There’s a National Pet Food Shortage Going On—Here’s What We Know

Due to supply chain issues, pet food is the latest good to face a shortage.

We all know that if there’s one thing our pets love to do, it’s eat. But, you might have noticed it’s been a lot harder to find your pet’s food in stores lately. What gives?

Amidst recent shortages of eggs and oranges, dog food is the latest good to be feeling the shortage heat. And, not to mention, the latest good to face rising prices.

Here’s everything you need to know about the shortage.

Why is there a pet food shortage?

If pet food aisles seem sparse, it’s likely due to supply chain issues. A familiar issue lately for stores and consumers (especially over the past few years), supply chain issues have affected almost everything you can think of. In this case, these supply chain issues are significantly impacting smaller stores.

One grocery store manager, Dave Clark, explains the pet food shortage. “The amount available doesn’t cover the market like it needs to,” he says. “Raw materials, according to my suppliers, raw materials are diverted first towards human use.”

Additionally, staffing issues, rising prices and slower deliveries across the board are contributing to the pet food shortage. Unfortunately, these supply chain issues have resulted in pet food prices increasing up to 40% from two years ago, according to Clark.

How long will there be a pet food shortage?

Man reads over product in Supermarket aisleVLG/Getty Images

As of now, there’s no clear-cut answer on when the pet food shortage will end. However, there certainly is hope in sight.

According to Clark, pet food brands like Purina are “much more comfortable about availability on the canned side, but he [a Purina representative] even warned that dry (food) is going to take a while to catch up.”

Is there anything I can do about the shortage?

Some pet owners may need to switch to pet food brands that are more available due to the shortage. Luckily, experts offer some helpful tips.

“If you’re going to switch and you have to switch brands, sometimes a lamb and rice will help,” explains Erin Evans Greens, vice president of pet supplies company UPCO. “And we also recommend trying to do it over a week’s time. So you kind of half and half for a little while to get them used to the new food. And we also recommend a probiotic.”

Meanwhile, if you’re looking to cut costs elsewhere due to these rising pet food prices, these are the things that will be cheaper this year.


  • KWCH 12 News: “Pet food shortage impacts community grocery stores in Kansas”
  • News Press Now: “Pet food shortage has some owners on the hunt”

Jessica Kaplan
Jessica Kaplan is an assistant editor who has written lifestyle content for Reader’s Digest, Family Handyman and The Healthy. Her expertise includes travel and restaurant news. These days, she creates timely trend content for Taste of Home. When she’s not writing, Jessica is bound to be planning out her next trip, trying out a new coffee spot or listening to a podcast.