SAINT LOUIS, May 1, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Homeless pets in many parts of the U.S. are experiencing an unexpected benefit during the coronavirus crisis, as housebound families with time on their hands and a desire to do some good are adopting and fostering shelter animals in record numbers. According to Pethealth, which tracks more than 1,400 animal welfare organizations nationally, the number of pets in foster care has almost doubled from last year, increasing 97%, as shuttered shelters roll out creative programs like online applications and curbside pickups to meet the increased demand.
Some shelters have expressed concern they could see pets being returned if fosters and adopters who lost their jobs experience financial hardships or if people who do go back to work find they no longer have time to care for a pet. Any surge in returned pets would come at a difficult time for animal charities, which have been forced to cancel many of the large fundraising events they typically rely on due to social distancing rules.
To help the animal welfare community meet these challenges, Tiki Pets, a brand committed to providing high-quality nutrition to dogs and cats, has made a large donation of its Tiki Dog™ and Tiki Cat™ food to be distributed to shelters, rescues and pet foster families in need. Worth $750,000 at retail, the Tiki Pets donations will provide 348,000 meals for cats and 100,000 meals for small dogs.
"Whether the food is used to help a needy family who might not otherwise be able to keep their foster pet or support an animal welfare organization that has lost a large part of its revenue stream, donating Tiki Dog and Tiki Cat food is a way we can offer assistance during this unprecedented crisis," said Melia Reeves-Long, Consumer Engagement Associate at Tiki Pets, who herself became a work-at-home foster mom to Barrett, a 3-year-old male cat from Gateway Pet Guardians, found wandering the streets of East St. Louis.
To ensure the donation reaches the communities and groups where it can do the most good, Tiki Pets has teamed up with Rescue Bank®, a Signature Program of GreaterGood.org, that partners with non-profit animal welfare and social services agencies across North America. Rescue Bank has developed a network of affiliate partners that understand their communities and provide local distribution services, delivering millions of meals to pets in need every year.
"The COVID-19 pandemic is creating an unprecedented animal sheltering crisis, while also affecting pet parents, so it is our duty to step in and offer assistance on a national level by creating a network of relief distribution centers with our local animal shelter partners while also supporting them," said Liz Baker, CEO for GreaterGood.org. "Our goal is to provide local animal shelters and pet parents struggling financially with pet food and supplies so they can continue to care for the pets they love during this challenging and stressful time."
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Foster cat Barrett, a 3-year-old male cat found wandering the streets of St. Louis.
SOURCE Tiki Pets