Meals on Wheels' PALS Program Feeds Pets of Homebound Seniors

Posted at 5:17 PM, Jul 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-06 17:17:54-04

Meals on Wheels delivers meals to the elderly or those who are unable to prepare food. While this program is a great way to ensure that seniors nationwide are consuming the proper nutrients this oftentimes leaves out a senior’s closest loved one: their pet.

“If I didn’t have them, me and Flaco wouldn’t eat as much,” said Diana Bickston, a Meals on Wheels client.

If Meals on Wheels didn’t deliver donated dog food, Diana Bickston says her dog Flaco would be eating half the food meant for her.

“By the time I pay my rent in full, I have maybe $100 left in my checking and that’s not enough to eat,” said Diana.

That’s why the Meals on Wheels pet food assistance program is so important.

“We found out that some of the clients were feeding their pets half of their Meals on Wheels food because they didn’t have enough to purchase food for their animal,” said Bob Mazal, founder of the pet program at Meals on Wheels.

Bob started the Meals for Pets program in his backyard, over 20 years ago to help homebound seniors, like Diana.

The program serves hundreds of pets in South Florida every year.

“We got bags of food, mix them together and re-bag them in ziplock bags in order to give them a mixture and that why their diet would not change month to month,” said Bob.

The organization isn’t only providing food for seniors and their pets, but they’re also offering veterinary and in-home grooming services… to make sure every pet is healthy.

“More and more of our clients are living alone so we see them getting a lot more pets. Their pets are like their four-legged family members,” said Mark Adler.

“He’s like my son,” added Diana.

Diana says she pays only six dollars a month to feed Flaco. To learn more about the program, click here.

If you’re interested in donating to Meals on Wheels South Florida, click here.