Dacorum-based charity DENS are very proud that The Elms, their pet-friendly hostel based in Hemel Hempstead, is the very first hostel to be awarded in a new nation-wide accreditation scheme.
The scheme – which will roll out nationwide – was launched by charity StreetVet and aims to ensure that hostels are well-equipped to proactively support pet-owning residents.
Sean Fitzgerald, manager of The Elms 44-bed hostel, said: “We wanted to be part of this scheme because we see the benefits pets bring their owners every day with our residents.
“The accreditation process is thorough but it’s also simple, with all the support you need provided by StreetVet. The scheme helped us improve our pet policies and we know StreetVet will be there whenever we need them in an emergency.”
Residents Debbie and sharpei Bluebell (pictured) have benefitted hugely from The Elms’ accreditation.
Debbie explained: “Without Bluebell I don’t know where I’d be. Having her by my side and having that bit of companionship means the world.
“I adopted her from a family who didn’t treat her great. She was two-and-a-half years old and hardly had any fur. It was awful, she was yelping and sore and scratching so badly and I couldn’t do anything about it.
“Since being in the hostel, Streetvet have helped her with loads with antibiotics, shampoo and advice and it’s so nice to see her with full fur and not scratching anymore – her quality of life is 100 times better.”
StreetVet co-founder and vet Jade Statt was able to launch the scheme after winning funding from Purina’s BetterwithPets prize.
Jade said: “Currently, one of the many complex reasons that people remain homeless is because there are not enough hostels that can safely accommodate them and their pet.
“Our hope is that in setting up the StreetVet Accredited Hostel Scheme, fewer people will have to make this impossible choice.”
To help DENS make a difference to more pets and their owners who face homelessness, you can make a donation at dens.org.uk
To find out more information about StreetVet and the hostel scheme, visit streetvet.org.uk