Pets, many times, are the silent victims of abuse. There are many instances where a home has cat or dogs in domestic violence situations. They can not fight back, and research has shown that up to 71% of battered women report their pet was harmed or killed by their partners. In October 2007, Governor Jodi Rell, signed into effect a law which permits courts to issue orders of protection for animals owned or kept by victims of family violence, stalking or harassment. The orders may prohibit respondents from injuring or threatening to injure the family pet. Many victims of violence stay in an abusive situation for fear of what will happen to the animal they leave behind. Almost half of battered women in Connecticut delay their escape for that reason.
Now, by protecting pets, the 2007 law eliminates the opportunity for abusers to continue to put cats or dogs in domestic violence situations by not subjecting them to further intimidation and cruelty if a pet becomes a target. Thirty-five US States now allow animal companions to be included in protective orders: California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Louisiana, Maine, Nevada, New York, Tennessee, and Vermont.
We value pets as our family, and just like our children and seniors- they require special attention and consideration. Too many times our defenseless pet are the victims of abuse and violence. We encourage you to use the law as the shield from their tormentors and bring justice to all lives that need it.