A smooth transition for this family’s best friend
- 10 February 2021 11:02AM
When a person experiencing domestic and family violence flees an unsafe home, sometimes the welfare of the pets left behind can be an additional stress for the family.
Not so for the beloved pet of a vulnerable customer and her family in Brisbane.
Karen* and her three children left a domestic violence situation and moved into a refuge, until their social housing property became available.
They couldn’t take their puppy with them, so he was cared for by the RSCPA’s Pets in Crisis program for three months. But there was a short period of time between the pup’s stay at the RSPCA finishing and the beginning of Karen’s new tenancy.
Belinda, RentConnect Officer from the Inala Housing Service Centre says that Karen and her family were already struggling with being separated from the pup.
“Finding out that he may not have a place to stay had the Karen contemplating returning to her previous property to care for the puppy, even though this risked her own safety,” she says.
The Inala Housing Service Centre tried to get an additional two-week extension for the puppy to remain with Pets in Crisis to cover the period in between, but Pets in Crisis were unable to accommodate the extension as he’d had been with them for three months already.
The Inala team helped by coordinating a stay at a local pet motel for the puppy and covering the costs.
“We wanted to ensure the family pet was appropriately accommodated and safe until it could be reunited with the family in their new property,” says Belinda.
“Once we realised the situation we talked to the customer about the preferences in location for pet motel accommodation. We also assisted with organising the release paperwork to be completed to allow the RSPCA to hand him over to the pet motel.
Belinda says Karen was so relieved once the pet motel accommodation had been arranged and paid for by the department.
“She became very emotional. The pup is a beloved family member and our assistance resolved the crisis, and allowed the family the time to be able to relocate to a new home without compromising their safety.”
The assistance given to Karen and her family is part of a coordinated response thanks to Brisbane DV Service, DV Connect and a women’s refuge funded by the Department of Justice and Attorney General.
*Not her real name.