Pets in Shelters

Happy Friday to all our friends, the week is over and the weekend is beginning phew.


As most of you know I am doing at the moment a workshop to become a Domestic Violence Advocate and as this month is Domestic Violence Awareness month I want to discuss having a pet in a shelter.


This is a subject that I have seen discussed on many groups on Facebook, and how important it is for a survivor to have her pet with her in the shelter so am going to share my story here.


I was fortunate to be able to take Baby into the shelter with me towards the end of my stay, before I moved over to another shelter and then transitional housing.


It was fantastic having her with me again and I was really blessed but people also need to understand Shelter policies also so I do understand why shelters say no. They are not being selfish but in a way practical and this is why :


01.There are children in shelters who are going through trauma and might be afraid of pets 

02. Allergies from pets

03.  The shelter staff are overloaded already so if you are running around sorting out your life you are adding another burden to the staff as your pet is in your room.

04. Shelters have curfews so if your pet needs to go potty at night you cannot take him/her out.

05. Not all shelters can you give you a single room so you might be sharing with someone who does not like pets.


When I was in the shelter with Baby I took her out just before the curfew started, I had my own room which made it easier but her food and water was in my room, she was not allowed in the public areas because of the reasons I listed above, when we did go out she was on leash and was on leash when we got back till we got to my room.


This is food for thought and that is why in so many ways I feel there should be some kind of program for the pets to ease it for everyone and I do know that some shelters are slowly opening their doors to pets.


Would love to hear your input on this.


Last Friday Layla and I with friends went for a picnic in Golden Gate Park. It was a beautiful evening, relaxing, good food and lots of laughs. It was just what we needed and a beautiful start to a weekend.

What I did for Layla’s food was instead of taking her home made food I took with me Freeze Dried Kibbles which she thinks are treats from Raw Paws Pet Food – she loves them. The flavor I had was Beef and then I had with me as a treat their Freeze Dried Minnows which she cannot get enough of.

You can see their awesome products on their website plus you have a coupon for shopping : Layla15 – Happy Shopping

https://www.rawpawspetfood.com/


This weekend our plans are to go to the Shih Tzu Meetup which I am really looking forward to as it is a different park and I love that park as it is so big you can do social distancing.


Have a wonderful weekend everyone, be safe

With a woof and love from Layla

Living with an abuser

TGIF !!!!!!!!!!!!
Friday is here and we are having a heat wave and it’s hot that I am melting so Mom has all the fans going, a cooling mat and lots of cold water. We have not been out much because of the heat.


I am aware that many of you have read about Baby but I wanted to share with you what it is like to live in a Domestic Violence Relationship with a dog (pet) who is your furkid.

We adopted Baby from a shelter, she was the best thing that happened to me when I was in the relationship as I finally had someone who loved me unconditionally and gave me someone to look after plus so much more.

wearing one of the sweaters I knitted

My abuser did nothing for her but buy her some clothes, and I was fortunate to get money to buy her food although when possible I would share my chicken with her. She was a cute little dog, very good and walked off leash all the time. 


The major plus with having her was my ex never walked her so I was able to get out of the house and walk her alone which was a time for me to breathe and try to relax as much as possible without the verbal abuse. She loved those walks as much as I did as there was no tension in the air. 


My ex would hit her with a newspaper whenever possible for no reason, she would be locked out of the house in the heat for no reason (I many times was locked out with her), and I was threatened all the time that if she got sick there would be no vets and she would be put down only.


I was always relieved when my ex was at work as I would do everything to spoil her and keep her as happy as possible, fearing the time when my ex would return home.

When I decided to run, and like many, I could not leave her behind, and that is why I took my time leaving as I wanted to know that she would be safe with me wherever we went. I had even packed a tent just in case and I would have slept on the streets if I had to although we were fortunate. The rest is history and I have shared with you in many other blogs.

Layla for me is a blessing, when I rescued her I vowed our house would be happy, stress free and I feel sometimes out of guilt because what I went through with Baby I spoil Layla as much as possible and have in so many ways become her slave LOL but I have no regrets either.


Last weekend we finally managed to have a little adventure and went to Golden Gate Park with a friend, the weather was cool, I had my coffee and we just relaxed outdoors in the shade which was heaven. Layla of course wandered around a bit and then she did her park thing, lie down and watch the world go by. It was the best gift I could have had just being outdoors breathing fresh air.

What Layla does not know is that we are going for an evening picnic today to the park again and I am so looking forward to it. 


