Women In Distress, through a unique partnership with the Humane Society of Broward County, is the only South Florida domestic abuse certified facility with an approved pet shelter. This unique partnership allows us to ensure survivors’ pets (dogs and cats) receive proper nutrition, physical exams and vaccines as survivors and their families stay in our emergency shelter. The pet shelter is critical to eliminating barriers to survivors seeking safety as many are hesitant to leave their pets behind.
This was true for survivor Maria* and her two children who came to our shelter after escaping their abuser. Although they were finally safe, the children were in tears because they missed their one-year-old Pomeranian, Coco. This was especially difficult for Maria’s daughter, who has special needs. Maria shared with us that her abuser made threats to kill them and Coco.
Coco was able to join the family and stay at our onsite pet shelter where she was examined and vaccinated by the Humane Society. The family was eventually able to transition out of the shelter to a home, along with Coco. Maria was thankful not only for the help that she and her children received but also for keeping Coco safe so she can continue to be a source of love and support for the family.