Vet Care Voucher Application
Asking For Traditional Help With Vet Bills
Many pet parents tend to go into credit-card debt to pay vet bills but, not everyone qualifies for credit, Dr. Blackwell says. Hes also seen people sell items to raise money or borrow funds from family and friends.
I dont believe we have nearly the amount of bankruptcy you see in human health care, but some families get into financial trouble overall, Dr. Blackwell says.
Where To Get Help With Veterinary Bills
First, talk to your veterinarian about options for reducing your bill. Some veterinary offices can help by creating payment plans to spread out your expenses. Your vet might also offer cash discounts.
Many pet owners have started crowdfunding to raise money for their pets medical expenses. So keep up the fight for your fluffier counterparts, and let pet fundraising help you get them the medical attention they need to be back to normal in no time.
If you still need help, heres a list of 11 organizations that help with vet bills so your furry friend can recover quickly.
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Irving Park Community Food Pantry
Pet Food Corner – The mission of the Pet Food Corner is to assist unemployed and underemployed families who have trouble feeding and caring for their beloved pets. Pet Supply distribution occurs on Wednesday mornings from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. C.A.R.E. and other local organizations support this area of the pantry with food and supply donations!
Phone: 773-283-6296 or toll-free: 800-521-7560Fax: 773-283-5945
Is Paying Your Vet Bills A Problem Here’s How To Find Help
Vet care can be hard on your budget. From your puppys or kittens first veterinary visit, which might cost you $100 to $300, to annual wellness visits, which can range from $50 to $400 , even routine care costs can add up. Then, along the way, there may be costly surprises like dental work, emergency room visits, or a battle with a long-term illness.
A 2015 study done by the ASPCA found that 26 percent of pet owners said they could not afford medical care for their pet’s health problems. Whats a pet owner to do when the costs of pet healthcare threaten to outstrip your resources?
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Your Pet Is Experiencing A Medical Emergency And Needs Treatment Right Now
Veterinary schools often provide low-cost veterinary care as it helps their students gain real experience caring for real animals. Though the procedures are performed by a student, theyre overseen by an experienced vet.
If youre not comfortable with the idea of your cat being part of the veterinary school curriculum, look for low-cost veterinary clinics in your area. If you cant find a low-cost veterinary clinic, just go to the vet. Get the veterinary care you need and then figure out how to pay for it later. There are organizations that can help you to cover your vet bills.
If youre not sure whether or not your pet needs emergency medical care, immediately and describe the symptoms. The vet wont charge you for a phone call and youll get a more authoritative answer than youll find on PetMD.
Need Help Paying Vet Bills
Whenever possible, work with your veterinarian. Ask your primary vet whether any less expensive treatment option is available. Think about getting a second opinion to compare medical cost. Try to arrange a payment plan. Ask whether the practice would accept services in place of cash. Perhaps an extra hand at the reception desk or in the kennel is needed at times.
Helpful links to various types of financial resources follow:
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If Your Beloved Pet Ever Gets Ill You Might Find Yourself Facing A Large Medical Bill That Strains Your Finances
According to the American Pet Products Association, pet owners in the U.S. spent almost $16 billion on veterinary care in 2016.
Veterinary care could include regular checkups and preventative care, but it also includes emergency vet costs.
And according to pet adoption site Petfinder, dog owners should be prepared to pay up to $2,000 or more for emergency veterinary care.
I would say that in at least 50% of emergencies, owners dont have the financial ability to afford care for their pets, says Eva Evans, a veterinarian in Nashville. In these situations, owners are often struggling to pay for other things like rent, food and clothing for their children as well.
The Humane Society of the United States recommends that you discuss your pets likelihood of recovery with veterinarians before agreeing to costly treatment. The chance of your pet having a good quality of life after treatment should be a key factor in deciding whether to proceed with costly medical care.
But if you decide to proceed and shoulder the cost, here are four options to consider that may help you pay the bill.
Sometimes The Vets Step In
Veterinarians do their best to care for pets in need and respect the clients budgets, but there is only so much they can do, Dr. Blackwell says.
Most of my colleagues are dedicated to taking care of the pet, he says. They are trying to make decisions medically in this case that would be in the best interest of the pet. That said, we are also charged with looking after the well-being of the client.
Veterinarians, as big as their hearts can be, cant just give away vet care and survive, Dr. Blackwell says. You can only go so far in cutting the fees.
