FRANKLIN, Tenn., Oct. 15, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Pet ownership is on the rise amid the pandemic with more than 11 million households having welcomed a new pet during COVID-191. While people continue to seek companionship and welcome new pets to their families, Mars Petcare is supporting the millions of pets in need of homes by expanding its annual BETTER CITIES FOR PETS Adoption Weekend. This year the event will be held virtually during Adopt a Shelter Pet Month on October 17-18 and will include shelters across BETTER CITIES FOR PETS certified cities in Middle Tennessee and Houston. As part of Adoption Weekend, Mars Petcare will cover up to $100,000 in adoption fees.

Joining in to support this year’s event is Mars Petcare partner, the Tennessee Titans, who are promoting the importance of pet adoption to find loving homes for hundreds of pets in their hometown. To help facilitate the adoption of pets in both participating cities, the Tennessee Titans are placing 200 cutouts of adoptable dogs and cats in the stadium for the Oct. 18 game against the Houston Texans. Viewers will be able to see these pets in the stands and can visit www.BetterCitiesforPets.com/AdoptionWeekend2020 for more information about adoptable pets in the two cities.

«Now more than ever people are looking to pets for comfort and companionship, and we want to ensure as many people as possible can experience the love and support that pets can offer,» said Jam Stewart, Vice President of Corporate Affairs at Mars Petcare. «By expanding this year’s BETTER CITIES FOR PETS Adoption Weekend, we hope to help more people find their forever friend and further support our mission of ending pet homelessness.»

The Mars Petcare BETTER CITIES FOR PETS Adoption Weekend will be hosted virtually via Zoom on Saturday (Oct. 17) and Sunday (Oct. 18) to promote a safe and contact-free process. The event will include both dogs and cats available for adoption. Participating shelters include:

  • Friends for Life Animal Shelter – Houston, TX
  • Houston Humane Society – Houston, TX
  • Metro Animal Care and Control – Nashville, TN
  • Nashville Humane Association – Nashville, TN
  • Williamson County Animal Center – Franklin, TN

«We’re proud to work with Mars Petcare to promote this year’s adoption weekend,» said Gil Beverly, Titans Sr. Vice President, Chief Marketing and Revenue Officer. «We’re excited to lend our seats to these pets in need of a loving home and promote this important cause in a safe and healthy manner.»

A complete schedule for each virtual event by market is available at www.BetterCitiesforPets.com/AdoptionWeekend2020. In addition to paying for the adoption of all pets that find a loving home as a result of the event, Mars Petcare will also provide every family who adopts with a starter kit that includes food from PEDIGREE® and IAMS, treats from GREENIES and TEMPTATIONS , as well as coupons and swag from BANFIELD™ Pet Hospital, VCA Animal Hospitals, WISDOM PANEL test kits, the PEDIGREE Foundation and the BETTER CITIES FOR PETS program. The company will also offer free virtual pet training 101 sessions for the new pet parents, hosted by Mars Petcare Associate volunteers and pet experts.

Beyond Adoption Weekend, Mars Petcare is continuing to work with cities and government to help enable people to enjoy the many benefits of pet ownership by advocating for pet-friendly cities, including affordable pet-friendly housing. For more information on the BETTER CITIES FOR PETS program, visit: www.bettercitiesforpets.com.

About BETTER CITIES FOR PETS                                                               
The BETTER CITIES FOR PETS program was created by Mars Petcare US, the world’s leading pet nutrition and health care business, to help communities become more pet-friendly by bringing the voice of pets and their owners to places of influence and advocating for fewer pets in shelters, more pet-friendly places, and happier, healthier lives for both people and pets. Mars Petcare works with key partners, businesses and local governments to better understand how to improve communities by: providing safe and welcoming shelters that lead to forever homes; encouraging pet-friendly, responsible homes for pets; welcoming more pets into local businesses, and giving pets plenty of park space to play. In 2019 the company launched the BETTER CITIES FOR PETS certification which recognizes and celebrates cities that are putting programs and policies into place to make life better for people and pets. For more information about the BETTER CITIES FOR PETS program and the BETTER CITIES FOR PETS certification, visit BetterCitiesForPets.com.

About Mars Petcare 
Part of Mars, Incorporated, a family-owned business with more than a century of history making diverse products and offering services for people and the pets people love, the 85,000 Associates across 50+ countries in Mars Petcare are dedicated to one purpose: A BETTER WORLD FOR PETS™. With 85 years of experience, our portfolio of almost 50 brands serves the health and nutrition needs of the world’s pets – including brands PEDIGREE®, WHISKAS®, ROYAL CANIN®, NUTRO™, GREENIES™, SHEBA®, CESAR®, IAMS™ and EUKANUBA™ as well as the Waltham Petcare Science Institute which has advanced research in the nutrition and health of pets for over 50 years. Mars Petcare is also a leading veterinary health provider through an international network of over 2,000 pet hospitals and diagnostic services including BANFIELD™, BLUEPEARL™, VCA™, Linnaeus, AniCura and Antech. We’re also active in innovation and technology for pets, with WISDOM PANEL™ genetic health screening and DNA testing for dogs, the WHISTLE™ GPS dog tracker, and LEAP VENTURE STUDIO accelerator and COMPANION FUND™ programs that drive innovation and disruption in the pet care industry. As a family business and guided by our principles, we are privileged with the flexibility to fight for what we believe in – and we choose to fight for: A BETTER WORLD FOR PETS.

1 The APPA COVID-19 Pulse Study: Pet Ownership During The Pandemic, Volume 3

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SOURCE Mars Petcare