His Cause, His Cleats—NFL Star Ezekiel Elliott ‘Rushes’ to Help Homeless Dogs

Published by Beth Silvia.

This week, the NFL is running a campaign called “My Cause My Cleats,” in which players are allowed (and encouraged) to wear custom cleats during their games in support of a charitable crusade of their choosing. Players selected everything from fighting hunger to stopping domestic violence. Of all the important messages, though, one player’s custom cleats stood out to us above the rest: Dallas Cowboys’ star running back, Ezekiel “Zeke” Elliott, used the opportunity to honor his best friend—his dog, Ace—and spread messages in support of animal adoption and against animal abuse.

As if that didn’t make us love him enough, he also puts his money where his mouth is! Beyond the very public custom cleats for the NFL’s campaign, he has supported local shelters and often promotes adoption.


We can all help end animal homelessness by adopting animals from our local shelters, never buying them from pet stores or breeders, and being sure to stop animal overpopulation in its tracks by spaying and neutering.

Has Zeke’s big heart inspired you?

  • Get your dogs and cats spayed or neutered.
  • Adopt from shelters—and don’t forget adult animals, who are often overlooked by people who are enamored with the idea of having a puppy or a kitten.
  • If possible, adopt two animals. Animals need both human and animal companionship. Having an animal friend can help alleviate their boredom and loneliness while they’re waiting for you to come home.
  • Cats and dogs are safest and happiest living indoors with their human families. For safety’s sake, they should only be allowed out into securely fenced areas or on a leash under close supervision.
  • Walk dogs and play with your animal companions every day.
  • Take strays to open-admission shelters.
  • Work within your community to legislate mandatory spaying and neutering.
  • Watch PETA’s “370,000 Reasons to Spay and Neuter” for more information.
  • Speak up if someone is planning to breed an animal. Urge people who desire the companionship of animals to adopt from shelters instead.
  • If you see a neglected animal, talk to the guardian and/or contact law enforcement. Be persistent! See PETA’s “chained dog” leaflet for more information.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind