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Austin Humane Society hosts sold-out drive-thru pet pantry

"We thought maybe as the pandemic wound down, a little bit and life returned to normal, we'd see less turnout at these events. But that's just not been the case."

AUSTIN, Texas — The Austin Humane Society (AHS) is looking to help pet owners in need as inflation causes an uptick in pet surrenders and animal rescues.

Canidae Pet Food teamed up with Austin Humane Society for a drive-thru pet pantry event, which was held on Saturday, Sept. 17. AHS said due to the overwhelming response it received, the event was moved to the shelter's future home, located at 7625 N. Interstate 35 (currently the location of Red Rocks Church).

AHS said pet food was distributed on a first-come, first-served basis and, in order to serve as many pet owners as possible, it limited the number of bags of food per household.

"We thought maybe as the pandemic wound down a little bit and life returned to normal, we'd see less turnout at these events. But that's just not been the case. I think it really shows that not only do Austinites love their pets, but that people are still struggling with pet food, and we want to make sure that they have what they need," said AHS Director of Community Support Programs Sarah Hammel.

Throughout the month of September, AHS and Canidae are teaming up for the “Pound for Pound to the Rescue!” initiative. Canidae will be launching its Kibble Refill Stations at seven Petco locations in Austin, and for every pound purchased, it will donate a pound back to AHS. Canidae also distributed kibble coupons during the Pet Food Pantry event.

More than 30,000 pounds of kibble will be delivered to shelters nationwide, equaling over 80,000 free meals served up to homeless pups during the launch month. AHS will receive 7,500 meals to give away. 

AHS plans to have another food pantry event on Dec. 10 at 9 a.m. at the Red Rocks Church parking lot.

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