Pet Financial Assistance for Low Income Families

Pet medical care can cost a lot of money, and you may find it difficult to afford the treatment for your pet. The following organizations listed here provide assistance to people facing financial hardship to help cover the expenses of their pet’s medical care.

Care credit for pets

Like a normal credit card, care credit can be used to pay for pet care for people who have only basic insurance or have to cover the up-front costs. There are options to pay of the card in monthly installments, just like a credit or store card. Cards like these can be a huge help for low-income families.

Can I get help paying my vet bill?

For many families, money can be tight and there is a constant worry of your pet falling ill. How will you pay for the vet fees? Depending on where you live, there is financial help available for low-income families or those claiming state benefits.

The claim procedure is different in each state and country to country. You can get advice from your veterinarian on where to find application forms and other financial information.

Do you have to pay vet bills upfront?

This is dependant on your vet surgery and you as a client. If you are new to the surgery or have a history of not paying bills, you will be required to pay the bill in full or give your pet insurance details.

Vet clinics may offer a grace period for regular clients who have always paid without issue and are due for several required appointments.

Do Vets for Pets offer payment plans?

Vets for pets have several health care plans for pets, such as the Vac4Life and Complete Care Health. Plans like these can be a lifeline if your pet is ever ill or injured unexpectedly.

Plans cover things such as:

  • Flea, tick and worm treatment
  • Vet consultation
  • Annual vaccinations

Other benefits may be offered depending on the plan you choose.

Do vets charge to write a prescription?

Charging for prescriptions is not a well-regulated area of animal care. The charge must be ‘reasonable’ and the animal must be considered as ‘under veterinary care’. Each vet surgery will decide their own charges for a written prescription.

Many pet owners find that they can order their pet’s medication online for cheaper than it is sold at the vet surgery, however, you need a written prescription to order medication online.

The charge is generally based on the time taken for the vet to go through your pet’s history and calculate the correct dosage for the medication. Some vets charge as little as $5, but some can be as much as $30.

Pet financial assistance programs

  • Assistance Dog Partners:
    For emergency veterinary care for service dogs only and must be contacted by your vet.
  • Brown Dog Foundation:
    For those who have no money immediately available for the care of cats and dogs that are sick or injured and would respond to treatment.
  • Dylan’s Heart:
    Must be requested through your attending veterinarian for a life-threatening or critical injury or illness with a favorable outcome with care and the owner must be on a form of government aid.
  • Feline Veterinary Emergency Assistance Programs:
    This organization helps cats with Vaccine Associated Sarcoma (VAC).
  • Friends & Vets Helping Pets: (859) 309-2043
    For applicants in financial need for their pet’s curable diseases such as tumors, broken bones, ambulatory care, expensive medication or post-surgical prosthetics. FVHP staff works with both the veterinarian and the family to provide pets with the necessary medical treatment.
  • The Magic Bullet Fund:
    Cancer-specific help for families with dogs that have cancer, but can’t afford treatment.
  • The Mosby Fund:
    For vet-confirmed critical situations that are non-basic and non-urgent.
  • Onyx and Breezy Fund:
    Assistance with financial aid for medical treatment, medication, pet food, and spay and neuter surgeries with proof of low income/need.
  • Paws 4 a Cure:
    Helps dogs and cats with injuries and illnesses, grants tend to be small and do not exceed $500.
  • Pet Assistance Inc:
    Helps long-time pet owners with financial aid for urgent or life-threatening emergencies only.
  • The Pet Fund:
    The Pet Fund works only on non-basic, non-urgent care such as cancer treatment, heart disease, chronic conditions, endocrine diseases, eye diseases, etc.
  • Pets of the Homeless:
    A resource center for pet food assistance, wellness clinics, and emergency veterinary care. For emergency vet care, call 775-841-7463 to see if you qualify.
  • Prince Chunk Foundation:
    Emergency Care for cats and dogs (possibly other pets in the future). Low-income individuals or those experiencing financial crisis are encouraged to pre-apply.
  • Red Rover:
    Provides grants around $200 for situations where urgent care is needed for a pet
  • The Reidel & Cody Fund:
    Support for pets suffering with cancer – funding for chemotherapy and radiation treatment.
  • Rose’s Fund for Animals: 
    For pets/animals that have a life-threatening illness, injury or condition with a good prognosis to survive.
  • The Shakespeare Animal Fund: (775) 342-7040
    Small grants of between $50 and $100 typically to people on a fixed income or with annual incomes below the federal poverty guidelines.
  • Voice for the Animals Foundation: (310) 392-5153
    Their Helping Friends Program helps seniors, people with disabilities, terminal illnesses or fixed incomes take care of their pets.



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Hannah Elizabeth is an English animal behavior author, having written for several online publications. With a degree in Animal Behaviour and over a decade of practical animal husbandry experience, Hannah's articles cover everything from pet care to wildlife conservation. When she isn't creating content for blog posts, Hannah enjoys long walks with her Rottweiler cross Senna, reading fantasy novels and breeding aquarium shrimp.

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