Several brands are jumping to the assistance of animal adoption organizations during the pandemic.
Many shelters nationwide are operating on skeleton staffs and are open for intakes but closed for adoptions. Without the adoption fees, operating funds are becoming an issue.
Skechers is donating more than $509,000 to the Petco Foundation, bringing the company’s total contribution to over $5.45 million for animal welfare agencies since 2016. Through sales of its Bobs from Skechers collection, donations are aiding shelters and agencies closed due to the coronavirus crisis.
“Animal welfare organizations across the country have been forced to innovate and operate in new ways, including mobilizing record numbers of foster homes to care for pets to support social distancing measures while saving animal lives,” says Susanne Kogut, president of Petco Foundation, in a release. “Thanks to Bobs, many of our organizations can continue their lifesaving work.”
For every Bobs from Skechers item purchased in the U.S., a donation is made to the Foundation to help save and support animals in its 4,000+ shelter and pet adoption network. Bobs also launched in Canada in January 2020; for every purchase made in that country, a donation will support Canada’s shelter dogs and cats.
Cats in particular are being impacted by the pandemic, according to Royal Canin. Shelters are anticipating the largest kitten season ever, given the reduction in spay and neuter services during the pandemic.
Because of this, even more people need to be recruited to sign up to foster. Many are doing it for the first time, and may not have all the same resources that would normally be made available to them.
That’s where Royal Canin and cat rescue expert Hannah Shaw, The Kitten Lady, come in. Shaw wants to help these first-time kitten fosters succeed by offering a four-week webinar series called “Catology” that shows how anyone can care for kittens.
Royal Canin is sponsoring the effort to help provide the series for free. The brand will also provide a month of free food, valued at $30, to the first 1,000 new kitten and cat fosters and adopters who sign up for the webinar.
The webinars will be streamed live on the official Facebook and Instagram of Royal Canin and the official Facebook and Instagram of The Kitten Lady and will be available to rewatch.
Additional support is available in the Catology Facebook Group, a new community for cat owners, where veterinarians, nutritionists and other feline experts will host chats and share resources.
“We are going through an unprecedented time right now -- but it’s incredible to see kindness emerge in times of need,” said Tony Wild, director of cat acceleration for Royal Canin, in a release. “While shelters and rescues are facing a crisis of their own in placing and caring for animals, people nationwide are opening their homes to pets in need. We are inspired by these actions and want to help.”
Those interested in learning more about fostering can visit StayHomeAndFoster.org to connect with a shelter or rescue in their area. Out of an abundance of precaution, many shelters offer foster pet delivery or low-contact pet pickup.