petsThe Women’s Centre Grey Bruce received a $7,500 grant from PetSmart Charities of Canada, to help keep pets and owners together, in cases of gender-based violence in the Grey Bruce community.

As the face of family changes over the years, what remains constant is the role pets play in our lives. Many people consider pets family members and it can be challenging to find resources when fleeing domestic violence in search of a safe-haven. Pet parents in these and other at-risk situations often determine they have no options beyond surrendering their beloved pet to a local shelter.

This $7,500 grant will allow The Women’s Centre to help preserve the bond between women and their pets by creating a “Pet Welcoming Area” where pets will be housed when their owners first arrive at the shelter. This quiet and secure room will allow a pet to acclimatize to the shelter while its owner completes the intake process. From there, women and their pets will be reunited and housed together in our pet-friendly shelter bedroom. Grant funds will also be used to provide ongoing services for women and their pets during their stay, provide staff training on animal care and behaviour, and to provide a secure dog relief area in the shelter backyard.

“Nearly sixty per cent of abused women who have animals, delay leaving out of concern for their animals. We are delighted that PetSmart Charities of Canada has continued their support of our programs that help women and children flee abuse and violence”, said Heather Sheldrick, Executive Director at The Women’s Centre Grey Bruce.

“We know finding pet-friendly facilities while searching for safety can add an extra layer of complexity,” said Dani LaGiglia, regional relationship manager at PetSmart Charities. “That’s one of the many reasons we are proud to support the work of The Women’s Centre Grey Bruce, which continues to provide creative solutions to keep women and their pets together as they transition to a safe environment.”

Since 1999, through its partnership with more than 220 humane societies, SPCAs and pet rescues across Canada, PetSmart Charities of Canada has helped nearly 330,000 pets to find loving homes via its in-store adoption program in over 140 PetSmart® stores. The leading funder of animal welfare has also donated more than $21.7 million to improve access to veterinary care, to positively impact communities, to connect people and pets and to help preserve families through initiatives like this with The Women’s Centre Grey Bruce.

source: media release, The Women’s Centre Grey Bruce


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