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Pet Foodbank Supports Families Through Covid-19 Crisis

The Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home pet foodbank has been supporting pets and their families through the Covid-19 pandemic in Edinburgh and the Lothians.

Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home has seen increased demand for our new service over the lockdown period, working directly with the community to ensure that those most in-need have been able to continue caring for their pets during the crisis. Walk-ins for the service increased 130% between January and May of 2020. The Home has also been supporting groups like Street Soccer Scotland and Space and the Broomhouse Hub to distribute donated items as part of our foodbank services.

The Home launched its first dedicated dog and cat foodbank in October 2019, in response to the poverty-related issues that we were seeing on a daily basis. Animal surrender can occur when owners struggle to care for their pets due to social problems – like financial issues, illness, homelessness and domestic abuse. Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home’s pet foodbank service aims to support them and keep animals in loving homes for as long as possible.

The foodbank offers wet and dry food, jackets, collars, leads, bowls and bedding. The Home’s dedicated and passionate staff are also on hand to offer pet care advice as part of this service.

Lindsay Fyffe-Jardine, CEO, Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home said:

“The Covid-19 pandemic has had an immense impact on the people of Scotland, not least those who were already struggling financially. Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home has been working at the frontline of animal welfare throughout this crisis, and we recognised that it is a period of huge uncertainty for pet owners experiencing poverty. Our pet foodbank has remained open and busy, and we’ve been delighted to support our partners at Street Soccer Scotland and Space and the Broomhouse Hub to help get supplies straight to those who need it most.

“We’d like to thank everyone who has donated to the pet foodbank over the last few months, and indeed those whose financial donations have been keeping us afloat during this challenging period when many income streams have been cut.”

Chris Binnie, Street Soccer Scotland, said:

“Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home’s pet foodbank has been a fantastic support to the Street Soccer Scotland players who have been caring for pets whilst also managing their own safety and well-being throughout COVID-19. The service has allowed a number of players to keep their pets in caring and loving homes during a time of heightened uncertainty. On behalf of our players and those supported by the pet foodbank, we are extremely grateful for all of the kindness shown.”

Helene van der Ploeg, Business Manager at Space and the Broomhouse Hub, said:

“As we went into lockdown during COVID-19, our furry friends were as vulnerable as the families they live with. Huge thanks to Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home for donating pet supplies that we could distribute to families in need in South West Edinburgh. We had many calls from people who were self-isolating, experiencing loss of income and real problems accessing food to feed their pets. The Home helped us to take the stress and worry away from these people and ensure that their faithful friends could be fed. One lady was in tears when we delivered her parcel of pet food; she lives on her own and was shielding, and her dog is her lifeline. She was so frightened that she would lose her beloved friend because she couldn’t find a way to feed him.

“Massive thanks to Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home for helping us to support this lady – our pets are so important to us, particularly during this time, and this just highlights the amazing work they do – keep it up!”

For more information about Edinburgh Dog and Cat Home’s pet foodbank or how to donate, please visit www.edch.org.uk/pet-foodbank

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