Animal Companions: Connection and Compassion

Baby GurlIf you’ve had the opportunity to visit My Friend’s Place, chances are you met one of our beloved animals even before having the opportunity to meet our youth. But did you know that My Friend’s Place is one of the few resource centers in Los Angeles where homeless young people’s pets are not only welcomed, but also cared for? Animal companions like Baby Gurl, left, a 6-month-old Blue Nose Pitbull, provide our young people with opportunities to create healthy relationships, receive unconditional love, practice responsibility, emotional regulation and future planning.

Baby Gurl’s young owner, for example, had experienced trauma in the foster care system and was struggling with forming positive relationships in his life. Baby Gurl gave him access to a healthy and loving relationship in which he did not fear abandonment or abuse. My Friend’s Place has been able to offer Baby Gurl access to a veterinary wellness exam, as well as cover the cost of her shots and vaccinations. Our young people’s love for their animals is such a beautiful place of partnership for My Friend’s Place, one where we can support our youth as they gain necessary life skills while also supporting the health and well-being of our four-legged and finned friends.

Thanks to the Happy Hippie Foundation’s continued partnership, My Friend’s Place is able to provide young pet owners with essential resources, as well as assist with critical veterinary care and treatment such as neuter/spay, vaccinations, and injury care. You can help too by providing dog and cat food, leashes, collars, carriers and other pet necessities. For more information, contact Dana Rust, Development Assistant, at (323) 908-0011 ext. 124 or drust@myfriendsplace.org.

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