Donations needed as pet food costs rise: Guelph Humane Society

Pet food prices have gone up recently due to inflation. To help pet owners in the community, the Guelph Humane Society has started a pet food bank.

It started as a pilot project last year and then became permanent in March, 2023. Staff say when they ended the pilot project there were around 100 people using it per month, but since then, use has tripled.

Now those who are facing financial hardships can pick up pet food at participating food banks.

“We are currently working with Hope House and Chalmers and Wyndham House. We work in the county with Arthur Food Bank,” said Jane Dawkins with the Guelph Humane Society.

They’re also hoping for more pet food donations that can be left at the humane society on Hanlon Creek Boulevard.

“We do focus on healthy meals so we’re really looking for people to give us kibbles or soft food that would be appropriate for a meal,” said Dawkins.

Dawkins said the increase in pet care costs is one of the factors that contributed to the pet surrenders they have seen in the last year.

The program allows people facing financial hardship to pick up pet food at participating food banks. (Heather Senoran/CTV Kitchener)

PET FOOD COSTS

The owner of Pet Culture, a pet store in Guelph, admits the price has continued to climb for pet food in the last few years.

“Pretty much almost every month we get emails from our vendors, suppliers with price increases,” owner Kelly George said. “Not just little price increases like a dollar or two. Some are going up as high as $5, $8 or $15.”

George suggests those who are having trouble making ends meet could ask staff about lower priced alternatives to their pet’s favorite dish.

“The grain-free could cost more than the original, and depending on the protein or the flavor, might have a different price to it as well,” she said.

Whether you have a four-legged feline or pooch at home and need a little extra help, or you’re feeling extra giving over the holidays, there are options to help ensure bowls don’t stay empty for long.

By hadem