It’s National Pet Day, and like many other nationally celebrated animal-related events, it’s poised to create public awareness regarding certain issues pertaining to our furry friends. Founded by Colleen Paige, who also founded National Puppy Day, among others, National Pet Day aims to spread the word about the plight of many animals awaiting forever homes in shelters all across the nation, and encourages animal lovers to support shelters and rescues in the U.S.
Many pet specialty retailers might take the opportunity to partner with local shelters and rescues, if they aren’t already, to help spread awareness to their local communities. Canada-based Pet Valu—the number three retailer on our 2012 list of Top 25 Pet Specialty Retailers, with close to 500 stores throughout Canada, and the Mid-Atlantic and Northeastern U.S.—is one such retailer spreading the word about pet adoption. Its Pet Appreciation Weekend (PAW), which will be celebrated at Pet Valu locations April 13–14, parallels National Pet Day’s message.
An adoptable dog at one of Pet Valu's PAW events last year.
PAW was created in 2010 as a way to give back to the community, thank Pet Valu’s customers, and raise awareness and funds for the company’s rescue partners. Every Pet Valu location will host small carnivals with games, refreshments, giveaways and pet adoptions—the stores will have adoptable pets onsite. “PAW is a really fun time to shop Pet Valu stores,” says Amy DePaoli, Pet Valu’s director of marketing. “There is an exciting atmosphere, it is festive and energetic, there are treats for pets and their parents, and there are many great deals.”
The lighthearted event boasts a serious message. The pet specialty retail chain sees it as a chance to build awareness and raise funs for local animal agencies and services. “Most everyone at Pet Valu are pet lovers, and we are all about the great good of these animals. Many of our employees are volunteers at shelters and some are even foster pet parents,” DePaoli says.
“The entire Pet Valu team is excited about PAW, and we all put our heart and soul into raising as much money as possible for these deserving shelters and rescue groups, as well as finding forever homes for needy pets.”
While the events are focused around the weekend, Pet Valu and its customers will be raising money, donating food and supplies to local animal charities all month long.
Last year, in the U.S.-based stores, over 300 pets were adopted and more than $100,000 was raised during the event. Combined with the company’s Canadian stores, Pet Valu raised more than $500,000 in 2012. DePaoli says this year, the company hopes to raise $750,000 between its U.S. and Canadian stores. “Pet Valu customers are incredibly generous, and I know we will reach this amazing amount of money!”