Did You Know - The Link Between Family Violence and Pets

  • Nearly ½ of the women entering shelters for protection against domestic violence say their pet has been threatened, injured or killed by their partner, according to several surveys.
  • Perhaps even worse for the women involved, others report they have delayed leaving their homes because they feared for their pets’ safety.
  • Why do batterers threaten, abuse and/or kill animals? Among the motivations:
    • to demonstrate and confirm power and control over the family;
    • to force the family to keep violence a secret;
    • to perpetuate the context of terror;
    • to prevent the victim from leaving or coerce her/him to return;
    • to punish the victim for leaving;
    • to degrade the victim through involvement in the abuse.