Matt Bershadker, President and CEO of the ASPCA, and Sarah Hyland, actress, vegetarian, and animal rights activist spoke this week about the importance of matching pets with families. The real stars of the day, though, were Barkley Bixby, Hyland’s adorable maltipoo, and his canine pals.
As part of their campaign to help the ASPCA find homes for over 5000 pets during their Mega Match-a-Thon weekend, Swiffer invited me and my pets to surprise a friend with a Swiffer Big Green Box and to join Bershadker, Hyland, Barkley Bixby, and their other fluffy friends in learning about pet adoption.
My cats declined. Possibly they stayed behind to tidy up? I’m not holding my breath.
Instead, my baby came as my plus one and made some new friends.
Bershadker shared with me that the Mega Match-a-Thon is a great opportunity for shelters to not only make those adoption matches but to try out innovative ideas and partnerships, like the one with Swiffer. According to the Swiffer Cleaning Index, half of Americans say that concerns about pet hair and shedding in their home is one of the top reasons they worry about getting a pet, wouldn’t get a pet or don’t have one. More than one third (38 percent) of pet owners also say the leading source of “pet cleaning tensions” in their home is hair, dust bunnies and/or shedding.
To address this, Swiffer provided approximately 7,000 pet adopters at more than 100 shelters nationwide with a free Swiffer Sweeper.
Another one of these innovative ideas is the “free over three” incentive to adopt older pets.
The goal, Bershadker explained, is to get pets out of shelters and into homes. The ASPCA provides shelters with the resources to try programs like foster to adoptions, in which pet foster families are trained and deputized to make that adoption match.
Even better than adopting pets out of shelters, Bershadker said, is to keep pet families together in the first place. Pointing to research that says the vast majority of pet owners who come to shelters do not wish to surrender their pets, the ASPCA is helping shelter workers to identify common obstacles. Pet deposits, pet fences, and more can help keep families together.
Ultimately, Bershadker said the work the ASPCA does is about saving lives.
Hopefully Hyland and Swiffer can help draw attention to this need and show loving families that they can adopt a shelter pet.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.