Big Businesses Show Big Hearts Toward Pets

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Be it Enron’s failed end-run, Bernie “Madoff with my fortune” or the oil companies some suspect are “gaming” the market (and gouging our wallets), we love to hate greed and avarice. For many of us, big business has become synonymous with chicanery and unscrupulous behavior.

This is unfortunate because a look beyond the broad brush reveals that there are plenty of companies doing good by their neighbors - and the planet. And they do so because it is the right thing to do.

In the coming months, Rescue Legacy will survey and highlight present and past businesses renowned not just for their quality products, but for how they give back to the animal rescue community. These companies will be featured individually on our upcoming “Spotlight” page along side particularly stellar rescue groups advocating on behalf of companion animals.

For now, here are a few big business interests more than deserving of recognition - and our patronage:

Bissell is not only committed to making vacuums that suck the unwanted microbes from our carpets and floors. Since 2011, The Bissell Pet Foundation (BPF) has swept away the dashed hopes of more than 120,000 homeless animals by funding pet fostering and adoption efforts. They also promote microchipping to keep pets and their families together and spay/neuter programs to address pet overpopulation.

The Foundation’s impact has been felt in all 50 states and Canada. With the help of generous supporters, BPF has awarded millions of dollars to a growing partner network of animal welfare organizations. The Animal Rescue Corps in Washington, D.C., has been awarded $20,000 to support emergency puppy mill rescue while New Leash on Life in Lebanon, Tennessee, was granted $10,000 to support low-cost spay/neuter.

Mac’s Mission in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, took home the grand prize of $30,000 by garnering the most votes in the BPF “Support the Shelters Sweepstakes.” Mac’s Mission is to help homeless dogs and those with special needs or injuries who would otherwise be euthanized. All beneficiaries and their specific funding missions are listed on the BPF’s “Action” page on their website.

Using $1.2 billion in proceeds from the sale of Triangle Publications in 1989, media mogul, Walter Annenberg, and his wife, Leonore, created the Annenberg Foundation. Known for generous funding of educational reform and cultural advancement at the national level, the Annenberg legacy has expanded to include environmental stewardship, social justice and animal welfare.

The Wallis Annenberg PetSpace in Playa Vista, California, represents an evolution of the Foundation from a traditional grant-making institution to one that is also “hands-on” at the community level offering large-scale solutions to systemic problems; in this case finding forever homes for homeless pets.

PetSpace features education programs exploring the history and science behind the human-companion animal bond, offers one-on-one consultations with adoption specialists and provides interactive adoption suites where individuals and families can mingle with available animals and find just the right pet for them. PetSpace is open from Wednesday through Sunday from 11 A.M. to 5 P.M.

In the market for new wheels? At a Subaru dealership, you can drive off with solid transportation serene in the knowledge that you have filled the holes in many an animal’s heart. Since 2008, Subaru has donated more than $20 million to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) as a part of their Share The Love partnership with the popular humane society. Subaru has also helped support more than 1,200 adoption events, helping more than 40,000 animals nationwide.

So, the next time we’re tempted to rail against “The Man,” it might help to remember that - quite often - the bigger they are, the more likely they are to “paw” it forward.

Joy Gaston, Director of development, contributed to this article