The mailed feces was sent along with this note: “Your bulk mailer has purchased a bogus name. Our dog does not need Medicare insurance and has never written a letter nor called Anthem requesting such trash … When are these solicitations going to stop arriving? Well, let’s see if you like your trash back. What comes around, goes around!”
The family, pointing out they were tired of the insurance company’s “crap,” addressed the package to “Expert A–holes” and ended the letter by saying, “Bon appetite.”
Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield told police it was the second time in two months they’ve received dog feces in the mail at their Virginia Avenue office. A similar delivery came in March.
Police have passed the complaint onto the postal inspector, according to Fox 59 in Indianapolis.
Anthem employees sealed the latest shipment in a plastic bag to hand over to inspectors, according to RTV 6.
The most recent letter had a return address, but police were unsure if it was authentic.
Posted by jwoestendiek May 30th, 2013 under Muttsblog.
Tags: addressed, advertisements, advertising, animals, anthem, blue cross blue shield, dog, dogs, feces, health, health insurance, indianapolis, insurance, junk mail, pets, poop
Subaru plans to eschew the Super Bowl again this year, running its new “Dog Tested, Dog Approved” commercials during the Puppy Bowl instead.
It’s the same approach the car company took last year, aiming its marketing at dog owners, as opposed to football fans. That’s a teaser from one of the new ads above.
According to the manufacturer, Subaru drivers are two times more likely than the average car owner to have a pet.
In addition to showing its ad during Animal Planet’s Puppy Bowl IX, Subaru is unveiling a new Facebook application that, among other things, pairs a dog’s breed with the appropriate model of Subaru. Dog owners can enter their dogs breed, weight, and lifestyle and the “Matchmaker” will identify a fitting car model for the dog.
(To see all our “Woof in Advertising” posts, click here.)
Posted by jwoestendiek January 30th, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: ads, advertising, animals, commercials, dog approved, dog tested, dogs, dogs in advertising, marketing, pets, puppy bowl, subaru, teaser, video, woof in advertising
We’re not too wowed by the car, or by this new commercial for it, but seeing a pit bull in a Cadillac ad — even though his appearance is far too brief — is something to celebrate.
We love that a car company like Cadillac is featuring a pit bull in an ad. We only wish it would have featured more of the dog and less of the good-looking, well-dressed hipster guys.
The ad, dubbed “Night Out,” opens with two guys in stylish duds playing baseball at night when a third friend stops by to pick them up in his Cadillac XTS.
Driving along, they come across what appears to be a farmer, or some other old, salty sort in a cap and flannel shirt, standing in the rain, apparently the victim of car trouble, or pick-up truck trouble.
They give him, and his pit bull, a ride.
Then they all go to a diner to eat, apparently leaving the dog in the Cadillac. Inside, they get the urge to do some dancing. The farmer, waitress, and eventually the whole crowd, join in.
Next we see the Cadillac driver heading home by himself as the sun comes up, passing through some unexplainedly scenic rural countryside on his way from the diner to his high-rise apartment.
He stops the car, and gets out to throw something even though the dog is no longer there to chase it.
We’re not sure what happens to the farmer, dog and fashionable friends, but the Cadillac owner returns home to his ritzy apartment building where the doorman asks, “Another big night on the town?”
The ad — unless we’re missing something — doesn’t seem to have the greatest story line. It’s not real easy to follow, and the diner dancing is a little goofy. But they did get one thing right — the dog.
(To see all our “Woof in Advertising” posts, click here)
Posted by jwoestendiek January 17th, 2013 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: ad, advertisement, advertising, animals, cadillac, commercial, dogs, dogs in advertising, marketing, night out, pets, pit bull, woof in advertising, xts
Subaru has done it again.
This heartwarming commercial follows a young man over the years, making the point that, whatever else might change, his two most loyal companions do not — his chocolate Lab and his Subaru.
There’s something about seeing the Lab go from a pup to a grey-muzzled senior that reminds us of the true meaning of loyalty, and might even make some of us tear up.
Of course, a car’s not really capable of loyalty. But we humans are.
So Subaru — doing it well and doing it often — continues in its advertising to seize upon what’s probably the best symbol for loyalty there is: the dog.
And more often than not, it works.
To see all of our “Woof in Advertising” posts, click here.
Posted by jwoestendiek November 21st, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: advertising, animals, cars, commercials, dogs, dogs in advertising, loyal, loyalty, marketing, pets, subaru, symbols, video, woof in advertising
Wouldn’t you really rather get there in a BMW?
Of course you would, unless “there” happened to be a neutering appointment.
This boxer is eager to hit the road until — thanks to the latest technology — he seems to become aware of the destination, and makes a quick exit.
(To see all our “Woof in Advertising” posts, click here.)
