Purina® Pro Plan® Rally to Rescue® Asks America to Vote for the Most Extraordinary Pet Rescue Survival Story

Doing More™ for Pets Rescue Stories Contest Shines Spotlight on Pet Adoption and Goal of Finding Homes for 400,000 Deserving Pets by the End of 2010

Jun 07, 2010, 06:00 ET from Nestle Purina PetCare Company

ST. LOUIS, June 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Many pet rescue stories tug at our heart strings and show the unique bond between pets and their owners.  Ten such stories represent some "paw"-inspiring tales of lovable canines that make up the finalists in the 2010 Purina® Pro Plan® Rally to Rescue® Doing More™ for Pets Rescue Stories Contest.  Now, America has the chance to vote for the most remarkable story and help choose the winner.

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The rescue organization Ambassador, rescue pet and owner featured in the winning story will be awarded with a trip to the National Dog Show presented by Purina® in Philadelphia in November. The winning pet rescue organization will also receive $5,000 in Purina® Pro Plan® brand pet food coupons.

This nationwide contest promotes the amazing but often untold stories of pet rescue and raises awareness about its importance.  Doing More™ for Pets honors rescue pets that have overcome great odds to survive and thrive under harrowing circumstances, thanks to the incredible hard work and dedication of small pet rescue organizations.  Nearly 100 stories were submitted, and a judging panel selected the 10 most inspiring success stories as finalists.

Through October 1, pet lovers across the country can visit www.rallytorescue.org to view the 10 finalist pet rescue stories and help make one canine the top dog with their vote. The contest winner will be determined by a combination of a popular vote and judges' scores.  

"These 10 stories are truly inspiring and pull on the heart strings of the pet lover in all of us," said Heather Gettys, senior brand manager for Purina® Pro Plan®. "We're proud to help shine the light on these special pets and the amazing people who rescued them."  

Doing More for Pets Rescue Stories Contest Finalists

Pets honored as the 10 finalists in the Purina® Pro Plan® Doing More™ for Pets Rescue Stories Contest include:  

  • Asher, submitted by Tennessee Valley Golden Retriever Rescue (Knoxville, TN)
    • The transformation from sick and fragile to gorgeous and loving has made Asher the golden retriever's life with his new family more meaningful then they could have ever imagined.
  • Bubbles, submitted by Raining Cats N Dogs (Redding, CA)
    • After intensive surgery and endless care and attention, a sick six-week-old puppy, weighing only six pounds and starving, soon found health, happiness and a wonderful home to call her own.
  • Buddy, submitted by Border Collies In Need, Inc. (Phelan, CA)
    • Found severely mauled when he was used as a bait dog for competitive dog fighting, Buddy is now thriving.  In fact, the gratefulness of this once-mistreated Border Collie has inspired others to realize that no matter what life hands you, a good heart will always overcome the bad.
  • JoJo, submitted by From the Heart Rescue (Canutillo, TX)
    • Once abandoned with a broken leg, this courageous dog now uses her own journey through life to inspire humans recovering from orthopedic injuries as a service dog.
  • Kaylene, submitted by Husky Haven (Houston)
    • Within the first few months of her life, a petite Siberian husky puppy went from being abused and abandoned on the side of a road to finding a forever home with her new best friend through the help of a devoted pet rescue organization.
  • Kobe, submitted by Dalmatian Rescue North Texas (Dallas)
    • Hit by a car, stranded, starving and left to fend for themselves on the side of the road, a Dalmatian mother and her pup are now strong on their road to recovery, and hopeful about finding a forever home.
  • Leopold, submitted by Great Lakes Weimaraner Rescue (Gary, IN)
    • After being rescued from a cold, lonely shelter, an injured yet hopeful Weimaraner had to give a little in order to gain a lot. An injury forced veterinarians to amputate his leg but he now has a loving family and a future thanks to many strangers who helped along the way.
  • Ollie, submitted by Animal Guardians of America (Plano, TX)
    • When it seemed that no one could keep up with the high-energy needs of a dog named Ollie and foster homes with other dogs weren't working, fate brought in someone who was just his speed.  
  • Ten, submitted by Alabama Pug Rescue and Adoption, Inc. (Birmingham, AL)
    • Found starving and severely malnourished, a spirited pug's life was threatened by an infection. But thanks to dedicated rescue workers, each day was a milestone and today he has exceeded all expectations and is a true perfect "Ten."
  • Wishbone, submitted by PupeLuv Rescue, Inc. (Waterford Township, MI)
    • When a kind soul was encountered by an abused, malnourished dog, his outreach to those who cared meant a new chance at a healthy life and a loving, forever home for this lucky dog.

About Pro Plan® Rally to Rescue®

Smaller pet rescue organizations help place nearly half a million dogs and cats in homes each year and represent nearly 45 percent of all pet adoption agencies.  However, they are often overlooked by potential donors due to more limited fundraising and marketing resources.

The Purina® Pro Plan® Rally to Rescue® campaign is committed to Doing More to help pet rescue organizations nationwide raise funds and awareness via local adoption events. The program helps pet rescue organizations give rescue pets the nutrition and care they need and the loving homes they deserve.  To help raise awareness and promote adoption, Rally to Rescue®  Ambassadors host adoption and fundraising events at pet retailers across the country and sell Doing More for Pets T-shirts onsite, online at www.rallytorescue.org and at Rally Across America events this summer and fall.

About Pro Plan® Rally Across America

Encouraging pet lovers to Do More™ for rescue pets and the organizations that care for them – by adopting, volunteering and giving – is the focus of the fourth annual Purina® Pro Plan® Rally Across America national road tour.  This year, the tour has set a goal of 400,000 pet adoptions by year end, building on the current total of more than 320,000 adoptions since the Rally to Rescue® program inception in 2005.  The tour also encourages pet lovers to contact local organizations and offer to help rescue pets by volunteering a few hours or by giving pet care items or a monetary donation, both of which provide valuable help.

In addition, event goers can receive training tips from Purina® Pro Plan® trainer Melissa Heeter with her rescue dog Viola. Heeter provides training techniques customized to pets' varied and unique personalities.  Pet owners can use these techniques at home with their own pets or their newest four-legged friend.

"When looking for a furry addition to their family, some potential pet owners may feel reluctant about adopting rescue pets out of concern they were given up because of behavioral problems or because they may have been abused," Heeter said.  "But that's not the case with many rescue pets and the truth is, just like any other pet, they can be a loving, wonderful, life-long companion.  Often it just takes a little training and patience for rescue pets to feel more at ease with their new environment."  

To find a pet rescue event near you, view the complete stories and vote in the Doing More for Pets Rescue Stories Contest, or to apply to become a Rally to Rescue® Ambassador, visit www.rallytorescue.org or www.facebook.com/rallytorescue.  

Nestle Purina PetCare Company promotes responsible pet care, community involvement and the positive bond between people and their pets.  A premiere global manufacturer of pet products, Nestle Purina PetCare is part of Swiss-based Nestle S.A., the world's largest food company.  Rally to Rescue is not a 501(c)(3) organization.


Abby Chiat: 312.729.4336

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Jadea Abolahrari: 314.982.3981

Nestle Purina PetCare Company

SOURCE Nestle Purina PetCare Company