Holiday Wishes
Holiday Wishes

Pets brighten our lives. Let's brighten theirs.


Since 2013, more than 15,000 adopters have shared the big and small ways their pet brightens their life to help make $5M in Holiday Wishes grant awards come true for the animal welfare organizations that work hard year-round to make these adoption matches possible. This holiday season, we’ll once again celebrate the best stories submitted by adopters and award lifesaving funds to animal welfare organizations across the country. Submission period opens August 10, 2020.

Angels Among Us Pet Rescue

$50,000 winner

Submitted by: Max

San Antonio Pets Alive!

$50,000 winner

Submitted by: Florencia

Humane Society of Oldham County

$50,000 winner

Submitted by: Shane

Peak Lab Rescue

$50,000 winner

Submitted by: Drew

Angels Among Us Pet Rescue

$25,000 winner

Submitted by: Neal

Two by Two Rescue League

$25,000 winner

Submitted by: Vicki

Hearts & Bones Animal Rescue

$25,000 winner

Submitted by: Sydney

Korean K9 Rescue

$25,000 winner

Submitted by: Lenore

Meow Parlour Cats, Inc.

$25,000 winner

Submitted by: Michael

Meow Parlour Cats, Inc.

$25,000 winner

Submitted by: Nicole

Muddy Paws Rescue

$25,000 winner

Submitted by: Hannah

Providence Animal Center

$25,000 winner

Submitted by: Amanda

Animal Humane Society of New Mexico

$20,000 winner

Submitted by: Chris

San Antonio Pets Alive!

$10,000 winner

Submitted by: Beverly

The Animal Foundation

$10,000 winner

Submitted by: Jennifer

Rescue Pit

$10,000 winner

Submitted by: Rachel

City of Sacramento Front Street Shelter

$10,000 winner

Submitted by: Christina

Sacramento SPCA

$10,000 winner
$10,000 people's choice

Submitted by: Lee

Anjellicle Cats Rescue

$10,000 winner

Submitted by: Zehui

Charleston Animal Society

$10,000 winner

Submitted by: Irene

Cape Ann Animal Aid Association

$10,000 winner

Submitted by: Cristy

Nate’s Honor Animal Rescue

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Nicole

Everett Animal Shelter

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Bree

Homeward Bound Animal Welfare Center

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Kira

Humane Society of Tampa Bay

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Adam

Little Victories Animal Rescue Group

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Leslie

4 Paws 4 Life Rescue

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Katharine

Animal Care Centers of NYC

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Taylar

Foster Dogs, Incorporated

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Zachary

Home for Good Dog Rescue

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Nicholas

Korean K9 Rescue

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Sarah

Whitman County Humane Society

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Ashley

Coastal German Shepherd Rescue of Southern California

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Ginamarie

Cozy Cat Cottage Adoption Center

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Deborah

Second Chance Pets

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Mildred

Second Chance Pets

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Staci

Humane Society of McCormick County

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Janine

Kansas City Pet Project

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Kenny

Hope Animal Rescue

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Veronica

Hope Animal Rescue

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Alyssa

Nuzzles & Co.

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Zoe

Peninsula Humane Society & SPCA

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Kathryn

SPCA Florida

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Abi

Voices of Change Animal League (VOCAL)

$5,000 winner

Submitted by: Valerie

K9 Hero Haven

Submitted by: Bill

K9 Hero Haven

Submitted by: Abby

Last Hope K9 Rescue

Submitted by: Darlene

Richmond SPCA

Submitted by: Amanda Sue

Independent Animal Rescue

Submitted by: Danielle

Service Dogs of New Mexico

Submitted by: R.A.

South Shore Humane Society

Submitted by: Danielle

Past Winners

Help Make Your Organization's Wishes Come True

All animal welfare organizations in the U.S. are invited to participate in the Holiday Wishes grant campaign. Learn more about how to encourage adopters to share their story, ensure your organization has completed all eligibility requirements, and hear tips from the Petco Foundation team. Join our Holiday Wishes Kickoff Webinar on Tuesday, August 11 at 1:30pm CST (2:30pm EST/11:30am PT).

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

If you have any questions, please refer to the FAQ.

  • Submission FAQs (Click to expand)

    Q: WHO CAN SUBMIT ADOPTION STORIES TO THE PETCO FOUNDATION’S HOLIDAY WISHES CAMPAIGN?
    Any person over the age of 18 (or under the age of 18 with parental/guardian consent) who has adopted a pet from a U.S. based animal welfare organization can submit a story during the Holiday Wishes campaign. Please note that the pet must be currently living.

