SAN DIEGO, Jan. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- PETCO customers from around the country are making a difference in the lives of homeless animals this new year by virtue of their donations to the PETCO Foundation's annual Tree of Hope fundraiser.
This year's Tree of Hope, conducted through the holidays at more than 1,000 PETCO stores across the nation, raised a record $4 million - up nearly 30 percent from last year - and gave customers the opportunity to receive snowflake card ornaments or T-shirts in return for a donation. Donations to Tree of Hope, the foundation's largest annual fundraiser, are used to fund grants to shelters and rescue groups throughout the country in their work to help animals in need.
"Donations from thousands of PETCO customers will enable the PETCO Foundation to help animal shelters and rescue groups nationwide in caring for thousands of homeless pets," said Paul Jolly, the foundation's executive director. "Despite the tough economy, our customers continue to give hope and help us address the growing needs of our animal-welfare partners."
Half of the funds raised during Tree of Hope will be put to work in the local communities where the dollars were donated, while the foundation will use the other half for regional programs and relief efforts.
The foundation also partnered with IAMS in its annual Home 4 the Holidays adoption drive, which aimed to find homes for 1.5 million animals by the end of the holiday season. IAMS donated $1 to the PETCO Foundation for every bag of IAMS( )cat or dog food sold at PETCO stores from Nov. 7 to Dec. 24.
Donations to the PETCO Foundation enable the organization to fulfill its mission to:
- Provide thousands of spay/neuter surgeries;
- Distribute millions of dollars of food and supplies to animals in need;
- Find lifelong, loving homes for thousands of homeless animals; and
- Strengthen the human-animal bond through food banks, animal-assisted therapy and humane education.
Together, PETCO customers help make a difference for thousands of animals in each of these important areas. For example, this year's Tree of Hope funds have the potential to support the cost of more than 200,000 spay and neuter procedures or to feed more than 140,000 orphaned pets for two months.
To learn more about the PETCO Foundation and about how you too can make a difference, visit www.petcofoundation.org. To learn more about PETCO or to find a location near you, visit www.petco.com. For the latest news on anything and everything PETCO - from updates about the company to incredible acts of animal kindness - visit the company's blog at www.petcoscoop.com.
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 more than $60 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 about 6,200 local animal welfare groups across the country to help find homes for more than 200,000 adoptable animals every year.