Having a sick dog can be distressing. And if that wasn’t enough, high vet fees can put your financial health in danger too. Luckily, there are a couple of options that can help you cover your dog’s vet bills.

Service dogs and Life Buddies aren’t just excellent companions and family members. They’re working professionals, assisting you with day-to-day tasks. So, keeping them healthy is not just in their best interest, but also yours.

9 Ways You Can Get Help With Vet Bills

From dental care to other routine checks, vet bills can quickly pile up. So, it’s important to seek help in the right places to give your dog the best medical care it deserves.

With these tips, you can get your service dog or Life Buddy the medical help they need without breaking the bank.

1. Ask the Vet for a Payment Plan 

You can ask your vet about payment plans. These could be weekly, monthly, or quarterly. However, defaulting on your payment can give you a bad credit score.

On the flip side, if you can get a payment plan, your vet bills won’t be too overwhelming, and you can have time to get the funds you need from other sources.

2. Look for Grants or Nonprofit Agencies 

There are several organizations dedicated to helping with vet bills. Each of them comes up with its own criteria and has varying funds available.

Generally, these grants only cover specific illnesses. They don’t usually help with preventive care or spaying/neutering. Plus, there are limits to these grants. You need a bit of luck to get one. But, it’s still a good option to try. 

Some organizations that help with vet bills include:

  • Brown Dog’s Foundation: This foundation helps with some of the costs of vet bills, and prioritizes dogs in critical condition. You need to apply for assistance online and wait for a caseworker to qualify or deny your request. 
  • Bow Wow Puppies Foundation: You can apply for a grant to get help for your dog’s necessary medical treatment. Spaying, neutering, preventive care, and end-of-life care aren’t included.
  • Red Rover Urgent Care: The average grant given by Red Rover is $250 per family to help with expensive vet bills. 
  • The Pet Fund: This non-profit organization helps you with non-basic non-urgent pet medical bills. For example, if your pup has cancer or heart disease, you can apply for funding online.

3. Go to Inexpensive Vet School Clinics

Your dog can get all the medical care they need at a vet school clinic without you pilling up too much on your vet bills.

In vet school clinics, certified veterinarians oversee veterinary students’ activities. So you can be assured that your dog will be in good hands. Usually, these initiatives are nonprofit and financed by charity donations or government funding.

4. Get Pet Insurance

A great way to save money on vet bills is to get pet insurance. After all, the monthly insurance payments are easy to budget for, and plans can cover all kinds of medical issues.

Make sure you choose a plan for your dog that covers preventive care as well as emergencies and non-urgent care. 

5. Have A Savings Plan for Your Dog 

Owning a pet comes with many expenses ranging from feeding to routine wellness checkups. 

So, creating a savings plan for emergencies is best as soon as you get a service dog. Even if you have a budget for pet expenses, you should always prepare for expensive emergencies. 

To prepare for unforeseen costs, you can add a line item to your savings budget for your pet. This way, you’ll be ready for when you need to pay for pet care expenses and won’t need to use a credit card.

6. Get Help From Friends and Family Members 

Ask your loved ones to help you with vet bills when you’re in an emergency. Your service dog is a family member, so they may be more generous to help than you think.

7. Consider Crowdfunding 

Crowdfunding is another way to raise money for your dog’s veterinary fees. 

To make the most of this option, you need to write down the story of you and your dog. You need to convince others to support you, and storytelling is an excellent way to do that. Share your campaign on social media, and ask your friends and family to spread the word.

You can also use platforms like GoFundMe, CoFund My Pet, and Waggle.

8. Take Out Loans 

While we wouldn’t recommend this for your financial health, in the absolute worst-case scenario, loans are an option.

Some pet finance companies offer loan plans to cater to your dog’s veterinary bills. You can also get personal loans and use them to take care of your dog’s vet bills. 

However, loans should be your last resort after trying other options.

9. Take Good Care of Your Dog 

Prevention is way better than cure. Helping your dog maintain a healthy lifestyle will help prevent frequent vet trips. You can include more vitamins and other nutrients in your dog’s diet to keep it healthy. Ultimately, this is the best way to avoid piles of vet bills.

Track Your Pup’s Health With the Life Buddy App 

Service dogs and Life Buddies are invaluable to Veterans. And so is their health. 

That’s why Sierra Delta provides the Life Buddy App to every Veteran in the Life Buddy Program. Not only does the Life Buddy App assist with training for your service dog or Life Buddy, it also helps you take care of your pup’s health. 

It’s a place to keep all of your pet’s health records and veterinarian appointments in one place. It can help you identify veterinarians, dog walkers, groomers, and other services in your area. And it can even help you identify the best pet insurance to help keep your costs low. 

Join our community and get full access to the Life Buddy App to help assist in the care of your dog!

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