    Q: WHEN CAN I SUBMIT MY STORY?
    Adopters can submit stories August 10 – September 23, 2020 at noon CST. However, due to the timing of the contest and review requirements, we can only guarantee that the first 10,000 stories will be fully reviewed and considered for the campaign. We encourage all to submit stories in the Holiday Wishes campaign early to assure consideration.

    Q: WHAT SHOULD THE STORY BE ABOUT?
    Your story should describe how your adopted pet has made your life better and should be a celebration of the love you share with your pet. Stories can range from the simplest things that bring more joy to life each and every day to the one-of-a-kind, extraordinary stories. Big or small, show how your pet has significantly changed your life for the better.

    Remember to tell a story rather than simply reciting facts as they happened. Quality storytelling and supporting photos or videos will make your submission stand out from the rest. You may wish to reach out to the animal welfare organization that you adopted your pet from so they can assist you with crafting your story and obtaining quality photos and/or video for your submission.

    Q: MY PET PASSED AWAY, CAN I STILL SUBMIT HIS/HER STORY?
    We are deeply sorry for the loss of your pet and offer our heartfelt condolences. For the Holiday Wishes campaign, all story submissions must be written about a pet currently living in your home.

    Q: I AM TRYING TO LOGIN TO SUBMIT MY STORY BUT I CANNOT REMEMBER MY PASSWORD?
    Please use the password reset button on the login screen.

    Q: I SUBMITTED A STORY LAST YEAR, BUT DID NOT WIN. CAN I SUBMIT AGAIN?
    Absolutely, please review some of our winning stories from last year to see what makes a winning story stand out.

    Q: MY HOLIDAY WISHES STORY WON AN AWARD IN A PRIOR YEAR – AM I ELIGIBLE TO WIN AGAIN?
    A: Stories about the same pet are not eligible to win; however, we encourage prior winners to share stories about other pets that were not featured in the original winning story.

    Q: CAN I SUBMIT MORE THAN ONE STORY?
    First, thank you for adopting more than one pet. However, due to the large number of submissions anticipated, we are asking adopters to limit submissions to one story per household.

    Q: CAN I SUBMIT A STORY ABOUT MORE THAN ONE PET?
    Yes, you can submit a story that includes information about more than one pet but you must single out the name of one pet and the animal welfare organization you adopted him/her from.

    Q: CAN I MAKE CHANGES TO MY ADOPTION STORY AFTER I SUBMIT IT?
    No, you cannot make any changes or additions once your story is submitted. You can however make as many changes as you wish while your story is in draft mode.

    Q: CAN THE PETCO FOUNDATION EDIT MY STORY?
    Yes, we reserve the right to edit all stories submitted for brevity or clarity before being published as a winning story. We also reserve the right to edit any photos or videos submitted with the story prior to publishing.

    Q: WHAT TYPES OF PETS CAN I SUBMIT AN ADOPTION STORY FOR?
    You can submit a story about any companion animal that you have adopted from an animal welfare organization.

    Q: WHAT TYPES OF PHOTOS SHOULD I INCLUDE?
    All story submissions should include a minimum of four photos including one photo of the pet by themselves, and one photo of you and your pet together. Additional photos can include your pet with the whole family or a photo that further supports your story. The expression ‘a photo is worth a thousand words’ definitely applies during the Holiday Wishes campaign. Great photos can tell a story by themselves, so submit photos that express the point of your story.

    When creating file names for the photos in your submission, please use the name of the pet you are nominating as the photos’ file name (e.g. bella.jpg, bella2.jpg). Additionally, be sure to use high-resolution images. Most cell phone cameras are capable of taking great photos. Be sure to submit photos that are clear and of the highest quality possible. The system will accept most image file types including gif, jpeg, jpg and png.

    Please do not submit photos that contain watermarks or text/graphics overlaid on the image. Collage images and/or images with added borders, etc., are not preferred.

    Q: CAN I INCLUDE VIDEO WITH MY STORY SUBMISSION?
    Yes, while not mandatory, we do encourage you to submit up to two videos to illustrate your story. Great videos can help your submission stand out from the rest. For example, videos can include a 60 second clip looking into the camera and sharing additional details about how your pet has changed your life for the better. The system will accept video file types including AVI and MP4, and there is no limit to video length, although we recommend no more than five minutes. Please ensure that you have the license for any music and or photos included with your video. We reserve the right to edit your video.

    Q: I AM A PETCO EMPLOYEE. AM I ABLE TO SUBMIT A STORY ABOUT AN ANIMAL THAT I ADOPTED FROM AN ANIMAL WELFARE ORGANIZATION?
    We are always happy to see Petco employees adopting pets, and we thank you for choosing adoption. Petco employees are eligible to submit stories and win grant awards for their animal welfare organization but are not eligible to receive the Petco shopping spree prize.

