Tuesday, April 18, 2023

Woman with double chin says she would rather starve to feed her cats

NEWS AND COMMENT: This is a BBC story published eight hours ago. The headline is "Cost of living: pet owner would rather starve to feed cats".

Under the headline is a picture (see below) of the woman, Miari Workman, holding her two cats. She has a double chin and she's clearly carrying too much weight. Starving? Not eating enough? Nah!

Ms Workman has made a bold statement which has caught the attention of the news media but she's clearly not carrying through on that statement. She has no need to starve herself because she is finding a way not to and that, by the way, is to go down to a local pet food bank. Free cat food.

I wonder sometimes whether people use pet food banks who should be using them. Do people who operate pet food banks actually check with care the credentials of their customers? Do they check whether they really are out-of-pocket completely to the point where they have to starve themselves as Ms Workman indicates?

I don't think so. In fact, I'm certain that it never happens. She says that she is a single mom with kids and two cats and really struggles with money. This is what is likely to happen because if you've got children you've got to be around for them and therefore you can't go out to work. And therefore, you rely on welfare benefits. And human and pet food banks.

I think though that she has made a statement which is over the top. If she was really skinny and looking pale then I would believe her. But her words are empty.

She also says that the pet food bank "helped tremendously". And "Sometimes I'll feed my daughter and go without and make sure I've got food for the cats."

She goes without food but I think she could go without a little more food because she needs to eat less. That is quite obvious.

Although I can't believe this woman, I can believe, through personal experience that food prices in the UK have rocketed and I believe a lot of the time the rises are unjustified. I believe that the supermarkets are jumping on the bandwagon of inflation and adding an extra price rise in order to increase their profit margins. This is unscrupulous.

Pet food has risen by 12.6% over the past 12 months and human food has risen by 18.2% over the same period.

The one good thing that Ms Workman states is that when you adopt a cat you don't just get rid of them because you're struggling to pay your expenses. You find a way to keep looking after them. Too many people find it too easy to abandon their cat companions as a time convenient to them. 

And sometimes people use events such as the cost-of-living crisis in the UK to get rid of their cat. It's a way of justifying it.

An animal welfare assistant at Blue Cross, who runs the pet food bank, Gemma Greg, 25, said that since January she had noticed that more people were using their charity. And she also said that many families were looking to have their pets rehomed for financial reasons.

I'm back to my original point. The last thing you should do is to get rid of your cat. You can find other ways to save money. You can stop paying subscriptions for mobile phones. You can stop or reduce your outgoings in many areas. You can save enough money by restricting your outgoings to allow you to afford cat food. I just don't see inflation as a good excuse.

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