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Vol. 2 No. 2 April/May

Tour for Life finds new homes for shelter pets


This month, three 35-foot mobile adoption units will journey across the United States and cross over the northern border into Canada—while another crosses the Atlantic Ocean to the United Kingdom— making stops at local animal shelters. The mission is to promote animal welfare and shelter pet adoption as part of North Shore Animal League America’s (NSALA) Tour for Life, the annual kickoff of the league’s worldwide Pet Adoptathon.

Fort Dodge Animal Health staff members welcome the Mobile No. 4 unit from the 2004 Tour for Life in Overland Park, Kan. This year marks Fort Dodge’s third consecutive year sponsoring Tour for Life and Pet Adoptathon.

Even before these mobile adoption units head out, they’ve come a long way—in history, that is. NSALA dreamed up Pet Adoptathon in 1995. The goal was to find a loving home for every cat and dog in their Port Washington, N.Y., shelter, which housed more than 500 pets. In May, the shelter hosted activities on the grounds, invited the local media, and stayed open for 36 hours straight. The event was a huge success: Every shelter pet was adopted.

NSALA shared its success story with other animal shelters across the United States, and a year later, the organization was ready for another record-breaking Pet Adoptathon. This time, they invited shelters around the world to participate by holding adoptathons the same weekend. The results have been staggering. Since 1995, Pet

For your information

For more information on North Shore Animal League America and these events, visit www.nsalamerica.org, www.pet adoptathon.com, and www.tourforlife.com.

Adoptathon has helped more than 210,000 shelter animals worldwide find new homes.

Spreading the word Of course, accomplishing a feat of this mag- nitude requires generating buzz—and spon- sors with generous hearts to cover the costs. Fort Dodge Animal Health is sponsoring Tour for Life and Pet Adoptathon as part of the National Pet Wellness Month (NPWM) campaign. Participating NPWM veterinarians will visit each adoption site and explain the benefits of twice-a-year wellness exams to pet owners. These veterinarians will perform wellness exams for all newly-adopted pets— as well as pets who attend the tour—using a wellness checklist and risk assessment form.

In addition, after NSALA received don- ated billboard space to advertise the events, officials wondered where they would find the funds to produce the advertisements. Fort Dodge stepped up again and covered the production costs for 200 billboards across the country. “Fort Dodge helps make this event happen,” says Elysia Howard, the associate director for NSALA. The compa-

ny even went the extra mile by creating and distributing publicity posters for veterinari- ans to hang in their clinics, she says.

Since 2001, Tour for Life has stirred countless families worldwide to open their hearts and homes to shelter companions. Last year, the tour visited 34 U.S. cities in 21 states. At each stop, local shelters and sponsors held activities, offered valuable pet health and ownership information, and gave away gifts to attendees. Between the two events, more than 22,000 shelter pets were adopted into loving homes in 2004.

The 2005 Tour for Life aims even high- er: Judge Judy will preside as the interna- tional spokesperson, and the tour will make stops in the United States, Canada, and Europe this month before launching another Pet Adoptathon weekend April 30 to May 1.

Dear Doctor is brought to you by Fort Dodge Animal Health. To reach us, write Dear Doctor, Editorial Office, 8033 Flint, Lenexa, KS 66214; e-mail thedeardoctor @yahoo.com; or call (800) 255-6864, ext. 129. Copyright 2005 by Fort Dodge Animal Health. Repro- duction without prior permission from Fort Dodge Animal Health is prohibited.


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