Hill’s Targets 1 Million Cat, Dog Adoptions

Pet nutrition company announces Second Chance for Love campaign to raise awareness of shelter adoption programs.

In an effort to raise awareness of shelter adoption programs, Hill’s Pet Nutrition of Topeka, Kan., has launched its 2008 Second Chance for Love program, with hopes that the program will lead to more than 1 million pet adoptions this year.

In 2007, Hill’s donated more than $30 million of pet food to shelters that adopted out more than 931,000 cats and dogs, the company reports. Under the program, Hill’s provides free pet food for dogs and cats cared for by the participating shelters.

“Hill’s has been actively supporting shelter adoptions through our shelter nutrition partnership program since 2002 and we believe that precisely balanced nutrition leads to a healthier, happier lifestyle and can strengthen the bond between people and their adopted pets,” says Dianne Perkins, Hill’s shelter partnership manager.

Since launching the shelter program, Hill’s says it has donated more than 60 million pounds of food valued at more than $78 million to more than 1,302 participating shelters, which have in turn adopted out nearly 3 million animals.

This year’s program includes a tour of participating shelters in various cities to raise awareness for the program and an online contest. Hill’s will underwrite the first 25 adoptions at each shelter event and provide new pet owners with a 5-pound bag of its Science Diet pet food and a pet adoption kit. The tour starts in May and runs through at least September, with stops in Seattle, San Francisco, Tampa, Chicago, Atlanta, and Philadelphia. For a full schedule, visit www.hillspet.com/secondchance.

In addition, pet photographer Jim Dratfield, who has worked with celebrity pet owners including Jennifer Aniston and Billy Joel, will join the tour, capturing moments of adopters and their new dogs and cats at adoption events. Photos will be available to the new pet owner.

“The bond between adopted pets and their owners is very special and I’m very excited to be working with Hill’s to help raise awareness for pet adoptions and help save 1 million cat and dog lives this year,” Dratfield says. “My own special relationship with my adopted dog, Kuma, inspired my career as a pet photographer and enables me to share my passion and love for all animals with others.”

For the contest, current and new adoptive pet owners can share their stories at the program’s website. Two grand prize winners will receive a year’s supply of pet food, a photo shoot with Dratfield in New York, and a $10,000 cash donation to their nominated shelter.

Eight second-place winners will win a year’s worth of pet food coupons and a $2,000 donation to their nominated shelter, and 50 “favorite shelter” prize winners will win $50 veterinary certificates and a set of pet carriers and bowls for their nominated shelter.

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