Michigan Humane, Gleaners Combine Forces to Open Pet Food Pantry

As part of its ongoing commitment to help pets and their families as well as mitigate the factors that lead to animals being surrendered to shelters, Michigan Humane is partnering with Gleaners Community Food Bank to open a pet food pantry.
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Cute puppy
Michigan Humane and Gleaners Food Bank have partnered to create a food bank for pets, so that families won’t have to abandon their pets at shelters during hard times. // Photo courtesy of Michigan Humane

As part of its ongoing commitment to help pets and their families as well as mitigate the factors that lead to animals being surrendered to shelters, Michigan Humane is partnering with Gleaners Community Food Bank to open a pet food pantry.

The facility officially opened on June 22. It is 26,000 square feet and is leased by Michigan Humane at the Detroit headquarters of Gleaners Community Food Bank (2131 Beaufait St.). Creating partnerships between animal-and human-centric organizations has been a priority for Michigan Humane for the last several years.

“We know that many of us put our pets’ wellbeing before our own,” says Matt Pepper, president and CEO of Michigan Humane. “We want to make sure that they are healthy and fed, often before we look to care for ourselves. This is why partnerships with human services organizations, like Gleaners Community Food Bank, is so important. Together, we can serve the whole pet family.”

The goal is to serve the needs of the whole community and reduce the barriers that can prevent people from seeking support.

In addition to the expanded relationship with Gleaners Community Food Bank, Michigan Humane also works alongside Forgotten Harvest, Greater Good Charities, and other organizations. The facility was made possible with support from Ralph Caplan and Strategic Staffing Solutions in Detroit.

The location on Detroit’s lower east side is now the base of operations for several of Michigan Humane’s initiatives under the Humane Communities umbrella, which includes outreach services, a community veterinary program, and additional support services.

With more than 1.6 million pounds of pet food distributed in 2022, Michigan Humane’s pet food distribution program continues to see increased demand from the community. While not open to the public, a new community-based distribution model will see pet food and supplies available to pet owners at a growing number of human services organizations in the area, including those supported by Gleaners Community Food Bank.

“Our communities are stronger when every member of the household, including pets, has the nutrition they need to thrive, and a majority of the people Gleaners serves has at least one pet,” says Gerry Brisson, president and CEO of Gleaners. “We are grateful for the partnership with the Michigan Humane team to help take the worry of hunger off the table for our neighbors and their household best friends.”

For those in the community who may need support, resources are available here or by calling 866-MHUMANE.