Keeping Families Together During a Global Pandemic

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, families across the state have struggled with lost income, mounting expenses, and in many cases, a choice of whether to feed their pet or themselves. This situation is what often leads people to make the heartbreaking decision to surrender their pets to a shelter. Not only is that hard on the pet, but also on the owner, who loses their companion and emotional support, something that is needed most during a pandemic. Studies have shown that pets can improve a person’s mental and emotional well-being, leading to less stress and a better-functioning immune system, which is why it is important to help others in our community keep their pets in their home.

Colorado Pet Pantry is committed to helping families keep their pets fed during challenging times by providing food, treats, and supplies. We are proud to have been able to help so many people throughout the past year. We asked some of our clients to share how Colorado Pet Pantry has helped them during the pandemic. Read on to hear what they had to say about how your support is making a difference in your community!

“I’ve experienced some challenging times in the past 12+ months. I was very fortunate to receive unemployment insurance, which kept a roof over the heads of myself and my beloved dog, Coco.

Colorado Pet Pantry, without question or judgment, showed up at Bienvenidos Food Bank to offer nourishment and sustenance for Coco. I am teary eyed writing this testament to the beautiful hearts and assistance provided to those of us who are genuinely in need by the selfless people at the Colorado Pet Pantry. My dog is my family, my heart, and it has always meant so much to me to know that she had food in her bowl when I was struggling just to keep a roof over our heads. I will forever be grateful!”


“Gracie, my Labradoodle and best friend, was rescued at one year old from a shelter in Illinois after my spouse passed away. Little did I know after moving to Colorado that I would be in a pickle with finances.

The loneliness is sometimes difficult especially this year with COVID, but she is always there, so excited to see me when I get home and sleeps on my husband’s side of the bed. It is worth every bit of pickiness in food that she gives me. Some of the food I get would be totally unaffordable for me. She is my love even though she is a princess and likes to be spoon fed sometimes! Thank you for all that you do and for keeping Gracie happy and fed well.” stock photo used here


“Colorado Pet Pantry and Cindy (from the Emergency Pet Food Assistance Team), our guardian angel, have been wonderful. She reached out to us in critical moments for our family when we weren’t able to afford our pets’ food. Our pets gave our children companionship and emotional support. Like a blessing, Cindy found us and she’s never let us go. She is always reaching out to us, delivering when we had no vehicle, getting our pets updated on their shots, and getting our pets spayed and neutered at no cost through pet mobile. We are blessed. Thank you for all you’ve provided.”


“We adopted the white one [dog] during COVID, not knowing my husband would lose his job and my business would have to shut temporarily. Colorado Pet Pantry has helped by not taking away from our food budget. It was also nice to be able to vaccinate an overdue dog with the help of the voucher. We will also be neutering the pup on Tuesday. We are thankful that CPP has helped us in so many ways. I can’t wait for the time to give back by volunteering to help this great group.”


“While COVID came, we had hardships, but you helped feed them!”


“I’m a single mom on unemployment because of COVID, and finances are really tight. Being able to get dog food from Colorado Pet Pantry has provided some much-needed relief. Thank you so much!”


“You all have been a blessing to us, including our little Bell. She’s looking forward to supper just like us and trying to stay home with COVID-19 running wild. Due to health conditions, things are short. She only has one tooth, and they give her food she can eat. I really feel they care. God bless everyone for helping us.”


“I was accepted into the program in March right as COVID was spreading across the US. With so many people being laid off and jobs becoming scarce, I was worried about how I would be able to provide for my cat Clover.

Colorado Pet Pantry has been a tremendous blessing to us by providing Clover with food and giving me security in knowing she’ll always be fed, even if I need to rely on community help.

CPP also has different cat food each time I go, so Clover never gets bored with her meals. I’m incredibly thankful for what CPP provides through their outreach program and that they’re able to not only help provide meals for Clover, but meals for other pets who may need a little extra assistance.”


“You saved BackUp, Prancer, and Pierre when my work hours were drastically cut due to COVID-19! Thank you so much!!”


