Fourth Graders Receive PETA’s Compassionate Classroom Award for Rescuing Injured Stray Dog

Class Raises More Than $1,500 to Help Future Animals in Need

For Immediate Release:
April 22, 2013

Shakira Croce 202-483-7382

New Tazewell, Tenn. — When Erica Pressnell’s fourth-grade class at TNT Primary School found a stray dog with a visibly broken leg during recess, they sprang into action, launching a fundraising effort to raise the $400 needed for the dog’s surgery. Their efforts caught the attention of the Animal Emergency Specialty Center, which then offered to provide the dog, now named TNT, with her much-needed surgery free of charge. She is now recovering from her surgery, and the class has decided to donate the more than $1,500 that it raised in just four days to the Claiborne Animal Shelter’s Emergency Fund so that more animals can find the help that they need.

In recognition of the students’ kindness and generosity, Pressnell’s class will receive a Compassionate Classroom Award from PETA Kids, PETA’s children’s division.

“As the story of TNT’s rescue and rehabilitation shows, kindness inspires kindness—and Pressnell’s class is an inspiration to us all,” says PETA Director of Youth Outreach and Campaigns Marta Holmberg. “PETA hopes more communities will follow in New Tazewell’s footsteps and come together to help animals in need. Even the smallest actions—such as taking a lonely dog for a walk or donating supplies to an animal shelter—add up to make a big difference in animals’ lives.”

Once TNT recovers from her surgery, she’ll be available for adoption and will likely find a home. But not every stray dog is as lucky as TNT: Every year, 6 to 8 million animals end up in U.S. animal shelters, and half of them have to be euthanized because there simply aren’t enough good homes for them. Countless more are abandoned on the streets, where they sustain injuries like TNT’s or succumb to starvation, exposure, or disease. That’s why PETA encourages families always to spay and neuter their dogs and cats and to adopt from animal shelters rather than buy from breeders or pet stores, which contribute to the animal overpopulation crisis.

Photos of TNT and of TNT Primary School students and teachers can be seen here. For more information, please visit

Stay up to date on the latest vegan trends and get breaking animal rights news delivered straight to your inbox!

By submitting this form, you’re acknowledging that you have read and agree to our privacy policy and agree to receive e-mails from us.

Get the Latest Tips—Right in Your Inbox
We’ll e-mail you weekly with the latest in vegan recipes, fashion, and more!

By submitting this form, you’re acknowledging that you have read and agree to our privacy policy and agree to receive e-mails from us.