So once again I am telling everyone if you know someone in an abusive relationship, reach out, tell them you are there for them if they need it,  and even if they do not immediately take up your offer, them knowing you are there is very comforting for them.


Here is the link for the National Domestic Violence Hotline :
https://www.thehotline.org/

Be safe, take care and have a wonderful weekend Layla 

Running from a Domestic Violence Relationship

TGIF !!!


As you know October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and I am sharing my story today again as it is 10 years since Baby passed away and feel, she being my hero should be remembered.


It is easy to tell victims to run but it is a complicated process and can be very difficult especially if your abuser controls the finances so something I always tell victims is hide somewhere in the house or outdoors if safe, a small bag with your documents and whatever cash you can save. Put in that bag whatever your abuser will not not notice is missing as to not cause anymore friction in the house. 

If you can and a friend or family are aware of the situation talk to them about helping you get away if you do not have a car and try to carefully plan whatever you can ahead which will help making the hard decision a little bit easier.


Please note that there is a shortage of rooms in shelters so try have a back up plan so that you do not land up on the streets and try find someone to take your pets that they will be safe. An abuser will not hesitate to harm your pets if you run and they are our furkids so we need to make sure they are safe.


Baby was my hero, she had kept me alive during the relationship, because of her I was able to go for walks and so much more. She kept me alive and thank goodness I had her in my life. 

When I ran I was fortunate to have a friend who picked me up from the house with my dog and hid me at her place till I could get out of the city. I did not have money as my ex controlled the finances so whatever I had was very limited but I sold jewellery to help me buy a ticket to get out of the city where I was living.


Upon arriving in San Francisco I found that shelters did not allow dogs so a wonderful Domestic Violence Organization stepped in to foster her while I was sorting myself out. Since I ran things are changing and slowly pets are being included and the DV organizations are talking more about pets and assisting those that have them.  


She joined me in the shelter about 2 months after I got there, stayed with me in  transitional housing and then we finally moved to our own home, a place to live happily with no drama, a peaceful happy home. 
About 3 months after we got into our own home, she suddenly contracted IMHA and within 48 hours passed away, 5 October 2010. It was one of the hardest days in my life as my angel had gone and I was left alone trying to sort my life out. 


My home was empty, lonely and I felt that it was not fair that when I finally could give her everything she left me but as a friend of mine said to me : She came into your life when you both needed each other (she was a rescue) and left you when you were safe so that you could open your home to a new furkid.


Three months later it happened and I rescued Layla and the rest is history.
So what I have decided to do is to give back and at the moment I am doing a workshop to become a Domestic Violence Advocate so that I can hopefully help others, pets included and be their voice.


If you know anyone that is in an abusive relationship, reach out, offer help and then let them decide what they want to do, BUT if they know that you are there for them and their pets it will hopefully make the decision a lot easier.


Take care everyone, be safe and remember you are not alone,
With a woof and love from Layla

The Domestic Violence Hotline : https://www.thehotline.org/

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October has arrived, an important month in my calendar as it is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, a month when Layla wears her purple harness to make a statement.


I am a proud Domestic Violence Survivor and this month we speak out about abuse, violence against women and children and by doing so we pray that if one victim reads our blog and it helps her we have done a Mitzvah. (Mitzvah is Hebrew for a good deed).

Domestic Violence has been going on for years, through the centuries, but it is only in the last 40 years or so that organizations started forming to help victims, give them a safe place, assistance with starting their life over and so much more.These women that work in the different organizations I call heroes as they do such amazing work they deserve a big shout out.


When we speak about it, we must not forget that many pets are stuck in the middle of Domestic Violence relationships and they do not have a voice so we need to be theirs. 


Many women stay in the relationships for their pets safety and I was one of them, I would not leave my pet behind as it would mean me abandoning my pet who was like a child to me. She had kept me going through it all so how could I leave her !


Unfortunately having a pet does make it harder as there are very few programs/shelters that accept pets and that is something that needs to be changed. As I always say if mothers would not leave their kids why should furmoms leave their furkids behind. 


If you know anyone in a relationship, reach out to them so that they know there is someone there for them, give them the below link :

Domestic Violence Hotline : https://www.thehotline.org/

You cannot force a person to leave the relationship but letting them know they are not alone, is sowing the seed in their brain that it is possible.


Please take care everyone, be safe and most of all remember it might be scary but in the long run life becomes easier, happier and you are free,

With a woof and love Layla 

April has arrived

TGIF !!!!!!!!!!!!! 


