What about? What do pet food banks do for your pet?

Seemingly simple questions are often the most difficult to answer. How are you doing? every week we try to find the answer to such questions. This time: what do the pet food banks do?

Food Bank

Food banks have existed since 2002 for the Dutch who can use extra help in their livelihood. Of these, 171 are in the Netherlands, in all provinces. These are intended for people who live below the poverty line and/or have difficulty supporting themselves and their loved ones. They receive a package of food and other foodstuffs once a week, as a supplement to their daily shopping. In this way, the food bank offers help and prevents food waste.

What is the difference between food banks and pet food banks?

There are similar measures for animal owners, even if they do not belong to the same fund. Pet products are also available at some mainstream food banks. You will find these in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, Almere, Emmeloord, Sneek, Winschoten, Purmerend, Anna Paulowna, Huizen (North Holland), IJmuiden and Alkmaar. In addition, there are specific animal food banks for pet owners throughout the Netherlands. Here you can find feed, care products and extra help for you and your pet. You can find out if there is an animal feed bank in your area via this overview of the Foundation for the Promotion of Animal Welfare.

Why are more and more people turning to the pet food bank?

The starting point for the animal food bank corresponds to that of ordinary food banks. The pet food banks act as a helping hand for people who are not well and still have to maintain their pets. In autumn 2022, this group has grown in size, primarily due to inflation and rising energy prices. According to Lilianne van Doorne from the Foundation for the Promotion of Pet Welfare, many dogs and cats live with owners who have the hardest time making ends meet. “Between 500,000 and 580,000. These are really big numbers. It’s just important that these people can keep their pets,” she says RTV Drenthe.

Can the pet food banks still make it?

Several regional animal feed banks have already sounded the alarm. For example, the volunteers at the animal food bank in Maarssen, Utrecht, have the biggest problems helping their clients. “More and more are coming, while the shelves are empty and stand empty. There are also fewer donations, the local pet dealers and private individuals can also miss out less due to the rising prices,’ said the volunteers Angelique Holweg and Marie-Louise Bosscher in conversation with RTV Utrecht.

What is the main source of income for the animal food banks?

The regular food banks need donations and volunteers to continue to exist. The same applies to animal feed banks, which have many costs. “We started last year and in 10 months we paid more than 68,000 euros in bills. This year we are already at 55,000 euros, so the need is huge”, said volunteer Wilma de Joode from Herwijnen. Issuer Gelderland up the balance. The number of customers in Limburg will also increase rapidly in autumn 2022. “We had 15 to 20 requests before corona, now we sometimes have 80 requests a week. It has really exploded,” says Carina Geurtsen-Driessen, regional manager of the animal food bank Brunssum . 1 Limburg.

When are you not eligible for the pet food bank?

If your pet could use a little extra help, you are of course very welcome at the pet food bank. At least it is if you are responsible with your pets and with your financial resources. “If you can barely buy groceries for your children and then buy a new animal, you don’t need to knock on our door. It’s the stupidest thing you can do,’ said De Joode from Herwijnen. Dyremadbanken in Brunssum stipulates that you must have your animal for at least six months. “It is therefore not the case that we have to look after your animal if you buy a puppy or a kitten. It doesn’t work that way,’ emphasizes Geurtsen-Driessen.

(Source: Food Banks Netherlands, Foundation for the Promotion of Pet Welfare, RTV Drenthe, RTV Utrecht, Omroep Gelderland, 1Limburg. Photo: Shutterstock)

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