KITCHENER – The Humane Society of Kitchener Waterloo and Stratford Perth is celebrating a $15,000 grant earmarked for its emergency boarding program.

The grant, which came from PetSmart Charities of Canada, will help individuals or families in emergency situations get boarding services for their pets for up to two weeks.

These situations range from military deployment to homelessness to fleeing domestic violence. In these situations, pet owners sometimes feel that they need to give up their pets to a shelter.

"By providing a safe place for pets during a transitional time in their family’s life, we are ensuring that they can remain together," said the humane society's executive director Kathrin Delutis in a statement.

"One of our goals is to help animals find forever homes. We want to ensure that forever remains an option."

Last year, the humane society helped 23 families with 31 pets in Kitchener and Stratford with emergency boarding.

"When unexpected transitions occur things move very quickly and finding care for pets adds a layer of complexity, adding extra stress to families with pets who are looking for pet friendly facilities," says Dani LaGiglia, regional relationship manager for PetSmart Charities of Canada, in a statement.

"This grant to KWSPHS enables the organization to provide pet parents with the peace of mind that their pet is being cared for until they can be reunited."