Real Pet Food Company employee shares her story of pet rescue and foster care

When Bernadette Ellisha was a young child in Indonesia, she was always warned about not touching stray cats because they have diseases. Today, the Sydney resident lives and breathes rescue pets as a volunteer foster carer for rescue groups and employee of Real Pet Food Company, proud supporter of local animal loving communities, charities and shelters.

The company’s pet food brand Ivory Coat is a major sponsor of this year’s Pet Insurance Australia Companion Animal Rescue Awards, Australia’s first and only national awards program for hard working rescues, shelters, companion animal welfare organisations, foster carers and passionate pet adopters.

Loki. Photo supplied.

“Before Covid, I used to work in advertising – it was stressful, high-paced and competitive,” said Bernie. “During the pandemic, I realised life must have more meaning than this and decided to move to the pet care industry. I work with Ivory Coat as an e-commerce specialist and it’s rewarding to do what I love every day.”

Bernie enjoys working with a team equally passionate about pet care education, volunteering with animal rescue groups or have welcomed a rescue pet into their home. She volunteers as a foster carer for Inner City Cats and cat colony guardian for Community Cat Carers.

Bernie sometimes brings in her foster felines to work, keeping them safely contained in a meeting room turned into a full-time cat entertainment room. Plus, there are frequent visits from ‘chief dog officers’ who offer free cuddles that boosts productivity.

“At Ivory Coat, we believe that animals bring love to everyday families,” said Bernie.

That’s why Real Pet Food Company encourages volunteering through its Volunteering Day program for employees. As part of the company’s charity partnership program, Real Pet Food supports the Starlight Foundation (granting puppy wishes) and Greyhounds As Pets (GAP).

Supporting pet rescue with volunteering and donations

So far this year, Real Pet Food Company has donated more than $500K worth of Ivory Coat products to charities, communities, shelters and foster agencies, such as Sydney Dogs and Cats Home, Aussie Helpers, Animal Welfare League QLD, Lort Smith Animal Hospital, Forever Friends Animal Rescue and many others.

To help recognise the work of the rescue industry, Real Pet Food Company has also continued its support of the Rescue Awards under the Ivory Coat brand as the sponsor of the Ivory Coat People’s Rescue Story and Ivory Coat Foster Carer Story categories.

Pet Insurance Australia Companion Animal Rescue Awards

The Rescue Awards are open for entries until 31 July 2022. Pet adopters can share their story and enter the Ivory Coat People’s Rescue Story to win a $500 gift of their choice, an Ivory Coat pack worth $250 RRP and more prizes valued at $600. Finalists each get an Ivory Coat pack worth $50 RRP. 

Foster carers won’t miss out; they can share their heart-warming story of fostering a rescue pet and enter the Ivory Coat Foster Carer Story to win a fabulous prize pack valued at $700 including an Ivory Coat pack worth $250 RRP!  Finalists each get an Ivory Coat pack worth $50 RRP.

For more information and to enter visit