Your rescue pet could be a star in a film for Nat Geo Wild

CLICK HERE to see the video of this interview!
Long Live Pets: Your rescue pet could be a star in a film for Nat Geo Wild

Best Friends Animal Society is on a mission to inspire people to change a shelter pet’s life and to celebrate rescue pets that have already found their forever home. An estimated 270,000 pets in shelters will be euthanized in March alone all due to a lack of space- almost 9,000 a day. Because of this growing epidemic CEO and co-founder of Best Friends Animal Society Gregory Castle and veterinarian and former Miss. America Dr. Debbye Turner Bell have teamed up with Natures Variety Instinct to create the Long Live Pets campaign. This effort is to help reduce the number of animal deaths in shelters across the country and to invite people to enter their rescue pets to be featured in a film for Nat Geo Wild.

Since the formation of Best Friends Animal Society Castle’s efforts have helped pioneer the no-kill movement- reducing the then 17 million homeless pets being euthanized in shelters each year to around four million. The headquarter sanctuary is located in Utah where Castle has been able to focus much of his efforts. As of now Utah is on trajectory to become a No Kill State by 2019 much thanks to Castle’s efforts. Castle has been trying to help clear up the common misconceptions about rescue animals. The biggest myth is that rescue pets are damaged or aggressive.

“There are some misconceptions about shelter animals and rescue animals,” Castle said in a March 3 interview. “They’re not all like that by any means- a few of them are, but they are not (all) damaged. Many of them are great pets. They’ve been in a home. Don’t feel that all of these animals have been subject to cruelty or damage- many of them have not.” (To see a full video of this interview uploaded to March 6 click here.)

Castle also wants the public to know that despite popular belief you can find puppies and kittens in shelters. Another common belief about shelter animals is that they were surrendered because they are flawed on some way.

“That’s a big myth- that they’ve been given up because there’s something wrong with them. That is absolutely not true,” explains Castle. Dr. Turner Bell agrees. She was crowned Miss America in 1990 and has since then focused her efforts on enriching the lives of pets across the country. Dr. Turner Bell is a well-known TV personality who worked as a broadcast journalist for CBS News and can be seen on Dogs 101 on Animal Planet as one of the expert contributors. Dr. Turner Bell is a proud supporter of the no kill movement.

“We have a real pet overpopulation in this country,” said Dr. Turner Bell in a March 3 interview. “There are 8 to 10 million pets that are in shelters homeless right now. Unfortunately about half of them will be euthanized- that’s about 4 million. So it is important then to encourage people who are ready for a pet and who have room in their family and their life for a pet go to a shelter and adopt.”

Although Dr. Turner Bell is urging potential pet parents to rescue she does have some very important advice for anyone planning on bringing a new pet home. She advises people to be prepared for the financial aspects and the responsibility of raising a pet.

“It is important to be sure that you can provide what that pet needs in terms of veterinary care,” said Dr. Turner Bell adding that all pets should visit their veterinarian at least once a year. “They need to have a good, high quality diet. Good nutrition is the absolute bedrock of good health for your pets.”

“Do your homework on the breed,” Dr. Turner Bell adds about dogs specifically. Owners should respect “what that dog was bred to do because that’s going to inform the type of lifestyle that that dog needs to live.”

Considering things like the family dynamic, lifestyle and expectations of that pet will be greatly influenced by the breed. Once perspective owners select a breed Best Friends Society can make it easy to find that breed in a shelter.

“To find a shelter in your local area go to we partner with organizations all over the country,” said Castle. “They have fantastic animals available for adoption- many different breeds and different sizes of animals.”

For anyone who has already rescued a pet the Long Live Pets campaign wants to celebrate your rescue pet. Natures Variety Instinct is getting involved by not only donating pet food to the Best Friends Animal Society’s headquarters in Utah but they have also teamed up with Nat Geo Wild to create a film featuring rescue pets across the country. If you have rescued a pet from a shelter you can visit and upload photos of your rescue pets- one at a time for each theme along the timeline at the bottom of the page. Select pets will be featured in the film that will air on Nat Geo Wild on April 17.

To see a full video of the interview with Gregory Castle and Dr. Debbye Turner Bell uploaded to March 6 click here. Please check out Best Friends Society and the Long Live Pets campaign headed by Dr. Debbye Turner Bell and Gregory Castle. Click here to find out all about the nutritious diets offered by Natures Variety Instinct.

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