I recently relocated from Surrey to East Sussex towards the end of last winter and found myself passing by an abundance of homeless persons - a large amount being dog owners.
Six months upcoming of nights where temperatures could be that of a standard fridge in your kitchen. Is it fair for a dog to be out on the streets during these months, let alone during the summer?
I have come to the realisation that many homeless people acquire a little more loose change than someone who does not have a four-legged friend by their side, but how much of that money is being spent on feeding the dog?
These dogs are often eating human food which is not good for them, plus scraps found in bins, with the owner either not understanding that a dog requires particular nutrients or giving it something rather than nothing. Kebabs, burgers, fish and chips, sausage rolls, cake... this really is no way to feed a dog.
Yes, there are projects helping those on low incomes be provided with pet food, not just dogs, but I and a handful of volunteers would be actively out on the streets, meeting with homeless people and their dogs, giving them reassurance that we can help feed their best friend.
So, here is my project. With your help, perhaps one day we can branch further afield.
Fundraising a total of £1,200 will get:
1,000 tins of dog food (400g) (30p - Pets At Home) - this will feed 25 homeless persons' dogs wet food every day for 2 months - £450
250kg of dry dog food (approx 1,400 portions x 180g x 12p per portion - various brands) - this will feed 25 homeless persons' dogs dry food every day for 2 months - £400
400 x 2 litre bottles of water (17p each - Lidl) - £68.00
50 dog bowls (60p each - Online wholesaler) - £30.00
Doggy bags - I would hope this would help combat this issue of dog mess around the town centre and areas nearby. (50 x 150 bags) - £50.00
£200 remainder would be spent on blankets from charity shops, dog chews, leads etc
Doggy Dinner Bank isn't just about feeding homeless doggies, but keeping them warm, hydrated and looked after whilst helping towards Hastings becoming a little more free of dog mess.
Should this project be supported well, I shall create a website and register as a charity, welcoming online donations, plus place bins in local shops for customers to donate dog food.
Please, if you can offer just £5, that would be fantastic. If you can afford a little more, that would be even better. Your donations are priceless.
Also, if you pass a homeless person with a dog and want to make a difference, please give them something for their dog rather than money!