Maddie’s Fund Expects to Give $2 Million* to Participating Shelters

June 6, 2011

Sharon Fletcher, Director of Marketing & Communications

(Alameda, Calif.) On June 4 and 5, the Bay Area saw unprecedented rain but that didn't stop thousands of people from coming out to adopt more than 2,200 shelter dogs and cats during the second annual Maddie's® Matchmaker Adoptathon. In total, Maddie's Fund expects to give about $2 million to participating shelters for all the adoptions processed during this year's Maddie's® Matchmaker Adoptathon*.

"My family and I spent the weekend visiting many of the participating locations," said Dave Duffield, Maddie's Fund founder. "The joy we saw in the animals, as well as the volunteers and the adopters, is the reason we created Maddie's Fund. Maddie gave us so much happiness, and we congratulate all of this weekend's adopters and wish them a lifetime of love with their new companions."

Forty-six shelter and rescue organizations participated in this year's adoptathon, and pets were available at more than 70 locations throughout Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. The big emphasis during this year's event was to find homes for senior pets and for pets who had been treated for medical conditions. Organizations reported that about 30 percent of all their adoptions qualified as senior and/or treatable.

"We are thrilled that so many of our animals found their forever homes during Maddie's® Matchmaker Adoptathon, especially those that are typically not easy to adopt," said Maryann Lovi with Shake Wiggle 'n Roll. "This event has opened people's hearts to senior animals, and those who have medical conditions."

Families came from all over Northern California to find a new pet at Maddie's® Matchmaker Adoptathon. Some came from as far away as Petaluma, Sacramento and Monterey. Tony La Russa's Animal Rescue Foundation in Walnut Creek reported the first adopter at 4:30 a.m., five hours before their doors opened. The Alameda Animal Shelter had people waiting for two hours in the pouring rain before they opened at 10:00 a.m.

"The outpouring of support from the community was even larger than last year," said Rich Avanzino, Maddie's Fund president. "Not only did we see a big increase of adopters, but we also had the gift of generosity from local businesses that opened up their doors to us this year, including Stoneridge Shopping Center in Pleasanton. This event is generating public interest in adopting from shelters, and it's evident that people are taking action - one pet at a time."

Maddie's® Matchmaker Adoptathon was held in honor of the Foundation's namesake, a Miniature Schnauzer named Maddie.

Most adoptions:

H.A.L.O.: 188
Oakland Animal Services: 166
Tony La Russa's ARF: 122
Safe Cat Foundation: 110
Tri-Valley Animal Rescue: 106
East Bay Animal Rescue and Refuge: 87
Valley Humane Society: 85

Stories from the weekend:

East Bay Animal Rescue & Refuge - Heidi, a 17-year old blind and deaf dog was the oldest animal to be adopted during Maddie's® Matchmaker Adoptathon. "Heidi had been brought to a vet by her owners to be euthanized, and the vet asked if he could try to find the dog another home after the exam showed no major health issues. Thanks to Maddie's® Matchmaker Adoptathon, Heidi was adopted by a hospice nurse who promises to fill the rest of her life with love and comfort."

Hayward Animal Services - Doug, an eight year old Great Dane mix was adopted by a woman who said, "I just wanted to give this dog a loving home for however many years he has left."

Martinez Animal Shelter foster parents - "All three of our foster dogs were adopted this weekend, which now allows us to take a new dog and her four puppies which were set to be put to sleep on Tuesday."

Maine Coon adoption - "Over 20 percent of the cats at Maine Coon adoption are senior or special needs. This weekend was invaluable in finding homes for those cats, and in offsetting the costs of rescue so that we can save more of these needy cats and find them great homes."

Please visit the Maddie's® Matchmaker Adoptathon website and Facebook Page to read more about this amazing event.

* Maddie's Fund will pay organizations $500 per regular adoption, $1,000 for each adoption involving a dog or cat who is 7 years of age or older or who has been treated for a medical condition and $1,500 for each adoption involving a dog or cat who is 7 years of age or older and has been treated for a medical condition. An exact count on the number of older animals and those with treatable conditions will be available once all adoption paperwork is processed.

About Maddie's Fund

Maddie's Fund® is a family foundation established in 1994 by Dave and Cheryl Duffield and is the fulfillment of a promise to their inspirational dog, Maddie. She provided them much joy from 1987 – 1997 and continues to inspire them today.

The Foundation has awarded over $275.7 million in grants toward increased community lifesaving, pioneering shelter medicine education and establishing foster care as a standard across the U.S.

Maddie's Fund proudly offers the industry a national voice, important funding opportunities for bold ideas, learning resources and access to collaborate and share innovative solutions. The Foundation invests its resources in a commitment to keeping pets and people together, creating a safety net of care for animals in need and operating within a culture of inclusiveness and humility. #ThanksToMaddie.