35,000 lbs of pet food donated to help pet owners impacted by COVID-19

Donated pet food will be distributed by Second Harvest Heartland to pet owners in need. (FOX 9)

The Animal Humane Society has seen the need for free pet food rise in just the past month and a number of organizations are stepping up to meet the demand.

Thursday at the Animal Humane Society in Golden Valley, a crew loaded more than 13,000 pounds of pet food that will be distributed by Second Harvest Heartland to pet owners in need.

“We anticipated this coming,” said Dave Garrity, AHS director of community engagement.

It’s a form of relief for those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Over the last eight weeks, we’ve seen that need skyrocket, so this is hopefully a good way to address those needs and keep people and their pets happy in their homes,” said Garrity.

The wet and dry cat and dog food was donated by GreaterGood.org and pet food maker, Tiki Pets.

“We’ve used a number of different partners, some smaller, some larger, like Second Harvest Heartland,” said Garrity. “And what they will do is they’ll distribute it to their partner food shelves and people will be able to come in and get pet food.”

So far, more than 35,000 pounds of pet food have been donated. Garrity says that the contribution will help feed 10,000 furry friends and bring relief to thousands of people throughout the Twin Cities.

“What we see in a lot of cases, not only during this time of the pandemic, but other cases, is if people don’t have the means they will actually buy the pet food first before they get food for themselves,” he said. “So this is a good solution for people to keep both their pets and themselves fed and healthy.”

This isn’t just a local effort. The Animal Humane Society is also working with organizations to distribute pet food to families across the state.