Stamp Out Pet Overpopulation

I participated in a press conference Friday afternoon at the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences in Los Angeles, Calif., with Ellen DeGeneres, who is co-owner of HALO, Purely for Pets; founder Betsy Saul; Postal Service CFO Joseph Corbett; and AHA spokesperson Jone Bouman, to unveil the new U.S. Postal Service social awareness stamp -- Animal Rescue: Adopt a Shelter Pet.

With Ellen DeGeneres and Betsy Saul, Co-Founder of Photo credit Clemente Bogle, Jr./U.S. Postal Service

The USPS has printed 300 million of the 44-cent stamps as a way to bring awareness to the issues of adopting shelter animals and promoting spaying and neutering. The stamps went on sale Friday throughout the nation, and if there is a great public response for the stamps by May 30, the USPS promised to do another major run.

Promoting these twin goals of adoption and sterilization has always been a core component of The Humane Society of the United States' programs, and until the USPS runs out of these stamps, they'll be the only ones for me for my regular mail. It is my hope that you'll flock to the USPS for these stamps as well, and that this collective action will signal to every American that we can solve the pet overpopulation problem.

Of the dogs and cats in our homes, fewer than one in five come from shelters or rescue groups. If we were able to increase that percentage of adopted animals by just a percentage, we could prevent the euthanasia of more than 3 million healthy and treatable pets in America. It's a problem that has plagued our cause for so many years, and this new campaign is just the latest awareness campaign to turn around the problem.

Last year, The HSUS announced with Maddie's Fund and The Ad Council our Shelter Pet Project -- a national advertising campaign to promote adoption. With that campaign on the airwaves, and with the new USPS campaign and the dozens of other efforts we engage in, it's an incredible moment in our campaign.

I was so pleased to appear with Ellen. She's such a great friend to The HSUS, and I think she's just the greatest.

This post originally appeared on Pacelle's blog, A Humane Nation.