Animal League America's Prestigious DogCatemy Mutt-i-grees® Rescue Awards, Hosted By ABC News Good Morning America Co-Anchors, Honors Animal Advocates & Highlights Life-Saving Partnerships

Dec 12, 2012, 10:00 ET from North Shore Animal League America

Featuring Renowned Dog Behavior Expert Cesar Millan, Honoring Warner Bros. Consumer Products & Iraq War Veteran Steve Johnston & Highlighting Award-Winning Student Created PSAs

PORT WASHINGTON, N.Y., Dec. 12, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- North Shore Animal League America, the world's largest no-kill animal rescue and adoption organization, will hold its annual DogCatemy Mutt-i-grees® Rescue Awards Gala on Monday, December 17th at 6 p.m. at the Waldorf Astoria New York. Highlighting the life-saving efforts of Animal League America, this annual event will also celebrate the inaugural Mutt-i-grees® Express rescue of over 100 animals from across the country that were given a ticket to a new life on board the Mutt-i-grees Express. The Mutt-i-grees Express, will be present at the Gala, with some of the Mutt-i-grees from the inaugural journey who will be up for adoption.



The evening will begin with a celebrity Red Carpet cocktail hour attended by Animal League America Spokesperson Beth Stern and Animal League America Supporters HGTV's Tanya Marchiol, Renowned Dog Behaviorist Cesar Millan, Actors Kathryn Erbe, Renee Felice Smith and Josh Flitter, and Broadcasters Michael Kay and Jodi Applegate. ABC News Good Morning America Co-Anchors Lara Spencer (who has adopted from Animal League America), Josh Elliott and Sam Champion will lead the program as the Masters of Ceremonies.

The Gala is themed around the rapidly expanding Mutt-i-grees® Movement, a movement that generates awareness of the plight of shelter animals, elevates their status and reduces animal cruelty through education and innovative programs, such as the Mutt-i-grees Curriculum, a unique approach to teaching children social, emotional and instinctual skills as well as highlighting the individual characteristics and needs of Mutt-i-grees, and the Mutt-i-grees Express.

Dog Behavior Expert and TV Star Cesar Millan will present the Cesar Millan Award for Excellence in Mutt-i-grees Education to Warner Bros. Consumer Products. The award, created to honor The Cesar Millan Foundation, which funds the Mutt-i-grees Curriculum, recognizes the impact that Warner Bros. Consumer Products is having in the animal humane field. Warner Bros. Consumer Products (with the full support of Scooby-Doo, who is Animal League America's official Pet Ambassador), in collaboration with The Cesar Millan Foundation, created the National Family Pack Walk to support the rescue, rehabilitation and adoption of Mutt-i-grees across the country.  The 2nd annual National Family Pack Walk was held on the National Mall in Washington D.C. in September, where 10,000 dog lovers and their canine companions rallied together for the cause.

Beth Stern, Animal League America Spokesperson, will also present the Hero Award to Special Agent for the Diplomatic Security Service, Steven Johnston. When Special Agent Johnston was stationed in Iraq in 2009, he and his fellow soldiers cared for several homeless dogs, including Oso and Misty May, a pregnant stray. When it came time for his deployment to end, Special Agent Johnston feared that the dogs would be killed. With the help of others, Steven made sure that Oso and the pups were transported safely back to the United States. Today, Oso is part of the Johnston family, and all three of Misty May's pups have found homes as well. 

The evening will include a special presentation featuring prize-winning Public Service Announcements created by students nationwide, encouraging Americans to adopt Mutt-i-grees. The students participated in a national contest that is part of the Mutt-i-grees Curriculum. A $10,000 Grand Prize grant and three $1,500 Regional Prize grants will be presented to each winning school at the event. The winning schools are from New York, California, Missouri and Arkansas.

The DogCatemy Mutt-i-grees Rescue Awards Gala reflects Animal League America's belief that all shelter pets deserve a loving home. Since its inception in 1944, Animal League America has saved more than one million lives. The proceeds from the Gala will enable Animal League America to strengthen its nationwide rescue efforts, saving nearly 20,000 lives each year. 

