On the Road AgainPosted by on April 15, 2013
Animal League America’s 13th Annual Tour For Life Finds Homes for Magnificent Mutt-i-grees Across the Country!
On March 6th, I was thrilled to take part in one of my favorite events of the year at North Shore Animal League America: the kick-off celebration of Tour For Life®. A huge crowd of staff, community leaders and animal lovers gathered to wish our drivers a safe journey as they headed out on their two-month-long, cross-country trip.
This year’s Tour For Life is the largest ever, with four of our Mobile Rescue & Adoption Units (or “shelters on wheels”) stopping in 51 cities and 26 states, plus Washington D.C., covering over 17,000 miles!
Here’s why this life-saving event is so important. Many municipal shelters are in out-of-the-way locations, where potential adopters might have trouble reaching them. And most rescue groups have no localized shelters at all, instead keeping their Mutt-i-grees in foster homes as they seek permanent adopters.
With Tour For Life (TFL), Animal League America enables these rescuers to bring their animals out to the public, whether it is at a Wal-Mart superstore, a Burbank parking lot or a car dealership. And, because we’re the largest no-kill animal rescue and adoption organization in the world, we’re able to provide them not only with our Mobile Rescue & Adoption Units but also with a ton of other support, including advertisements in local publications, t-shirts and much more!
Once TFL is over and our drivers head back to New York, the life-saving effect continues, because people across the nation have experienced firsthand the beauty, affection and intelligence of Mutt-i-grees—any rescued dog, cat, puppy or kitten, whether mixed or purebred, old or young, in need of a home.
I absolutely loved what Jacob Stroman, head of the Jefferson Parish SPCA in Louisiana, told us after the conclusion of the TFL event in his city. He sent along this photo (below right) of one of his kennels, happily showcasing a line of empty cages—because all of the Mutt-i-grees inside had been adopted! Here’s what Jacob said:
“For many years in sheltering, I’ve often thought of the significance of an empty cage in the kennels. Who will the next face be? How many animals have passed through this one kennel? Maybe it’ll stay empty for a while. So many feelings and thoughts does an empty cage at the shelter evoke. Offsite adoption events such as Tour for Life pay off. For a little while after our event, we are able to breathe a much-needed sigh of relief. No matter what it means, it certainly is a good feeling to see so many animals out of the shelter.”
I will be joining my friend Rénee Felice Smith, this year’s TFL spokesperson and star of NCIS: Los Angeles, at the TFL stops in Burbank and Irvine, California, on April 26th and 27th. I hope to see you there—and let’s empty out more of those cages and give these deserving Mutt-i-grees their loving homes!
Please join Animal League America on Friday, May 10th, at West 46th/47th Streets on Broadway at the Pedestrian Plaza in New York City from 11 A.M. to 6 P.M. for TFL’s Grand Finale!