Food stamps for Fido?

Posted By KATE STANTON, UPI.com   |   Feb. 25, 2013 at 4:06 PM   |   0 comments

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Feb. 25 (UPI) -- Pet Food Stamps, a non-profit organization based in New York has started a new program offering "food stamps" to families who can't afford to feed their animals, KVIA-TV reported last week.

The program's organizers hope that financial assistance will prevent low-income pet owners from abandoning their animals or leaving them at shelters. According to ABCNews.com, Pet Food Stamps gives six-months worth of pet food from Pet Food Direct to qualifying families anywhere in the United States.

So far, the organization's so-called "food stamp" program runs on donations, though executive director and founder Marc Okon said he would be open to federal funding.

"We’re not looking for government funding at this point," he told ABCNews.com. "Should the government be willing to provide assistance further down the line, we will look into it."

Okon said he came up with the idea after receiving a letter from a single mother who couldn't afford to take car of the family dog that helped her disabled son communicate. He said the program receives thousands of application each day.

"So in total we have over 40,000 cats and dogs already awaiting food," Okon told KVIA.

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