Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Paws for Courage

Copied directly from their website. This is a must read. Feel free to cut and paste it and email it to every one in your address book. Chances are you know someone who is being abused and or was once a victim of domestic violence. It is all too common and all too taboo.

"Almost 50% of those leaving domestic violence situations delay leaving their abusers. They fear for the lives of the pets they will have to leave behind. Beloved pets often become pawns in abusive relationships. A “thing” to be used to instill fear in their victims, to further control them, to punish them or show them what will happen if they tell about the abuse or get out of line.

It's this fear that keeps victims of abuse frozen with terror. They know that the minute they leave, their abuser will take their anger out on their pets by seriously harming or even killing them. By the time victims are ready to leave their abusers, their self esteem has been battered and they have been alienated from most of their family and friends; they don't think they can leave and more often than not, have no place to go. And the longer a victim waits, the greater danger they put themselves in.

When a victim is finally able to leave, more often than not, the domestic violence safe havens they seek refuge at do not allow pets to be brought in or do not have the appropriate facilities to house animals. There are many domestic violence shelters that have cooperative agreements with local animal shelters for temporary holding of animals while victims are residing at the shelter. Unfortunately, due to time constraints and limited space, animals can only be held for very short periods of time...anywhere from a week to 30 days.

Paws For Courage was created with the purpose of diminishing the high number of those who feel they cannot leave because of their pets. 50% is a VERY high number and a rather disturbing statistic. Time is of the essence in domestic violence situations; any delay could prove to be deadly. Paws For Courage is a network of shelters, foster homes, and transporters dedicated to giving domestic violence 'victims' a greater chance of becoming 'survivors'. Please read our Volunteer page and consider joining or supporting our cause. An animal's (and humans') life may very well depend on it. Just a note, some of our pages are currently under construction, so please remember to keep checking back...we're always updating! If you have any questions about anything on this website (or about our organization), please feel free to contact me at any time."

I signed up to help transport and foster. I hope you find it in your heart to help in any capacity that you can.


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