Andrew East of Hope has recently started the Penobscot Pet Pantry, which will distribute free pet food the first Tuesday of each month.

While watching the evening news, East said, he saw a piece on an operation in Fairfield that gave him the idea to start a pantry in the Midcoast. He visited the Fairfield operation and based his pantry on the one there.

East said he feels that if people had the food to give their pets they wouldn’t have to give up the companionship animals provide. According to the Camden-Rockport Animal Rescue League, pets have been dropped off on that shelter’s doorstep because people don’t have the means to provide for the animals.

East said Wal-Mart will donate its surplus pet food to the pantry. He is working with other major food stores to see if they will also donate surplus. East accepts donations from both private and public sources. There will also be donation buckets set out at local businesses.

The first distribution of pet food will be Tuesday, April 6 from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Camden American Legion Hall at 91 Pearl St.

Applications for the pet food will be available at the Camden-Rockport Animal Rescue League and the Knox County Humane Society. Applications will also be available at the first distribution of food. The application lets the pantry know how many pets the owner has and the size of the animals so the necessary amount of food can be provided. No one will be turned away, according to East.

For more information, call 763-4291.