Can 9,000 pets be adopted in four days? Zappos is hoping to make that idea a reality during one of the busiest holiday shopping weekends of the year. From Black Friday to Cyber Monday, the Las Vegas-based retail giant is leading a nationwide Pawlidayz campaign, teaming up with 300 shelters to pay all adoption fees. The expense adds up to about $1.5 million, but Zappos says absorbing the cost is well worth it.
The company launched the event last year, with the goal of covering the adoption of 4,000 shelter pets across the country. The figure reached 6,285 adoptions over four days, so organizers decided to raise the stakes even higher this time around. This year’s goal of 9,000 adoptions is the same number of dogs and cats killed each day in America’s shelters, simply because they don’t have a place to call home.
The online retailer benefits directly from the holiday shopping rush, of course—bringing in massive profits by selling shoes, clothing and accessories. But employees say that offering a little love to an animal in need can be more important than filling the post-Thanksgiving weekend with shopping and eating. Zappos has long been animal-friendly, working with both the Animal Foundation in Las Vegas as well as Moapa’s Roos-N-More Zoo. Adoption events are held frequently at its Downtown headquarters, and just last year the company designated its campus a dog-friendly zone. Even CEO Tony Hsieh got into the act by adopting his first dog, Blizzy.
So while you’re opening up your wallets for some holiday shopping this year, think about also opening your heart and home for a new member of the family. Pets can make great holiday gifts—just make sure the recipient is ready and able to handle the responsibility.