Question Mark Icon
  • Home
  • Cost-of-living campaign
  • Cost-of-living campaign

    We need your support to continue our vital work.

    Times are hard for people across the world, and in the UK they’re about to get even harder. On 1 October the energy price cap rise came into force, intensifying the effects of the cost-of-living crisis for many.

    We all want to make the world a better place for Cats and Dogs. But the sad truth is that when people suffer, animals do too. Mayhew is already seeing an increase in abandoned and surrendered pets as people struggle to pay the bills, and a huge reduction in the number of potential adopters coming forward to rehome those cats and dogs who need a second chance.

    Our community desperately needs our help, but we too are facing higher costs for essential equipment, food, utilities and supplies. Without your support, we cannot hope to help our community’s cats, dogs and their struggling owners get through these tough times.

    Offering Vital Support

    In the London boroughs we operate in, use of food banks has been rising steeply, with many pet owners forced to choose between providing for themselves and feeding their animals. Our work with five local food banks to provide pet food and other essentials, alongside individual care package deliveries for vulnerable residents, helps prevent the pain of separation for owners and pets while reducing the strain on local rescue services.

    Find out more

    “Our individual care packages are a lifeline to so many pet owners. If we can continue to secure valuable support from donors, we can continue to help owners most in need.”

    Lisa Guiney

    Head of Operations

    Colin, Max and Molly’s story

    Father of four Colin was at breaking point when he turned to Mayhew for help. The 45-year-old was sleeping in his van following the breakdown of his marriage and was struggling to afford to feed himself, let alone his cats, all while living with osteoarthritis and depression.

    “All of a sudden everything shot up. Cat food went from £3.60 to £4.10 - we're not talking pennies. I shop with a budget and have to recalculate what I should put back on the shelf… People might think if you get rid of the cats, then you'd have a bit more money in your pocket. But that's just not an option." Colin Ortutai-Hughes

    Colin had already given up three kittens and was desperate to keep their parents, Max and Molly. Our care packages made that possible. We provided Colin with cat food, blankets and other essential supplies, and thankfully he is now settled in a new flat, although the cost-of-living crisis is still a huge concern.

    Can you help us support struggling pet owners?

    Your generosity will allow us to provide much-needed supplies for vulnerable people and animals in our community, even as demand continues to rise.

    Donate now

    Make a difference to an animal in need!

    Rescuing and rehoming

    Surrendering a beloved animal should be a last resort; yet we’re seeing too many people having to do just that as costs skyrocket. Rather than risk owners trying to rehome their pet themselves, or – worse – abandoning them out of shame, we’re doing everything we can to provide a safe place for any animal that needs one.

    Need help to rehome your pet?

    “People have told us that they quite simply can’t afford to care for their pet anymore. I can’t actually recollect anybody saying that even during COVID.”

    Georgina Costi

    Cat Welfare Coordinator

    Poppy, Buttercup, and Dandelion's story

    Poppy and her kittens Buttercup and Dandelion were living in a crowded, multi-cat household when our Animal Welfare Officers met them. Their owner had signed up to receive Mayhew’s care packages but it was clear she wasn’t coping, so with our encouragement she relinquished some of her cats to Mayhew. The decision came just in time for tiny Buttercup, who was close to starvation. With mum Poppy now receiving enough food, we were able to supplement her milk with bottle-feeds for Buttercup, and soon she and Dandelion were thriving. We’ve continued to support the owner with her remaining cats. “Sometimes pet owners are forced to make difficult decisions, and having no other choice than to rehome a pet can be one of the toughest. Taking care of any pet is a significant, long-term commitment.” Lisa Guiney, Head of Operations

    Can you help us provide a safe refuge for animals?

    Your support will enable us to continue caring for abandoned and relinquished animals as they wait longer and longer for new homes.

    Donate now

    Make a difference to an animal in need!

    Providing accessible care

    For those in financial crisis, regular vet visits are often simply not an option. To prevent potential welfare issues, we offer free neutering, microchipping and parasite treatments for those eligible in five London boroughs and, as part of our Collect & Care programme, will even pick up and drop off pets to ensure easy access.

    Find out more

    Belle's Story

    Seven-year-old Belle was found tied up outside low-cost supermarket Iceland on a sweltering day in June this year. The confused and anxious dog had been left unattended for six long hours, despite security’s efforts to identify her owner. Local resident Jaine knew she had to intervene. She untied Belle, gave her water and waited with her until Mayhew’s Animal Welfare Officers arrived. Belle has since been neutered, microchipped and had two non-cancerous cysts removed at our on-site clinic. She takes time to trust, but has so much love to give. Her owner was sadly unable to be found. “I doubt we will ever know why the person who owned Belle left her tied up and alone that day, but we do know that not being able to afford veterinary treatment can be a factor.” Merryn Walker, Head of Kennels, Dog Adoptions and Fostering

    Can you help us deliver preventative veterinary care?

    Your donation will make a tangible difference to an animal’s welfare, keeping them happy, healthy and in the care of their loving owner.

    Donate Now

    Support our work this Animal Welfare Week

    We rely completely on generous support from people like you. Help vulnerable people and pets survive the cost-of-living crisis today.

    Donate Now

    Make a difference to an animal in need!