Pets in the Classroom invites teachers to submit pictures of the habitats of their classroom pets.

The Pets in the Classroom grant program invites pre-kindergarten through 8th grade teachers with classroom pets to enter the Pets in the Classroom Habitat Contest. September 19th through December 10th, teachers can submit pictures of their classroom pet’s habitat.  All entries are being featured on the Pets in the Classroom website, and people are invited to vote for their favorite habitat.  The teacher whose entry receives the most votes when the contest ends will be selected as one of the contest winners and one additional teacher will also be selected as a winner based on random selection.  Each winner will receive a $100 Amazon Gift Card.

 “We encourage all teachers with a classroom pet to enter the habitat contest,” commented Steven T. King, Pet Care Trust Executive Director. “Your students will enjoy seeing their ‘classmate’ featured on the Pets in the Classroom website, and you will help other classes improve their pets' habitats with your ideas. Encourage parents, students and fellow teachers to vote for your habitat and you might win a $100 gift card!”

The Pets in the Classroom grant program provides grants to Pre-Kindergarten through 8th grade teachers in both private and public schools for the purpose of purchasing and maintaining classroom pets.  Classroom animals are wonderful resources for teachers that, when incorporated into lesson plans, can have a profound impact.  Classroom pets not only provide excitement in the classroom, but they also benefit students by teaching them responsible, long-term pet care at an early age and providing the psychological and developmental benefits associated with the human-animal bond.  Studies have shown that caring for pets has a positive effect on children, improving school attendance and teaching children responsibility, as well as encouraging nurturing and building self-esteem. 

For more information on the Pets in the Classroom grant program or the Habitat Contest, visit www.PetsintheClassroom.org.

 

Eleven equine rescues receive grants in recognition of their efforts to protect horses

NEW YORK—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today revealed the eleven winners of the third annual ASPCA Help a Horse Day contest, a nationwide grant competition for equine rescues and sanctuaries to raise awareness about the year-round work they do to save and care for at-risk horses. The grand prize winner received a $25,000 grant, while ten runners-up were awarded grants of $10,000 or $5,000 to support their ongoing efforts to protect horses. The winning groups include:

$25,000 Grand Prize Winner:

  • Equine Voices Rescue & Sanctuary, Green Valley, Ariz.

$10,000 Prize Winners:

  • All About Equine Animal Rescue, El Dorado Hills, Calif.
  • Begin Again Horse Rescue, Honeoye, N.Y.
  • California Coastal Horse Rescue, Oak View, Calif.
  • Hidden Acres Thoroughbred Rescue, Cocoa, Fla.
  • The Pegasus Project, Ben Wheeler, TX

$5,000 Prize Winners:

  • Blue Rose Ranch, Springfield, Colo.
  • Freedom Hill Horse Rescue, Owings, Md.
  • HiCaliber Horse Rescue, Valley Center, Calif.
  • Horse Protection League, Arvada, Colo.
  • Horses of Tir Na Nog, San Diego, Calif.

“In honor of the ASPCA’s 150th anniversary this year, we expanded our Help a Horse Day celebration to recognize even more groups for their incredible work engaging their communities and spreading the word about how to protect horses,” said Jacque Schultz, senior director of the ASPCA Equine Fund. “We were overwhelmed by the enthusiastic response and thrilled to welcome twice as many participants to the contest this year. There are so many deserving equine rescues and sanctuaries, and we are pleased to help them provide vital services to at-risk horses around the country.”

Adding to the excitement surrounding this year’s contest was “2 Broke Girls” actress and horse advocate Beth Behrs, who teamed up with the ASPCA to help spread the word about the everyday heroes who work tirelessly to care for and rehabilitate horses like her own adopted horse, Belle.

More than 33,000 community members came out to support the 187 groups holding celebrations across the country in April, and winners were selected based on the creativity of their events, as well as their success engaging their local communities. This year’s events included movie screenings, book signings, family fairs and spring festivals, and even a mini horse wedding. The groups reported record fundraising efforts through these events, with several raising $50,000 or more to assist their rescue work.

Horses have been central to the ASPCA mission since the organization’s founding 150 years ago. The ASPCA’s efforts to further equine protection include supporting equine welfare through legislation, public advocacy, professional development, horse rescue, and targeted grants. Most recently the ASPCA launched a broad “Adopt a Horse” public service campaign featuring Beth Behrs and her rescue horse Belle, to encourage potential horse owners to pledge to make adoption their first option. The campaign highlights the many benefits of adopting a horse from one of the nation’s hundreds of equine rescue groups. It also aims to connect the many horses in need of permanent homes with the 2.3 million Americans who, according to a recent survey, say they have adequate space, resources, and strong interest in adopting a horse.

