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Helping Paws Sanctuary
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Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ

IF MY PARTNER HARMS AN ANIMAL, WILL HE/SHE HURT ME?
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   It is a possibility.  It is a clear sign that a person can be violent if he/she kicks, punches, throws or injures an animal in anyway.  If your partner has hurt or seriously threatened your pet, you may be in danger and should think about leaving.

HOW CAN I PROTECT MY PET?
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   It is very important to have an emergency plan for sheltering your pet, yourself and your children when there is violence in the home.

WILL MY PET BE IN DANGER IN A SHELTERING PROGRAM?
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    It is possible that a violent partner will come looking for your pet.  It is important that you do not tell anyone where your pet is located.  Just like where you will be protected is a secret, the place where your pet is located is also a secret.  You may be discouraged from visiting your pet in his/her temporary home to make sure you, your pet, and his/her temporary caretakers are safe.

DOES MY PET NEED TO BE CURRENT ON ALL       
                              VACCINATIONS?
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    Yes.  Almost all veterinary clinics, kennels, groomers, and caretakers require animals to be vaccinated.  Helping Paws is no exception.  If you do not have a copy of your pet's vaccination record, the Sanctuary will assist you in getting a copy or in getting your pet vaccinated.
   Keep vaccination and other veterinary records together in a safe place so you can take them with you,  if you need to leave home  quickly.  If you do have these records but know your pet has been vaccinated, get a copy of these records from your veterinarian.  If your pet is not current, make an appointment with your veterinarian.  Make sure the records are in YOUR name.

WHEN I MOVE MY PET TO SAFETY WHAT SHOULD I TAKE?
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   If you are able to prepare for your pet's departure, try to have the following pet items in a safe place and out of your partner's reach:
 
 

  • Vaccination and medical records
  • A collar and identification tags*
  • A license that proves you own your animal
  • Dog leashes
  • Cat carriers*
  • Medication, if any
  • An information sheet on feeding schedules, medical conditions, pet's likes and dislikes, and any possible behavior problems to give to a temporary caretaker
  • Bowls, bedding, toys, grooming supplies, a blanket, etc.

*NOTE
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   Do NOT use tags that identify the household you are leaving.  If you don't have a cat carrier, a pillow-case can work in an emergency.  Unconfined cats are easily frightened and can escape so, carriers are safer.

WHO WILL TAKE CARE OF MY PET IF I LEAVE?
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   Contact Helping Paws Sanctuary at 505-439-0925 and C.O.P.E. at 505-437-2673.  Helping Paws will provide a safe temporary sanctuary for your pet; giving you time to make long-term plans.
 

HOW CAN I PROVE THAT I OWN MY PET?
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   In order to intimidate you, your partner may try to get control of your pet.  An animal license, proof of vaccinations, or receipts from your veterinarian in YOUR name will help prove your ownership.

WHAT IF I HAVE TO LEAVE MY PET BEHIND?
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   Most communities recognize pets as property.  Be sure you ask a law enforcement agent to go with you when you return home to reclaim your pet.
 
 

WOULD MY PET BE BETTER OFF IF I PUT HIM UP FOR ADOPTION?
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   Only you can make this decision.  Giving up a beloved pet is sad,  but it may be best for both of you.  For one thing, moving is expensive.   Many housing situations do not permit pets, or if they do, they may charge extra.   Knowing that your pet is safe in a new home can make your decision to leave a violent situation easier -- emotionally and financially.
 
   While animal shelters cannot guarantee to find a permanent place for every animal.  Helping Paws Sanctuary will find a temporary home and will assist you in finding a home should you decide to give the pet up permanently.   Helping Paws Sanctuary has developed a network of volunteer temporary caregivers to provide a safe home for up to three months; giving you time to decide what to do with a pet.                               
 
    To ease the pain of separation, you may want to take pictures of your pet for you and your children to keep.   It is easier to match a good  SAFE HOUSE  for your pet if you provide a detailed description of your pets medical history, behavior, likes and dislikes; if he is house-trained, obedience trained, good with children and other animals.
 
 
 

I'll update this page frequently so check back often!

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  This site was developed by Helping Paws Sanctuary to increase the public's awareness of the connection between animal cruelty and human violence and to increase awareness that there is a way to protect pets from becoming victims of domestic violence.

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