Donations for the BC SPCA’s pet food bank program down across the province
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Donations for the BC SPCA’s pet food bank program down across the province

May 23, 2024

It is another presumed symptom of the higher cost of living in British Columbia. The BC SPCA has seen an ongoing decrease in the number of donations of pet food and supplies coming into their animal centres since January 2024.

“Across the province we have seen less pet food donations coming into our centres,” says Diane Waters, the BC SPCA’s outreach specialist. “Everyone understands that the increased cost of living makes it more difficult for people to donate, but unfortunately, this is exactly when the need is greatest for the clients of our pet food banks.”

Waters explains that the Society makes every effort to keep the food bank shelves stocked, but supplies can get depleted very quickly, especially with emergencies like the Fort Nelson wildfire evacuation. “In these emergent situations, we need to make quick adjustments and move supplies that were destined for one animal centre to another where the evacuees are located so we can support them while they are away from home.”

Empty pet food bank shelves at the BC SPCA’s Victoria animal centre.

For those that rely on the BC SPCA’s pet food bank program and its partners, the ability to access pet food supplies for their furry family members makes an enormous difference. One of the clients of HOPE Outreach in Vernon, a BC SPCA community partner, who received help from the food bank last month, says, “Thank God for this generosity! I was going to have to make the choice between pet food and food for myself, now all of us have food to eat.”

(L to R) Supplies for wildfire evacuees, Shuswap, October 2023 and a client of Charlie’s pet food bank.

Waters adds that it would be heartbreaking to not be able to continue to support pet guardians who need the BC SPCA’s help. “People from all age groups can have a variety of reasons for needing temporary support from the BC SPCA, including families who come together to get the food and other supplies they need for their pets from our animal centres and community food banks,” she says. “Sometime a pay cheque just can’t be stretched to the end of the month and people need a little help.”

Waters says the BC SPCA welcomes donations of unopened pet food for the pet food banks, as well as cash donations towards this important program. “Our biggest need right now is dry and wet cat food and cat litter.” The BC SPCA is also looking for volunteers to help collect and distribute pet food and supplies.

In response to this considerable need, our friends at Ian and Rosemary Mottershead Fund at the West Vancouver Foundation are offering to triple match every donation made towards these essential outreach services, up to $30,000.

This match has now been met – thank you so much for all the kind generosity!