SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — Domestic violence survivors are among those who would benefit from a big move in the works at Renegade Paws, the Savannah-based animal rescue is purchasing a new building — where they hope to offer even more services throughout the community, and you can help.
“There’s a large amount of women who won’t leave an unsafe environment, because they have an animal, or they don’t know where to go because they have an animal,” said Jennifer Miller a volunteer with Renegade Paws Rescue.
With more than 300 dogs currently in foster care and more coming in every day Renegade Paws Rescue has long outgrown its office space on waters avenue.
“Renegade is a rapidly growing animal rescue in America, and we are busting out of our space year,” Miller said.
At only 500 square feet inside, volunteers often have to provide services, including intake of animals, outside.
“Last night, we hosted a free heartworm treatment event for the community, for heartworm-positive dogs, and we had people in their vehicles outside, dogs on the cement,” Miller said.
But at least some relief is in sight. The nonprofit is close to closing on a new five thousand-square-foot facility, that will allow them to expand their services to people who want to keep their animals.
“We’d like to have a food pantry. We’d like to provide low-cost, possibly free treatment, veterinary care for animals,” Miller said.
They also want to help women trying to escape abuse because most domestic violence shelters don’t accept animals.
“We would happily take the animal while they can get the care and the treatment they need,” Miller said.
The folks at Savannah’s Safe Shelter say the need for this kind of service is overwhelming, with 71% of women in domestic violence shelters saying their abuser has threatened, injured or even killed their pet.
“We hear, like, it’s like their child, you know, and they would never leave without them, or know that they were going to be in danger,” said Kathryn Autry, Development Director for Safe Shelter.
But to do all of that, for so many animals and humans, Renegade Paws said they need your help and your money.
“This is the first-ever capital campaign we’ve ever done for the organization, and we are at the point where we need the community’s support so that we can continue giving the community support,” Miller said.
Renegade Paws Rescue needs to raise $100,000 to help with the down payment for the building and setting up new services. To donate to help, click or tap here.