October 20th, 2022
When Katie* gathered the courage to leave her abusive partner with her three kids, the family was devastated to learn that they couldn’t bring their dog, Beans,* to the domestic violence shelter with them.
“It was the most heartbreaking thing,” she recalls. “I considered giving him to a family who could love him, but my kids begged me to keep him.”
Beans wasn’t safe with her ex, who would kick the dog when he was angry. Beans had lost much of his hair due to stress, and had run away more than once while in the care of this abusive man and his mother. So Katie promised her kids she would find a way to keep their beloved pup.
Thanks to a RedRover Safe Housing grant – and with the help of a wonderfully supportive shelter advocate named Shoshanna – Katie was able to keep her promise. Katie, her kids, and Beans were all able to find safety and heal. In fact, by the time they were ready to begin a new life together as a family, Beans’ hair had fully grown back.
“A pet is emotional support,” Katie says. “Your kids are your life – and so is your pet.”
What would Katie tell other survivors?
“Just hang in there, and I hope one day every shelter is pet-friendly.”
She added, “I’m so thankful for you guys, you have no idea. If it wasn’t for you all, I would have had to break my promise to my kids.”
*Names have been changed to protect privacy.