On April 10, the ASPCA launched a months-long celebration of its 150th anniversary with ASPCA 150: Come To Their Rescue – a national campaign honoring the ASPCA’s 150 years of animal rescue by inspiring public acts of compassion that will help save and protect dogs, cats, horses and farm animals from cruelty. For 150 days, the ASPCA is encouraging animal lovers to visit ASPCA.org/150days and pledge at least 15 minutes of their time to helping animals in need, toward an ultimate goal of 150,000 acts of compassion through September 7, 2016.

For more information about ASPCA Help a Horse Day, please visit http://www.aspca.org/helpahorse.

About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, and celebrating its 150th birthday this year, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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New York, NYTo celebrate the dogs who do extraordinary things in the service of humankind, the AKC Humane FundSM is seeking YOUR nominations for its AKC Humane Fund Awards for Canine Excellence (ACE).  Nominations are now open and winners will be announced in Fall 2016.  

Each year, the AKC Humane Fund pays tribute to five dedicated, hardworking dogs for making significant contributions to an individual or entire community.  Since the creation of the awards in 2000, 80 ACEs have been awarded to dogs of 32 different breeds and one mixed-breed dog from 28 states. Former ACE dogs have included a police K-9 who uncovered the work of a serial killer and a family pet who saved her owner from a bear attack, among dozens of other incredible pups.

“There are so many dynamic dogs to recognize with an ACE Award,” said AKC Spokesperson Gina DiNardo.  “These canines touch the lives and hearts of those who love them and the world around them. We are proud to honor five of them each year with an ACE Award as a symbol of our appreciation.” 

One award is given in each of the following five categories:

Uniformed Service K-9

Eligibility: Full-time working K-9s in the realms of city, county, state, or federal law enforcement; the military; firefighting; customs and border patrol; emergency services.

 

Exemplary Companion

Eligibility: Dogs without formal training or certification who have nonetheless distinguished themselves in some way that has made a meaningful contribution to the life of his owner or community.

Search and Rescue

Eligibility: Dogs certified to assist in wilderness and urban tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events and locating missing people.

 

Therapy

Eligibility: Certified therapy dogs working in hospitals, schools, disaster sites, war zones, and wherever else the affection of a good dog can provide comfort.

Service

Eligibility: Certified service dogs who enrich the lives of physically or mentally disabled owners. Including but not limited to guide dogs for the blind, seizure-alert dogs, hearing dogs, balance dogs.

**(Note: Nominees doing service or therapy work without certification are considered in the Exemplary Companion category.)

Honorees will receive an engraved sterling-silver medallion and an all-expenses-paid trip for dog and owner to Orlando, Florida, to be honored at the AKC National Championship in December. A donation of $1,000 will also be made in each recipient’s name to the pet-related charity of their choice. The names of the five recipients will be added to the ACE plaque on permanent display in the AKC Humane Fund Library at AKC headquarters in New York City.

All entrants will receive an ACE Certificate of Recognition in acknowledgement of their nomination.

Anyone, including the dog’s owner or handler, may submit a nomination form.  Submissions for the AKC Humane Fund Awards for Canine Excellence for 2016 must include:

·         A non-returnable, original print or digital photograph of the dog. All digital photos must be larger than 1MB in size and a minimum of 300 dpi. The photo should feature solely the nominated dog.

·         A 500-word-or-less description of how the dog has demonstrated excellence.

·         Dog’s call name, breed, age and sex.

·         Owner’s/Nominator's name(s), address and phone number. E-mail address if available.

Nominations will be accepted through July 31, 2016 and should be submitted here, with a photo sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or mailed with a photo to:

 

ACE Awards 2016

The AKC Humane Fund

260 Madison Avenue, 4th Floor

New York, New York 10016

For more information about the ACE awards or to download a nomination form visit the AKC website.

 

In celebration of GHOSTBUSTERS:

The Original Cast Reunites and Joins the New Cast on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” as

Moviegoers Celebrate the Franchise with Screenings of the Original Film, a Sneak Peek at the New Film, Fun Events, a Contest, and More

Elle King’s “Good Girls” Available at Digital Music Providers Today – CLICK HERE TO LISTEN!

