“I’ve been to six grocery stores today and I can’t find the cat food I need for Connan,” said a frustrated Andrew Harris late last week. Harris was looking for kibble that comes in bags for his 17 year old Connan, an indoor cat, who gets severe diarrhea whenever he eats anything other than Purina One. “He won’t use the litter box. Instead, he uses any other part of our home as a litter box.”
Harris lives in Freeport and retraced his steps in his hunt for dry cat food for Connan. He started at Shaws in Freeport, then went to the Bow Street Market, Freeport. No luck at either of those places. So, he continued his journey until he ended up at Hannaford Brothers, Forest Avenue. “I give up. I’m at the end of my rope on the subject,” he said. (See below right photo of Andrew and Connan.)
A lack of resin may be the culprit. Resin is a plant product used in plastic products. It is a protective ingredient that is apparently needed in bags of cat food. It is used as a protection in plastic products. It’s scarce now because it’s stuck in some cargo ships in the Pacific according to some with knowledge of the subject.
What started as a shortage of some canned cat food about a year ago has now spread to dry cat food found in bags. Possibly some dog foods are beginning to be affected as well. Are kibble bags made of plastic?
A shortage of some wet canned cat food began about a year ago. This cat owner became aware of it in seaching for a specific brand of chicken pate for Boobie, my 16 year old cat. He won’t eat anything else. Just chicken pate. Originally, this Boobie owner was told there was a shortage of a specific brand carried in area grocery stores because of a can shortage due to the pandemic, there were too many cats being released from shelters that placed a burden on cat food supplies and various other justifications for the shortages.
In search of chicken pate and answers to questions, this Boobie owner visited several grocery stores yesterday, again. Neither the status of chicken pate nor answers to questions about it were found by this Boobie owner.
At one grocery store in southern Maine, two store managers did their very best to avoid my questions: Where is your cat food and what is happening to the supply? Why are the shelves empty? They either scurried away or changed the subject to – what was this Boobie owner preparing for dinner last night. A third individual working at the customer service desk said she had no idea there was a shortage of cat food.
“A lot of people have been coming in wondering what is going on?” said Sarah White, manager of the South Portland Pet Quarters, yesterday afternoon. “Is there a shortage of cat and dog food? Did they stop making Fancy Fest?”
These are just some of the questions that cat owners are asking the employees of Pet Quarters said White. And White is knowledgeable and able to answer many of them. Pet Quarters does not carry Fancy Feast brand. “We only carry what customers buy,” she said. White is employed at Pet Quarters on a part-time basis. She has a cat sitting and dog walking service in her spare time.
What many customers whose cats like chicken pate are buying is Wellness. It’s all protein with no grain, a/k/a filler, in it. The cans come in two sizes. The smaller, 3 ounce can, costs $1.29. White admits the price just went up recently a few cents because of the pandemic. “This is the least expensive we sell compared with the rest of the line from this company,” said the helpful White. Pet Quarters received a major supply last week when a truck carrying 6 or 7 pellets of Wellness product only unloaded at their sites. That supply is expected to last until spring.
“Don’t forget to introduce this new cat food to Boobie gradually. Mix it well with his current cat food if you can. Otherwise, it will be hard on his digestive system,” reminded White as this Boobie owner fled into the dusk with a serious stash of Wellness Chicken Pate in her ditty bag.
Please visit post herein dated March 14, 2021 for another post on the shortage of cat food in southern Maine.