Most victims have to leave the pet at home or, in some cases, pay to have them kenneled. The family is then separated from their pet, which causes even more stress than they are already under, and if the pet is left at home there is an increased risk of the pet being physically abused or killed. Often, a victim of violence in dire need of safety will elect not to enter the safe house if not allowed to bring their beloved pet. This is why the kennel facility is now an integrated piece of the safe house.
The kennel facility has four individual kennels which enables the safe house to bring in up to four animals of small to medium size. There is an outside run for animals to exercise, and the safe house residents have the ability to be with and interact with their furry family members at any time. The kennel facility is climate controlled, with ventilation, heating and air conditioning. Clients have the responsibility of caring for their pets: feeding, watering, walking and cleaning the individual kennels. A Memorandum of Understanding was signed between Family Support Services and Animal Protection, for the benefit of the animals in the agency’s care. Family Support Services currently has agreements with several local veterinarians who will help with this program by offering emergency veterinarian services at reduced cost as needed. The safe house receives donations of dog and cat food, as well as other pet needs.
The purpose of the kennel facility located at the Family Support Services Safe House is to provide shelter residents a safe place to house their furry family members, enabling the entire family to heal in a safe and secure environment. Our goal is to have 100% of the clients who need to bring their pet to safety to be able to do so. As of now in Amarillo, there are very few options for victims who need shelter to also safely house their pets.