Animals win a lot from food fund

12-02-2015'Vets4pets foodbank for pets, Mhairi MacLeod, Carol Lloyd (Manager) and Laura Sheppard (Vet).'Picture Paul McSherry.
12-02-2015'Vets4pets foodbank for pets, Mhairi MacLeod, Carol Lloyd (Manager) and Laura Sheppard (Vet).'Picture Paul McSherry.

A Bearsden veterinary practice has teamed up with Scotland’s first pet foodbank to help people struggling to feed their animals.

Vets4Pets in Hillfoot is providing collection bins for visitors to drop off cans and packets of food for pets of homeless and vulnerable people.

Practice manager Carol Lloyd from the Hillfoot Drive practice, said: “This is the first of its kind in Scotland, Pet Food Bank launched in September 2014 as the demand for pet food supplies became clear.

‘‘The initiative has quickly grown with followers and support from a number of different areas. This has come largely from those not affiliated or supported by a particular charity - in other words, those who care for abandoned pets and are not in receipt of funding.

“The Pet Food Bank initiative also has the added benefit of reducing the number of pets abandoned due to a lack of funds for food.”

Since the vet practice started collecting donations at the end of last month, items have been flooding in andthey are now ready to be distributed to those in greatest need. As well as the Pet Food Bank, the practice will also be distributing items to a number of other charity organisations including Cats Protection League, Dogs Trust, and the Greyhound Awareness League.

Mrs Lloyd said one worthwhile cause that stands out is the Underheugh Ark, which rescues animals on the PTS (Put to Sleep) list.

She added: “These are pets that have been abandoned in pounds that have been given a seven day termination date as no home has been found for them.

“The Pet Food Bank supports the project providing food for the animals to go to temporary fosterers, creating more time for permanent homes to be identified.”

The brains behind the initiative is Paul Devlin, who along with wife Susan and daughter Lauren, set up the group in September last year. Paul is now planning to register the group as a charity.

He said: “It has been immensely successful. The response has been absolutely amazing. Since I set up the Facebook page we have had more than 25,000 people visiting it every week.”

Paul was keen to stress that he was not wanting to take any of the credit for the project, adding “the real heroes are the people who have donated”.

As well as pet food the Bearsden Vets4Pets has also been given three dog beds.

Paul said: “I am just waiting for Carol to phone me, which I think will be in the next week, so I can start distributing it.”

Donations will also go to Greater Maryhill foodbank.