EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Pets make up an important part of the El Paso community, but owners can oftentimes become overwhelmed with everyday expenses, like food.
El Paso Animal Services recently acquired grant funding, which was spent on a new pet retention program. The Maddie’s Fund, a national animal welfare foundation, gifted $5,000 to assist local pet owners.
The Pet Commissary is a food pantry that gives pets the opportunity to remain at home with a full belly and a happy heart.
“This is the first time we’ve been able to really assist the community in a big capacity,” says Renee Rojas, Pet Retention Supervisor at El Paso Animal Services.
Rojas adds that El Paso Animal Services has always received supply and food donations, but this grant has allowed them to provide more and better resources to those in need.
“A lot of times, people go through rough times and patches. And you know, the pets are the ones that need to be taken care of. So, we want to make sure that pets stay in their home and out of the shelter with giving them the food for the assistance that they need, for maybe a short time or maybe a longer duration,” says Rojas.
Interested applicants must submit proof of government assistance (i.e. Medicare, Medicaid, SNAP, Social Security, WIC, etc.) and a valid form of ID that proves residence along with the program’s application.
Utilizing the extent of their limited resources, the pet commissary is limited to one applicant per household.
Tackling food insecurity on behalf of pets will prove to be impactful for this community — “this will help keep pets at home, where they belong,” says Rojas.
Applications are available in-person at the Animal Services Center, located at 5001 Fred Wilson or online via the center’s website.
The center is open from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., seven days a week.