Rules & Legal Information (December 2014) (GGO) and The Animal Rescue Site are proud to announce that THE SHELTER CHALLENGE will grant more than $35,000 USD, through monetary grants and product grants, in support and assistance to select domestic and international animal rescue and welfare organizations.

Animal rescue and welfare organizations caring for domestic pets (mammal, avian, or reptile) are welcome to join the Shelter Challenge at any time, before, during, or after current contests., GreaterGood, The Animal Rescue Site, and Shelter Challenge take no responsibility for organization's failing to provide all registration material necessary for approval or technical difficulties in registration.

The eligibility of participating animal rescue and welfare organizations will be determined either during or after the voting period has been completed.  To be eligible, organizations must have a valid and current 501(c)3 or international equivalent, or be a Municipal Shelter.  Determination of eligibility is at the sole discretion of

How The Shelter Challenge Works
Visitors to THE SHELTER CHALLENGE will have an opportunity to choose from a list of select animal rescue and welfare organizations.  Visitors can cast one vote daily during each voting period to help pick the organizations which will receive support from Voters are limited to one (1) vote per person per day for each voting contest.  Votes will be accepted from Monday, December 22, 2014, until Midnight (PT) on Sunday, January 18, 2015.

Grant Prizes are anticipated to be distributed in the following manner: Grand Prize of $3,000 for the eligible organization with the most votes (one prize); Story Contest Prizes of one $1,000 grant for the eligible organization represented by the finalist story with the most votes in the story contest (one prize); fifty-one (51) U.S. State Regional Prizes including State Prizes of $500 for an eligible organization in each U.S. state, and one in the District of Columbia, with the most votes (fifty-one prizes of $500 each), one Canadian Prize of $500 for the organization in Canada with the highest vote totals for that country (one prize of $500), one U.S. Organized Territories and Presidential Republics Prize of $500 for the organization in U.S. organized territories or presidential republics in free association with the U.S. (one prize of $500), and one International Prize of $500 for the organization with the highest vote totals located outside the United States and Canada (one prize of $500). 

Weekly Prizes: One $1,000 grant to help animals will be awarded each week during the voting period for each eligible organization with the most votes during that week (4 prizes of $1,000 each; participants are eligible for only one weekly prize during each Shelter Challenge). Winners of the Weekly prizes will be announced weekly. No organization may win more than one Weekly Prize during each voting period.

Non-Monetary Prizes:  Story Runner Up Prizes of 50 washable, shelter-friendly pet beds for each of the four eligible organizations represented by the top four stories with the highest number of votes in the story contest (four prizes of 50 pet beds) will be distributed.  

Acceptance of Prizes:  Winners must accept the monetary prizes in the form of a check drawn upon a U.S. Bank and the non-monetary prizes as described above. If they decline to accept the prizes as stated in these rules, will determine an appropriate use of funds or non-monetary prizes to benefit rescued animals.


Organizations receiving the Grand Prize are ineligible for Regional Prizes during the same voting period (For example, if the Grand Prize Winner is located in California, the State Prizes will go to the eligible organizations in that state with the highest vote total after the Grand Prize Winner).

Organizations are only eligible for one Grand Prize per calendar year.  Organizations that have won a Grand Prize during a previous Shelter Challenge are still eligible for other prizes.

Winners of First Place regional prizes are not eligible for the regional prize during the next consecutive contest in the calendar year.  Organizations are still eligible for other contests, including the Weekly Prize and Photo Contest Prizes.

Winners of Weekly Prizes are not eligible for Regional Prizes during the same voting period. They remain eligible for Grand Prize and Second Prize, and for Photo Contest Prizes, subject to the rules governing those prizes.

Any organization which loses or fails to provide proof of its 501c3 status (if operating in the United States) or charity status (if operating outside the United States) prior to, during, or at the end of the Shelter Challenge will be ineligible for any prize won during the Shelter Challenge.

Organizations which sign up for the Shelter Challenge agree to abide by the rules, provide accounting of the use of funds or non-monetary prizes to, and provide documentation of their 501( c)3, 990, or charity status upon request. Failure to do so may strip them of current or future eligibility in Shelter Challenges as determined by

Final determination of eligibility for current and future Shelter Challenges remains at the sole discretion of and its staff.

Shelter and Rescue Group Staff Participation

Staff and volunteers of organizations are allowed and encouraged to create accounts, recruit, submit stories, and vote for their own organizations, subject to the one vote per person per day per contest limitation. 

Participating organizations are absolutely welcome to communicate about the Shelter Challenge on websites, blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and other media.  Participating organizations are expected to encourage participation based on the rules of the Shelter Challenge.  Organizations that appear to officially encourage or sanction fraudulent activity in the Shelter Challenge will be contacted and their votes audited.  Repeated incidents will lead to disqualification without notice. 

Auditing and Disqualification of Votes

GreaterGood and the Shelter Challenge reserve the right, at their sole discretion, to disqualify any votes that appear to be (a) created by an automated system; or (b) fraudulent in any way.  Users who attempt malicious or fraudulent service attacks may be permanently blocked from accessing the Shelter Challenge.

Please check our FAQ first! If the answer cannot be found there, please direct your question to

Legal Notice
The distribution of award monies or product by to various animal rescue and welfare organizations through the Challenge should not be construed as an endorsement by of the recipient organization's practices or policies. and The Animal Rescue Site are not responsible for any inability to vote in or participate in the Challenge due to accessibility or connectivity problems, technical or otherwise, associated with the Challenge, GreaterGood websites, The Animal Rescue Site, the Shelter Challenge website, the voter's choice of browser or Internet provider, or other.

The final determination of the winners in the Challenge is in the sole discretion of GreaterGood, the Shelter Challenge, and  GreaterGood and Shelter Challenge reserve the right, at their sole discretion, to remove, deactivate, or suspend any organization in the voting database. reserves the right to determine the final eligibility of each organization to receive funding and to audit, recount, and discount votes.