No one should ever be forced to choose between their best friend and a safe place to sleep.
This is an incredible collaboration project that has been launched here in Scotland and I am so pleased to see this happen. Well done to the Dogs Trust and Simon Community Scotland for your work!
Dogs Trust have launched a dedicated, 1 year project in Scotland to strengthen this work in 2020/2021. Cat Birt joins them as Pets and Housing Development and Engagement Officer in a 12-month role joint with Simon Community Scotland. They are appealing to homelessness organisations, accommodation services and housing providers to become pet-friendly, removing barriers for dog owners in crisis to access the support they need. They are providing a service that is easy, safe, friendly (and free!) service.
Here at Pawsitivity Team we are firm believers that the human-animal relationship can have a truly positive impact on both human and animal. It’s the basis of everything we do.
When it comes to the societal issue of homelessness this relationship can become an actual lifeline. These animals provide people comfort, protection, warmth and, at the extreme, a reason to keep living.
I have personally been affected by homelessness and I have long been a supporter of this particular relationship as I truly understand the value it creates. I would encourage everyone who works in the sector to consider the research and see if you can become a ‘Welcoming Dogs’ accomodation provider so that people who are homeless don’t have to choose between being safe and their beloved four-legged friends.
To address the potential negative assumptions about homelessness and dogs it is worth mentioning that most dogs living with their owners on the streets are healthier than their housed counter parts. Fitter, no obesity issues, no separation-anixety issues and are often more social and less aggressive to strangers!
Trusty Paws Glasgow
If you do see a dog with a homeless person who may need treatment in Glasgow feel free to pass on the information for ‘Trusty Paws – Glasgow’ who provide monthly clinics for homeless dogs for free. An amazing project that is in Glasgow and Liverpool.
Paws For Thought
Dogs Trust contributed to Simon Community’s ‘Paws for Thought’ guidance (link below), which explored in depth the barriers dog owners face when accessing services, putting a spotlight on the human animal bond and the importance of keeping people and their pets together. Simon Community Scotland have committed to being dog-friendly, and Cat will be working with them to safely welcome and manage dogs in their accommodation services across central Scotland.
Welcoming Dogs Consultation
Through a bespoke ‘Welcoming Dogs Consultation (click here to read)’, they can offer free, practical, help and advice for organisations to implement small changes, that will make the world of difference to dog owners in crisis.
To find out more about this project you can contact them directly using the details below.
T: 07384 834 466