CULVER CITY, Calif., June 3, 2016 – In anticipation of the release of Ghostbusters, which brings the legendary franchise back to theaters with a new team fighting the paranormal on July 15, Sony Pictures and moviegoers across the country will celebrate the classic franchise with Ghostbusters Day on Wednesday, June 8 – the anniversary of the release date of the original 1984 film.

On Ghostbusters Day, the cast of the original classic Ghostbusters – including Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Ernie Hudson, and Annie Potts – will reunite and join the new Ghostbusters – Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones – as they honor the franchise that evening with an appearance on “Jimmy Kimmel Live.” “Jimmy Kimmel Live” airs weeknights at 11:35pm Eastern and Pacific / 10:35pm Central on ABC.

Fans will also be able to join in the celebration by seeing a sneak peek of the new film as part of the Fathom Events presentation of the original classic in more than 800 cinemas nationwide on June 8, with encore showings on Sunday, June 12.  In addition, in Brooklyn, BBQ Films will present the world’s only official immersive screening of the classic Ghostbusters – a transportive experience built around the classic movie called GHOSTBUSTERS HQ. 

Participating theaters will also join in the fun with sweepstakes. Cinemark is giving fans the chance to score one of ten signed posters for the new film through a social media giveaway and as a collectible reward in their all-new app-based loyalty program, Cinemark Connections.  And when Regal Cinemas Crown Club Members buy a ticket to the classic movie, they will be entered for the chance to win a flyaway to the premiere of the new Ghostbusters film in Los Angeles, plus a $2500 gift card for travel and accommodations.

Guests of BBQ Films to GHOSTBUSTERS HQ in Brooklyn on the 8th will not only get a 360-degree interactive experience, but also an exclusive first chance to play the new Ghostbusters console game and the mobile game, Ghostbusters: Slime City, both from Activision. Fans will have the chance to record their unique spectral encounters using special GIPHY Cam filters, and enjoy Hi-C Ecto Cooler beverages at the bar. New shows have been added, including a family show. More information is available at www.bbqfilms.com

Fans will be able to check out the Ghostbusters’ ride, the Ecto-1, with national and local appearances.

The studio will also launch the Ghostbusters Twitter Mission Sweepstakes on Ghostbusters Day.  The sweepstakes will award cool prizes, like custom Ghostbusters uniforms, every week leading up to the release of the film to users who retweet contest messages.  Twitter users can join in the fun by following @Ghostbusters. 

Fans can also follow the movie at @Ghostbusters on their favorite social networks, as the day will be documented via Facebook Live, Periscope, Snapchat Live Stories, and other social coverage.

In addition, moviegoers can now hear Elle King’s “Good Girls,” from the film’s original soundtrack, which is available now at all digital providers. Click here to listen.  “Good Girls” was written by Elle King and Dave Bassett and produced by Bassett. The soundtrack will be available on July 15th.

  

Ghostbusters makes its long-awaited return, rebooted with a cast of hilarious new characters. Thirty years after the beloved original franchise took the world by storm, director Paul Feig brings his fresh take to the supernatural comedy, joined by some of the funniest actors working today – Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, Leslie Jones, and Chris Hemsworth. This summer, they’re here to save the world! The film is produced by Ivan Reitman and Amy Pascal, and written by Katie Dippold & Paul Feig, based on the 1984 film “Ghostbusters,” an Ivan Reitman film, written by Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis.

ABOUT SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT
Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Entertainment Inc., a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE’s global operations encompass motion picture production, acquisition and distribution; television production, acquisition and distribution; television networks; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; and development of new entertainment products, services and technologies. For additional information, go to 
http://www.sonypictures.com.


Macy's iHeart Radio Rising Star [logo]
Winner of Contest to Open at the 2016 iHeartRadio Music Festival
 
NASHVILLE, Tenn. (May 13, 2016) – Lucas Hoge has made it to the top 25 percent of all genres in Macy’s iHeartRadio Rising Star Contest. Fans can vote online or through social media, with a chance to win a VIP trip to the 2016 iHeartRadio Music Festival.

To vote for Lucas Hoge fans can visit iHeartRadio.com/RisingStar.

Lucas is currently on a radio tour promoting his current single, “Boom Boom.” Click here to download “Boom Boom.”

“I’m super excited and feel very blessed to have been chosen for Macy’s iHeartRadio Rising Star Contest. It was awesome to get this news while on the road playing the song and now it’s in the top 25 of the contest!” said Hoge.

