Rarely do I feel compelled to endorse other people or companies. And I've become very selective about who I am willing to network with. These are topics for another day. But today, I made a discovery that compels me to stand up and do one of those victory dances you see on TV football or reach real high with my right hand, grab a fist-full of air and pull down with all my might shouting "Yeeeessssss!!!"
Well, you get the idea. I'm excited. I finally found a project that is genius in its simplicity.
I had a pair of cats; one died two months ago. Now I firmly believe pets are much healthier and happier when they have a companion to play with. But I've been holding out and dragging my feet just a little about getting another companion for Twiggy. Adoptions have gotten really expensive – upwards of $75 ($100 for kittens) plus or minus the cost of shots, etc. Besides, I'd heard that some places have been getting finicky about letting older people adopt because so many on limited incomes have been giving up their pets because of financial problems.
My daughter suggested she'd like to give me a cat for my birthday. Being frugal myself, the cost really bothered me. But I couldn't sway her. I have a persistent daughter and I know better than to quibble with her.
Ok, ok, so I decided to go take a look, knowing full well that I could expect some cunning, lovable cat to pull at my heartstrings.
So, after looking around some and discovering that many animal shelters and pounds have been shut down due to the economy, I went back to the local animal care organization where we'd already found 3-4 delightful pets at various times in the past.
I had a selection of about two dozen cats the youngest 10 months old… no kittens this time. Just as well, from the selection I had, I was already torn between two beautiful animals.
There was no hard sell, in-your-face marketing here. The attendant walked me around, introduced me to each cat in turn. He answered all my questions courteously and as thoroughly as possible. When I was ready to make my selection and I confirmed that the payment could be made by check or credit card as well as cash, the attendant said simply and without fanfare: "You are a senior citizen and so it will only be $35 for you to complete the adoptions (with all shots, microchipping etc included). Purina has a program that enables seniors to adopt pets and we participate with them. Purina pays the balance of the adoption fee."
You could have knocked me over with a whisper!!
Finally, someone has gotten it right.
Purina rocks!! They have found a way to connect loving, caring seniors on limited incomes with pets, who might otherwise be put to sleep…creating loving homes for both. They've found a way to make the market they serve a whole lot better by finding a way to practice inclusivity rather than exclusivity (and yes, it's a very nice way to expand their market at the same time.)