Ellen DeGeneres, Halo pet food, and the United States Postal Service have teamed up to raise awareness of the need to adopt shelter pets starting April 30th with the highly anticipated debut of the latest in a series of social awareness stamps – ten new 44-cent animal rescue stamps. Designed by Derry Noyes of Washington, D.C. and photographed by Sally Andersen-Bruce, each of the 10 stamp designs features a dog or cat from an animal shelter near Bruce’s home in New Milford, Connecticut.
Each of the 10 pets featured was chosen to represent the many pets in shelters who are surrendered each year because their owners could no longer care for them. Each of them had been homeless at one time; all but one had been adopted when they were photographed.
Here are their stories, courtesy of the Stamps To The Rescue website:
- Willow, a beautiful solid gray cat was left in a box by the door of the shelter as a kitten. When the animal control officer met her there, she knew the scrawny, little gray kitten should come home with her. Willow is now part of a happy family that includes three dogs and two other cats.
- The owners of Teddy’s mother were surprised when she gave birth to another litter. They couldn’t afford to raise more puppies, so they gave Teddy, a terrier mix, and his siblings to a shelter. Today, Teddy lives with a loving family, their other Jack Russell, and a cat.
- Bianca was adopted through a senior-to-senior program which allows cats older than six to be adopted by a senior citizen at no cost. Bianca, a beautiful short-hair Torbi, has since passed away, but was well-loved and cared for in her final years.
- Trevor and his litter mates were found abandoned at 8-10 weeks of age at a new home construction site. The yellow lab puppies were rescued by Labrador Retriever Rescue of CT, Inc. Trevor was adopted by a couple who are a perfect match for his outgoing personality.
- Buddy is a pure-bred golden retriever who was purchased from a pet store. At only eight months old, he had such bad hips that his family gave him to a shelter. Now, Buddy is flourishing with his family who has improved his health through regular exercise and a good diet.
- Peaches, a striking grey tabby and white kitty, was born under a porch. She and her littermates had to be trapped to be taken to the shelter. There, all the kittens were spayed or neutered, given complete health exams, and put up for adoption.
- Bindu Su’s mother was handed over to an Australian Terrier rescue group when her owners found out she was expecting. Bindu Su, an Aussie mix, was adopted at eight weeks old. Now she competes in agility events and visits a local nursing home weekly.
- Frankie was brought to the shelter with his mother and two other kittens. Unfortunately, they were all very sick and this striking Birman mix was the only one to survive. Today, he is thriving in a loving home.
- Purchased at a pet shop on Thanksgiving when he was just eight weeks old, Jake’s original family quickly realized that they couldn’t take care of him. The pet shop had a no-return policy, so the little Boston Terrier was turned over to a shelter.
- Hungry, cold, and lucky, Lucas picked the right yard to wander into. It belonged to an animal shelter volunteer. The gorgeous orange tabby cat was taken to the shelter, where he got a complete physical, was neutered, and put up for adoption.
The popular 2002 Spay Neuter stamps were sold out by mid-2003
“As one of the many volunteers for the local animal shelter, I am proud to see our mission being shared so beautifully and it gives me hope that we will see shelter adoptions increase as a result,” commented Julia Lilly, a volunteer for Cowtown Loves Animal Shelter Pets.
Halo, Purely for Pets and its co-owner, animal advocate Ellen DeGeneres, plan to harness the power of social networking to donate 1 million meals of Halo’s Spot’s Stew to shelter pets awaiting adoption. For each new follower on Twitter, and each new Facebook friend, Halo will donate 1 meal. For each new Facebook friend or online coupon redeemed, Halo will donate 1 meal. For each Halo intro kit (including a collectible stamp pin), Halo will donate 5 meals. According to Martha Denton, Richardson Humane Society, “I think the stamps are gorgeous and will do a lot to raise awareness, especially with Ellen DeGeneres involved. They are a great way to get our message out to the public.”
The 1966 5-cent Humane Treatment of Animal stamp
“We think the new animal welfare stamp campaign is GREAT! Shelter Pets need all the help they can get – and not only will they be getting much needed help and exposure, but we feel the campaign will help raise awareness to the pet overpopulation problems in our country. Plus, it is so cool that they use pictures of cute dogs and cats that have found homes!” said Heather Ciceran, Vice President & Treasurer for New Beginnings Cat Rescue.
One of the first US postal service stamps with an animal-related social awareness message was a 1966 5-cent stamp promoting humane treatment of animals. And according to Dave Failor, executive director of USPS Stamp Services, they still gets letters calling for more stamps like the First-Class Neuter or Spay commemorative postage stamps issued in September 2002. The postal service sold out of all 250 million of the stamps, that featured Kirby and Samantha, a photogenic puppy and kitten by mid-2003.
For more info: Stamps To The Rescue!, Halo, Purely For Pets 1 Million Meals
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