Artists in the competition were found by a combination of music industry insiders from across the country at over 800 iHeartRadio local radio stations and Macy’s national entertainment scouts. From that group, a panel of music fans was constructed to rate the artists based on who they were excited to hear more of and see in concert. Those scores were added to the artists' social media standings, and points were awarded for regional diversity to come up with this top 25.

To vote for Lucas Hoge fans can visit iHeartRadio.com/RisingStar by logging in with an email address or facebook account. To vote using Twitter hashtag #RisingStar and #LucasHoge. Fans who vote online or on twitter can also enter to win a VIP Trip for two to the iHeartRadio Muic Festival 2016 including tickets for both nights as well as entry to the Festival Village, airfare, accommodations and an exclusive meet-and-greet with the Macy’s iHeartRadio Rising Star winner. Add #Sweepstakes to any social #RisingStar vote to enter to win the VIP Trip. Online and Twitter voters can vote up to 50 times per day, retweets will count as votes, for a total of 100 votes per day. Voting for the Top 25 will close June 5 at midnight.

For more information on Lucas Hoge visit lucashoge.com and follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

Lucas Hoge on Tour
May 20 - Stoney’s Rockin Country - Las Vegas, Nev.
May 21 - Moonshine Flats - San Diego, Calif.
May 23 - June 03 - Wrangler National Patriot Tour
June 10 - Whiskey Bent - Nashville, Tenn.
June 11 - Durango Music Spot - Nashville, Tenn.
July 02 - Freedom Crossing at Fort Bliss - Fort Bliss, Texas
July 03 - Greeley Stampede - Greeley, Colo.
June 14 - June 21 - UK Military Tour

Recommended Tweet
Pls RT to vote for #LucasHoge #RisingStar @Macys @iHeartRadio #Sweepstakes!

About Lucas Hoge
Hoge rose to national fame in 2010 as a star of Animal Planet's “Last Chance Highway,” which led to appearances on “The Today Show,” “Inside Edition,” “The Daily Buzz,” “Daytime TV” and many more. Hoge is the Music Ambassador for Cabela’s and is also a passionate supporter of the U.S. military having traveled to various countries throughout the Middle East and beyond to perform for troops. In 2012, Hoge’s "Have I Done Something" hit No. 1 on the Christian Country Charts. Hoge has been visiting radio stations all over the U.S. promoting his latest single, “Boom Boom.”
 
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Lucas Hoge & radio friends
 

Benebone is a new and growing line of durable chews for dogs.  In 2012, Peter Toolan, a long time accountant and banker, was ready for a career change.  He was ready for an entrepreneurial venture.   What attracted him to the pet space was the passionate bond between pet parents and their pets. 

Benebone’s brand identity is simple:  USA-made, ergonomic design, real flavor, and canine welfare support.  Too many products on pet shelves are made overseas.  While it is true that there has been a big backlash on made-in-China treats, many chew toys are still made in China.  Some other chew toys are flavored – but it’s unclear with what.  We use only real bacon, peanuts or chicken to flavor our chew toys.  Our designs are simple, elegant, even beautiful.  And they are all shaped irregularly for a reason – dog’s don’t have thumbs!

We have two injection mold factories, both in New York State.  They are family businesses that have been in business for decades, and have seen much of their business go to China.  Benebone has been a great partner for these manufacturers, who take pride in the quality of their work.  It’s nice to be a small part of the USA-made manufacturing story.

Benebone is a very small company.  We have two partners:  Peter Toolan (son) and Jim Toolan (dad).  At 76 years young, Dad does everything from processing purchase orders to selling big accounts.  There is nothing more rewarding than working as a father-and-son team every day.  When I think back to my life working for big companies with all of their politics and bureaucracy, I have to pinch myself!    

As Jim mentioned, we are committed to canine welfare, in particular dog shelters and rescues throughout the US.  While we can’t change the world on our own, our products can make a dog’s time in a shelter or rescue just a little bit more enjoyable.  It’s good business for us too, as it builds brand awareness and creates a bond between our company and passionate dog lovers.

We are proud of how far we have come in three short years.  Our flagship product is the number one selling product on Amazon among 9000 Dog Chew Toys.  And we intentionally do not discount online to as to protect our pet specialty retailers.  Our products are found in various pet specialty stores in the Southeast, including Florida, and are distributed in the region by Southeast Pet.

