Vampire Diaries Star Ian Somerhalder Is Drawn To Cats Like Blood!
Ian Somerhalder, star of the CW’s Vampire Diaries, along with co-stars Nina Dobrev and Paul Wesley, is much more than a hot actor women drool over all around the world. He is so much more than that. Aside from acting – his first major TV role was in the first season of ABC’s hit series Lost in 2004, which was followed by a lead role on The Vampire Diaries in 2009 – Ian is actively involved in nature preservation work. In December 2010, he launched his Ian Somerhalder Foundation, an organization designed to raise funds for environmental efforts and to educate people on the importance of protecting the planet. Their goal is to work in collaboration with other Non-Profit, For-Profit and governing bodies globally. “The coming together of like-minded individuals through action is what’s needed to see wide spread change for us, our planet and its creatures” says Ian.
The IS Foundation is actively involved in animals issues – animal habitat and extinction, cruelty towards animals, empowerment of NO-KILL shelters, sterilization and assistance and therapy animals – as well as nature and energy issues – green technology and local biofuels, green disaster relief, greening the entertainment industry, natural habitat and biodiversity conservation, and deforestation/reforestation. Ian is the figurehead of ISF and is deeply involved in its work. He regularly gives us updates on Twitter and ISF is also on Twitter and Facebook.
Ian is very close to his supporters and fans, especially through social networks. He recently stated on Facebook that his “inspiration is literally fueled by the actions of our supporters and people who have come together with the understanding that we, as a collective, have the power to make wide sweeping change.”
As an animal lover and advocate, Somerhalder lives with three once abandoned cats in his loft in Atlanta. “I literally wake up and there’s just fur everywhere. It’s so awesome! They’re all very different. One is a feral cat from Hawaii who grew up in the jungle, another one is a rescue from a dungeon in New York and the other one’s from Canada.” There is also often a rescue that’s being fostered before finding it’s furr-ever home! But even if his cat Moke has a twitter account, Ian is no crazy cat person taking in every stray feline that he finds in the street. He always has them checked-up at his favorite vet clinic before taking them home. “I don’t want to take them back to my pride and get my kids sick”, he says.
Apart from his work with ISF, Ian is also involved with different branches of the Humane Society. A native of Louisiana, the actor returned to his roots on November 2010 for Unleashed “Bash on the Bayou,” in support of St. Tammany Humane Society, the state’s largest no-kill animal shelter. Still with the St. Tammany Humane Society, as he cares very much about feral cat overpopulation, he’s launched a Animal Foundation in Louisiana. Through the foundation, Ian aims to help control the situation “without causing ecological after-effects.” “We’re allocating a very specific amount of money to funding research for sterilization drugs,” Ian says. “[Once the drug] becomes species-specific, hopefully, in two decades there will be no problem.”
He also received in March 2012 a Wyler Award from the Humane Society. Every year, the honor “is bestowed on a celebrity or public figure for raising awareness of animal issues via the media.” Sir Paul McCartney, Hayden Panettiere, Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi, and Kristin Davis are all past recipients of the award. More recently he participated with his dog to the Best Friends Animal Society’s fundraiser Strut Your Mutt, which took place in 11 different cities. Together, these two- and four-legged walkers earned nearly $1.3 million for homeless pets and 180 animal welfare groups who serve them, helping to save the lives of pets in shelters all across the country.
Ian Somerhalder sure is more than just a another pretty face! He’s also quite the philosopher: “True statement: Live it, love it, leave the world better off than when you got here.”