Venezuelan pet shops and stores are in short supply of pet foods, and also medicine, according to Reuters. Shoppers already face long supermarket lines for staples like corn flour and toilet paper as the combination of falling oil prices and a decaying state-led economic model has left the OPEC nation with chronic product shortages.
Local pet food manufacturers have had to slow or halt operations for lack of dollars to import raw materials such as white corn and soy.
Some pet owners are feeding their pets mostly whatever they have in the kitchen, such as rice, various vegetables, and sometimes meat, however meat is also in short supply and very expensive. So many people are going without.
The police force of Miranda state is rationing food for dogs that are trained to protect officers and sniff out guns and drugs, according to police chief Francisco Escalona.
The Venezuelan division of Purina, owned by Swiss food giant Nestle, says it has reduced the variety of pet food products it offers to maximize its scarce raw materials and continue supplying the market.
The company said its local production has returned to full capacity after raw materials shortages forced it to slow output several months back, which at the time left pet store shelves bare.