Domestic Violence Awareness Month Means a Lot at RCHS
33-year old “Linda” is a Domestic Violence Survivor. Once the victim of physical and emotional abuse, Linda worked hard to start a new life and keep her family, including two young children and an 8-year-old cat named Harvey, together. Rancho Coastal Humane Society’s Animal Safehouse Program (ASP) was the safety net for Harvey.
Linda feared she’d have to give up the beloved cat forever while starting her new life. Most domestic violence shelters are not equipped to care for pets of the human victims. Pets left behind often become new victims. Some abusers target pets as a form of mental cruelty. Many victims stay in their homes rather than risk their pets being abused.
Harvey received temporary emergency boarding with the ASP while Linda got the help she needed. Harvey received comfort and care with a RCHS foster family, along with updated vaccinations and veterinary care. After 70 days, Linda and Harvey reunited. Cat food, toys and supplies were provided to give the reunion a strong start. The family is now safe and living together in a new apartment.
Linda tells us, “I don’t know what I would have done without you guys. I would have lost one of my family members. You helped me keep my family together during a time of crisis.”
Domestic Violence Awareness Month means a lot at RCHS. The ASP was launched in 1997 to help people like Linda. Today, our program not only provides emergency pet boarding for domestic violence victims, it also helps seniors requiring emergency hospitalization and military veterans undergoing inpatient treatment at the VA.
If you’re a victim, or you know a victim of domestic violence who cannot escape because of a pet, call (760) 753-6476. Visit our website to learn more or to donate to the Animal Safehouse Program.
There is never a charge for ASP clients. You can’t put a price on saving a life.