The Trail SPCA is looking for a break on a rash of break-ins that have plagued the shelter in the last few months.
Last week the shelter’s food bank — an outdoor shed housing pet food donations from the public — was ravaged, with would-be thieves breaking the lock on the door.
Although the person who attempted the break-in ran off without taking anything when the alarm system was sounded, the incident is the fourth in the last six months at the shelter, said Trail SPCA branch manager Danielle Jackman.
She found it confusing that thieves would break in and steal pet food — the only thing stolen in previous break ins — when the shelter offered free pet food through their food bank service.
“It’s not even that the food is missing, it’s that they have to break and damage our property when it is something we would have given them (free) in the first place,” she said.
“If this continues we may have to reconsider the whole program. If we can’t keep it running without incident, we may have to ask the food bank if they can take the animal (operation) back.”
The SPCA’s food bank is used by people down on their luck and are struggling through the winter months, or who might have extra bills and don’t have enough for a bag of pet food, said Jackman.
“We use it similar to the human food bank,” she explained. “When they come down we would normally give out the food to those in need, but we’ve had a couple of cases where people have broken down the door to the shed and broken the latches and have helped themselves.”
The SPCA helps 20 people per month, on average, through the food bank. The only time they turn people away without pet food is if they have nothing to give them.
Although the pet food for the shelter dogs is in a different location and has not been touched, the SPCA is now without any food to give to those people who utilize the food bank, said Jackman.
“So we’re looking for more donations to replenish stock,” she said. “But we also want people to stop breaking in, and to just stop in and ask (for food).”
Donations can be made at the shelter: 7700 Highway 3B.