Sometimes, we fall on hard times. There’s no way to describe the stress and fear of losing what you have, and having to make sacrifices. Unfortunately, families who can’t care for their pets face a startling choice: Can we keep our dog? The Asilomar Accords for New York City shows that citizens surrendered 1,119 cats and 775 dogs to shelters in December 2015, totaling 1,894 pets.
But there are more options for families who may be facing hard choices. Before you decide, look at the New York City resources for families with pets:
Check Your Local Food Pantry
If you’re in a pinch, The Mayor’s Alliance recommends you visit your local food pantry. Although it isn’t guaranteed there will be pet food there, chances are someone has donated to your location. You can search for the closest food bank by going to the Food Bank for New York City website, and using their program locator.
ARF! The Animal Relief Fund
So you’ve checked your local food bank and found some pet food! Chances are that if a citizen didn’t donate, ARF! did. It’s a not-for-profit for New York State, roused by Susan Kaufman. The hope of the organization is to help families who find themselves in a bind be able to provide for their pets, not be forced to face the idea of giving them up. Their website has a list of pantries that they work with, organized by borough and zip code. Read their guidelines, and see if your area is on the list.
PAWS NY for Seniors and the Disabled
Sometimes we find ourselves in hard situations, and those who can’t physically take care of their pets know that well. This isn’t a pet food service, per say, but it offers a very important resource for people struggling. The organization relies a lot on volunteers to help with the physical aspects of pet care in New York City. If you’re interested in volunteering, there are a lot of opportunities to help, including house calls and Pet Pantry distribution! Check it out here. Or, if you’d like to apply for PAWS NY services, go ahead and see what services are available to you.
Healthy Pets Project of NYC
Healthy Pets is a program that offers low cost, or even free services to those who apply. They can help out with somethings as basic as food and vaccinations, or with the more unpredictable things, like surgeries. Akin to PAWS NY, the program depends on donations and volunteering, and a lot of their services are affected by supply and demand. Fortunately, if they can’t help you at the moment, they have a large net of resources they can refer you to.
Pets of the Homeless
If you’re homeless, or facing the possibility, there is hope for you and your pets. Pets caters to many cities, and offers information on state, national, and Canadian resources that people can take advantage of. Even if you aren’t homeless, but need help, you can still use this website to find food and supplies, free clinics, emergency care for your pet, and so much more. Take a look at the New York City section of the website, and be safe!
Featured image was taken by Erick Pleitez, and has been resized.