Meals on Wheels delivers food to local senior citizens’ pets

(WSVN) - Making sure homebound senior citizens have enough to eat — that’s what Meals on Wheels South Florida does for thousands of elderly people every day. But now the group is also trying to help those seniors who have pets. As 7’s Brandon Beyer reports, volunteers are working hard these days to make some very special deliveries.

Dylan the poodle is William Sawyer’s best friend.

William Sawyer, Dylan’s owner: “He’s my only companion. I very rarely get out.”

But finding the money to feed Dylan isn’t easy. That’s why the Meals on Wheels’ Companion Pets Program is so important.

William Sawyer: “It’s the most wonderful thing in the world, especially being on a fixed income, especially on disability, so it really does mean a lot.”

Diana Bickston and her sister Carol have two dogs. They’re also getting help from the program.

Diana Bickston: “It saves me from having to find homes for my dogs, because I wouldn’t be able to take care of them.”

Judy Bates, volunteer: “We have some dry food, and there’s some canned food.”

Judy Bates became a volunteer with the group after reading an article about how some senior citizens were going hungry so their pets could eat.

Judy Bates: “They have nothing except their dog or their cat, and they were sharing their food from Meals on Wheels with their companion pet, and it just touched my heart and still does.”

The Meals for Companion Pets Program helps feed the pets of about 200 clients every month, but they need donations of dog and cat food. VCA Hollywood Animal Hospital recently held a food drive, collecting thousands of pounds.

Linda Ream, VCA Hollywood Animal Hospital: “We’re hoping to get them through six months. We’re hoping, with donations of money which we’ve gotten, as well as food, we’re going to.”

Volunteers come to this warehouse to collect the food they need for their clients and deliver the pet food once a month.

Judy Bates: “Here you go, sweetie pie.”

Now there’s no need for these seniors to share their own food.

Carol Beggs, dog owner: “I think that Meals on Wheels has done a fantastic job.”

The cost of the program is just $3 a month. To find out more about this program, click here.

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