This Tuesday, the Westminster Kennel Club will crown its Best in Show winner at this year's dog show. Millions of people watched the dog show and its many advertisements last year. But, something is missing from this year's show and not for a very good reason.
The Westminster Kennel Club has officially dropped Pedigree as a sponsor after almost twenty-five years. Why? Because Pedigree decided to ignore WKC's requests to air happy-go-lucky, purebred focused commercials during the show. Instead, Pedigree decided to shed light on an overwhelming problem in our nation today: that of the thousands of adoptable animals waiting in shelters to find forever homes.
So, what's the big deal? The pro-adoption ads got plenty of attention over the years, boosting donations by half a million dollars over the course of the two day show in 2007 alone. According to David Frei, the dog show's host and communications director, the shelter image just doesn't jive with the "mission" of the WKC. Their mission, according to Frei, is to "celebrate the dogs in our lives." He would rather see ads with "smiling" dogs rather than those quaking in fear at shelters. This is their stance even though it seems those "sad ads" may help encourage adoptions and donations.
It's yet to be seen if the end of the Pedigree/WKC partnership will have a negative effect on Pedigree's donations. If you're interested, you can donate to the Pedigree Foundation, Pedigree's fund to help shelters across the country, by clicking here or as always, you can donate to THLN in many different ways and help fund our mission to promote humane legislation across the state of Texas.
You can read more in the New York Times article published on February 11th.