By: Patti Strand  Date: 01/27/2012

The National Animal Interest Alliance has selected The Iams Company as its 2004 “Hero of the Year” for the company’s remarkable leadership in advancing animal well-being and supporting the human-animal bond.

“Our research confirms that no other company has done more for animals and animal enthusiasts than The Iams Company,” said NAIA National Director Patti Strand. “From the development of high-quality pet foods and pet health research to shelter programs, breeder education and sponsorship of dog and cat events and clubs, Iams has consistently led the way in promoting animal welfare and strengthening the bond between people and their pets.”

When forest fires hit the western US in 2003 and hurricanes severely damaged communities in the southeast in 2004, Iams donated food and equipment to hundreds of shelters and rescue groups that took in homeless dogs and attempted to reunite them with their owners or place them in adoptive homes.

In 2001, Iams joined forces with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) to support a long-term adoption program. In 2004, the company co-sponsored the annual New York City Cat Fanciers of America show and cat adoption event.

The Iams Company is a giant force in support of pet shelters and rescue groups throughout North America. Since 1999, its “Home 4 the Holidays” shelter adoption promotion has grown from 14 shelters in California to more than 1300 shelters in the US, Canada, Mexico and Puerto Rico. In 2004, the company offered to donate 30,000 microchip scanners to shelters, animal control agencies and veterinarians to help reunite lost dogs with their owners.

Wherever there is a shelter that needs help, Iams is there – providing educational packets to new pet owners, helping finance shelter construction or renovation, donating food and providing other forms of support in times of crisis.

The Iams Company has had a profound influence through its strong support of programs that help to reinforce the bond between people and animals. The company’s sponsorship of the annual AKC/Eukanuba National Championship Dog Show supports events that celebrate the human-canine bond, provides opportunities for educational outreach by breed clubs, showcases dog sports for the general public, and highlights the achievements of owners and trainers who enjoy breeding, training, and working with their dogs.

“When people do things with their dogs – participate in dog shows, trials, training classes, and other activities – those dogs are far less likely to end up in animal shelters,” Strand said. “Iams has been an unequalled leader in the sponsorship of events and activities that help promote socialization, positive human-animal interaction and healthy bonding. It’s hard to imagine a more positive contribution for people or animals."

“NAIA works for animals and the people who care for them, so it is especially important that we recognize the Iams’ contribution,” she said. "Despite pressure from radical animal rights groups to do otherwise, Iams has never wavered in its strong support for pet ownership, owner and breeder education, and dog and cat health research.”

Strand noted that PeTA and similar extremist fundraising groups utilize “attack campaigns” against companies as vehicles for raising funds and garnering public attention. Half truths, character assassination and misrepresentations are standard fare for PeTA attack campaigns, and Iams has been a favorite target of PeTA for a long time. PeTA attacked Iams in a 2003 smear campaign, using “undercover” video to prop up bogus charges of animal cruelty in an Iams contract research facility. The PeTA activist who shot the video was hired specifically to provide enrichment and socialization for the dogs in the study. Mysteriously, the tape she shot reflected no such improvements, strongly suggesting that she had deliberately undermined the research project in order to distort the study results. “In addition”, Strand said, “PeTA misrepresented the procedures used in the study.”

In October 2004, PeTA kept up the attacks with an unconfirmed report that an Iams-funded study at Auburn University would result in the deaths of the dogs involved. When Iams proved that the report was false, PeTA removed the claim from its website homepage, but kept it available as a press release. The false report still circulates on other e-mail lists and websites.

So in recognition of Iams extraordinary contributions on behalf of our pets, and all the extremist smears they've had to endure to continue making those contributions, NAIA is proud to recognize The Iams Company as its 2004 “Hero of the Year.” We encourage our members and friends to communicate their appreciation and support in any way they deem appropriate. If you’d like to sign a “Thank You, Iams” card from NAIA, please click here.

About The Author

Patti Strand's photo
Patti Strand -

All Authors Of This Article: | Patti Strand |




blog comments powered by Disqus