Published on : Saturday, November 9, 2013
Seeing homeless people with dogs in Kelowna has become a relatively common sight and has left some people scratching their heads. For concerned citizens, the sight brings up a multitude of questions, as people wonder why someone who is homeless would have a pet and how they can possibly take care of them. And while taking care of a dog may make life and distribution of resources more difficult, those who are homeless have pets for the same reason that any other person does: Companionship.
“Pets don’t care if someone is homeless,” said Ami Catriona from Kelowna’s Gospel Mission. “They have someone to love and someone who loves them. The importance of pets in someone’s life is not differentiated by someone’s housing issue.”Indeed, when one considers the emotional and mental benefits of having a pet, it is understandable that someone who is homeless would desire the companionship provided by their dog.
“When it comes to dogs in general, in the community, we recognize as the Regional District that dogs are companions for many people and families and that includes the homeless in the community,” said Bruce Smith, Communications Officer with the Regional District of the Central Okanagan.