COLUMBUS, Ohio (WCMH) — Local animal shelters say the need for food and other supplies is at a dire state as inflation takes a toll on central Ohioans wallets.

“We’d much rather people come here and get the food and supplies that they need versus turning their dog in or getting rid of their family,” says Kaye Persinger, the Director of the Franklin County Dog Shelter & Adoption Center.

Just days ago, the shelter posted a picture of their almost-entirely bare pet food pantry on Facebook.

The shelves have since been re-stocked, but Persinger says it’s only a matter of time before they’ll need to call on the community again.

“It’s probably half-empty now, so by the end of the week, it’s going to be empty,” Persinger describes. “The city of Columbus has been very gracious. When we do put a plea out, they come to the rescue.”

Persinger says that a shortage of veterinary services has been attributed to the growing need.

And with nearly 250 dogs currently at the shelter, and almost another 50 in foster care, already high intake numbers are climbing.

But Persinger says it’s rising prices that are taking a toll on pet owners.

“I think initially we attribute just to inflation,” Persinger reflects. “The cost of living has gone up quite a bit, just in 12 months.”

Outside the shelter is a shed donated by girl scouts, where community members can leave donations of food, blankets, toys, and other supplies.

A pantry that for Persinger and her staff is by the community, for the community

“Anyone that comes in that needs food, you do not have to show anything about income, we’ll give you the food,” Persinger adds. “Everything is extremely helpful, and all of that goes 100% back to the community.”

For those interested, donations to the Franklin County Dog Shelter & Adoption Center can be made in-person at: 4340 Tamarack Blvd. Columbus, OH 43229.

You can also have donations shipped to the shelter directly from Amazon by ordering from their Amazon wish list here.