We have 15 SKUs currently (5 shapes, 3 flavors) and for now are not going to expand further.  We have a tight, clean line. Too many companies toss out more product without innovating, in the hopes of “grabbing” shelf space.  Going forward, we are considering durable edible chews, but have not yet decided on that path.  We only want to expand into other products if we can find a way to bring truly better, differentiated, made-in-USA product to our loyal customers.

www.benebone.com

Email Jon Patch Host of Talkin' Pets before Saturday at 630 pm EST and register your favorite shelter (supply contact person and address) to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Or call the show Saturday from 6-7 pm EST to register a shelter to win 844-305-7800

 



ASPCA #HelpAHorse contest will award $100,000 in grant prizes to equine organizations across the country

New research shows at least 2.3 million Americans have a strong interest in adopting a horse

NEW YORK—The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today announced the participants in its third annual ASPCA Help a Horse Day grants contest. The nationwide competition of equine rescues and sanctuaries is designed to raise awareness about the year-round lifesaving work they do to care for local at-risk horses who’ve been abused, neglected or find themselves homeless. In honor of the ASPCA’s 150th Anniversary celebration this month, the ASPCA has teamed up with “2 Broke Girls” actress and horse advocate Beth Behrs to spread the word about the contest, which has been expanded to include a total of $100,000 in grant prizes. This year, 191 groups will be hosting events across 42 states during the weekend of April 22-24 as they compete to win a grand prize of $25,000.

“The ASPCA Help a Horse Day contest has grown exponentially over the past few years, and we are excited to celebrate our 150th anniversary by providing even more grants to the dedicated equine rescues and sanctuaries that step in to care for abused or neglected horses and give them a much-deserved new lease on life,” said Jacque Schultz, senior director of the ASPCA Equine Fund. “We are proud to welcome Beth Behrs to the contest this year and we applaud her efforts to raise awareness about wonderful horses available for adoption around the country.”

“I recently adopted my horse, Belle, from a California sanctuary, where I was able to see firsthand the tireless efforts that go into rehabilitating and caring for at-risk horses,” said Behrs. “It’s inspiring to see the creative events being planned around the country in celebration of the ASPCA Help A Horse Day contest, and I am honored to lend my voice to equine protection and to help recognize these everyday heroes for their life-saving work.”

Participating rescue groups will be judged on the creativity of their events, as well as their ability to engage their local communities to assist their efforts to protect horses. Activities include open houses, education and volunteer programs, birthday parties, spring festivals, scavenger hunts and other fun-filled events. ASPCA Help a Horse Day is celebrated annually on April 26 – a date chosen for its significance to the ASPCA’s long history of horse protection. In 1866, ASPCA founder Henry Bergh stopped a cart driver from beating his horse, resulting in the first successful arrest for horse mistreatment on April 26 of that year. The protection of horses has been a core part of the ASPCA mission ever since, which includes supporting equine welfare legislation, advocacy, rescue and targeted grants.

Coinciding with Help a Horse Day events, the ASPCA has unveiled the results of a recent nationwide survey showing that at least 2.3 million Americans have adequate space, resources, and a strong interest in adopting a horse. This new data suggests that there are more than enough homes available for the approximately 125,000 American horses shipped to Canada and Mexico last year to be slaughtered for human consumption.

“For anyone considering adopting a horse or donkey, there’s no better time than an ASPCA Help a Horse Day event to see what the nation’s equine rescues have to offer,” added Schultz. “The strong public sentiment against horse slaughter, combined with the significant lack of awareness that this is a problem horses face, underscores how community events like ASPCA Help A Horse Day are critical to pairing horses in need with the homes that are available.”

Last year, the ASPCA awarded over $1 million in grants to support 124 equine rescues and sanctuaries across the country. The grant money supported several areas of equine welfare including large-scale rehabilitation, emergency relief grants, safety net programs, and the Rescuing Racers Initiative, which aids in the rescue and rehabilitation of retired racehorses to save them from slaughter.

For more information about ASPCA Help a Horse Day or to see if there is an event near you, please visit www.aspca.org/helpahorse.

About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, and celebrating its 150th birthday this year, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first animal welfare organization in North America and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animals. More than two million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. For more information, please visit www.ASPCA.org, and be sure to follow the ASPCA on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

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International Cat Care’s annual photography competition is back for its fourth year with a brand new theme – Cat Naps. 

