WeatherTech was on set, filming what was probably going to become its Super Bowl commercial, when staff and crew found out that Scout, the CEO’s Golden Retriever, had collapsed.
Veterinarians found a tumor on the top-right chamber of his heart that resulted in the leaking of blood. They recommended that his owner, David MacNeil, founder and CEO of WeatherTech, have Scout put down.
But when MacNeil walked into the veterinary clinic and saw Scout—who also starred in WeatherTech’s 2019 Super Bowl ad—wagging his tail, he knew he couldn’t go through with it. “He is a very happy 6-year-old Golden Retriever,” said MacNeil.
So he took Scout to the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where MacNeil says they implemented an aggressive treatment program.
WeatherTech’s original Super Bowl plan had been to do another “Made in America” commercial, says Jac Mansour, chief creative officer at Pinnacle Advertising, WeatherTech’s agency of record. “But David said. ‘No, we are going to tell Scout’s story.’”
“I think people have seen enough of that,” MacNeil says, referring to WeatherTech’s long history of promoting how its products are made in the USA and how it helps employ workers here. “So I thought, let’s invest our energy to really do something to help animals, which also helps people.”
The result is a 30-second spot that will air in the second quarter of the game that touches on the treatment Scout received and research being conducted at the university.