How to Care for Animals Affected by COVID-19
Animals are struggling to survive outside of workplaces that are now empty due to COVID-19. Community cats make their homes around businesses, and birds migrate through these areas or nest nearby. Squirrels and other wild animals like raccoons and opossums can be very reliant on human food waste as a means to eat.
To compound the problem, it is also springtime, which means mating season for mammals and birds. Millions of birds are migrating and may return to areas with little to no food. So, in addition to struggling to feed themselves, many birds and mammals are also struggling to feed their offspring.
What can you do to help these animals during this difficult period?
Was a coworker feeding cats or birds at your workplace? If so, check in with the coworker to see if they are continuing to do so. If they aren't, consider taking over daily feeding and providing fresh water until this passes and life returns to normal.
The stay-at-home orders in most states allow someone to care for animals in need. Please check your local or state stay-at-home order to confirm this is still the case.
If you need help buying or securing donations of birdseed or cat food, check with your local animal rescues, food banks, and churches to see what resources are available. You can also ask friends or family who may be less affected by the shutdown to help purchase food and supplies.
To learn what you can do to help wild animals affected by the shutdown, check in with local wildlife rehabbers or rescues. You can find a list of wildlife resources by doing an Internet search using your city name and "wildlife rehabbers."
These are trying times for everyone, animals included. Please watch out for one another as well as for other animals in need.
For more advice we encourage you to read our 10 Tips: How to Help Your Animal Companions and Others During the COVID-19 Outbreak.