More than 400 fostered cats and dogs in the Adamstown PetRescue member group are set to benefit from $1.3 million worth of pet food donations through a Mars Petcare Australia initiative.
Peri Chappell’s co-owned Herd2Homes organisation is one rescue group that fosters a number of those animals, with a portion of the region’s $73,008 worth of food currently earmarked for her working dog-focused shelter.
She believes the aims of the PetRescue-run initiative, which will go to more than 50 rescue groups around the country, are “crucial” because of the way it mitigates foster homes’ major expense– premium pet foods for the rescued animals.
“For us [at Herd2Homes] we have a lot of working dogs that are active at all times of the day, especially kelpies, so all the puppies we look after eat a lot of food,” Ms Chappell explained. “They’re a lovable handful, so we like to keep them happy.”
The national donation drive’s main objective is to keep rescued animals in independent shelters in the PetRescue groups “fed and healthy”, and Ms Chappell revealed how beneficial the boost was last year.
“We participated in the same drive [through PetRescue] when they ran it [in 2017], and it made such a massive difference to how much it costs us to look after all the animals. It’s not something you think about, but the expenses add up,” she said.
“Obviously our main aim for the program is to get these animals into new homes, but while they’re with us we want to give them the best quality of care. That means that we have to prioritise food and immediate costs, but because we get that supplied to us through the donations we can focus on other key things too.”
Although this is the third year of the donations, this will be the first Mars Petcare and PetRescue have aimed for national coverage, with more than more than 30 hub stores and 65 rescue groups listed for the roll-out set to commence on May 19.
Vickie Davy, co-founder and executive officer of PetRescue, said her organisation were “pleased” they could help out all the “amazing” rescue volunteers.
“On any given day we have more than 10,000 pets currently listed for adoption, and these are all in these groups and foster care homes, so food is a big cost for them,” she said. “These groups are often funded by the people running them, so to be able to supply large amounts of foods to really help allows them to spend that money on something like vet bills.”
Ms Davy also asked anyone who was interested in getting a new pet to think about adopting, to “give them an amazing home”.
If you are interested in adopting, more than 10,000 pets are available online at petrescue.com.au/listings.