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Non-Profit Organization Aims to Reduce Number of Pets Left behind During Foreclosures

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RISMEDIA, June 25, 2008-No Paws Left Behind, Inc., a 501c3 non-profit organization dedicated to bringing awareness to and finding solutions for the growing phenomena of “foreclosure pets,” announced the launch of their organization and website, intended to help foreclosure victims find shelters for their pets. The site, www.NoPawsLeftBehind.org, directs visitors, based on their zip code, to local animal shelters and other alternative housing providers for pets in need.

Outdated legislation prevents the removal of pets from abandoned properties prior to the eviction process, placing code inspection officers in a difficult position. As such, No Paws Left Behind established a petition on its website with the goal of repealing this law on the national level. Visitors to the No Paws Left Behind website will find resources for locating local No Kill animal shelters, foster care for pets in need of temporary care and pet deposit assistance when borrowers are forced to relocate. The site also provides a resource for qualified animal shelters and foster care providers to seek financial assistance.

“In an effort to help families coping with the devastating foreclosure process, we are bringing awareness to the growing trend of abandoned pets and offering possible solutions,” said Cheryl Lang, president of Houston-based Integrated Mortgage Solutions, a collateral protection resource for the mortgage servicing industry, and founder of No Paws Left Behind. “We founded No Paws Left Behind to provide homeowners facing foreclosure with a resource for finding alternative housing for their pets during this difficult time. Through visiting our website, borrowers are provided with an array of housing options for their pets, whether a no kill shelter or temporary foster care. No Paws Left Behind will also provide monetary assistance for pet deposits required by new landlords.”

No Paws Left Behind’s mission includes educating homeowners on their loan workout options when facing foreclosure. A common misconception among borrowers is that they will return home to find their belongings on the curb. As a result, many borrowers vacate their property prematurely and often leave a part of the family behind in the process to suffer alone. But there are many other options lenders can offer for distressed borrowers aside from foreclosure. No Paws Left Behind recommends that borrowers contact their lender to discuss their individual workout options.

According to recent statistics, 63 percent of all American households have pets. With foreclosures growing in record numbers, experts agree that around two to four million Americans will lose their homes before the crisis ends. That leaves more than 1.25 million companion animals at risk.

“For more than five years, my company and I have been dedicated to professionally and sympathetically working with borrowers, lenders and servicers throughout loss mitigation and default management,” continued Lang. “Unfortunately, it is this experience that has brought me face-to-face with abandoned animals and their heart-wrenching stories. As the mortgage industry and the nation embrace legislative improvements, we must keep in mind those silent victims who cannot speak up for themselves.”

For more information, visit www.nopawsleftbehind.org.

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