It’s no secret that Los Angeles County residents love their pets. These animals provide comfort and companionship to their human family. Unfortunately, when a County resident is experiencing homelessness, caring for a pet can be difficult while trying to secure housing.
This is where the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control comes in through a program to assist pets and their human companions experiencing homelessness. In these situations, the Department of Animal Care and Control will provide folks with the option to temporarily house their animals at their local animal care center for up to 30 days while they secure housing.
The program is a part of the County’s Homeless Initiative in partnership with the Los Angeles Housing Services Authority (LAHSA) that seeks to connect clients to housing and other assistance.
Recently, the Downey Animal Care Center team and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) Community Engagement Program assisted Ms. Mutum and her beloved dog, Bella during a challenging time in their lives. When Ms. Mutum had an emergency, Bella was sheltered until she was able to come back and retrieve her. Unfortunately, Ms. Mutum was unable to afford the redemption fees, but Bella’s pet sitter was able to help contribute financially so that Bella and Ms. Mutum could be reunited.
After this, Ms. Mutum was connected with LAHSA for assistance in finding housing and obtaining a new driver’s license, while Bella stayed with a pet sitter. The program was a partnership between the County’s Animal Care and Control and LAHSA. Bella didn’t have to sit in a shelter while Ms. Mutum worried about securing housing and needing to arrange a reunion with Bella in the future. She was able to focus on finding housing, which is the point of the program that looked after Bella.
If you or someone you know is experiencing homelessness and has a pet and would like more information on this kind of assistance, please call one of the telephone numbers below based on your service area.
Animal Care and Control Centers
Downey (562) 940-6898
Carson/Gardena (310) 523-9566
Baldwin Park (626) 962-3577
Lancaster (661) 940-4191
Castaic (661) 257-3191
Agoura (818) 991-0071