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Facebook app: Save a pet by sharing its photo

A new campaign by PetSmart Charities is calling on Facebook users to help local sheltered pets find homes by posting their information and pictures online.

Screenshot by Lance Whitney/CNET

Facebook users can now rescue homeless cats and dogs by potentially fixing them up with the right owners.

Spearheaded by PetSmart Charities, the new Share a Pic, Save a Pet campaign is calling on users of the social network to spread the word among family, friends, and followers about pets available for adoption in their communities. Information and photos of local homeless pets, along with links to the local shelters currently hosting them, can be shared directly on your Facebook timeline and appear on the newsfeeds of your friends.

Facebook users who want to do their part can tap into the Share a Pic, Save a Pet app through the following steps:

  1. Go to the Share a Pic, Save a Pet Facebook app.
  2. Enter your Zip code.
  3. Select up to 10 adoptable cats or dogs to appear on your profile based on breed, color, size, and gender.

Photos of your chosen pets will then be added to your Facebook profile. Clicking on an individual photo reveals more details on the pet and links on where it can be adopted. You can also alert your Facebook friends about the campaign so they can join the effort.

"Share a Pic, Save a Pet is an innovative way to use social media to promote pet adoption locally," Susana Della Maddalena, executive director of PetSmart Charities, said in a statement. "Adoption saves lives, and we believe this application will spark pet lovers to spread the word about the thousands of wonderful adoptable pets looking for forever homes -- at the click of a button."

Almost 8 million pets are currently without a home in the United States alone, according to PetSmart Charities.

The nonprofit group said it has saved almost 5 million pets through its in-store adoption program and is striving to save the 11,000 pets who are euthanized each day in the U.S. because they're homeless.