    Q: HOW MANY STORIES WILL YOU ACCEPT?
    The Petco Foundation will accept all stories submitted during August 10 – September 23, 2020. However, due to the timing of the contest and review requirements, we can only guarantee that the first 10,000 stories will be fully reviewed and considered for the campaign. We encourage all to enter stories in the Holiday Wishes campaign early to assure consideration.

    Q: WHAT QUALIFIES AS AN ANIMAL WELFARE ORGANIZATION?
    The Petco Foundation grants funds to qualified, U.S. based animal welfare organizations. Organizations include municipal or government animal shelters and nonprofit 501(c)3 organizations such as humane societies, SPCAs and foster-based rescues. To be eligible to receive an award, nominated animal welfare organizations must complete the adoption verification for submissions, an annual Petco Foundation partnership application and a Holiday Wishes grant application.

    Q: WHAT CONTACT INFORMATION SHOULD I SUBMIT FOR THE ANIMAL WELFARE ORGANIZATION?
    It is important that you contact the animal welfare organization you adopted your pet from and inform them that you are submitting a Petco Foundation Holiday Wishes story and giving their organization an opportunity to win a substantial grant. Ask them for the direct email and phone number for their Executive Director/President or someone who can verify the adoption and respond immediately along with their organization Tax ID. Your animal welfare organization may be willing to assist you with your story or help you obtain high quality photos and/or video for your submission.

    Q: HOW CAN I BE SURE MY STORY IS SUBMITTED?
    When you have completed the required tasks, please be sure to click “Review & Submit” and the final “Submit Your Application” button to ensure that your submission is eligible for review. You will receive an email confirmation that your story was submitted successfully.

    If you experience any technical issues that are not answered in these FAQs, please contact us at holidaywishes@petcofoundation.org.

  • Animal Welfare Organizations FAQs (Click to expand)

    Q: HOW DO I VERIFY AN ADOPTION?
    Your organization will receive an email for each verification needed. Login to the Petco Foundation Partner Portal, identify the adoption under the menu “Pending Verifications”, verify and submit. All verifications due by September 30th.

    Q: SHOULD I WAIT FOR ALL OF THE STORIES TO BE SUBMITTED BEFORE COMPLETING OUR APPLICATION OR SHOULD I SUBMIT RIGHT AWAY?
    No, you do not have to wait, and we encourage you to submit your application as soon as reasonably possible (and definitely before the September 30th due date).
    Organization Instructions

    Q: HOW CAN I ENCOURAGE OUR ADOPTERS TO SUBMIT STORIES?
    Check out the promo guide and download the Holiday Wishes toolkit which contains sample social media posts and graphics, emails, flyers, and a press release. You can also offer assistance to your adopters, including helping them obtain quality photos and/or video to support their stories and reviewing their stories.

    Q: IS MY ORGANIZATION STILL ELIGIBLE IF WE RECEIVED A GRANT EARLIER THIS YEAR AND HAVE AN OPEN FOLLOW-UP REPORT?
    Yes – your organization could be eligible. The Holiday Wishes contest does not fall under our normal grant cycle, so any outstanding grant follow-ups or applications will not impact eligibility for a Holiday Wishes grant.

    Q: HOW WILL I KNOW IF AN ADOPTER HAS SUBMITTED A STORY ON OUR BEHALF?
    The Petco Foundation has requested that the adopter provide a contact email in his/her submission for someone at your organization to verify the adoption and submit organization information. If the adopter has provided a contact, an email will be sent to this contact with information on how to verify the adoption and submit your organization’s information. If no contact has been provided or if the email to the organization is undeliverable, we will contact your organization if the story submission is a finalist. We encourage you to provide your adopters with a preferred contact name, email and your organization’s tax ID number to include on their submission. You can look up the tax ID number here.

    Q: I RECEIVED MULTIPLE EMAILS ABOUT HOLIDAY WISHES STORY SUBMISSIONS. DO I NEED TO ENTER OUR ORGANIZATION’S INFORMATION AGAIN?
    You do need to verify each adoption, but you only need to submit your organization’s application once. The verification and application may be found on our Partner Portal.
    Organization Instructions

    Q: CAN OUR ORGANIZATION HAVE MORE THAN ONE WINNING STORY?
    Yes, it is possible that multiple entries could result in more than one grant award for your organization! Additionally, there are grant awards ranging from $5,000 to $25,000 for the top five organizations with the most valid story submissions.

    Q: I’M A SERVICE OR THERAPY ANIMAL ORGANIZATION  WITH AN INCREDIBLE STORY, CAN SOMEONE ENTER A STORY ON OUR BEHALF?
    If your organization pulled the pet featured in the story from an animal shelter and trained the service or therapy animal and made the match, you may be eligible to win a Holiday Wishes award.

