13th annual pet adoption drive runs through new year

RANCHO SANTA FE — Once again this year, Iams and Helen Woodward Animal Center will team up with more than 3,500 animal organizations worldwide to encourage pet adoption during the 13th annual Home-4-the-Holidays Pet Adoption Drive.
“We are honored that so many organizations worldwide have partnered with us to make this program a success,” said Mike Arms, founder of the adoption drive and president of Helen Woodward Animal Center. “We are especially grateful to the organizations in our own backyard here in San Diego who have supported us year after year.”
Among those participating are Borrego Animal Rescue, Camp Pendleton Animal Rescue, Chihuahua Rescue of San Diego, Coronado Animal Care Facility, Foundation for the Care of Indigent Animals, Friends of Cats, It’s the Pits Dog Rescue, Labradors and Friends, San Diego Turtle and Tortoise Society and Shelter Pet Partners.
From so many partners there are a wide variety of pets from which to choose.
“We have big dogs, little ones and everything in between all ages, all sizes and all colors,” said Beth Chee, spokeswoman for the Rancho Santa Fe based organization. “We have dozens of cats and kittens all ages, sizes and colors. “We have Guiness, who has been here for a while. He is a stout 1 1/2 year old black terrier blend. What is fun about him is his white facial hair and white chest. The white facial hair gives him expressions. When you play with him, he feels like a little person.
Then there is Cupid the cat.
“Cupid is a rather large cat, I describe him as a flour sack of a cat you throw over your shoulder. He’s 9 years old and is diabetic, which is managed with medication. He is calm and takes his medication calmly. He’s been tough to places.
Another animal that stands out in my mind is Nacho, an Australian Shepard Blend, one of the cutest puppies I have ever seen,” she said.
“We have brand new puppies right now,” Chee said.
The program, which runs from Oct. 1 through Jan. 3, 2012, has helped 5.8 million pets find loving homes across the globe.
The goal this year in this annual drive is to place 1.5 pets into loving homes this holiday season, Chee said. Another interesting fact is that the first week of Home For The Holidays, 76,000 pets have been adopted.
The goal this year for Helen Woodward’s and their partners is to help 700 pets find homes during the drive. Last year they placed 703 pets.
“This year we hope to meet or exceed that,” she said.
New to the program this year are campaign ambassadors, NASCAR driver, Ryan Newman, and his wife, Krissie. The Newmans, who founded the Ryan Newman Foundation to educate and encourage people to spay or neuter their pets and to adopt animals from shelters and rescue centers, have joined Iams in their mission to help animals in need this holiday season
“As proud pet parents to five incredible animals, we are honored to join with Iams Home 4 the Holidays to find permanent homes to loving animals,” Ryan Newman said .
Krissie Newman added, “We truly believe that the real reward is when the pet adopts you and we invite everyone to join the millions of families who’ve already experienced the joy of animal adoption through this program.”
To learn more about the adoption drive, call (858) 756-4117 or visit


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