Posted by jwoestendiek October 2nd, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: ad, advertising, animals, bmw, boxer, cars, commercials, computers, directions, dog, dogs, dogs in advertising, gps, marketing, neuter, neutering, pets, video, woof in advertising
The dog ate the car keys? No big deal — at least not in this case, and as far as the car goes.
In this new ad from Volkswagen, entitled “Vet,” a Jetta owner, and bulldog owner, discovers the latter has eaten the keys to the former, but calmly handles the situation.
He grabs the bulldog, puts him in his car and, thanks to a keyless operating system, starts the car up and heads for the veterinarian.
(To see all of our “Woof in Advertising” posts, click here.)
Posted by jwoestendiek September 7th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: advertising, animals, ate, bulldog, commercial, dogs, dogs in advertising, jetta, keyless, keys, marketing, pets, swallowed, video, volkswagen, vw, woof in advertising
Remember that Super Bowl ad for Skechers athletic shoes — the one that featured Mr. Quiggly, a French bulldog, racing a group of greyhounds at an Arizona racetrack?
It led to some major backlash, mainly from Grey2K USA, an anti-greyhound racing group that had documented abuses at Tucson Greyhound Park, where the ad was filmed. The organization, and others, tried to get the ad pulled and then called for a boycott of Skechers, saying the ad promoted cruelty.
Given all that, what is one to make of this?
A band called Swedish House Mafia — if band is even the right word – has teamed up with Absolut Vodka to create a commercial that promotes the musical group, and the vodka, and, seemingly, the racing of futuristic greyhound robots.
I don’t begin to understand what’s going on in the ad, but the band members appear to be taking part in some sort of virtual greyhound racing experience in which they are the dogs, as a crowd of people dressed in Lady Gaga-like attire and wearing too much make-up watch, biting their lips in excitement.
One of the digital greyhounds takes a fall at some point, but gets up and keeps running.
Most people seem to find the ad, and its pounding techno dance club music, highly cool, but an Arizona greyhound rescuer and blogger has lashed out against it, saying it promotes animal cruelty. “…Greyhounds are once again perceived as futuristic exploited racing machines,” Karyn Zoldan wrote on her blog, Tucson Tails. “The video is a deadly cross between Project Runway and Mad Max.”
“…This ad is haunting…haunting in the way it promotes greyhound racing as subhuman depravity. Haunting in a way, I feel nauseous and want to vomit.”
GREY2K USA, to its credit, hasn’t taken a position on the Absolut ad, deeming it not worth pouncing upon, given no greyhounds were used in it and those depicted are computer-made images.
Besides, complaining about an ad so oddly ambiguous and unclear in its meaning — if it has any – would be a waste of time, and who has time to waste in today’s fast-paced world?
If you’re wondering what greyhound racing and vodka have to do with each other, the answer is absolutely nothing. The only connection I can see is that there was — even before Absolut had the foresight to put them in the same bottle — a vodka and grapefruit juice cocktail called a Greyhound, and adding salt to it makes it a Salty Dog.
While we don’t object to cocktails being named after dogs, or to consuming vodka, or to mixing it with grapefruit juice, we”re all for an end to greyhound racing.
While slowly fading away, it continues in seven states.
Racing greyhound robots, though? We have no objections to that. In fact, it can even be looked at as a solution.
If only robots were raced at greyhound tracks, industry employees would learn news skills more befitting modern times. There would be employment opportunities for all the techno-nerds who build and service them. There would be no worries about feeding or humanely maintaining the dogs. There would be no exploitation of animals for human gain — just exploitation of robots, and I kind of like that idea, at least until they turn on us. There could even be techno dance music pumped in, and vodka-based beverages served.
And, odds are – when it comes to the real, breathing versions — there’d be a lot more happy greyhounds.
(To see all our Woof in Advertising posts, click here.)
Posted by jwoestendiek July 30th, 2012 under Muttsblog, videos.
Tags: absolut, absolut greyhound, advertising, animals, cgi, commercial, cruelty, dogs, dogs in advertising, grey2k usa, greyhound, greyhound racing, karyn zoldan, marketing, pets, racing, swedish house mafia, tracks, tucson tails, video, vodka, woof in advertising
Harried New York subway riders can now stop and play some fetch — throwing digital tennis balls to digital dogs at a digital dog park on the wall of a vacant storefront at the Columbus Circle subway station.
The storefront beneath 57th St. and Eighth Ave. has been transformed into a virtual dog park — with dogs included.
It’s like a Nintendo Wii game, the New York Daily News reports, with a screen that’s 64-feet long and 6-feet high.
It’s all part of a Beneful dog food advertising campaign — but one commuters are finding to their liking.
