March 12, 2009
Photo Contest Raises More than $500,000 to Help Animals
The HSUS' Online Pet Photo Contest Funds Spay/Neuter Programs for 200 Organizations Worldwide
More than 45,000 pet lovers entered their pet's photos in The Humane Society of the United States' second annual Spay Day Online Pet Photo Contest. The contest raised more than $550,000 for spay/neuter efforts worldwide, with nearly half of that going to local animal organizations and the remaining to fund The HSUS' spay/neuter projects.
"Spaying and neutering is a tangible and proven pathway to reducing the pet overpopulation problem, and the response to our Spay Day Photo Contest demonstrates that people understand that fact," said Wayne Pacelle, president and CEO of The HSUS. "The use of these funds will save countless lives, and we hope it spawns even more work to promote humane sterilization as a strategy to prevent euthanasia."
Contestants who participated in the Fundraising Category chose the charity or charities — such as The HSUS, Humane Society International or one of the more than 200 local organizations that fulfilled charity eligibility requirements — to receive funds every time his or her pet photo received a donation and vote online.
The Fundraising Category winning entrant is Martina the dog of Isle, Minn., who received more than 12,000 votes, raising $12,268 for HSUS and HSI spay/neuter efforts.
To see all the top pets in the Fundraising Category, please click here. The winners in the Judged Category will be announced on March 16. Those winners are determined based on the quality of their photos and stories, as decided by our celebrity judges.
As the grand prize winner, Martina will receive a photo shoot with famed pet photographer Amanda Jones and recognition in HSUS publications. The top 10 fundraising winners receive custom oil portraits of their submitted photos by Janie Coleman or Kirk Fanelly and a signed copy of John Grogan's bestselling novel Marley & Me. The top 500 fundraising winners will receive a $25 electronic gift card to Humane Domain, The HSUS' online store, and Legacy Interactive's "Pet Pals: New Leash on Life" computer game.
Spay Day takes place on the last Tuesday of February, with events in honor of the day occurring throughout February. Event organizers across the United States and around the world hold special spay/neuter clinics and conduct outreach efforts to raise funds and promote spaying and neutering. Since its inception in 1995, more than 1.5 million dogs and cats have been spayed or neutered as a result of Spay Day.
Spay Day Online Pet Photo Contest sponsors include IDEXX Laboratories, Petplan Pet Insurance, Zootoo.com Shelter Makeover and Legacy Interactive.
The Humane Society of the United States is the nation's largest animal protection organization — backed by 11 million Americans, or one of every 28. For more than a half-century, The HSUS has been fighting for the protection of all animals through advocacy, education and hands-on programs. Celebrating animals and confronting cruelty — On the web at humanesociety.org.