2016 iCatCare Photography Competition

The charity, in association with Your Cat magazine, is searching for beautiful and unique images of cats asleep or resting to feature in its 2017 calendar (and other published materials) that will be sold to raise funds for the charity. Images can be of cats sleeping alone or with other cats or animals, cats asleep in weird and wonderful locations or of cats simply curled up. Basically any image that shows a cat engaging in one of the species’ favourite pastimes – sleeping!

Twelve winning images will be selected by the judges from iCatCare and Your Cat magazine. These will feature in the calendar with the overall winner appearing on the cover. Images entered into the competition may also be used in other iCatCare materials and on the charity’s social media. Any image used will always be credited to the photographer.

The overall winner will receive £500, plus a year’s subscription to Your Cat magazine. The other competition winners will receive £100 each and all winning photographers will be sent a certificate, three copies of the calendar and a selection of iCatCare merchandise. Winners will also be invited to attend iCatCare’s annual awards event at Kensington Roof Gardens in London.

The competition opened on 1 April and will close at on 15 May 2016. Winners will be announced on iCatCare’s social media shortly after.

For a chance to win and to find out full terms and conditions, visit: http://icatcare.org/photography-competition. International Cat Care has also included some top tips on how to take the perfect picture of cats from past winners of the competition.

Pets in the Classroom invites teachers to submit pictures of the habitats of their classroom pets.

The Pets in the Classroom grant program invites pre-kindergarten through 8th grade teachers with classroom pets to enter the Pets in the Classroom Habitat Contest. Now through December 15th, teachers can submit pictures of their classroom pet’s habitat.  All entries are being featured on the Pets in the Classroom website, and people are invited to vote for their favorite habitat.  The teacher whose entry receives the most votes when the contest ends will be selected as one of the contest winners and two additional teachers will also be selected as winners based on random selection.  Each winner will receive a $100 Amazon Gift Card.

“Teachers are endlessly creative in incorporating pets into their classroom environment,” noted Steve King, Pet Care Trust executive director. “We wanted to give teachers an opportunity to share their creativity with their peers. The Habitat Contest is a fun way to inspire others.”

The Pets in the Classroom grant program provides grants to Pre-Kindergarten through 8th grade teachers in both private and public schools for the purpose of purchasing and maintaining classroom pets.  Classroom animals are wonderful resources for teachers that, when incorporated into lesson plans, can have a profound impact.  Classroom pets not only provide excitement in the classroom, but they also benefit students by teaching them responsible, long-term pet care at an early age and providing the psychological and developmental benefits associated with the human-animal bond.  Studies have shown that caring for pets has a positive effect on children, improving school attendance and teaching children responsibility, as well as encouraging nurturing and building self-esteem. 

For more information on the Pets in the Classroom grant program or the Habitat Contest, visit www.PetsintheClassroom.org.

Calling all creative kids! Bob Vetere, APPA President & CEO, is excited to announce that the association’s non-profit campaign, Pets Add Life (PAL), is kicking off the 8th Annual Pets Add Life Children’s Poetry Contest beginning September 1, 2015 through January 31, 2016. Students in 3rd-8th grade are encouraged to write original poems about the joys of owning pets of all types for a chance at top prizes for both themselves and their classroom.

Participants can submit poems via PAL’s Facebook page at facebook.com/petsaddlife, online at www.PetsAddLife.org or mail final poems and submission forms to:

Pets Add Life
50 Washington St. Suite 100
Reno, NV 89503

The deadline for submissions is January 31, 2016 at 5 p.m. EST.

Additionally, teachers within these grade levels are welcome to incorporate this national contest into their lesson plans and submit poems in one entry on behalf of their classroom.

One student from each grade nationwide (6 total) will win a $250 gift certificate for pet products, and a potential “by-line” in a nationally circulated publication or online outlet. Additionally, the six winning students’ classrooms will each win a $1,000 grant to spend on pet-related education or to support a classroom pet.

To learn more about the Pets Add Life Children’s Poetry Contest, read previous winning poems, upload submissions, or download submission forms, please visit http://petsaddlife.org/childrens-poetry-contest or contact Ashlee Verba at 775.322.4022 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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The American Pet Products Association (APPA) is the leading not-for-profit trade association serving the interests of the pet products industry since 1958.  APPA membership includes more than 1,000 pet product manufacturers, their representatives, importers and livestock suppliers representing both large corporations and growing business enterprises.  APPA's mission is to promote, develop and advance pet ownership and the pet product industry and to provide the services necessary to help its members prosper. Visit www.americanpetproducts.org for more information.

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