September 7th 2022

The Cost of Living Crisis and Pets

Welcome back to the VCMS blog where we share the latest updates, industry news and insights. Recent reports have been arriving at the VCMS linked to the cost of living crisis and its effects on pet owners. In today’s article, we cover the worrying trend of pets being abandoned as owners struggle to cope with rising costs and detail how you can help.

Reports have started to filter through both in the media and to the VCMS that pet owners are going without meals so they can feed their animals as demand for pet food banks rises amid the cost of living crisis. The increase comes amid fears the surging cost of living could force more people to give up their pets. Animal charity Blue Cross already has four pet food banks and is looking at rolling out more across the country. For 125 years, the Blue Cross have been helping sick, injured and homeless pets. Today, there are millions of families with a pet in their life – thousands who currently need their help, and thousands who will need help in the future. The Blue Cross provide lifelong, ongoing care and support for pets and the people who love them.

In addition to the Blue Cross, the Pet Food Bank Service in Wales has reported that the number of owners turning to them for help is increasing every month. Last year it provided 51,000 pet meals and so far this year it has already reached 47,000. Hits to their website also doubled in June before doubling again in July. Debi Emmett, who runs the service based in Cardiff, said she has heard from people who are going without to provide for their pets.

Ms Emmett said: “People say things like I wouldn’t ask myself but I will for my animals”

Blue Cross currently has pet food banks at its rehoming centres in Sheffield, Manchester and Exeter, as well as its animal hospital in Grimsby. The amount of wet food given out from January to July this year at the charity’s Sheffield pet food bank is 500 percent higher than the same period in 2021, while there has been a 31% jump for dry food.

Where can you find a local pet food bank?

If you are struggling to find one, some of the organisations and websites below are currently accepting donations. These include:

  1. Your local Pets at Home store (you can either donate funds or drop items off, but do check with the store manager first).
  2. The RSPCA Wimbledon, Wandsworth and Sutton Branch.
  3. In Scotland, it’s The Pet Food Bank.
  4. Check social media pages, such as Facebook, to see whether anyone in your local area is collecting pet food to donate.
  5. Keep an eye open for RSPCA collection bins in Tesco and Morrisons.
  6. If it’s specifically cat food you’re looking to donate, Cats Protection has a list of the supermarkets accepting donations.
  7. 7. Donate easily via Pets of The Homeless.
  8. In Sheffield, Manchester and Grimsby, Blue Cross are working with partner organisations.
  9. The RSPCA have also partnered with over 40 food banks across the North of England.
  10. It is also worthwhile checking to see if any independent or locally volunteered food banks are available to you where you live. This may be at your closest rescue centre or cat and dog home.

For more information about the Blue Cross and their work, visit

Should you wish to speak to a member of the VCMS contact our team via 0345 040 5834 or

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