Lisa A. Shenkle
Vice President Marketing & Communications
“The Pet Effect” Showcases ‘Lead By Example’ Good Deeds from Pet Industry
Washington, D.C. – With more than $183 million donated in the form of food and general supplies, as well as direct monetary aid, the pet industry has helped more than 7.5 million homeless and shelter pets in the last two decades. The remarkable stories of community outreach and support are captured in the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council’s (PIJAC) newest program, The Pet Effect.
“The Pet Effect is a program intended to ‘lead by example,’” says Mike Canning, president and CEO of PIJAC. “It is no accident that the pet industry takes the lead in advancing local initiatives that enable rescues, help shelter animals and promote pet education throughout the U.S. Those of us in the industry have a passion for pets and this dedication to responsible pet ownership engenders amazing generosity from the pet industry.”
“Donations are only a part of the effect that the pet industry has on companion and shelter animals nationwide,” says Cathy Calliotte, vice president of marketing and communications for PIJAC. “These companies, in communities across the country, have actively facilitated everything from conservation support and animal assisted therapy to dog parks, pet education programs and countless shelter adoption events resulting in hundreds of thousands of adoptions in cities nationwide.”
The Pet Effect grew out of the awareness of the profound affect that pets have on people – and our responsibility to have a positive effect on theirs. In discussions with individual companies across the United States, PIJAC realized that the best way to positively impact society is to demonstrate that giving back makes a difference. The Pet Effect is a cache of individual stories with collective impact, intended to ignite still more companies, and individuals, toward doing great things in their communities – all in the name of assisting pets, homeless or not, and responsible pet owners.
Companies such as Natural Balance, Nestle’ Purina, Petco and PetSmart utilize access to a national network of retail outlets to make significant contributions in communities across the country. Their respective donations, in-kind and monetary, have directly impacted pets, and their families, such as Petco’s National Pet Food Bank, which has supplied more than 2 million pounds of pet food and litter to help pet parents feed and keep their pets through tough economic times and PetSmart’s $165 million in grants via their PetSmart Charities, Inc. donated to animal welfare organizations making them one of the largest funders of animal welfare initiatives in North America.
It is not just the ‘fur’ set of the pet world receiving a commitment from pet industry leaders. United Pet Group has helped establish hospital tanks for sea turtles devastated by an oil spill as well as provided school education programs on marine conservation and pet ownership and the Sarasota Parrot Conservatory works with pediatric cancer patients and elderly through their “Parrots for Patients” outreach programs.
“There are as many pet-industry led programs as there are types of pets available,” says Mike Canning. “PIJAC is a family of fins, fur and feathers and we’re doing all that we can to positively impact the lives of domestic animals, and pet owners, to support, educate and invigorate the passion we all share about pets.”
To learn more about The Pet Effect and the myriad programs around the country, currently in place - and growing, go to www.pijac.org/peteffect and click on The Pet Effect tab to see all that the industry is doing to help animals in need.