“This is awesome,” said Zeinabou Banks, 38, as her two pre-schoolers tossed tennis balls that two digital dogs retrieved. “It’s ingenious.”
Daily News columnist Pete Donohue described it as:
“… a perfect and unexpected antidote to all the dismal sights in the subway: a woman panhandler sitting on the floor at Grand Central with an infant cradled in her arms; a madman in filthy rags looking like he escaped from a leper colony; a middle-aged man in a suit keeling over and dying of a heart attack on the dirty floor of a crowded No. 4 train; a teen-age mom with a neck tattoo cursing out a crying toddler for acting like a toddler.”
“In the Columbus Circle passageway,” he noted, “the sun shines, birds chirp and the wind rustles the green grass.”
The interactive advertisement is only the second of its kind in the subway system, but more are expected to be showing up underground.
(Photo: Andrew Savulich / New York Daily News)
Posted by jwoestendiek May 15th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: ad, advertising, animals, balls, beneful, columbus circle, digital, dog food, dog park, dogs, fetch, interactive, marketing, mta, new york, new york city, pets, riders, subway, subway riders, tennis balls, throw, virtual, wii
For almost two years now, a big blue tarp has covered the backside of Kim Houghton’s dog grooming shop, Wag More Dogs in Arlington, Va., as courts try to figure out if what’s beneath it is art or advertising.
Since Wag More Dogs’ backside faces Shirlington Dog Park, Houghton thought it would be a good idea to turn the boring cinderblock wall into a mural. She spent $4,000 to commission a painting of cartoon dogs, bones and paw prints. It was intended as gesture of goodwill, she says, and a gift to the community.
The Arlington County Zoning Board saw it differently.
In the fall of 2010, the board informed her that it considered the mural a sign for her business, and that it violated the neighborhood size limit of 60 square feet — even though the mural itself doesn’t mention her business. Houghton said she was told to cover the mural at her own expense, face fines or closure, or make the mural a government sign by adding “Welcome to Shirlington Park’s Community Canine Area” in four-foot-high letters.
In December, 2010, she filed a lawsuit, saying the county was violating her right to free speech. U.S. District Judge Leonie M. Brinkema disagreed and dismissed her lawsuit in February of 2011.
The following June, Houghton field an appeal, with the backing of the Institute for Justice, a nonprofit, Arlington-based libertarian law firm.
It’s scheduled to be heard this week by a federal Court of Appeals in Richmond, WTOP reports.
Her attorney says he will argue that Arlington’s sign code “unconstitutionally gives government bureaucrats the power to play art critic.”
Posted by jwoestendiek March 22nd, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: advertising, animals, appeals court, arlington, art, boarding, building, dogs, first amendment, free speech, groomer, institute for justice, kim houghton, mural, pets, shirlington dog park, virginia, wag more dogs, wall, zoning board
An Ohio woman who hoped to get her dog on Ellen’s show has been ordered to remove a billboard, not far from the studio where the show is taped, that pictures her golden retriever in a blond wig and DeGeneresque attire.
The billboard read, “Ellen, Denali the Dog Wants to Meet You.”
Madalyn Ruggiero, a freelance photographer, had rented the billboard for six weeks, the Los Angeles Times reports.
“She says she likes dogs, so I thought she’d love my dog,” explained Ruggiero, who dresses her golden retriever in funny costumes and sells the images as greeting cards.
Instead of an invitation to be on the show, Ruggerio received word from a billboard company lawyer that the sign, after it was up for five days, had to be taken down — apparently as a result of complaints from DeGeneres’ staff.
“Our CBS Outdoor Attorney has advised that we take down the Denali The Dog bulletin ASAP due to the fact that the clothes the dog is wearing in the copy and the use of the name Ellen appears that they are trying to trade on the public image of Ellen DeGeneres,” wrote Tim Fox, director of governmental affairs for CBS Outdoor.
Fox noted the billboard campaign was stopped “at the demand of the representatives of Ms. DeGeneres and her show.”
A publicist for DeGeneres’ show said she was unaware of the billboard controversy.
The disputed ad has been taken down from the billboard, at Cahuenga Boulevard West and Broadlawn Drive, and replaced with a public service message for the Marine Corps.
Ruggiero, 37, of Maumee, Ohio, said dressing the dog as Ellen was the suggestion of the billboard salesman. She was originally going to use a photo of her dog in Elvis attire.
CBS Outdoor says it will attempt to give Ruggiero at least a partial refund for the billboard ad, for which she paid $6,000.
Posted by jwoestendiek February 24th, 2012 under Muttsblog.
Tags: advertising, animals, cbs, costumes, dogs, ellen, ellen degeneres, los angeles, madalyn ruggiero, outdoor, pets, publicity, show, sign, television, tv