Shelby Humane Society helping domestic violence survivors and their pets

Keeping pets safe in Shelby County
Published: Feb. 27, 2023 at 6:38 PM CST|Updated: Feb. 27, 2023 at 7:25 PM CST
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SHELBY CO., Ala. (WBRC) - A Shelby County program helps victims of domestic violence in a way you may not have thought of.

Shelby Safe Pet has now helped over 75 domestic violence survivors by caring for their animals while they find the support they need.

Right now throughout Alabama there are only three domestic violence shelters that can accommodate a pet with their owner.

With very few options, many victims leave their pets behind, then return to their abuser due to fear of abuse towards the pet. While others leave with the pet but have no resources to care for it properly.

This is where Shelby Humane Safe Pet program comes in.

They work closely with domestic violence shelters, law enforcement agencies and court advocates.

Typically, the pets stay with Shelby Safe Pet for about 90 days, but the end goal is pet and owner reunions.

Sarah Hakins, Safe Pet program manager said Shelby Safe Pet gets funding through grants from the department of justice and donations.

“We are actively fundraising and trying to make sure we have enough to sustain our program this year. We are always looking for volunteers,” Hakins said. “Like foster volunteers or volunteers that help us that go out into the community and help us educate, those are our biggest needs.”

The service is free for survivors.

Shelby Safe Pet is looking to expand the program outside of domestic violence.

Right now, they are in search of additional funding options.

So far, they have been Contacted by the VA and the University of Montevallo and Alabama to provide services for students who are experiencing mental health crisis.

Victims or volunteers can reach out to this organization by calling (205) 223-9348, or visiting their website.

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