“Money is tight because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but thanks to Colorado Pet Pantry I don’t have to worry about how I’m going to feed my sweet fur baby, Socks. Because he deserves nothing but the best 💕”


“The Colorado Pet Pantry has helped me feed Milo and Salem while in between jobs during COVID-19 and being high risk. I will be forever thankful for CPP and all the wonderful people who help put this together. Thank you so much!”


“I’m a solitary senior with heart disease and fixed income that isn’t enough for Colorado. My pets give me critical emotional contact, even before the pandemic. Now I’m in permanent quarantine.

On my income, I can only feed my pets the cheapest food. Thanks to Colorado Pet Pantry, they eat wholesome food. They all have glossy coats and enjoy good health.”
stock photo used


“Your program helped our family a lot by providing food for our pets. Because of the pandemic, we are struggling financially, and we hardly have money to buy food for the family and our pets. We appreciate your kindness.”


Sweet image provided with no quote – but adorable pup!

Donating Made Easy!

We know that life can get busy and sometimes it’s hard to volunteer or find ways to give back. That’s why Colorado Pet Pantry makes it easy for you to help us feed local pets in need. Learn two ways you can automatically support Colorado Pet Pantry in no time.


Did you know you can support Colorado Pet Pantry just by doing your regular shopping at King Soopers or City Market? When you add us as your charity of choice, King Soopers/City Market will donate a portion of what you spend directly to us. In the last quarter of 2020, 372 enrolled households helped us raise $4,332.04 in donations! Visit the King Soopers/City Market page and sign up today.


If you’re expecting a Colorado state income tax refund this year, we hope you’ll consider donating some or all of it to Colorado Pet Pantry. Colorado makes it easy to donate your refund to the charity of your choice. When you file your taxes this year, add our registration number, 20123031891, on the Voluntary Contributions Schedule (DR 0104CH) of your Colorado Individual Income Tax Return. Learn more about this easy to use and much appreciated program.


Colorado Gives Day – 12.8.20

How you can help us maximize this important day?

* Schedule Your Donation

Starting November 1st you can schedule your donation for Colorado Gives Day. Join one of the largest one-day giving movements in the country. Each December Coloradans come together with the common goal to strengthen the community by helping to power nonprofits.

Community First Foundation and FirstBank partner to make this day rewarding for givers, nonprofits and the community as a whole.

With partially-matched incentive funds, your donation will go much further when giving-on or scheduling-for Colorado Gives Day. To donate directly to us, please click here.

* Start a Fundraiser for Us

Enlist the help of all your friends to raise money for Colorado Pet Pantry on Colorado Gives Day by creating your very own fundraising page.

By making your own Fundraising Page you can:

  • Add personal appeal
  • Upload your own photos and videos
  • Make a custom link to your page so you can share directly with others
  • Explain why you love Colorado Pet Pantry and why you support us
  • Set goals to track your progress

* Share! Share! Share!

Another way to amplify your gift is to SHARE with your friends! Share our posts and graphics on social media, and share your personal reasons for giving to Colorado Pet Pantry. We are a community-supported organization and we rely on our community to help spread the word. Together we can make this a truly successful day, setting off a groundbreaking year for Colorado Pet Pantry!


October Volunteer Needs

Please sign up here: https://signup.com/Group/27197926080/. There are more volunteer opportunities on the website, but these are our top needs.

Sunday, Oct 4th – Warehouse Sorting, Englewood (CPP Warehouse)
Wednesday, Oct 7th – Pet Food Distribution, Conifer (Mountain Resource Center)
Friday, Oct 9th – Pet Food Distribution, Denver (City of Denver Mobile Pantry) There are multiple shifts you can sign up for. Sign up for one or both!
Sunday, Oct 11th – Warehouse Sorting, Englewood (CPP Warehouse)
Friday, October 23rd – Pet Food Distribution, Loveland (Food Bank for Larimer County)
Monday, October 26th – Help Direct Traffic at Pet Food Bank, Lakewood
This is a very important role, and we will rotate you into the pet food bank role as well, but we ask traffic helpers to come a little earlier
Monday, October 26th – Pet Food Distribution, Alamosa (La Puénte’s Food Bank)
Thursday, October 29th – Pet Food Distribution, Pueblo (Lynn Gardens Baptist Church)

Join our Colorado Pet Pantry Volunteers Facebook Group to stay up to date on these opportunities and our current needs.

