Domestic Violence Shelters must be pet-friendly by Ed Boks

A recent Washington Post article Little by little, domestic violence shelters become pet-friendly reports on a widening body of research regarding domestic violence.  Over two decades of research has found that abusive partners often threaten, injure and even kill victims’ pets so as to persuade the victim not to leave.

Frank Ascione

In fact, surveys of women at shelters found that 20 to 50 percent say that fear for a pet’s safety delayed their decision to flee.  “These situations are particularly dire when victims are deeply attached to their pets”, said Frank Ascione, a University of Denver psychologist who has published numerous studies on the topic.

“Particularly in households with no children”, Ascione said, “the pet or companion animal may be the only source of safe, affectionate contact that a woman has in her environment.” Continue reading “Domestic Violence Shelters must be pet-friendly by Ed Boks”