People out of work or underemployed due to the COVID-19 shutdown are now struggling to feed themselves and their families, with lines of cars being reported at food distribution events and banks in the region. In the midst of all this chaos, furry family members can sometimes be forgotten. Now a local rescue group and pet store are stepping in to change that.
The pitbull rescue group Biggies Bullies and Petagogy, an independent Pittsburgh-based pet supply store, have partnered with Greater Pittsburgh Restaurant Workers Mutual Aid (PRWA) to include pet food distribution in its COVID-19 relief efforts. Biggies Bullies and Petagogy will provide pet food and supplies to PRWA, which will distribute them and other necessary resources to affected restaurant and hospitality workers.
So far, Petagogy and Biggies Bullies delivered supplies and food to 84 pets at 34 households through PRWA, according to a press release.
The partnership expands on current work by Biggies Bullies' Hungry Hippo’s Pet Pantry. Normally, the pantry partners with food banks and Meals on Wheels programs to ensure that owners will not have to surrender their pets to shelters due to sudden financial insecurity.
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture also lists various pet pantries throughout the state, including at Animal Friends and the Ellie's Pet Pantry operated by Humane Animal Rescue.
In addition, PRWA is collecting donations of food, household supplies, and childcare supplies for worker care packages.
Donations to help workers in need can be made to Hungry Hippo’s Pet Food Pantry on Biggies Bullies' website. Support Hungry Hippo’s Pet Pantry by making a monetary donation to Biggies Bullies' fund, or purchase dog or cat food through the Amazon Wishlist.
To receive assistance with Pittsburgh Restaurant Workers Aid, send an email to PRWA, firstname.lastname@example.org, and fill out the Request For Aid Google Form.