Thanks for your continued support. It means so much to us, and the people & pets that we serve.


As Demand for Pet Food Continues to Rise, our Supporters Have Stepped Up.

Throughout the pandemic we have seen exponential growth in the amount of people and pets in need of our services. What has surprised us just as much is the amount of giving that has accompanied this growth. As people are in higher need of assistance, people are also stepping up and giving what they can in ways we’ve never seen before. We have been in awe of the support we have received in light of many missed fundraisers, due to COVID.

The people who have been helped through your support of the Colorado Pet Pantry are your neighbors, sisters, brothers and friends. People like Heidi from Weld County who visits us at the Longmont Pet Food Bank.

Heidi’s Story

Heidi is the graceful guardian of four wonderful dogs. Heidi’s dogs are more than wonderful companions. They are also “Colorado Mountain Dogs” who protect Heidi’s flocks of chickens and doves from predators.

Heidi lives in Eastern Colorado and says, “before I had my Colorado Mountain Dogs (CMD), I would regularly lose birds to predators, but have not lost a single one since the CMD’s began their guarding duties.”

In 2016, Heidi found herself in an unfortunate, yet very common situation. After going through a divorce and being unable to work, due to a chronic medical condition, she was at the point of not being able to afford food for her four dogs. “They go through a 50lb bag of kibble every ten days! While I worked hard to get back on my feet, Colorado Pet Pantry made it possible for me to not only keep my dogs, but keep them well fed.”

We are so fortunate to have the ability to help amazing women like Heidi. It is thanks to the generosity of our supporters that we can do this work, which we are so passionate about.

Without the help of Colorado Pet Pantry, Heidi estimates she would have had to re-home at least three of her four dogs. “It would be devastating to see them go. Especially because my daughter and I are already facing so many difficult life changes. Having pets provides an emotional cushion for us, so it goes without saying that this program has truly made a huge difference in our family.”


Tune Up Your Fur-Fur-Furnace and Support Colorado Pet Pantry

Don’t go into Winter without knowing that your furnace is functioning correctly. Your family and pets will thank you. Once again, Applewood Plumbing Heating & Electric is offering our friends a timely way to support the Colorado Pet Pantry pet food bank.

Schedule a furnace tune-up during September (a service valued at $199) for $99. One hundred percent of your furnace check fee will be made directly to Colorado Pet Pantry as a donation. Last year, so many families took advantage of this generous offer that we were able to feed 417 additional pets (twice as many as we raised in 2018! Woot!).


Download the coupon or call Applewood at 303-232-6611.
Thanks for your continued support.

Your friends at Colorado Pet Pantry


It’s the Dog Days of Summer and we are Barking Busy!

As we head into fall, we are feeling the full effect of the global pandemic. The need for assistance continues to grow as more and more people are missing paychecks. Many people will feed their pets before they feed themselves and we are here to tell them they do not need to do that. We have 62 monthly pet food banks all across the Front Range. We are open to the public and we are here for you, and your pets. To find a local food bank in your area, please check out our monthly schedule.

Colorado Pet Pantry client Carmen shares a photo of her beloved pet. Carmen says, “I want to thank the pet food bank for the dog food. It helps me because I am on a fixed income and cannot afford his food. He loves his food, thank you I appreciate it.”

As the need for pet food assistance grows, so does our need for volunteers. Volunteering with Colorado Pet Pantry is one of the most fulfilling and beneficial things you can do to help the animals in your community, and it’s worth mentioning it’s a blast! We have the best crew of volunteers around.