April has arrived and with it has come lock downs, Spring, and of course Easter and Passover. So where do we start.


Our lock down is going good, we are indoors more than normal, trying to find things to keep Layla occupied as unfortunately all my dog sitting jobs have been cancelled. So she has a new quirk to sit on the bed and moan for attention all the time which is not making my life easy as I ignore it part of the time and then feel guilty also. 

Our dog parks closed this week, they are focusing more on the enclosed ones than the one like ours that has no fencing although ours has a kids playground etc which they have closed but are not making a big deal about us sitting on the lawns as long as there is 6 ft between us. Many families are there enjoying the warm weather which we have at the moment and I the past two days have been going also with a blanket and coffee, getting that fresh air is so great plus good for Layla also. She does not wander far so I have no worries with her.


Outdoor recreation is still allowed like walking, hiking, biking and running without limitations as long as people follow social requirements.

With the lock downs I am reading more and more how unfortunately Domestic Violence cases are rising, something that upsets me very much because we all complain about the lock downs but are blessed that we are free of violence not like those that are stuck at home with an abuser. My prayers and thoughts go out to all of them. If you hear of anyone in trouble and you can please reach out or give them the National Hotline Number so that they call. Remember they sometimes do not have access to a computer so having the number on hand will help them.

https://www.thehotline.org/help/


Advocates are available 24/7 at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) in more than 200 languages. All calls are free and confidential.  

Another cause we must not forget is April is Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month.


We must not forget that like Domestic Violence with the lock down many animals may be being abused by an abusive human and as they are more in the house the abuse could be worse. Please if you see any animal abuse or hear of any please call your local Animal Control or the Police. 


I feel in these times we must be more aware of our surroundings, neighbors and reach out where possible as you could be saving a life.


Passover is next week, I cannot believe it and that holiday as many of you know symbolizes the freedom from slavery of the Jews from Egypt, and for me it also symbolizes especially with what is happening in the world today, freedom for Domestic Violence Victims and Animals from Cruelty situations.


So on this note we are asking everyone to be aware, keep your eyes open for any abuse if you are out on an essential errand, stay safe and healthy,


With a woof and love from Layla 

PS: For our all our Jewish Followers


Finding calm in the storm

Woof hello friends,


How are you all doing both humans and pets ?


Well we are on lock down and have no dogs at the moment staying with us but we are dealing with it the best we can and staying positive.


This lock down has caused me many triggers, but thank goodness having a wonderful network of people in my life it is easing it for me plus of course the one and only Layla. My rock.


There are two triggers I have had to deal with this week but today being Thursday am back to my normal self whatever normal is and plodding along.


The first is being a Domestic Violence Survivor and having been kept on lock down and isolated, having to walk on egg shells and so much more it really freaked me out till I realized that hey there is no one here but Layla, I can use the phone or computer, and as that slowly started sinking in I started relaxing more. 


The second was when they said stay inside, I suddenly went back in my mind to the days before the Gulf War, I was living in Israel, how we had our gas masks, a safe room with Duct tape on the window, etc so that no chemicals of any kind could enter that room, and I had 3 cats with me also. There too once we started going outside the sirens, closing ourselves in our safe room, carrying our masks with us everywhere suddenly became a routine.


So when I sit here and watch everyone panicking, hoarding and driving themselves nuts because of all the social media I came to the conclusion that I am switching off TV, jazz on only, and off the computer by dinner time wherever possible. I am also doing our daily walks,  and weather permitting taking Layla to one of my favorite tiny parks here in the city, where I sit with my coffee, Layla wanders and if there is one other person it is a lot. It is a great place for me to just relax, balance myself and enjoy the beauty of nature. 

My Heaven


With all the information floating around the internet and so many people saying different things I decided to get my resources together when it comes to our pets and am quoting here, putting a link also so that everyone understands. These are qualified resources as I do not trust everything that everyone says.


The first person I turned to was a very good friend of mine, she is an expert on viruses and discussed with her Layla whom she knows and as you can see in the photo below it says there no pets can get the virus.


The second resource I went to was my vets – I am blessed that I can email them and they were quick to reply with the below link, once again saying that pets cannot get the virus.

https://www.sfspca.org/blog/coronavirus-what-you-need-to-know-to-keep-your-pets-safe/


In an nutshell it says that there is no proof at this moment that pets can get the virus but they do remind us to wash our hands with warm soapy water for 20 seconds after walking your dog, include your pets in a disaster plan – I have a written document what should happen to Layla if something happens to me and it is with friends who have keys to my place. 


