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29 Stars Who Shined a Light on Shelter Pets

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In March we welcomed the start of spring, a time that’s synonymous with new beginnings–including a fresh start for many shelter pets. As we say goodbye to the month that was, let’s take a look back at some of the celebrities who gave the promise of a new beginning to dogs and cats in need through adoption or by drawing attention to paws causes in March:

Dogs Adopted by Famous Pet Parents in March

Everybody “Raise Your Glass” to Pink! Currently on her Beautiful Trauma tour, the singer has given a puppy from the Nashville Humane Society the start to a beautiful life. The dog has been dubbed Nash in honor of his home town.

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Tennis star Alexander Zverev didn’t win the 2019 Miami Open, but during the athlete’s time in Magic City he won the admiration of animal lovers when he adopted Pop, a two-month-old puppy from the Humane Society of Greater Miami!

Karamo Brown, who helps people live their best life through emotional motivation on the Netflix reboot of Queer Eye, has given the gift of a wonderful life to his new furry family member, Elizabeth Diane Jordan Brown (who will be known as Lizzie). The tiny pup, who has become fast friends with her new four-legged sibling Logan, was adopted from Paw Works by her famous father.

Although this pet adoption took place in February, it’s never too late to congratulate a new pet parent on welcoming a fur baby into their heart and home! Rena Sofer, a star of the CBS soap The Bold & The Beautiful, made the bold move to foster a pregnant pup named Bonnie who was facing her fate before receiving a new lease on life thanks to 4 Paws Kiddo Rescue. Fans followed the dog’s journey in the care of her famous foster mother, which ended with the actress finding forever homes for Bonnie and all of her babies with the star’s brother, the stage manager at The Bold and The Beautiful…and in the Sofer home, where two puppies have taken on starring roles in the actress’s life!

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Emma loves to sleep on her back! #adoptdontshop #fosterfail #puppies #puppylove

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Stars Who Raised Awareness of Paws Causes in March

Star of the NBC comedy The Good Place, Kristen Bell recently witnessed a program that helps to put both people and pets on the path to a good place in their lives. At the Bakersfield Juvenile Hall the star helped to shine a spotlight on Marley’s Mutts juvenile dog program, which partners dogs who were facing their fate in kill shelters with incarcerated adolescent girls, who train and rehabilitate pups to increase their chances of quickly finding their forever home.

As Miranda Lambert celebrates her first days of wedded bliss, the non-profit organization co-founded by the country crooner and her mother is celebrating its 10th anniversary! Marking a decade of dogged devotion to shelter pets, MuttNation Foundation recently awarded $150,000 in grants to animal shelters across the country. In 2018 alone 1,776 homeless companion animals took center stage in the lives of forever pet parents thanks to MuttNation!

The debut of the new NBC comedy series Abby’s also marked the debut of actress Natalie Morales as one of the many stars who has shown their support for Best Friends Animal Society‘s mission to #SaveThemAll. The former Parks and Recreation and White Collar cast member struck a pose alongside her real life co-stars Taco and Axl for the national welfare organization’s “I Saved My Best Friend” campaign, which raises awareness of the more than 4,100 companion animals who lose their lives every day in US shelters. Since its start in 1984, Best Friends Animal Society has played a major role in reducing the number of dogs and cats who are euthanized in US shelters from 17 million a year to approximately 1.5 million.

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Going to bat for both people and pets, Houston Astros pitcher Justin Verlander‘s Wins for Warriors Foundation recently launched the program Adopt. Rescue. Heal., which trains shelter dogs who were thrown a curve ball by life to aid veterans dealing with PTSD and/or traumatic brain injuries. Prior to the first pitch at a March 20th game between the Astros and the New York Yankees several military veterans were united with their trained rescue dogs.

Currently on the road, country crooners Dan and Shay are helping rescue organizations’ efforts to put homeless dogs on the road to finding their forever families by posing with adorable adoptables at various stops. Back stage at a Minneapolis concert the duo who took “Tequila” to the top of the charts met pups from Wags and Whiskers:

British star Peter Egan (Downton Abbey, Unforgotten) acts as patron for several animal welfare charities, including the no-kill animal rescue Finding Shelter. Stepping into the vital real life role, the actor helped to shine a light on the plight of dogs in puppy mills by showing his support for Victoria’s Law, which would put an end to the sale of commercially bred companion animals in pet stores in the state of Pennsylvania.

Emceed by Jai Rodriguez of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy fame with entertainment by Trenyce and David Hernandez from past cycles of American Idol, PAW WORKS recently hosted its 5th annual Ties & Tails Gala at the Four Seasons Westlake Village to raise funds that will aid the organization’s ongoing efforts to save companion animals in need. (More than 5,000 dogs and cats have received a new lease on life over the past five years thanks to the non-profit!) This year’s event even includes a surprise appearance by Sean Combs, whose daughters D’Lila Star and Jessie James Combs were among the evening’s Paw Works Child Pet Ambassador volunteers.


Photo via PrLog

Three hundred fans of football, Fidos and felines were “bowled” over by Christopher Moore, Patrick Onwuasor and Albert McClennan of the Baltimore Ravens as the teammates “spare”d a little time from their busy schedules to switch sports for an afternoon, all in support of a paws cause. The three-hour bowling fundraiser benefited Show Your Soft Side, a national public service campaign designed to teach impressionable, at-risk adolescents that treating animals with compassion, not cruelty, is the true measure of a man.

