GLENDALE, Ariz. - Unemployment is still impacting hundreds of thousands of Arizonans. With bills due and holiday season upon us, the nonprofit Arizona Pet Project took it upon themselves to give away free pet food at State Farm Stadium on Dec. 5 to ease some financial stress.
On Saturday morning, hundreds of pet owners lined up for free Blue Buffalo dog and cat food.
"This holiday season, we want to make sure no family makes the choice of having to feed themselves or feed their pet," said Leanna Taylor of the Arizona Pet Project.
The Arizona Pet Project worked with the Arizona Cardinals and Blue Buffalo to hand out 10,000 pounds of pet food.
This was a much-needed event for Glendale resident and dog owner Bobby Salais, a painter struggling to find work.
"I’m very grateful for it. Helping us out and everything else, stuff like this -- we wouldn’t be able to do it.," said Salais.
Now, tough choices that shouldn't have to be made won't be for these holiday recipients of holiday kindness.
"People's paychecks are really limited in what extra funds they have, but 70 percent of households have pets," said Leanne Taylor. "So when people are making difficult choices for their families, their pets are involved in those decisions."
For Bobby, his pups mean everything to him. His son died recently and left his dad the dogs - making them a connection to his son. They mean everything to him.
"They're our pride and joy," said Salais. "We promised we’d take care of them when our son passed away."
And the bagged kibbles tossed in a trunk mean everything to a family that was about to make some tough choices just before Saint Nick arrives.
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