Many women in situations of domestic violence delay leaving because they don’t want to leave their pets behind and they can’t take them with them because so few women’s shelters have the ability to house pets. There is a growing recognition that women stay in violent situations rather than leave their pets with their abusers and that bringing pets with them provides comfort and security. As a result, more women’s shelters are seeking to enable women to bring their pets with them when they flee an abusive situation to start a new life in safety.
Paula Abdul is the spokesperson for American Humane Association’s Pets and Women’s Shelters (PAWS) Program, which helps shelters fund and set up such programs. Abdul has written a letter encouraging domestic violence shelters to start programs that accommodate pets. She will be auctioning off many items from her own wardrobe with a portion of the proceeds going to PAWS.
Check out the auction on eBay. Fans of American Idol will recognize clothes and accessories that Abdul wore on the show.
Karen B. London, PhD, is a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist and Certified Professional Dog Trainer whose clinical work over the last 17 years has focused on the evaluation and treatment of serious behavioral problems in dogs, especially aggression. Karen has been writing the behavior column for The Bark since 2012 and wrote The Bark’s training column and various other articles for eight years before that. She is an adjunct professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at Northern Arizona University, and teaches a tropical field biology course in Costa Rica. Karen writes an animal column, The London Zoo, which appear in The Arizona Daily Sun and is the author of five books on canine training and behavior. She is working on her next book, which she expects to be published in 2017.