U.S. SENATOR DEAN HELLER, RENO MAYOR HILLARY SCHIEVE AND FOUR-LEGGED FURRY DIGNITARIES MARKED THE SPOT FOR NOAH’S ANIMAL HOUSE ARRIVAL
Reno, NEV (July 6, 2017)- Dignitaries, politicians, donors and several four-legged furry dignitary dogs came together today on the Committee to Aid Abused Women’s (CAAW) transitional housing campus, to dig up the ground for Noah’s Animal House (NAH), Northern Nevada’s first full service pet boarding house exclusively for the pets of domestic violence. Its mission is to keep the entire family united as they transition out of an abusive situation and to eliminate barriers of leaving abusive relationships by ensuring the family pets can remain safe with their caretakers.
The 1,300 square foot building, scheduled to open by late-2017, will be able to accommodate up to 36 animals and will feature:
- “Wags & Whiskers” arrival room including family boarding and exam rooms
- “Wags Boarding” offering indoor/outdoor dog runs plus kennels
- The “Feline Sun Room” for cats with multi-use condos that face the morning sun
- Two glass-enclosed cuddle rooms offering private time with the entire family
- Dog bathing/spa area
- Supply center
In 2007, NAH became the first ever stand-alone full service pet boarding house in the country exclusively for families and pets of domestic violence victims when it opened in Southern Nevada next door and in partnership with The Shade Tree, a shelter for women and children in crisis. Since that time, NAH has helped more than 1,200 pets stay safe and united with their families by providing nearly 90,000 nights of safe boarding, oftentimes helping survivors throughout their period of crisis. Threats against family pets are often part of domestic violence, and, many victims will not leave their abuser because they do not want to leave their pet behind. NAH empowers victims to seek safety and provides food, shelter and veterinary services free of charge for the pets of the survivors of domestic violence that reside at both The Shade Tree Shelter and the soon- to-open campus at CAAW.
“When we started Noah’s, it was to remove the barrier that was preventing women from leaving their abuser. As pet owners, we would never leave our pet behind to be tortured as payback for leaving,” said NAH founder Staci Alonso. After ten years of operating in Las Vegas, we now recognize that it is as much about the healing as it is about the escape. We are thrilled to partner with CAAW and expand our services to cover both Northern and Southern Nevada, Alonso concluded.
“Over the past 18 months, CAAW has documented 86 individuals that have opted not to enter its emergency shelter because it couldn’t accommodate their pets, who are equally a member of the family as their other children,” said Denise Yoxsimer, executive director of CAAW. “The partnership with Noah’s Animal House will become an integral part of the lifesaving services CAAW provides to adult and child domestic violence survivors. We feel honored to be selected by Noah’s to provide this very important service.”
SUPPORT FOR NAH
Funds for Noah’s Reno have been generously donated by private donors and corporations including NV Energy, Western Nevada Supply, Bayer Animal Health, Bennett Family Foundation, Dolan Auto Group, David and Cheryl Duffield, E.L. Wiegand Foundation, Staci and Mike Alonso and the Peppermill Resort Spa Casino.
Additionally, Grand Canyon Development Partners who serves as project manager and general contractor, Frank Lepori Construction, Victory Millwork and Western Nevada Supply have generously donated or reduced costs of their construction services and materials.
Upon spending time at NAH, U.S. Senator Dean Heller recently co-introduced the “Pet and Women Safety Act” (PAWS Act) with U.S. Senator Gary Peters, for bipartisan legislation to protect victims of domestic violence from emotional and psychological trauma caused by violence against their pets.
"I am proud that Nevada is leading the way to ensure that domestic violence victims have the resources they need to feel empowered to leave abusive relationships," said Heller. "I congratulate Staci and Noah's Animal House for providing such an innovative component at their housing facilities, so that women can leave abusive situations and have a safe place for themselves and their pets. I thank the Committee to Aid Abused Women and Noah's Animal House for their continued positive impact on our Nevada communities,” the U.S. Senator concluded.
"Domestic violence of any kind is sad enough, but when a pet's life is also adversely impacted it adds another level of heartbreak to the situation," Reno Mayor Hillary Schieve said. "I applaud Noah’s Animal House for their great work to date in Nevada, and I'm excited that they're partnering with the Committee to Aid Abused Women to bring a transitional housing pet shelter to Reno."
WHO IS NOAH?
Noah is the teenage son of the founder, Staci Alonso, a well-respected gaming industry executive who heard a heart-breaking story of a woman refusing to abandon her abusive life because she had to leave her kitten behind with her abuser if she wanted to escape. Knowing first hand, the power pets have during the healing process, Alonso began actively fundraising for a pet boarding facility to be located next to the Shade Tree Shelter in Southern Nevada and has expanded the vision by opening this second location in Northern Nevada. To learn more or to make a donation to Noah’s Reno, visit www.noahsanimalhouse.org
CAAW provides free, confidential, bilingual services to families in Washoe County as they seek to end the abuse in their lives. CAAW currently operates an emergency shelter, transitional housing facilities, a temporary protection order office, a crisis call line and many support programs. During CAAW’s 2015-2016 fiscal year, it provided shelter for 808 individuals for a total of 10,833 bed-nights. To learn more, visit www.caaw.org.