Manchester Orchestra Guitarist Speaks Up for Homeless Dogs in New peta2 Video

Robert McDowell Dishes on His Band's 'Bring Your Own B****' Contest, Why Adopting a Dog Is a 'Blessing'

For Immediate Release:
July 22, 2014

Shakira Croce 202-483-7382

Los Angeles Manchester Orchestra‘s summer touring schedule is packed, with shows stretching from coast to coast and featuring Balance and Composure, Brick + Mortar, The Mowgli’s, and more—but that didn’t stop guitarist Robert McDowell from sitting down with peta2, PETA’s youth division, for a brand-new video (available here) in which he opens up about his lifelong love of dogs and the importance of supporting animal shelters.

“In my family, we always just connected well with dogs,” he says. “Just that unconditional excitement and love, that even if you’ve had a terrible day, you get home and they just kind of look at you excited. . . . Overall, it’s just kind of like a little blessing.”

That’s why his family always supported local adoption events. It’s also why Manchester Orchestra held a contest on tour called “BYOB”—Bring Your Own Bitch—in which fans sent in photos of their dogs and the band picked one to spend an afternoon with. “When you’re on the road, you don’t have that companionship and you don’t have that love from the dog,” McDowell says. So the lucky fan “would bring the dog in, we’d hang out with them, and that was one of the most bright tours.”

Six to 8 million cats and dogs end up in U.S. animal shelters every year, and roughly half of them have to be euthanized because there simply aren’t enough good homes for them. For every puppy or kitten purchased from a breeder or pet store, a dog or cat in an animal shelter loses his or her chance of finding a home. The best way to help dogs and cats is to adopt and never buy them—and, of course, to spay and neuter.

McDowell is part of a long list of musicians and other celebrities—including Animal Collective, Rise Against, Miniature Tigers, Mogwai, Morrissey, and Rodrigo y Gabriela—who have teamed up with peta2 to promote animal protection.

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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