England’s first “pet food bank” has just been started by a Market Harborough woman.
The Dogz Dinner food bank will supply pet food free to owners of cats and dogs who are struggling to make ends meet.
Lisa Parratt (31), the woman behind the innovation, told the Mail: “We’ve got a human food bank in Market Harborough, but – like many food banks – they don’t take pet food.
“I thought if there’s a need for a human food bank for people who can’t afford to buy food, there’s a need for a pet food bank too.”
She said animal shelters were regularly being sent pets that their owners can no longer afford to keep.
“Pet food banks like this one can take some of the pressure off local animal shelters too” she said.
Market Harborough’s pet food bank has already amassed supplies from local donors and from supermarkets. A town garage has been donated as a storage unit.
People who want to donate money to the not-for-profit organisation can do so via www.gofundme.com/dogz dinnermh
You can take food donations to Vape Central at 115, St Mary’s Road, Market Harborough.
Anyone from south Leicestershire and Northamptonshire who wants to use the pet food bank would normally require a signature from a professional person, usually a vet. Three Market Harborough vets have signed up to the pet food bank system.
You can also contact the food bank directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or by ringing 07935 537724.
Pet food bank volunteers will then hand over the food in a public place – Lisa wants to keep the location of the food depot private.
Lisa said she would like to thank everyone who has donated so far, and everyone who has helped her set up the pet food bank, especially John Pollard.
Liss said: “I’m a pet lover myself, and I think it’s awful that people have to give up their pets because they can’t afford to feed them.
“That’s when I decided to set up this pet food bank. As far as I know it’s the first one in England.”