For Immediate Release:
January 29, 2021
Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382
State College, Pa. – PETA Kids, PETA’s youth division, has recognized fifth-grader Ryan Marusa with a special Hero to Animals Award for creating and donating 200 braided fleece toys to dogs in his hometown, including those at local shelters. In return, Ryan simply asks for photographs of his satisfied canine customers enjoying their toys.
“Thanks to Ryan’s compassion and creativity, life is more fun for dozens of playful dogs,” says PETA Senior Director of Youth Programs Marta Holmberg. “PETA Kids is recognizing him for showing that young people can have the biggest hearts for animals.”
PETA Kids—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—thanks Ryan for thinking of the animals in his community, as approximately 70 million dogs and cats are homeless in the U.S. at any given time. PETA Kids urges families never to buy an animal from a breeder or pet store, which exacerbates the homeless-animal overpopulation crisis, and to follow Ryan’s lead by treating four-legged family members to toys as well as lots of good food, exercise, and affection.