Thursday, November 03, 2005

Shelters need a new marketing strategy.

You know the current craze for designer dog breeds?
Why hasn't the Humane Society jumped on the bandwagon? It could really get people looking for a cute -poo, -doodle, -chon or -pom mix thinking about adopting from shelters, instead of looking online for puppymill cutesy mixes for hundreds - sometimes even thousands - of dollars.

Instead of the weekly photos of adoptable mutts posted by the local shelter honestly described as "Labrador mix" or "Cocker Spaniel mix", shelters really should jazz it up a bit. Call it a "Muttilab" or "Cockamix." Why not?
Even bill the potential adoptees as designer breeds. Call small Labrador mixes "teacup" Labs. Call every pup a "poopuppy." Use the term "hybrid" as much as possible. This term sounds a bit more scientific and will impress the sort of stupid people who might look to the internet, or the local classified ads, for those special "hybrid" puppies.

Since the vacuous national interest in celebrities shows no sign of waning (indicating the alarmingly high number of Stupid People in developed nations) shelters can capitalize on this too.
"Now is your chance to own a rare Doodleman Pinscher hybrid! (insert name of local sports celebrity) owns a Doberman! You can be just like him, nearly almost! Only $125, adoption fee covers spay/neuter, deworming and shots." "Paris Hilton owns designer teacup Chihuahuas! This week's designer hybrid is an adorable Chipoo-Maltitzu! You can be just like Paris Hilton, nearly almost! Discounted this week only! $75, includes spay/neuter, deworming, shots and a cute bow!"

D'ya think that might work, just a little? Of course, you'd get more stupid people owning dogs. But stupid people are going to own dogs, no matter what. Maybe it's better that they get dogs from the shelter instead of an Amish puppymill. Maybe better for the shelter dogs, since most of them get killed anyhow.

Well, I think it's an idea worthy of further thought.


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