December 13, 2010
Keeping Pets with Their Families
The story of Sandy and Sweetie
The Pets for Life NYC Program (PFLNYC) is an animal surrender prevention program in New York City dedicated to helping people resolve problems that could otherwise lead them to surrender their pets to the city's animal shelter system. The following is a story of how the program helped two cats and their family.
PFLNYC received an urgent plea one Sunday afternoon from a client; she and her two children had lived in a shelter for domestic violence survivors for five months.
Her two adopted cats, Sandy and Sweetie, were staying at a friend's home. The friend's landlord complained about the cats, and the friend threatened to put the cats in the street if the family didn't come back to get them within 24 hours.
PFLNYC stepped in and quickly provided a foster home for the cats. The pair made themselves at home in the foster parent's bathroom with new beds, new collars, ID tags, and toys.
The family got good news after the cats were safely settled. The shelter the client was living in generously offered to pay for a flight for her and her children. They would fly to the city where they originally lived to get an apartment and start over with the support of nearby family.
There was one catch: the shelter couldn't pay for the cats to fly along with the family. Again, the client and her children faced having to possibly surrender their cats. PFLNYC was able to fund the cats' on-board flight across the country with their family.
The client she said it was the first time in months she was able to relax, knowing the cats were going to be well cared for until their trip. They were all going to be going home together as a family.