Did you know pet food pantries exist? Did you know they offer free pet food and cat litter to those who are unable to pay for it and need help feeding their furry loved ones? Did you know these pantries are all across the United States?
Most of us have heard about the food banks and food pantries that are cropping up all across the United States to feed hungry people as the recession deepens but how many of you are aware of food pantries for pets? That’s right… pet food pantries and pet food banks are opening up state by state to help pet owners keep their beloved “furries” and “purries” home with them and out of the animal shelters and Humane Societies.
Authorities across the U.S. are reporting an increase in abandonment of pets as people leave their homes due to a variety of reasons ranging anywhere from foreclosure to moving in search of jobs.
These people just leave the dogs and cats in the house to die, they’re broke and desperate. According to the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, dogs have been found in empty houses several weeks after a person has moved away.
These dogs survive by drinking toilet water. Other dogs are left chained outside, while still others are turned loose. These are the lucky ones…all too many are found dead.
Some people give their pets to friends who later decide to take them to either the Humane Society or Animal Control because they don’t really want the animal.
Too many people are taking their beloved pets to shelters because they can no longer afford to feed them due to the recession. In 2008 the Humane Society of Kent County, Michigan reported taking in an alarming 8,000 to 10,000 animals.
In 2007 Atlanta shelters euthanized over 3 million healthy pets, while in 2008 Los Angeles euthanized 15,000.
According to Allie Phillips, director of public policy at the American Humane Association, “Abandoned pets have become a national issue. This has really become an epidemic.”
According to Phillips 8000 houses go into foreclosure everyday which puts 15,000 to 26,000 more pets in danger of losing their homes each and every day across the United States.
“Many of them will be euthanized.” She concluded.
According to the Humane Society between 3 and 4 million pets are euthanized across the U.S. annually.
Volunteers of pet food pantries say that they no longer see just lower income people coming in for free pet food. They are also seeing middle class white- collar workers, elderly -whose family members were helping with expenses but due to the recession can no longer afford to do so, military spouses who cannot find jobs, students who’ve lost part-time jobs and high earners with high bills.
Published in: Pets