Many truck drivers often rely on a variety of pets – birds, cats, dogs, you name it – to provide companionship on the road, as this story illustrates.
So, from that perspective, it’s perhaps more than a little appropriate that a new charity endeavor launched by PetSmart to provide free food for pets in need is relying on tractor-trailers to deliver the goods.
PetSmart recently began delivering the first of nearly 90 initial tractor-trailer loads of free pet food through its Buy a Bag, Give a Meal program, whereby meals are given to a pet in need for any and every bag of dog or cat food purchased via one of the company’s more than 1,500 stores or online through the end of this year.
Through this philanthropic program, PetSmart said it expects to make pet food deliveries throughout the rest of 2017 and well into 2018.
It also expects to distribute the expected 60 million-plus meals to hundreds of locations across North America at local animal shelters and animal rescue organizations, as well as to food banks and pantries where pet food is a rare offering.
Nonprofit partner PetSmart Charities, the leading funder of animal welfare in North America, is the recipient of the significant pet food donation and is teaming up with GreaterGood.org’s Rescue Bank program and Feeding America to help distribute this free pet food directly to pets in need across the U.S.
Launched in March of this year, the Buy a Bag, Give a Meal program has already generated more than 20 million meals to date. Throughout the past two weeks, the first three of nearly 90 tractor-trailers loaded with the donated pet food were delivered to pets in need. The initial shipment included 750,000 meals of pet food split evenly between dog and cat food and was delivered to Feeding America affiliates, Food Bank of the Rockies in Denver, and Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona in Tucson. A third truck load was delivered to Rescue Bank facility, St. Paws, and adjacent shelter, National Mill Dog Rescue, in Peyton, Colo., a suburb of Colorado Springs.
The pet food meals are expected to be on the shelves of hundreds of food pantries across the Denver and Tucson metro areas, while also feeding hungry pets at rescues and shelters in the Colorado Springs region.
“We are thrilled to be getting these initial meals to pets in need across Colorado and the Southern Arizona area,” said Eran Cohen, chief customer experience officer at PetSmart, in a statement. “We know pets in need are not only in shelters and rescues across North America, but also with their families who are served by food pantries and meal programs.”