Ellen DeGeneres to be Honored for Commitment to Animals at Third Annual PETCO Foundation Gala on April 30

All proceeds from the annual fundraising event will benefit the Halo Pet Foundation

Mar 16, 2011, 11:07 ET from PETCO Foundation from ,PETCO

SAN DIEGO, March 16, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Celebrating more than 12 years of making a difference for animals, the PETCO Foundation will host its third annual fundraising gala at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, April 30, at the newly upgraded San Diego Marriott Marquis & Marina. This year's event honors Ellen DeGeneres, a long-time friend of the PETCO Foundation and co-owner of pet food maker Halo, Purely for Pets, for her lifelong commitment to animals. Proceeds from the event will benefit the Halo Pet Foundation.

Each year, the PETCO Foundation gala recognizes one or more people or groups who share the foundation's mission to improve the quality of life for animals and the people who love and need them. This year, Ms. DeGeneres will receive the PETCO Foundation's inaugural HOPE Award, which celebrates the spirit of hope through a life dedicated to promoting the human-animal bond.

"We are fortunate to have a great many active supporters, and it's always an honor for us to celebrate the great work being done by our friends and partners to help animals in need," said Paul Jolly, Executive Director of the PETCO Foundation. "We've been big fans of Ellen and her dedication to animal welfare, both in her personal life and through her work with Halo, for many years. We're thrilled to recognize her at this year's gala, and to provide financial support to the Halo Pet Foundation."

Gala attendees will learn how Ellen has advocated for animals throughout her life, how the Halo Pet Foundation helps pets in need and promotes responsible pet ownership, and how the PETCO Foundation works to support more than 7,000 other local animal welfare groups across the country.

"I wish we lived in a world where caring for animals wasn't so rare that it deserved an award," said Ellen. "All I do is treat animals with the respect and dignity they deserve. I hope someday soon, everyone does the same. PETCO and the PETCO Foundation have made great efforts to protect animals and I commend them for going above and beyond the call of duty."

The event will be emceed by San Diego's KFMB Channel 8 anchors Dan Cohen and Kimberly King, and will feature a black tie-optional cocktail reception, dinner, dancing, entertainment, opportunity drawing and silent auction. All profits from the evening will go directly to the Halo Pet Foundation via the PETCO Foundation.

To learn more about the PETCO Foundation and how you can help, visit http://www.petcofoundation.org. To learn more about the gala or to RSVP to attend, visit http://www.petco.com/gala.

About PETCO and the PETCO Foundation

PETCO is a privately held specialty retailer that provides products, services and advice that make it easier for our customers to be great pet parents. We operate more than 1,000 stores in 50 states and the District of Columbia, as well as a leading pet products and information destination at www.petco.com. Our nonprofit organization, The PETCO Foundation, has raised nearly $70 million since its inception in 1999 to help promote and improve the welfare of companion animals. In conjunction with the Foundation, we work with and support approximately 7,000 local animal welfare groups across the country to help find homes for more than 200,000 adoptable animals every year.