In the fast-paced world of professional sports, where adrenaline and competition take center stage, Wasabi Publicity leveraged a very unique event to score touchdowns for its PR client, Humane Society Silicon Valley (HSSV). HSSV has a long-standing relationship with the San Francisco 49ers; so when Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl producers called in 2023, HSSV teamed up to bring a heartwarming twist to the public relations game – Puppy Therapy.

See the viral videos here:

This unique collaboration transcends the boundaries of sports, promoting the well-being of both players and fans through the therapeutic power of puppies. When Wasabi Publicity received notice of the videos going viral over the last weekend in January, our team switched its pitches to feature the viral videos.

Two weeks before the Super Bowl and the premier of the 20th anniversary of the reality show, Puppy Bowl, our writers started pitching puppy therapy as the key reason to cover HSSV, the 49ers, and the television show. (It helped that the 49ers ended up in the Super Bowl, too!)

ESPN picked it up, and that was one of the targets Animal Planet’s PR team was hoping we could help them score.

See the touchdown here.

The Power of Puppy Therapy

The 49ers and HSSV embraced the healing power of puppy therapy. Research has shown that interactions with animals, particularly puppies, can reduce stress and anxiety and improve overall mood. Having puppies visit brawny athletes also made for excellent photo and video opportunities.

See our online press kit image gallery here.

Puppy Bowl PR Unleashed

The Puppy Bowl, known for its adorable four-legged athletes, joined forces with HSSV and used their long-term relationship to enroll the 49ers to “train the puppies” for the actual Puppy Bowl. The result: cuteness overload! The PR campaign involved engaging content, behind-the-scenes glimpses of players bonding with puppies, and heartwarming stories of these furry companions.

Here is a sample of the press release we edited and released after the viral video hit the internet.

Humane Society Silicon Valley’s Role

Humane Society Silicon Valley, a leading advocate for animal welfare, played a pivotal role in this collaboration. Providing the puppies for the therapy sessions and the actual Puppy Bowl, the organization not only showcased the adorable adoptable pets but also championed the causes of responsible pet ownership and regional rescue. The partnership with the 49ers and Puppy Bowl became a platform for Humane Society Silicon Valley to amplify their message, encouraging the public to consider adoption and support their mission.

Bringing Joy to the Locker Room

Beyond the field, the 49ers’ locker room has become a hub of joy and relaxation, thanks to the presence of these therapy puppies. Players, coaches, and staff alike have embraced the therapeutic benefits of spending time with these furry friends. The puppies, in turn, offer unconditional love and support, creating a positive and stress-free environment for the team.

Fan Engagement and Social Impact

The collaboration not only resonated within the 49ers organization, but it also captivated the hearts of fans. Social media platforms are flooded with pictures and videos of players engaging with the puppies, fostering a sense of camaraderie and unity among the fan base. This positive impact extends beyond the football field, contributing to a broader social conversation about mental health, animal welfare, and the role sports can play in promoting holistic well-being.

As the 49ers, Puppy Bowl, and Humane Society Silicon Valley continue to score touchdowns in the realm of compassionate collaboration, the world watches with delight. This innovative approach to sports and community engagement demonstrates that, sometimes, the most effective plays don’t involve a ball but rather a furry companion with a wagging tail.

The union of Puppy Bowl, the 49ers, the Humane Society Silicon Valley, and Wasabi Publicity, Inc. serves as a beacon of hope, proving that, in the game of life, touchdowns and tail wags can go hand in paw.