‘Don’t stock up’: Advice as supply chain disruptions affect pet food

The global issues with getting goods and products in and out of shipping yards are now affecting the supply chain for pet food, surprising many pet owners.

Between the shipping difficulties, short-staffed manufacturing plants and the few canneries in the country canning pet food, customers are starting to find empty shelves where their preferred brand used to be.

“We’re to a point now where I, I kind of just shrug when people ask, ‘Why haven’t you been able to get this in so long?’ I say, ‘It’s like everything,'” said Kristina Pierce, who manages the Pet Barn in Annapolis, Maryland.

Her store specializes in natural foods and while dry foods are not as affected, Pierce said the cost of most products is going up due to disruptions in the supply chain. She pointed specifically to difficulties getting certain types of canned food.

“These companies are having to kind of focus on their top-selling … items and manufacturing those and getting those out. And so everything else that maybe didn’t perform as well is now secondary and isn’t even being made,” she said.

However, rather than stocking up on a brand, customers should talk to their veterinarian to diversify what they feed their pet.

“You never want to be married to one food brand. One thing you always want is to have options. If, God forbid, you know, there is an out of stock on your specific item for any number of reasons, you always want to be able to have something else in your back pocket that you can use,” Pierce said.

Megan Cloherty

WTOP Investigative Reporter Megan Cloherty primarily covers breaking news, crime and courts.

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