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From the 3rd Annual Shorty Social Good Awards

Tournament of Tails Shelter Pet Challenge

Entered in NGO

About this entry

Shelters, rescues and humane societies give their all to save homeless pets, and Petplan's Tournament of Tails is a chance to cheer them on. The Tournament of Tails was created to raise awareness for pet adoption and local animal shelters/organizations, while also serving as a platform to align our philanthropic efforts in the animal rescue community. The friendly online com-paw-tition raises awareness and much-needed funds for 32 deserving shelter pets from rescues all across the country – and helps ensure that every animal finds a home.

Why does this entry deserve to win?

The fifth annual Tournament of Tails is a bracket-style online fan-voting challenge that features 32 animal shelters/organizations from across the country. Each participating organization is represented by an adoptable pet going paw-to-paw for their share of nearly $11,000 in donations. Each matchup lasts one calendar day, and the pet who earns the most votes moves on to the next round. The ultimate winner takes home $5,000 for their organization, but no pet goes home empty-pawed. Those bounced from the Terrific 32 receive a $100 donation for their shelters; players whose run ends at the Super 16 receive $200; pets knocked off in the Great 8 round receive $300; and those who make it to the Final Fur net an impressive $500 each.

Voting for each match-up takes place online at and is promoted through Petplan's policyholder network, social media presence, digital media and each participating organization's network of supporters.

The unique aspect of the Tournament of Tails is the participating shelter animals. Many have overcome difficult obstacles, including physical injury, abuse, and more to rally the community for support and a forever home with a family of their own. Thankfully, many of the participating pets end up being adopted because of the contest, while countless other shelter animals also find homes because of the awareness of the campaign. In 2018, more than 200,000 votes were cast for these deserving rescue pets.


The Tournament of Tails successfully raised awareness for the local animal shelters throughout the country as evidenced by the adoption of nearly all the competing pets during the contest, countless other adoptions at participating rescues during the month of the campaign and nearly 300 million media impressions both locally and nationally for the campaign and shelters. Additionally, Petplan was able to engage more local shelters in an effort to raise awareness about the benefits of pet insurance for adopted pets, hopefully reducing the number of pets returned to shelters for unexpected health costs.


Video for Tournament of Tails Shelter Pet Challenge

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Petplan pet insurance


Entry Credits