Canadian tennis player Denis Shapovalov recently launched Shapo Shelter, an online platform aimed at helping dogs and cats in shelters find forever homes.
Through this initiative, the World No. 15 hopes to generate awareness for these animals and encourage their adoption.
"Over the years I've heard so many cruel stories about certain animals that were so helpless. With Shapo Shelter, we're going to highlight the stories of these poor animals that can't tell their own stories in hopes of finding them new homes, as well as tell the stories of all these different shelters and organizations trying to help these beautiful animals," said Denis Shapovalov in a video he posted to the Shapo Shelter's Instagram account.
"Our goal is to find as many animals in need of their forever homes and give them a chance to have a great life!" added Shapovalov in a separate post on his personal Instagram account.
Shapo Shelter, through its website, Instagram and Twitter accounts, aims to share stories of animals who suffer from cruelty as it partners with different shelters and organizations worldwide. It currently supports the Humane Society of Manatee County, the Humane Society of Greater Miami in Florida, and Adopta un Amigo para Siempre in Mexico City.
"I've got a huge love and passion for helping out animals. I've been supporting different shelters throughout the years. I've got so many pets of my own. So I'm really excited to announce that I put together a team and have started my own page called Shapo Shelter which is going to help out different shelters around the world promote their animals, both dogs and cats and try to find them new homes," said Denis Shapovalov.
Just last week, Shapovalov posted on Twitter a photo of himself at the Humane Society of Manatee County.
True to its mission of highlighting stories on rescue animals, Shapo Shelter posted a video on its website, shaposhelter.com, showing Shapovalov petting and interacting with a dog named Hank.
Hank was rescued by the animal welfare organization a week before it was slated to be put down. The dog had to have its tail amputated due to past trauma and anxiety but could still be seen happily wagging what little was left of it as it welcomed Shapovalov. Hank was also seen performing a couple of tricks.
"Honestly, this is one of the happiest dogs I've ever seen in my life," noted Shapovalov in the video.
"All Hank needs now is a home," a message on the video read as it ended.
Shapovalov also encouraged others to help by adopting from or donating to Shapo Shelter's partner shelters and by spreading information about the initiative.
Aside from its website, the Shapo Shelter is also on Twitter and Instagram, @ShapoShelter.
Denis Shapovalov misses Monte-Carlo Masters for second straight year
Denis Shapovalov skipped the ongoing Monte-Carlo Masters for the second year in a row. He last played in the Masters 1000 tournament in 2019, when he lost to Germany's Jan-Lennard Struff in three sets in the first round. The event was canceled in 2020 due to the pandemic.
Shapovalov currently holds a 12-7 win-loss record this season. He suffered early exits at Indian Wells and Miami, losing to American Reilly Opelka in the third round and South Africa's Lloyd Harris in the second round, respectively.