GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., May 25, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- It's all paws on deck this week for pet lovers from BISSELL Homecare Inc., Animal Lifeline, the Petfinder.com Foundation and The Animal Rescue Site, who have organized a group of volunteers that today embarks on an 8-day operation to improve the lives of homeless pets in Eastern Kentucky. BISSELL, a longtime advocate for pet adoption, is funding Animal Lifeline's Rescue U trip through a $20,000 grant that allows the group to rehabilitate several animal shelters in need of support, educate shelter workers and help place adoptable pets in forever homes. Animal Lifeline is a nonprofit support organization for rescues, shelters and municipal groups working to improve the lives of homeless pets.
From May 25-June 1, student volunteers and animal care professionals from across the U.S. will undertake a series of "paws-on" clean-up projects to improve the conditions at Kentucky's Rowan County Animal Shelter and Menifee County Animal Shelter. The group will clean and repair existing kennels as well as build new ones; install chain link fences; create cat and dog beds; and build an outdoor enclosure and play area for cats. In addition, BISSELL, Animal Lifeline and the Petfinder.com Foundation will participate in an educational seminar to inform representatives from 15 local shelter and rescue groups on pet clean-up and other factors affecting adoption.
"BISSELL believes in supporting families and recognizes that pets are a great addition to a family. But our research reveals that pet clean-up is a significant barrier to pet adoption in America – 38 percent of Americans say they'd add a pet to their home if clean-up was easier," says Rich Sorota BISSELL's senior vice president and general manager of global marketing and sales. "This unfortunate reality is what compels BISSELL pet lovers to support animal welfare programs like Rescue U and the Petfinder.com Foundation, so that more pets can find their forever homes."
At the end of the week, volunteers will transport approximately 40 dogs from the Rowan and Menifee county shelters to Petfinder.com shelters and rescue organizations in the Northeast for adoption through the program.
Pet lovers can follow the week-long Rescue U effort through photos and video by visiting BISSELL's Facebook page or the Petfinder.com Foundation blog. To further rally consumers around pet adoption, for each new fan that registers on BISSELL's Facebook page beginning June 27, the company will make a $0.50 donation to the Petfinder.com Foundation in order to reach its goal of contributing a total of $50,000 in 2011.
BISSELL supports the pet community through contributions to more than 100 U.S. pet charities totaling over $200,000 annually, as well as through partnerships with organizations like Petfinder.com. For more information on BISSELL's pet programs, the complete line up of BISSELL pet products, cleaning tips and more, visit the online Pet Lovers Community at www.bissell.com/pets.
About BISSELL Homecare, Inc.
A 135-year-old company, Grand Rapids-based BISSELL Homecare, Inc., is the top-selling brand in floor care appliances in North America* with an expanding presence worldwide. As an innovator of cleaning products, BISSELL produces and sells vacuums, sweepers, deep-cleaning machines, bare floor cleaners and cleaning formulas at retail locations across the globe. The company is in its fourth generation of family leadership.
The Petfinder.com Foundation, a nonprofit 501(c)3 public charity, helps homeless pets by saving lives through adoptions, helping shelters prepare for and recover from disaster and working to make sure animal welfare organizations across the country are more sustainable. Its mission is to ensure no adoptable pet is euthanized for lack of a home. Since 2003 the foundation has provided over $15 million in grants to animal welfare organizations and Petfinder.com member shelters and rescue groups.
Rescue University is a program of Animal Lifeline, a nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting animal rescues, shelters and municipal groups who advocate for homeless pets. The mission of Rescue University is to involve the next generation of Americans in volunteerism to benefit animal rescue and sheltering efforts. Since 2008, the program has allowed college-aged students to volunteer in local shelters, run supply drives and travel to rural communities to provide support and resources to animal rescue groups.
*based on NPD sales data
SOURCE BISSELL Homecare, Inc.