Helping homeless dogs and cats who might not have had a ghost of a chance without the efforts of staff at the Monroe SPCA, paranormal investigator Dustin Pari from the SyFy reality series Ghost Hunters and Ghost Hunters International spoke at Pawtographs for Pooches, a fundraiser held at the Old Mill Museum in Dundee, Michigan. The spirited evening, which raised over $7,000 for the paws cause, even included a ghost hunt at the Old Mill!

In Memoriam

A heartthrob with a heart of gold, in 2012 actor Luke Perry–who we lost far too soon on March 4th– filmed this PSA to promote the Hallmark Channel’s pet adoption initiative:

For animal lovers, the bright lights of Broadway seem a little bit dimmer after the March 11th passing of one of The Great White Way’s dog stars, Chico. Once a shelter dog at the Associated Humane Society in Newark, New Jersey, the charming Chihuahua who had suffered from abuse was scheduled to be euthanized until the curtain rose on the second act in his life, thanks to celebrity animal trainer Bill Berloni. Chico gained fame with his portrayal of Bruiser Woods in Legally Blonde- The Musical on Broadway and on a national tour. Fans who would like to honor Chico’s memory with a donation can contribute to The Sandy Fund, which aids The Humane Society of New York‘s efforts to help animals in need.

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On Monday, March 11th, our beloved Chico crossed the rainbow bridge. His journey to the Palace Theater, where he originated the role of Bruiser Woods in LEGALLY BLONDE – THE MUSICAL, began at the Associated Humane Society in Newark, NJ when he was mistakenly shown to Bill. Chico had been severely abused and was actually slated for euthanasia. He “spoke” to Bill that day, however, and despite everyone at the shelter telling him he was the absolute wrong choice, Bill took him…if nothing else to find him the perfect forever home. Destiny intervened at a press event for LEGALLY BLONDE when the show’s director, Jerry Mitchell, fell in love with our little chihuaha and declared “This is our Bruiser!” Original cast members Laura Bell Bundy, Annaleigh Ashford, and Christian Borle worked patiently to help Chico overcome his fears, learn to trust again, and become the first dog ever trusted to open a Broadway show and deliver crucial exposition to Margot and the Delta Nus on the whereabouts of his pink princess Elle Woods. He was a true star and the show literally couldn’t go on without his talents! Chico went on to do the entire Broadway run of LEGALLY BLONDE, followed by the national tour and numerous regional productions before retiring two years ago. Chico often travelled with Bill to do talks and training demonstrations, and starred in an episode of FROM WAGS TO RICHES WITH BILL BERLONI affectionately titled “Bad Chico.” He can be seen on the MTV live taping of his signature show, followed by their reality show THE SEARCH FOR THE NEXT ELLE WOODS. He will live on in our hearts and as LEGALLY BLONDE – THE MUSICAL’s official logo. Donations in Chico’s name can be made to THE SANDY FUND at the Humane Society of New York, 306 East 59th Street, NY NY 10022. THE SANDY FUND is an endowment fund to benefit homeless animals created by Bill and Dorothy Berloni in honor of their first canine Broadway star “Sandy,” the rescue dog that originated the role of Sandy in the musical ANNIE.

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Karl Lagerfeld passed away in February, but the love that the fashion icon’s cat has for her late human lives on. Making her mourning have a higher meaning, Choupette has unveiled her #RIPDaddy collection, which includes a hooded sweatshirt, t-shirts, iphone case, mug and diary, all featuring a sketch of the beautiful Burmese. As compassion is always in fashion, a portion of the proceeds from the collection will be donated to the Helen Woodward Animal Center.

March Birthdays of Animal-Loving Luminaries

The month began with fans saying happy birthday to Kesha! As Humane Society International‘s first global ambassador she has helped to shine a spotlight on various causes, such as protecting baby seals from slaughter, putting an end to the sale of shark fins and cosmetics testing on animals, and the need to help street dogs:

Much like his fellow Twilight alums Rachelle LeFevre and Ashley Greene, who celebrated their birthdays in February, Kellan Lutz has also helped efforts to bring about the dawn of a new day to animals in need. The actor, who celebrated his birthday on March 15th, has used his star wattage to shine a spotlight on the work of the Black Jaguar White Tiger Foundation, Animal Asia’s efforts to end bear bile farming, and Animal Rescue Sofia, a no-kill shelter in Bulgaria which received help in the form of dog walking and a donation of more than $200,000 from the star and his Hercules cast mates and crew members during the filming of the 2014 action flick.

Actress Pauley Perrette, who celebrated her birthday on March 27th, is a long-time supporter of The Amanda Foundation:

Fans of Fidos and felines are still singing the praises of country crooner Kenny Chesney (born March 26th) for coming to the aid of companion animals in need in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma in 2017.

An offensive tackle for the Baltimore Ravens, Ronnie Stanley (born March 18, 1994) teamed up with his rescue dog Lola to tackle the topic of animal abuse in a PSA for the nationwide Show your Soft Side campaign:


Photo Credit: Leo Howard Lubow/Show Your Soft Side

The former host of the long-running game show Hollywood Squares, Peter Marshall spent the day before his own 93rd birthday celebrating the upcoming 97th birthday of his friend Doris Day at an annual fundraiser for the iconic star’s animal welfare organization, The Doris Day Animal Foundation:

Baywatch star Donna D’Errico, who marked her birthday on March 30th, frequently steps into her real life role as an animal activist. A supporter of Last Chance for Animals, the actress took part in a 2018 protest against the South Korean dog meat trade, and posed for a PSA to call attention to the dogs’ plight.


Photo Credit: Last Chance for Animals

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