Family Pets and Animal Welfare

Providing community resources and leadership to ensure family pets are not left behind, abused, or forgotten if the parties involved cannot take or continue to care for the animal.

Most of us love our pets. They are treated as part of the family, as they should be. Although it’s difficult to imagine and talk about, some pets are not so lucky. Sadly, pets that live in a house with violence often fall victim to that violence. There are stories that are unfortunately true, of pets being kicked across the room out of rage or a show of dominance. Pets can be used to control another person. They are sometimes even killed in order to show what could happen if the other person does not obey. This can happen when an order of protection is served against the person. It is important to provide not only the service of the order of protection but also resources that can provide a safe haven for pets as well as their owners.

Evictions are another area in which pets are sometimes not so lucky. When people lose their home they do not always have somewhere to go. It is very hard to be homeless or ‘house surf’ with a pet. Instead of self-surrendering their pet, they sometimes just leave them behind. During the housing crisis, when thousands were losing their homes, thousands of pets were left homeless.

How can being a trauma-informed constable make a difference? Being trauma-informed means looking at the whole picture without judgment. My job is not to make people homeless, but to carry out the orders of the court with compassion. As I see it, my job is also to assist people being evicted by providing community resources. I would also ensure that both the person who filed the order of protection and the one being served, have information on community resources. As a society, which includes constables, we all have a duty to protect and assist the vulnerable.

I am proud to have teamed up with Lost Our Home Pet Shelter a no-kill, loving shelter that was founded to take care of the needs of pets while their families are in crisis or have left them behind. Teaming up with Lost Our Home Pet Shelter by bringing to light their existence and need, has been a highlight of my campaign. I get nothing out of this except the angst of wanting to take home a puppy every time I go there to visit. Please take the time to read their story. It is heartwarming.