Coming up in the next month we need help at the following dates and locations:
SIGN UP HERE: https://signup.com/Group/27197926080

  • Friday, August 21st with City of Denver Mobile Pet Food Bank
    This event is separated into two shifts (9:15AM-12:30PM & 12PM-2:30PM). We need help for both shifts.
  • Friday, August 28th with City of Denver Mobile Pet Food Bank
    This event is separated into two shifts (9:15AM-12:30PM & 12PM-2:30PM). We need help for both shifts.
  • Friday, August 28th in Loveland. Our monthly pet food bank at Food Bank for Larimer County runs from 10:15AM – 1:30PM.
  • Monday, August 31st in Alamosa. This pet food bank at La Puente’s Food Bank needs volunteers from 11:30AM – 2:30PM.
  • Wednesday, Sept 2nd in Conifer. This monthly pet food bank with Mountain Resource Center needs volunteers from 12:15PM – 3:30PM.
  • Thursday, Sept 3rd in Denver. This monthly pet food bank at Bienvenidos Food Bank needs volunteers from 9:30AM – 11:30AM.
  • Friday, Sept 4th with City of Denver Mobile Pet Food Bank
    This event is separated into two shifts (9:15AM-12:30PM & 12PM-2:30PM).
  • Wednesday, Sept 9th in Denver. This monthly pet food bank at Denver Inner City Parish (DICP) needs volunteers from 9AM – 11AM.
  • Friday, September 11th with City of Denver Mobile Pet Food Bank
    This event is separated into two shifts (9:15AM-12:30PM & 12PM-2:30PM).

Thank you for considering volunteering with our organization. We guarantee you will have a wonderful time, we look forward to meeting you, and our clients are grateful for your service.



Helping Pets in Need

This Dogster article is so kind, educational and thorough – YOU should read it. Photography by Steve Hostetler Photography.

“I have clients tell me they have to make a choice between paying rent and their utilities and buying pet food,” says Eileen, who started the Denver-based nonprofit in 2013 when, as a shelter volunteer, she noticed dogs were consistently given up because their owners couldn’t afford to take care of them.

Now, Eileen and her team have grown Colorado Pet Pantry into the largest pet food bank in the country, she says, with 45 locations throughout Colorado, plus 90 donation bins at local businesses. By collecting donations, such as that opened bag of dog food that your dog refuses to eat, in 2019, the organization fed 3.7 million meals to pets.

Read full article here…


Sweet Lady Mae

“We take misfit dogs..” says Mitzi, owner and guardian of Lady Mae the German Shepherd. Lady has a unique set of thumbs on both her front and hind legs. Due to this deformity, if you can even call it that, her previous owner cast her as useless to him and her guardian angels (his neighbors), swooped in to her rescue.

“When we got her she was just bones, skinny. You could see her hip bones, her ribs, and she had a big arch in her back because of the small kennel she had stayed in.” Her previous owner’s brother managed to get Lady to safety in the hands of Jefferson, Mitzi and McKayla. After less than a year in their care, and with the help of Colorado Pet Pantry, Lady showed incredible signs of love, care, and thank goodness – some weight.

Mitzi has been coming to Colorado Pet Pantry’s Jewish Family Service food bank and says, “having the food is a tremendous help.”

Thanks to the love and support of our Colorado community, we are able to continue to help so many dogs like Lady stay in homes they deserve and with people who care, love, and are able to feed them all the food they need to thrive.

Lady’s brother and best friend Buttons, the latest “misfit” of the family

Christy & Paco

As Christy waits in line at our Community Ministry Pet Food Bank with her best friend Paco, it’s clear these two are meant for each other. As she describes how Paco’s soothing energy saved her husband, while lying with him in the hospital bed, their true friendship and bond shows through. There is a calm and quiet understanding between these two as they wait among several excited and barking dogs.

Paco waits his turn at the pet food bank

Christy has been coming to our pet food banks for three years now. “I have to take care of him. Vet payments and food costs are money that I don’t have. With Colorado Pet Pantry, there is a resource for someone like me to take good care of my dog,” Christy shares.

