Written by Dr. Cynthia Paulis: firstname.lastname@example.org Friday, 13 July 2012 00:00
In a groundbreaking move, Lord & Taylor partnered with Best Friends Animal Society, to host the “Perfect Pairs” Pet Adoption Day, in celebration of the retailer’s biggest sandal sale of the season. Merging retail and rescue animal groups that are part of Best Friends Animal Societies No More Homeless Pets Network brought rescued pets to the stores as part of a nationwide effort to put shelter pets in front of retail shoppers.
The idea to feature rescued animals came from Lord & Taylor. It was the kind of support welcomed by Greta Palmer, Best Friends Animal Society’s national event manager.
“We were so impressed when representatives of Lord & Taylor approached us with the concept of pet adoption events inside their stores,” Palmer said. “In the past, shopping malls had pet stores, which unfortunately usually were supplied by puppy mills. Now thanks, to the leadership of Lord & Taylor, we have the next development in ‘retail meets rescue.’ People will have the opportunity to meet several rescued dogs at their favorite department store and hopefully find their new four-footed family member.”
Lord & Taylor also sponsored a “Perfect Pairs” Facebook contest where customers can submit a photo on Lord & Taylor’s Facebook page of their pet with their favorite shoes for a chance to win a pair of shoes every month for a year. The winner will be announced July 6.
On Saturday, June 23, seven rescue dogs from Wilma’s Orphans were featured at the Garden City Lord & Taylor location. The response from the community was overwhelmingly positive regarding the department store’s initiative on behalf of rescued animals. Diane Bachor, who’s given a home to a number of rescue animals, was thrilled to see this kind of corporate support.
“I think this event is fabulous! It’s wonderful to have all of these rescues being shown and hopefully adopted by someone who will care for them, love them and change their life,” she gushed. “I think what Lord & Taylor has done here is groundbreaking and I hope every department store will follow suit so we can wipe out puppy mills, and have nice homes for dogs that deserve them. I think that whoever thought of and partnered with them (Best Friends) needs to be applauded. It’s amazing!”
Wilma Louras, founder of Wilma’s Orphans, brought seven rescue dogs for adoption. She had high praise for Lord & Taylor. “I think this is absolutely amazing, that they let us bring the dogs into the store and let us walk the dogs around the store. It’s incredible.”
The dogs were fetching and on their best behavior in the hopes of finding new homes. Several people who expressed interest either wanted to add a new pet to their home because one of their pets had passed away or they wanted to adopt for the first time.
Best Friends volunteer David Glicksman held Fredo, a two-year-old Miniature Pinscher. Glicksman was pleased with all of the support they were getting from the shoppers.
“Lord & Taylor has been great to support this first large scale retail and rescue event and its really wonderful. Every Lord & Taylor today around the nation has a different rescue organization so it’s really wonderful.”
Elaine Katz, who works with Best Friend’s Animal Sanctuary and has three rescued dogs was praying that all of the dogs would get adopted. She adopts older dogs and feels that, “When one passes on you immediately make room for another one. You don’t sit home and weep because that doesn’t do anyone any good. You immediately rescue another one and give them a home and love. Animals add so much to our life, lower our blood pressure, there is less incidence of heart disease, and your general feeling that you just wake up happy. The animals ask for nothing and give unselfish love and warmth. Don’t medicate yourself for depression, just rescue an animal.”
Joseph Ricaurte, vice-president and general manager of the Garden City Lord & Taylor is also a firm proponent of the program.
“Lord & Taylor strongly believes that Best Friends Animal Society’s mission of ‘No More Homeless Pets’ resonates with our customers and hopes that the partnership will draw awareness to this important cause,” he explained. Ricaurte hopes that the event will be repeated next year. “The event was fun and it was a great way to serve the community and the customers. It was a very nice event in supporting a local organization.”
Perhaps the best comment overheard came from one of the customers who said, “I love this event, I think it is one of the greatest things Lord & Taylor ever took part in. It shows that the company really has a heart.”
To learn more about Best Friends Animal Society please visit www.bestfriends.org.