New Program Will Help Older Adults Keep, Care for Beloved Pets
“I don’t have to worry about how I’m going to feed my dog. And my dog loves the food.”
Meals on Wheels Loves Pets program participant
Pets play an important role in the life of a homebound senior, providing a critical social connection that enhances their physical and mental health and well-being. But caring for a pet can be a financial challenge for our Meals on Wheels seniors.
Meals on Wheels Loves Pets, a new effort by the Salisbury Maryland Kennel Club (SMKC) and the Salisbury Maryland Kennel Club Charitable Trust, in partnership with MAC’s Meals on Wheels program, is aimed at making it possible for our seniors to keep and care for their beloved animal companions.
The program provides food for pets of MAC’s Meals on Wheels seniors in Wicomico County.
During its first year as a pilot project, the program has made a huge difference in the lives of local seniors, providing companionship to fight loneliness and isolation.
“My cat is my only family. (The program) helps me keep my cat. Money is so tight, and the program helps me be able to feed my cat and still pay other bills,” said one program participant.
“A total of 63 clients and 101 pets are currently participating in the program,” said Paula Erdie, MAC Chief Executive Officer. “To date, an estimated 11,200 pet meals have been delivered.”
Funding for the program is provided by the SMKC and its Charitable Trust, and by the Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore. Additional support is needed. Monetary donations may be mailed to MAC at 909 Progress Circle, Salisbury MD 21804 (make checks payable to MAC, Inc.) Donations will be used for the purchase of pet food.
“Our pets play such a major role in our lives. So, we understand the importance a pet has for a homebound elderly person,” said Peggy Bradford, SMKC board member and treasurer for the SMKC Charitable Trust. “Helping to obtain food for the beloved pets of Meals on Wheels recipients gives us joy and makes us smile, knowing we are making things a little better for both the pet and older person.” Bradford is also the retired Executive Director of MAC.
In order to meet the dietary needs of the pets, we ask for monetary donations only; no food or pet items please.
For more information on Meals on Wheels Loves Pets program, call Al Chandler at 410-742-0505, Ext. 144, or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. More information is also available on MAC’s website, www.macinc.org.
MAC is a member agency of the United Way of the Lower Eastern Shore.