San Francisco News

San Francisco dog rescuers feel 'Oprah Effect'

Monday, December 20, 2010

Everyone knows Oprah Winfrey is a powerful woman. If she brings an author on the show, the book becomes a best-seller. Bring a doctor on the show, she becomes a celebrity too. A local nonprofit is now feeling the "Oprah effect."

Oprah gave audience members some of her favorite things and two San Francisco women were in that crowd. Ever since that show first aired last month, they and their non-profit organization have really benefited from the so-called "Oprah effect."

"Thank you Oprah," said Sherri Franklin, the founder of Muttville.

Muttville is a non-profit organization that has found homes for hundreds of older, harder to adopt dogs. Patty Stanton is a volunteer who nominated Franklin as someone Oprah should salute and together they wound up on Winfrey's show.

"We practiced in the taxi cab over there. What if she tosses it to us? What are you going to say?" said Stanton.

It turns out they did not get to talk about Muttville because Oprah was busy handing out her favorite things. Still, the impact of being on the show last month, the "Oprah effect," and our news story about their appearance have paid off big time.

"We are not only getting so many applications, at least triple the amount of applications for adoption and questions about how to start a senior dog rescue, which I love that," said Franklin.

Patti Kent got swept up in the Oprah effect and now she has her dog "Tulip."

"I saw it on TV and was very excited because I was looking for an adult dog, low maintenance," said Kent. "Thanks to Oprah, I have my new forever friend here."

And being on Oprah has turned into a financial bonanza for Muttville.

"We were also able to take a lot of the items Oprah gave to us and put them on a website that does auctions for non-profits and we made about $5,800,"says Stanton.

That'll pay a lot of vet bills to make sure the pooches are in top shape for adoption.

"Diamond earrings, we didn't keep those...Ugg boots," said Stanton.

But they are keeping at least one of the new Volkswagens coming their way. It'll be painted with the Muttville logo and used to transport the pets. They want the license plate to say "Thanks Oprah."

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Tags:
volunteerism, oprah winfrey, animal, animals in peril, san francisco news, carolyn tyler
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