Degree Type

Honors Capstone Project

Date of Submission

Spring 5-1-2019

Capstone Advisor

Regina Luttrell

Honors Reader

Adam Novak

Capstone Major

Public Relations

Capstone College

Public Communications

Audio/Visual Component


Capstone Prize Winner


Won Capstone Funding


Honors Categories


Subject Categories

Communication | Public Relations and Advertising


Pet overpopulation has been a national issue for years. With thousands of unwanted stray cats and dogs found on the streets annually, local shelters are doing their best to rehabilitate and rehome animals. However, funds and resources are limited, and communication efforts are poor. Animal shelters need to begin to focus on public relations efforts in order to boost identity within their local communities. The purpose of this research was to discover what inherently goes into developing a comprehensive, successful public relations campaign. This study specifically focused on the following research questions (a) what makes a public relations campaign successful? (b) how do public relations efforts change and/or affect nonprofit organizations? and (c) how can animal shelters better utilize public relations to promote their mission? This was accomplished through two methods. First, research of previous successful nonprofit campaigns along with an analysis of the current state of the adoption process (related to public relations efforts) in animal shelters across the United States was conducted. Second, the implementation of an integrated app, which will enable easier accessibility to the adoption process directly to the consumer, is to be created. The app is called PAWNDER, and is inspired by the dating app, Tinder, in format. Consumers are matched with adoptable animals based off of preferences inputted into the app. The app’s goal is to make the process easier and provide more accessibility to animals in need.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.



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