    Q: HOW CAN I RECEIVE A GRANT AWARD UP TO $25,000 FOR THE MOST VALID SUBMISSIONS?
    If your organization is one of the top five organizations with the most valid Holiday Wishes story submissions, you will be eligible to receive a grant award up to $25,000. To be considered valid, story submissions must meet the guidelines, duplicate submissions will not count, and all adoptions must be verified in the Petco Foundation Partner Portal by the adoption organization. Organizations must also have completed the partnership agreement and the Holiday Wishes application.
    Top 5 Organizations with the Most Valid Submissions Will Receive:
    One (1) First Place: $25k
    Two (2) Second Place Winners: $10k each
    Two (2) Third Place Winners: $5k each

    Q: I STILL NEED HELP. HOW CAN I GET IN CONTACT WITH YOU?
    If you experience any issues that are not answered in these FAQs, please contact us at holidaywishes@petcofoundation.org.

  • Winner Selection & Prizes FAQs (click to expand)

    Q: WHO WILL DECIDE WHICH ORGANIZATIONS ARE SELECTED TO RECEIVE HOLIDAY WISHES GRANTS?
    The Petco Foundation will have a dedicated team responsible for reviewing submissions. Winners will be chosen based on the sole and absolute discretion of the Petco Foundation.

    Q: WHAT ARE THE PRIZES FOR THE HOLIDAY WISHES GRANT CAMPAIGN?
    The Petco Foundation will grant approximately $750,000 in Holiday Wishes awards to winning animal welfare organizations while Petco will grant a shopping spree to the adopters in the amounts specified below:

    Grand Prize:
    $100,000 grant award for the animal welfare organization
    $1,000 Petco shopping spree and a prize pack including a pair of BOBs from Skechers for the adopter

    2nd Prize Winners:
    $50,000 grant award for the animal welfare organization
    $500 Petco shopping spree and a prize pack including a pair of BOBs from Skechers for the adopter

    3rd Prize Winners:
    $25,000 grant award for the animal welfare organization
    $250 Petco shopping spree and a prize pack including a pair of BOBs from Skechers for the adopter

    Runner-ups:
    $5,000 or $10,000 grant award for the animal welfare organization
    $100 Petco shopping spree and a prize pack including a pair of BOBs from Skechers for the adopter

    The organization with the most valid submissions will also receive a grant award of $25,000.

    Please click here for applicant terms and conditions.

    Q: WHEN WILL THE WINNING ANIMAL WELFARE ORGANIZATIONS BE ANNOUNCED?
    The Petco Foundation will make its final decisions regarding Holiday Wishes grants in December.

    All winners will be listed on the Petco Foundation website once the winners have been announced publicly. The Petco Foundation may contact the animal welfare organization and adopter directly to coordinate involvement in any media or publication of winners.

    Please note, the Petco Foundation may use photos or highlight stories prior to the determination of the final winners, but such use of stories or photos during the course of this campaign does not imply a winning entry.

    Q: WHAT IS THE PEOPLE’S CHOICE AWARDS COMPETITION
    This is an opportunity for the public to vote on their favorite winning stories. This will give the winning organizations the chance to receive additional grant funding of up to $25,000. Following the announcement of the winning organizations in December, the public will have the chance to vote online via our gallery poll for their favorite stories from December 6, 2019 at Noon CST through December 20, 2019 at Noon CST.
    Top 5 Vote Recipients Will Receive:
    One (1) First Place: $25k
    Two (2) Second Place Winners: $10k each
    Two (2) Third Place Winners: $5k each

    Participating organizations will receive a toolkit to help them promote the competition. Voters must participate via the gallery poll. Only one vote per story will be recorded. Voters must verify their email address to vote and be in the United States. The gallery poll will be accessible petcofoundation.org/vote. Offering incentives for voting, paying for votes or voting on behalf of another person is not permitted. The Petco Foundation reserves the right to remove fraudulent votes and disqualify organizations from the People’s Choice voting. See Official Rules.

    Q: IF MY STORY AND THE ANIMAL WELFARE ORGANIZATION IS SELECTED AS A WINNER, WHEN WILL I RECEIVE MY PRIZE?
    Both the adopter and animal welfare organization of any winning submissions will receive the shopping spree and grant check before December 31, 2020. People’s Choice award winners will receive additional grant awards by January 31, 2021.

Powered in Partnership with BOBS from Skechers

Join the Petco Foundation and BOBS from Skechers in saving animal lives across the U.S. When you purchase BOBS from Skechers, a donation is made to the Petco Foundation to help shelters save animal lives nationwide.