It’s a good news-bad news thing.
On the one hand, the Cat Adoption Team’s Cat Food Bank has been extremely successful in its mission not only to get the grub, but also in getting the word out to people in need.
On the other hand, it’s sad that so many people are so desperately in need.
The Cat Food Bank’s mission is to ensure that cat owners in the Sherwood, Ore., area have the resources to keep their cats. Once a month, the organization distributes free cat food to about 154 cat caretakers in financial distress.
Pet food banks are becoming more common all across the country as animal welfare organizations realize that pets are victims of the ongoing economic disaster afflicting so many people.
The Cat Adoption Team‘s food bank provides an important safety net not just for people who want to be able to keep their cats, but for people who know there’s no way they can do their cat justice because of their economic circumstances and make the painful decision to surrender their cats to a shelter. Because shelters in the Sherwood area have very long waiting lists for pet surrenders, the cat food bank is making it possible for people to at least feed their feline friends until an opening occurs at the shelter.
Blogger Cathy Covey, the manager of CAT’s Cat Food Bank, told of a new client who thanked them because the free food enabled him to keep his three cats. “His budget was stretched so thin that the twenty or so dollars he saved by coming to the Cat Food Bank made a huge difference,” she wrote.
Anybody who says that pets are a frivolous luxury that should be abandoned in hard times is both heartless and clueless.
I’ve gone through some really difficult financial times myself — in 2003, I was laid off from my multimedia development job of six years because the economy was still reeling from the 9/11 attacks and there was simply no business — and I know how important my cats were to me. They boosted my spirits while I applied for job after job, only to hear nothing or to get “thanks, but no thanks” letters.
I join the Cat Adoption Team in celebrating the cat food bank’s bittersweet milestone. I’m grateful the place exists, and I hope the organization’s story will inspire more rescue groups to operate pet food banks for the needy people and animals in their area.
Check out this video of a distribution day at the Cat Food Bank:
(In a reader? Watch the video here.)
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