Pushing Creativity to the Limits for Long-Stay Pets

Here are the Details

Maddie’s Fund® is hosting a contest over a 3-month period to get dogs and cats adopted who have been in the shelter for over 30 days. The contest begins October 1, 2018 and ends December 31, 2018. We will be awarding more than $50,000 in grants to shelters across the United States!

We’re looking for creative approaches to getting dogs and cats adopted and engaging your volunteers, staff and community. You might use foster care to get to know more about the pets, take great photos and video, tell powerful stories to potential adopters. Out of the box thinking is what we are looking for!


  • Most Creative Foster or Adoption Tactic
    Awarded for information about a single tactic utilized to Get ‘em Home
  • Most Creative Program Overall
    Award related to your entire campaign or program to Get ‘Em Home; might involve several different tactics
  • Impact Award
    Awarded for your program’s impact on your shelter. This could be finding homes for the most long stay pets, adding a program or changing a policy that makes it easier for the shelter to find homes for long stay pets.
  • Completing the Challenge
    Organizations who find a home for at least one long stay dog or cat and complete all three surveys will be entered for a chance to win one of ten $1,000 grants.

Who is Eligible to Participate?

Any dog or cat adoption organization with a physical shelter can register. To qualify for prizes, we strongly encourage you to meet our grant requirements.

Before the application window opens, you can prepare in the following ways:

Review the following resources for ideas:

Joining the Get ‘Em Home Challenge? Get information and inspiration in our interactive Huddles!

Have a few questions to ask, don’t know where to start or just want to make sure you understand the Get ‘Em Home Challenge? Huddle with us on Thursdays at 3pm EST/12pm PST for more information, resources, tips and answers to your burning questions.

Grant Recognition

Grant recipients will be asked to honor Maddie, the little dog who inspired a movement, through their social media and donor recognition about this grant on their website, donor wall, annual report, newsletter or other promotional materials or marketing communications, as appropriate. Learn more.