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This Tech Giant Wants More Dogs To Find Their Forever Homes: Here’s How Google Plans To Make It Happen

Last Updated: March 5, 2024
  • Google launches “Pixel Pawtraits” campaign providing shelters with Pixel phones and photography kits to take better photos of adoptable dogs.
  • Research shows dogs with higher-quality photos get adopted faster – the goal is to boost adoption rates with AI-powered Pixel cameras.
  • Over 70 shelters across 29 states have already applied to receive free kits to photograph their pups, with Google featuring adoptable dogs weekly on their social media.
Abandoned Dog Is Rescued

Many families expanded during the pandemic, with over 23 million Americans adopting a furry friend. However, as offices reopen and the economy struggles, more and more of these pandemic pups are being returned to shelters.

Animal shelters across the country are overwhelmed, desperately needing help to find loving homes for their rescue dogs.

Tech giant Google aims to address this crisis by leveraging the power of their Pixel smartphone cameras. Google’s Pixel team recently launched the Pixel Pawtraits campaign, which provides shelters with Pixel devices and photography kits.

Equipped with Pixel 8 Pro phones and AI-powered cameras, shelters can capture attention-grabbing photos to boost adoption rates.

Research shows dogs with higher-quality photos get adopted faster – within 14 days on average, compared to 43 days with poor photos. By upping shelters’ photography game, Google hopes more pups will find their forever families.

Leanne Johnson, Google’s Head of Global Social and Influencer Marketing, said “We are a company of dog lovers at Google. When we learned of the impact a quality photo can make, we knew the Pixel – with its best-in-class camera and features fit for energetic pups and shelter environments – would be able to have real impact on this issue.”

The Pixel Pawtraits Kits contain a Pixel 8 Pro device, photography equipment like backdrops and tripods, and a guide on taking the perfect pup portraits. These kits reduce barriers for shelters, enabling them to showcase dogs’ unique personalities through photos.

So far, over 70 shelters across 29 states have applied to receive the free kits. Google is prioritizing no-kill shelters in states with the most dogs needing homes.

The goal is to empower at least one shelter per state to participate. Participating shelters can apply to acquire a kit of their own and to be highlighted on Google Pixel’s social media accounts.

“Because I run our social media page, I have noticed time and time again that one of the key things to getting a pet adopted is good quality photos… When the personality of a dog can come through in a photo and somebody can really connect to them, that’s what gets their foot in the door for rescue. And that can be the game changer for everything,” said Lauren Botticelli, Executive Director of The Animal Pad.

The Animal Pad, a San Diego no-kill shelter, became one of the first recipients of the Pixel Pawtraits Kits.

Black Rescued Dog

Each week, Google will feature adoptable dogs from different shelters using the program, sharing photos and profiles across their social channels. This expands the dogs’ reach and visibility to potential new families.

Moa Netto, Head of Creative for 1000heads, Google’s campaign partner, said “I was personally inspired by the creative simplicity and impact of this idea. By providing shelter employees with a camera equipped with AI capabilities, we’re not only expanding their potential but also saving lives.

It’s innovation with heart, empowering people to capture the personalities of dogs and enhance their chances of finding loving homes.”

With over 70 shelter applicants so far, the Pixel Pawtraits campaign is gaining momentum. Google plans to continue distributing kits to deserving shelters nationwide.

By leveraging Pixel technology to help pups shine through quality photos, the tech powerhouse aims to reduce overcrowding in animal shelters. More tails could be wagging with joy in new forever homes thanks to this creative approach.

As Moa Netto said, it’s “a reminder that technology can be our best friend when it comes to helping our true best friends out there.”

Sharon Waddington
Sharon Waddington is the founder of World of Dogz. With over 30 years of experience working with dogs, this former Police Officer has seen it all. But it’s her trusty German Shepherd, Willow, who steals the show as the inspiration behind this website. As Sharon’s constant companion Willow has played a pivotal role in shaping her passion for dogs. Recently, Sharon has become deeply passionate about the plight of rescue dogs and is an active advocate for dog rescue, striving to make a difference in the lives of dogs in need.

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