Due to the COVID-19 pandemic this time has been an adjusting progress financially for many people in the world, and pets are not excluded from this change. On Saturday Apr. 25, the SEK Humane Society began to offer their “Free Pet Food Pantry.” This pantry was designed to provide food free of charge to pet owners in need during the epidemic. Pet owners are welcomed to come to the Humane Society under specific guidelines on Wednesdays from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and also on Saturdays from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
“The pet food pantry was mostly created from donations from the public helping to pay it forward to residents in financial need of pet food for their cats and dogs,” said Jasmine Kyle, Business and Promotions Manager of the SEK Humane Society.
The pantry has been a beneficial to pet owners in the community of Pittsburg.
“When I first heard of the food pantry, I thought it was a great idea because it has been hard managing financially through this quarantine,” said Tera Lane, resident of Crawford County.
The Humane Society is accepting donations from citizens within the community and they have partnered with other businesses in Pittsburg to be utilized as drop off locations for donations.
“Pet sense here in Pittsburg has agreed to be a physical donation drop off location,” Kyle said. “Also, Redd’s Retail Liquor is accepting these program donations through their drive thru.”
Redd’s liquor has requested that food donations be left at the back door and mention to the drive-thru that the food is there. Food donations can also be delivered to the Humane Society.
“With this pandemic it has been a lot of changes in my everyday life, but I do not want my pets lives to be affected,” Lane said.
The Humane Society has strict guidelines to ensure that people will be safe. Participants will stay in their vehicles at all times. The applicants then will answer a few questions, as employees place the food in their vehicles. As stated in a press release, all employees will be wearing gloves and masks.
The food supply is limited but with help from donators the Humane Society hopes to continue to have the pantry.
“With multiple phases leading up to June and with the number of cases still rising, we plan to hold the free food pantry to at least June or when the pantry runs out of food supplies,” Kyle said.
The pantry has attracted a lot attention and many of Crawford County residents has visited.
“Being in college it’s hard to provide for yourself, and a pet as well,” said Armon Jones, sophomore in engineering. “It’s cool that a small town like this is still providing things through a rough time.”
The Humane Society has been closed for pet adoptions, but the animals remain safe because they are a no-kill animal shelter. The shelter plans to reopen soon for adoptions, when stay-at-home orders are released.
“Our board will be making the decision to hold adoptions and fosters by appointment only tonight (May 5),” Kyle said. “We will be releasing our updated procedures, on our Facebook page and in a press release as well.”