Shelters across the United States are reporting a significant surge of applications for fostering and adopting animals during COVID-19, resulting in a high demand for supplies at local pet retailers. To ensure pet parents can get food and the necessary products for their new member of the family, more than 490 Pet Supplies Plus stores in 34 states nationwide are offering free 2-hour curbside pickup. Pet parents can simply order online and drive to their nearest location, where a team member will bring the items to their vehicle.
In addition, over 200 Pet Supplies Plus stores are offering delivery services, bringing pet food and supplies directly to homes during the pandemic and moving forward.
The curbside pickup and delivery services are necessary safety precautions during the pandemic, especially given the increase in pet fostering and adoptions. Local shelters in Chicago, Dallas, New York City, Los Angeles, Kansas City and many more are reporting fostering applications surging to as much as tenfold over what they are on a typical day. Petpoint, a software program with over 1,200 shelters in its database, reported that fostering and adoption rates are up 700 percent from last year.
"Pets can help combat loneliness and provide a great source of comfort during stressful times," said Chris Rowland, Chief Executive Officer of Pet Supplies Plus. "That's one reason for the increase in adoptions and fostering. Sheltering-in-place has also given people the opportunity to be at home throughout the day to devote time and attention to caring for a pet. We're glad we are able to provide a safe way for pet parents to obtain the food and supplies they need to take care of their new family members."
With curbside pickup in place at all Pet Supplies Plus locations, pet parents can easily pick up all the products they need while practicing safe social distancing. Because enforcing social distancing during outdoor activity can be a bit trickier, the brand created a fun infographic to help envision the distance of six feet … in animal terms: Imagine a dog, two cats, and a guinea pigs' length between you and other fellow pet owners.
Pet Supplies Plus has also created an at-home guide for those extending their homes to new and fostered pets, hoping to make the transition simple and comforting for the pet and parent. For first-time pet parents, the list of supplies, available through delivery, curbside pickup and in store, will help round out all the items needed to create a healthy environment for your new furry friend:
- Toys: Be mindful of your pet's strength and temperament when choosing any toy and be sure to keep a close eye on them as they play. Smart toy options include treat dispensing toys, plush toys, discs, tennis balls and puzzle toys.
- Food/supplies: Upon getting a new animal, take note of how much and often they eat. On a trip to the pet store, buy more than you think you'll need as a precaution and until you have a consistent routine in place. Additional items like a water and food bowl, and treats with nutritional benefits are a worthwhile buy.
- First-time essentials: For walks, make sure to buy a good quality collar and leash, as well as ID tags. For comfort, order a bed, litterbox and/or crate, all important for training and bedtime. For health, consider flea and tick prevention. For grooming, get a brush, nail clippers and shampoo.
- Preventing injuries: Try to prevent injury, specifically for our senior pets, by properly tucking cables away from walking spaces and putting up barriers to block off stairs or other off-limits spaces. Similarly, if your pet is a chewer, keep any small or tempting items out of reach.
Pet Supplies Plus offers a wide array of natural pet foods and a variety of Made in the USA pet consumables, such as wet and dry food, treats, rawhide and chews. Set in welcoming neighborhood environments, Pet Supplies Plus team members get to know their neighbors and pets by name at every store.
To place an order for curbside pickup or to see whether your local Pet Supplies Plus store offers a delivery option, please visit https://www.petsuppliesplus.com/.