Roger and his 14-year-old cat were living under a tarp for several weeks without adequate protection from the heat and rain. Roger lost his job due to changes in the economy and eventually overstayed his welcome with family/friends as he couch-surfed.
He refused to apply for government assistance because he had always been independent and felt those who need it more should be the ones to use government help. Eventually, with the support of OFW staff, his cat was placed in our Crisis Care Program while he worked on finding stability.
For the next couple of weeks Roger called every few days to make sure that Chubs was doing well. He was put in touch with a housing support agency and after several weeks secured stable housing.
Roger and Chubs were reunited and moved into their own apartment together.
This story is not unique.
When in crisis, pet owners are often unable to focus on their own mental and physical wellbeing until they know that their companion animal will be safe. The Crisis Care Program provides reprieve to pet owners dealing with a life-changing event that impedes on their ability to care for their companion animal(s).
The Alberta SPCA’s Crisis Care Program was launched in 2019. This program is designed for individuals that have run out of safe options, it is a last resort program for individuals experiencing crisis and are unable to care for their animals temporarily.
Refuge should be available to everyone.