It’s stories like these we hear time and time again at our pet food banks. These stories continue to encourage us to push further, expand our reach, and continue to be a resource for those who love their pets, and despite financial hardships, strive to do the best for them.

Christy and Paco pick out a new toy as they wait for their food

Food Bank partners with Colorado Pet Pantry in Loveland…

BY SHELLEY W IDHALM FOR THE REPORTER-HERALD

Thank you to Shelley Idhalm for this great article covering our pet food bank in Loveland. Link to full article at the end of the post.

The fourth Saturday of the month, the Food Bank for Larimer County places importance on cats and dogs.

Colorado Pet Pantry sets up a tent for two hours outside the Loveland Food Share building, 2600 N. Lincoln Ave., to hand out pet food and supplies to clients of the food bank and others needing the help.

“Our goals are definitely aligned… Whether you’re talking about food for families or food for pets, we want to make it easier for families to manage day to day,” said Paul Donnelly, communications director for the Food Bank for Larimer County, which has food pantries in Loveland and Fort Collins. “We don’t want people making a choice between getting food or medicine.”

In February, the Food Bank for Larimer County partnered with Colorado Pet Pantry, and since then, the pet pantry has served an average of 85 to 95 families per month. As of June, 360 families signed up for services for 875 pets, including 499 dogs and 376 cats.

“Everybody has leftover food from their animals for whatever reason. We want to stop that food from going into the landfills,” said Eileen Lambert, Executive Director of the Colorado Pet Pantry.

Read more…


We Are Growing!

Our first pet food bank was six years ago on June 6, 2013! So much has changed, but our goals remain the same. In 2018, Colorado Pet Pantry volunteers helped families-in-need feed 2.3 million meals (376,651 lbs) to 38,997 pets in the Denver/Boulder-metro area, Colorado Springs, Conifer, Ordway, and other parts of the state.

Just recently we added pet food banks at La Puentes Food Bank in Alamosa, Aurora Interfaith Community Services Food Bank in Aurora, Sangre De Cristos Volunteers for Community in Colorado City, The Action Center in Lakewood, and Lynn Gardens Baptist Church Food Bank in Pueblo. We are working hard to service all those-in-need throughout the State of Colorado, but we need your help. 

Learn how you can help. As of right now, we need help at ALL of our pet food banks. For a calendar view of our upcoming volunteer opportunities, visit the calendar on our website. If you would like to volunteer at a food bank or warehouse workday, visit sign up, select the type of volunteer activity you would like, then select the date you would like to volunteer.

Email eileen@coloradopetpantry.org with any questions.



Colorado Pet Pantry’s Take on Opinion: “Being Hungry In America Is Hard Work.”

While our mission is to help pets, our larger goal is to help the family not have to make a choice about who to feed. Access to pet food means there’s more human food for the humans. Did you know you cannot buy pet food with food stamps? Without enough money and food, these are the choices our friends have to make every day.


Dignity. Why are we “open to the public”? This article nails it:“The volunteers at the food bank were silver-haired and kind. On my first visit, I was fresh from my receptionist job, sharply dressed in a skirt suit handed down from my mother. I was worried I wouldn’t look needy enough, so I’d tucked my pay stubs into my purse just in case. It wasn’t necessary. I told the volunteers I needed help and they believed me. I didn’t need to prove I was hungry. It was a time in my life when I rarely received respect from anyone, but I received it from them. Dignity was the first gift they gave me.”

Choice. Food banks can’t provide enough to feed everyone. The article quotes the executive director of a human food bank “Says Habenicht, ‘I wish the public better understood that most folks who visit the food bank are working families who simply can’t make ends meet with the rising cost of living … Not only do families have to choose between paying bills or buying food, they often have to decide who, in the family, gets to eat. These are impossible choices that no family should have to make.’”
Please read this article to learn more about why the “easy road” isn’t so easy. But we do our best to make it as good as it can be. 

Read the entire article here.