SAN MATEO COUNTY, Calif. (KRON) — The Peninsula Humane Society has started giving away pet food to needy families struggling to feed their animals or who are self isolating during this coronavirus pandemic.

Volunteers portion out kibble for the 28 pets that have registered so far for the Peninsula Humane Society’s pet food bank.

It’s for San Mateo County residents who are struggling to make ends meet because of the shelter in place order shutting down the local economy. The shelter’s communication manager says this is first time they’ve done anything like this.

“I mean certainly we can help people if they fallen on hard times and they need some pet food but we’ve never done anything on the scale recently. But nothing like this has ever happened recently,” Buffy Martin-Tarbox said. “I mean you know the coronavirus has crippled so many aspects of our community and as the animal liters of San Mateo County, we need to be able to help pet owners. That’s why we decided to focus providing pet food for people who need it during this time.”

The volunteers bag up and give away the food from inside pick of the litter the non profit’s thrift store in Burlingame.

Those picking up wait outside for their order, which is two weeks of food for their pets. The volunteers will also deliver to those self isolating. They just need to pre-register in advance.

“So when people are calling, we’re asking for information about their animal. How much does your pet weigh, that will just help us determine how much food that we’re giving them,” Martin-Tarbox said. “Because we have a dog that only weighs 10 pounds versus a dog that’s 100 pounds, the 100-pound dog’s gonna leave me a lot more food. So we’re trying to manage at least enough for two weeks and if it continues to expand beyond that you can give us a call back.”

The Peninsula Humane Society says they’ll be providing this service as long as they can during this crisis. The pet food bank is open on Fridays between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Right now they’re only able to provide dog and cat food, but they’re hoping to be able to expand so they can give away other types of pet food soon.

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