LISBON, Ohio (WKBN) – We’ve seen thousands of people go through food donation lines here in the Valley, but one thing that often gets overlooked is the need for pet food.

Pet food for dogs and cats was one of the items we saw people panic buying in March. During that time period, dog food sales spiked almost 54 percent, which made finding it difficult.

Pet food is considered an essential item here in Ohio and in Pennsylvania, and it can get expensive. Buying dog food when you’re unemployed or furloughed can be tough as the average bag costs about $20 to $30.

BrightPet Nutrition Group is a developer and producer of premium dog and cat foods based out of Lisbon. When they heard some people may be struggling to feed their animals, they made a commitment to some local non-profits in the Valley.

The company is donating over 50,000 pounds of food across the county to help feed dogs and cats.

“We donate year-round. It’s not just a thing during times of crisis but in times like this we tend to step up and give more because the need is real,” said Matt Golladay, president of BrightPet Nutrition.

The company isn’t just donating locally, their generosity spans the country, reaching non-profits in New York, Texas, Louisiana and California.

Locally, Every Dog Matters and Animal Charity in Boardman is getting the free pet food.

Every Dog Matters has been holding weekly drives to make sure they don’t fall short.

“We will continue to donate. Locally, we tend to commit a huge amount for donation all the time, so we keep those small donations flowing locally as needed. We get those requests all the time and try to help as much as we can,” Golladay said.

BrightPet Nutrition has helped many shelters and non-profits across the Valley, even when there isn’t a crisis.