The Banfield Foundation is committed to raising awareness of the link between domestic violence and animal abuse investing in partnerships with shelters such as Rainbow House through its new Safer Together initiative. The program was designed to help create a world where victims of domestic violence and their pets can find safety together. This multi-faceted initiative includes a grant program, the creation of an all-volunteer Advisory Committee, continuing education for the veterinary profession, and a public awareness campaign.

domestic abuse define, domestic abuse divorce, domestic abuse day, domestic abuse donations, domestic abuse during pregnancy, domestic abuse definition change

Research suggests up to 89 percent of pet-owning domestic violence victims report their abuser has either threatened, injured or killed the family pet1. As many as 48 percent of victims remain in an abusive relationship because they fear for the safety of their pet2. The need to create and grow support for pet-friendly programs feels both critical and urgent to protect the human-animal bond and ultimately, save lives.  That’s why Banfield Foundation is offering support to our companion animals at Rainbow House.  Both in-shelter and outreach clients are eligible to apply for free veterinary care through this collaboration, while funds last.

“Through our work and the work of other outstanding organizations, we hope to create a world where victims never have to choose between their own safety and the safety of their loved ones, including their pets. Victims often remain in a dangerous environment because they do not have access to a pet-friendly shelter or program, and we believe saving the life of a pet can save the life of a human,” said Kim Van Syoc, Executive Director, Banfield Foundation. “Pets play an essential role in families, particularly during crises, and that includes domestic violence. Keeping pets safe and healthy helps ensure they remain a vital part of their family support system, which we believe will lead to better outcomes for both people and pets.”

The foundation’s new Safer Together grant program enables qualifying nonprofit organizations, such as Rainbow House to offer funding as they increase their capacity to help people and pets escaping domestic violence. Funding will largely focus on ensuring pets have access to preventive and emergency veterinary care.  We partner with Town and Country Veterinary Clinic in Marinette, who graciously oversees our companion animal program.  Veterinarians play a crucial role in not only treating these pets, but also recognizing the signs of animal cruelty. Making the connection between animal cruelty and domestic violence makes veterinarians a lifeline for victims of domestic violence, providing earlier intervention that can help save both animal and human lives.  Thank you to Banfield Foundation, and Town and Country Vet for making this program possible.  We’d also like to recognize the generosity of the AKC Fund, and Red Rover, who provided the resources to make our on-site animal shelter possible.  Finally, we are so grateful for the support on Menominee Animal Shelter, who helps us out with food and supplies for our small kennel.  Thanks for making our community safer for everyone.