So as I end this weeks woof I want everyone to take a moment please and think of all the Domestic Violence victims who are stuck in homes and are suffering and pray that they will survive and get away from it all.


Take care everyone, stay safe and most of all remember you are not alone.
With a big virtual hug and lick from Layla 


The weekend has arrived

TGIF !!!!!!!


It has been a long week and phew thank goodness the weekend has arrived. I just hope there will be no more tremors and I can relax a bit. Yes I did check my earthquake kit again LOL.


Last Saturday we went to Bark in the park K9 Heroes event in our park which of course Madam sat in her backpack and I did the carrying. She was not happy with all the noise especially the jets flying over head so on Sunday we just lay low and relaxed in the house which she was happy with. I had the Jazz going to keep it as calm as possible plus to block out the jets. So I spoiled her with lots of treats.

Talking about treats we got some new goodies to try out. They come from one of our favorite local stores – Jeffrey’s Natural Pet Food Store. What she got was some frozen raw chicken necks and I must say she is going to town on them. Loves them and sits on the bed moaning to get more although I am only giving her one a day.

Madam will not  sit still for anything when she gets one so sorry
 about this pic


Jeffrey’s is a local raw pet food store, they prepare their food daily in San Francisco sourcing local ingredients, quality ingredients: fresh, raw, quality meats, free from hormones and antibiotics, fresh organic vegetables, and their own vitamin mineral mix. They make food for both dogs and cats.

You can read all about them on their website https://www.jeffreyspets.com/

I also had to compensate Layla big time as she got punished LOL with a bath this week, lying in the park with all the leaves falling had made her dusty and itchy, so it was needed and she was happy to come home and chew on another neck.




As you all know October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month we are sharing important info all the time to remind everyone to be safe, both humans and animals.


So that has been our week, Madam as usual being spoiled and me working hard to keep her happy, what a perfect balance.


Have a wonderful weekend all,With a woof and love from Layla

October is a busy month

TGIF !!!!! 


As you know October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month where we pray for all the victims, both humans and animals that they will be able to get away from the abuse safely.


So before I start with what has been happening in the Layla Neighborhood I want to remind everyone what to do if your pet is threatened. It is so important to remember this as this way you will know you have proof that your abuser abused your pets too which will make it easier for you to get them away.

October is a month where I think and miss Baby a lot as she was part of that dark chapter of my life but another reason I miss her is because October is filled with so many Halloween events which I was never able to do with her so I try to do as many as possible with Layla, and I often question myself am I doing it for her or out of guilt not being able to do it all with Baby.


Last weekend we went to a great Halloween Event held by one of the Paw Barkeries in San Francisco. It was so much fun with so many dogs and costumes I could not keep up with them all. Of course there were loads of treats so Layla had a party munching away all the time LOL.

I am putting up some of the photos here of some of the costumes.

There were also different vendors and an introduction to insects from a non profit that is trying to save all insects.

As I always do I used a backpack for Layla to keep her safe with everyone pushing and walking around. This is a new backpack that I received from the company called Mr. Peanut’s Pet Products. It was so comfy to carry Layla in, she was so happy and one thing I really loved about it was that when I sat down to have coffee I could lie it on its side and she could lie down and have a nap. 

The backpack is PETA certified, made of vegan leatherette and faux fleece bedding pads. It is a great backpack, light weight, weighing only 2.4 lbs, waterproof which is great for when it rains, has really great ventilation with breathable mesh on 3 sides, removable fleece travel bed and compartments for treats, poop bags or medications. It comes with a 2 in 1 feeder travel set, 12 oz duel sided collapsible bowl and an amazing 20 oz Water Bottle. It is also airline approved which for those that fly with their pets it is just perfect.


They also have a program that pays forward so when you shop from them you are supporting a shelter also, and businesses that do that for me are a winner.

For more information about their products which are socially aware, ecologically produced and safe for your pets you can visit their website : https://www.mrpeanutspremiumproducts.com/

And before I forget to all our cat friends their products are for cats too.


While I am typing all this there are jets flying over head practicing for Fleet Weekend, I personally think a waste of money which could be used for so many non profit organizations that are struggling. It also reminds me of the October 1973 war when I was sitting in school with jets flying over head protecting Israel. 


So as you can see October is full of memories for me, but am at this same time trying to make great new fun memories which will not wipe out the bad but helps make the month look good instead.


