iFetch Launches iFetch A Family Shelter Program
iFetch has a new give-back program aimed at helping long-stay shelter dogs find homes. iFetch A Family connects shelters and trainers across the U.S. to identify and support dogs that have been overlooked for adoption and need help becoming more attractive candidates to potential owners.
iFetch A Family will donate iFetch Too interactive ball launchers to qualifying shelters to increase the amount of playtime for dogs in need. The local trainers and shelters will use iFetch Too as a training aid as well. iFetch will also help the shelters publicize the dogs in need of adoption in their local area through social media and other financial support.
“Dogs in a shelter struggle with anxiety and depression, so new forms of enrichment and play help them cope with the stress of the environment,” said Crystal Dunn, director of iFetch A Family Training and owner of Leaps N' Hounds Dog Training in Austin, Texas. “As a trainer, I have observed firsthand how undesirable behaviors like leash aggression and reactivity can be tackled through training with an interactive toy like the iFetch. Outlets for play that exercise both the mind and body are very helpful in reducing anxiety and stress in animals.”
The iFetch team piloted the program at local shelter Austin Pets Alive! this winter and were able to secure the adoption of a Pit Bull mix named Mona who struggled to find an adopter for over a year. Mona worked on basic commands and overcoming her aggressive “take” of the ball while working with the iFetch Too.
“Shelter dogs start to feel the psychological effects of their environment in as little as two weeks,” said Debbie Hamill, chief marketing officer and owner at iFetch. “When I found the research showing that play increases the chances for adoption, I knew this was the perfect program for iFetch to launch. We look forward to fetching a family for more shelter dogs across the country.”