Domestic Violence and Animal Cruelty
For survivors and advocates we know that if there is violence in the home, the chances are very great that pets are also victims of this violence. Shelters that do not assist in placing animals in safety or consider the safety of pets, find victims refusing to seek shelter. In many cases these animals are all the unconditional love a victim and/or child may know. These animals are a part of their family and victims do not want to leave them behind to face the violence alone.
Why would someone want to hurt an animal?
* Power and Control
* Isolate the victim and children
* Enforce the notion that the abuser is in control
* Create fear
* Use the animal as leverage to get the victim to respond the way the abuser wants
* Threaten to kill the animal to hurt the victim and/or children
* As punishment to the victim, knowing how much the animal means to them.
What can victims do?
* Keep up with your animals vaccines so that the animals can be placed somewhere safe easier.
* Keep important animal documents with your other important papers
* License the pet(s) with the City or County in your name
* Don’t leave your pets with your abuser
* Create a safety plan that includes your pets
* Make plans for temporary shelter for your pet (s) safety in advance; talk to your vet, a trusted friend or family member where the animal cannot be located or animal shelter.
In some States, including Nevada, pets can be included on a Temporary Protection Order.
For more information about violence and animal cruelty:
Internet Safety Alert
Your abuser can monitor the use of your computer and the Internet. Learn how to protect yourself.