Have a wonderful weekend everyone,With a love and woof from Layla


Domestic Violence Awareness Month

Happy Friday Everyone,


October has begun and this month is a very important month for me as we will be talking about Domestic Violence and how it affects both Humans and Pets. This is also the reason I am such a strong advocate against abuse for both Humans and Animals.

To start off the month I decided to once again share my story, as I am a survivor, a proud survivor that got away and now has a voice to speak up.

I met Baby, a tan Chiweenie, while I was visiting the SPCA in Southern California. She had just been surrendered by her family. It was love at first sight. Her loving eyes and beautiful face just made me want to hold her and keep her. They kept her for 48 hours to spay her and check her out, and then I fetched her.

Baby changed my life from the moment she came to live with my now ex-husband and me.At home, I was a victim of domestic violence on a daily basis. With Baby around, I finally had an excuse to get out of the house, by telling my ex I was taking her for a walk.I went for long walks with her, which helped me get away from the stress I was submerged in day after day.My life was hard. My ex controlled the money, the computer, the phone, everything. He didn’t give me access to bank accounts, I was not allowed to answer the telephone, I could not check e-mails, not even the mail box.I was isolated from the outside world, including my friends and family. When I was allowed to talk to them, he sat right next to me, so I could not say much. He timed me when I went to the supermarket or went shopping. If I was a bit longer than expected, I got yelled at. His constant emotional abuse was to me harder than any physical abuse, since body wounds heal quicker than emotions. I was walking on eggshells all the time.

No matter what I did, to him it always looked wrong. Baby kept me going with her loving personality, her wanting cuddles, her unconditional love. And the moment we had a chance, I packed up with her and ran. We found shelter with a friend, who hid us until we could get our lives organized.We were penniless, but I knew in my heart that all would fall slowly into place once we were safe and by ourselves.

Upon arrival in San Francisco, Baby was fostered by some wonderful women from the Domestic Violence Organization Shalom Bayit (Their link is on my links page) and when possible she became the first dog accepted into a domestic violence shelter. (In another post I will discuss the pros and cons of having a pet in a Shelter)
I finally found our own little place we called home and were living a peaceful happy life with lots of laughter, fun and so much more.

10/5/10 Baby, my little trooper, my angel, my everything, grew her wings and crossed the Rainbow Bridge. She had contracted IMHA and within 48 hours passed. It was one of the hardest days of my life, one I will never forget as she had kept me going during my darkest hours.

My friend said something to me which sticks in my mind “Baby came into your life at a time you both needed each other, and left when she knew you were safe so that you could rescue another”


In January 2011 Layla arrived, and the rest is history.


If you are in a Domestic Violence Situation you can go to the National Domestic Violence Hotline :
Tel : 1-800-799-SAFE (7233) or their website :

https://www.thehotline.org/

If you are in the situation we were in, know that where there is a will there is a way. Against all odds, Baby and I did it. You can do it, too and today compared to when I did it there is so much more assistance out there for you.


So we are asking everyone this month to share our story as it is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and by sharing maybe we can help others.


Please be safe, Baby and Layla’s Mom




And the New Year has arrived

Good Morning Friends,

How are you and we hope you have all recovered from the holidays and over eating LOL, we have managed to relax in the middle also.

January is a special month for me as it is the month that I ran from Domestic Violence and found my freedom and it is the month that I rescued Layla also, we call it the month we found our freedom.

It has been a long journey, there have been ups and downs like when I lost Baby but whatever the negatives have been I am so happy I did it, saved Baby RIP from the abuse and although life is not perfect today I would rather have this life than what I had.

Rescuing Layla is a bonus, she has given me so much laughter, love and friendship which is things money cannot buy and I am so blessed to wake up to Ms Piss and Vinegar every morning.

Today and the next couple of days are for Layla Christmas Tree heaven as everyone puts their trees out to be picked up so she when going for walks pees on all of them. I often wonder what is going through her mind when doing it as when we visit friends over Christmas we watch the dogs to make sure they do not pee and then overnight they have the freedom to do it whenever they want. They must really think we are nuts.

Many are asking what resolutions we have made for New Year and going to be honest have made none, am going to take each day as it comes, cross every bridge as I get to it and make the best of the year as possible. Of course though the most important is keeping Layla healthy and happy.

So as Layla starts her morning nap we both want to wish everyone again a Happy Healthy 2019.

Woof with love from Layla