Animal League America would like to thank its 2012 DogCatemy Sponsors:

  • Mutt-i-grees Curriculum Sponsors: MuttNation Foundation, MBS Insight and Butler Schein Animal Health.
  • Center Stage Sponsor: Karmazin Foundation

For more information about North Shore Animal League America and the Mutt-i-grees Movement, visit

Animal League America has saved more than 1,000,000 lives.  As the world's largest no-kill rescue and adoption organization, we understand that a rescue isn't complete until each animal is placed into a loving home.  Our innovative programs provide education to reduce animal cruelty and advance standards in animal welfare.  Our staff and volunteers work tirelessly in the pursuit of our vision of a world where all companion animals find permanent homes to end euthanasia. For more information, visit

The Mutt-i-grees Curriculum is an innovative program that builds on the affinity between children and animals, providing a unique context to teach compassion, empathy and social responsibility.  Developed by the Yale School of the 21st Century in collaboration with North Shore Animal League America, and funded by the Millan Foundation, the Curriculum highlights the unique characteristics and desirability of shelter dogs, known as Mutt-i-grees. 

Warner Bros. Consumer Products, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company, is one of the leading licensing and retail merchandising organizations in the world.

World-renowned dog behaviorist Cesar Millan officially established the Cesar Millan Foundation with the mission to create and deliver community humane education programs and promote animal welfare. Since its inception in 2007, the Cesar Millan Foundation has provided grants and materials to non-profit animal organizations to support the rescue, rehabilitation, and rehoming of abused and abandoned dogs, mobilized emergency assistance through the Daddy's Emergency Animal Rescue (DEAR) Fund, and contributed critical funding and professional insight to develop The Mutt-i-grees Curriculum with The Pet Savers Foundation, in collaboration with Yale University's School of the 21st Century. For more information visit

A GSI Commerce Company (Nasdaq: EBAY), MBS offers a range of outsourced database and enterprise decisioning solutions and services, including: strategic services for goal setting, measurement and meaningful data identification and patterning; analytical solutions that help clients optimize marketing program response, revenue and efficiency; customized database solutions enabling marketers to access a holistic view of a customer's multichannel activity; and customer data integration. MBS has longstanding relationships with many of the world's leading multichannel retail, not-for-profit and healthcare organizations, including: North Shore Animal League America, Tiffany & Co., Things Remembered, Bloomingdale's, Cleveland Clinic and Brooks Brothers. For more information, please visit

ABOUT MUTTNATION FOUNDATION The Foundation's mission is to raise funds through donations from the officers and directors of the Foundation and the general public, through direct donations, occasional benefit concerts and other fundraising mechanisms in order to support other 501(c)(3) organizations and governmental institutions or entities whose purpose is to build animal shelters for better care; increase pet adoption and encourage responsible pet guardianship; rehabilitate sick or unsocialized animals; fund spay/neuter programs; reduce/eliminate euthanasia of healthy animals; and train shelter dogs for purposes of therapy programs, assistance for wounded military personnel and dogs-in-prisons programs.

ABOUT BUTLER SCHEIN ANIMAL HEALTH Butler Schein Animal Health®- the U.S. animal health business of Henry Schein, Inc. (NASDAQ: HSIC) is the leading U.S. animal health distributor for wellness, compliance, and practice management solutions. Partnering with more than 400 suppliers, Butler Schein Animal Health offers the broadest selection of products and services to veterinarians, including: dentistry, diagnostics, diets, equipment and supplies, nutraceuticals, parasiticides, pharmaceuticals, private label, financing, equipment repair, hospital design, home delivery, inventory management, technology, and more. For more information, call (888) 691-2724, or visit Follow Butler Schein Animal Health on Twitter @ButlerSchein, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+ and YouTube.

Media Contact: Lindsey Calabrese (516)840-0066

SOURCE North Shore Animal League America