CAPITAL REGION (NEWS10) — Throughout the pandemic, there have been many shortages and this one now affects your furry family members. Across the country, the pandemic is impacting what pets are getting for dinner.

Thus far, the shelves are stocked with cat and dog food at the Healthy Pet Center in Latham. “We have not run into any major problems; we do find that there are certain individual items that we are having a hard time getting our hands-on,” said Kathleen Dodson, Operations Supervisor at Healthy Pet Center.

Dodson said her independent store is not seeing the shortages as much, while the big box stores are. Many of them are dealing with labor shortages in the warehouses and the trucking industry. She said domestic food products are less likely to be held in the process.

“As far as food items stuck in a crate somewhere, I think we experience a little less of that because the majority of our products are made here in this country,” Dodson said. “Makes it a little easier for the independent pet stores.” 

She said there is one flavor of food in particular for dogs and cats that seems to be more difficult to get your hands on. “Oddly enough, right now, anything turkey-based—a lot of turkey-based foods are a little tricky to come by,” Dodson said.

When it comes to combating food shortages, Dodson suggests that a little bit of variety can go a long way. “Sometimes your pet has a favorite food, and we can often match that flavor or match those dietary needs. We have many options and choices it will do the same thing,” she said.

NEWS10 contacted many pet stores in the Capital Region who said they were not experiencing a major shortage right now, but are prepared in case things change. A Price Chopper spokesperson said there is some unevenness on the “wet” (canned) side of the cat food category, but nothing like they saw last year. Domestic wet/canned products and wet/canned dog food are holding up admirably. Meanwhile, dry cat and dog food have been in stock all along.