The first-ever pet-friendly hostel accreditation scheme has been launched by a charity operating in Swindon.

StreetVet, has started the initiative to help ensure homeless pet owners can be housed with their animals. The alternative is often giving up their pet.

The new national ‘pet-friendly’ hostel accreditation scheme ensures hostels are well-equipped to proactively support pet-owning residents, including having a variety of health, hygiene and safety policies in place, providing pet owners with access to vet care, free provision of pet essentials, and access to emergency kennelling, among others.

StreetVet co-founder and vet Jade Statt said: “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 fewer people will have to make this impossible choice. Access to pet-friendly hostels is their first step towards independent housing."