DODGER DOGS (with fur!)
Sponsored by PetSmart Charities
The Los Angeles Dodgers game against the San Diego Padres featured a different kind of "Dodger dog." No mustard. No ketchup. No relish. No onions. These dogs had fur!
20 dogs that the Bark Avenue Foundation had rescued from city and county shelters throughout Los Angeles were showcased in the first parade of its' kind during the game. Wearing bright orange "Adopt Me" vests, the parade of dogs of all sizes, colors and ages, emerged out of the main centerfield gate. Accompanied by volunteer dog handlers, 10 dogs were walked out towards left field, and 10 were walked towards right. They paused for the stadium announcement, and posed for their close-ups on DodgerVision.
"Boy, it really hits you once you see the dogs," said Michael Fach, with the Los Angeles Dodgers, who helped direct the parade on the field just prior to the start of the game. "There are so many great dogs at the shelters."
After the parade, Los Angeles Dodger fans and dog lovers crowded the Dodger Dogs (with fur!) booths that were setup throughout the stadium to inquire about specific four-legged parade participants. Adoption applications were collected, free PetSmart Charities items were given away as well as "Handy Info" brochures that were specially designed for this event; a resource for pet owners and/or future pet owners that includes contact information and listings of local shelter, rescue organizations, spay and neuter assistance and overview on pertinent pet ordinances for Los Angeles city and county residents, printed with spirit in "Dodger blue."
The Los Angeles Dodgers were currently ranked first in the National League West. Attendance was over 55,000 at this important game against the San Diego Padres. The opportunity was serendipitous to reach out to the diverse fan base to get the messages across: adopt from your local shelters and spay and neuter your pets. Throughout the game, PetSmart Charities maximized those key issues via advertisements across the LED ribbon boards.
As the ramped-up fans exited the stadium at the end of the entertaining game, both the Bark Avenue and Dodgers staff were stationed at major exits to hand out the freebies and more handy brochures.
Within two weeks after the event, the majority of the Dodger dogs were adopted.