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Low Cost Spay And Neuter
Your local ASPCA may offer low cost spay and neuter clinics. More than 4 million unwanted dogs and cats are euthanised in shelters every year. Spay or neuter your pet to help reduce the strain on already-overcrowded shelters.
Neutered male dogs are less territorial Spayed females get fewer reproductive system cancers
What Vouchers Can Be Used For
Vouchers can be used for most veterinary care goods and services. $250 should cover veterinary care needs for one healthy pet needing an annual wellness visit that requires a physical exam, some disease tests , and core vaccinations . If you have a sick pet, costs for tests and treatments may be higher than $250.
Vouchers may NOT be used for:
If you have needs that aren’t met by our Voucher program, check out these other Northeast Ohio pet resources.
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The Waiting Room Solution
About Oscar: I adopted him as a puppy in 2009 in Kansas City, Missouri. His breed and birthday were impossible to know for sure as both he and his sister had been thrown from a moving car. The rescue people brought him to my house to see how we got along. He shivered, gazed deep into my eyes, and peed on my hardwood floor. Love.
The memory of it swirled 10 years later, as I took pictures of Oscars bills to send the insurance company and thought about the people crying in that emergency room. They wheeled dogs in on stretchers, or carried them hanging limp in their arms, and every single one watching their pet disappear into the back was asked what they knew about low-interest financing. They thumbed through credit card applications on their phones like it was a matter of life and death, which I now understand that it was. No payment, no treatment.
Leigh Kunkel, who is finishing her masters in journalism at Northwestern, found herself facing a five-figure bill when her dog, Rutherford, was diagnosed with a brain tumor in 2017.
Leigh, who is also an acquaintance of mine, knew Rutherford needed help when the large-breed coonhound mix struggled to walk a straight line and keep his head up. But you cant treat without a diagnosis, which meant brain scans, which meant $2,500 down before the technicians would warm up the machine.
If you leave a single dollar on the balance, the second that introductory period lapses, the accrued interest crashes down, Wu says.
Other Options To Pay The Bill
Aside from getting help from animal welfare organisations or charities, there are other options to consider when unexpected vet bills occur.
- Paying vet bills in instalments To cover large vet bills, some vets may allow you to pay the total cost over a certain period of time. There are some vets that accept interest-free payment and others require external financing.
- Getting a personal loan If all else fails, you may try getting a personal loan as a last option. This type of loan usually has fixed rates within a certain period of time just like on monthly instalments. It is important to understand the terms before deciding on which repayment options to choose.
Did you find this article helpful? Seek more advice from our pet blogs.
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Vet Bill Help: 20+ Organizations That Help You Pay Veterinary Care Bills
by Lauren Bennett – Last Updated January 20, 2017
Are there any organizations that help with vet bills?
We all love our pets and only want the best for them I know I do!
When your pet gets sick or injured, you want to make sure that theyre cared for and that you get them back to their full healthy and happy selves as soon as possible.
Unfortunately, vet bills can be pretty high.
Treatments, tests, and procedures can all be pricey, and for many people, paying for veterinary care can seem impossible.
We already covered saving money on vet bills. But for many of us, its not a matter of trying to save money, its a matter of not having the money to pay the bills in the first place.
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Fortunately, there are many charities, animal welfare organizations, nonprofits, clinics, and other wonderful organizations out there that help people with their vet bills whether youre a low-income family, disabled, have lost your job, or are just going through a rough financial phase.
Resources For Those With Assistance Dogs
- The International Association of Assistance Dog Partners has established an emergency veterinary fund to provide financial aid to U.S. IAADP partner members whose assistance dogs require high-cost veterinary intervention beyond their ability to pay.
- The California Department of Social Services Assistance Dog Special Allowance Program provides a monthly payment of $50 to eligible individuals who use a guide, signal or service dog to help them with needs related to their physical disabilities. The allowance is to help pay the costs of food, grooming and health care for the dogs. This program, available only to residents of California, will provide these funds monthly toward the care of registered service dogs. Call 916-657-2628.
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You Need A Veterinarians Advice
If you have a question about your pets healthmaybe youre not sure why your cat has been vomiting lately or youve noticed an unusual rashbut your pet isnt in serious distress, you may get valuable advice from a veterinarian online.
You can get free, personalized advice from veterinarians on PetCoach.co.
If you need answers fast, you can pay a small fee to get a speedier reply. PetCoach is good, but sometimes you need an interactive, real-time conversation.
If you would like more of a veterinary-office experience, you can pay a small fee to chat with a real veterinarian on JustAnswer. JustAnswer consultations cost between $10 and $100, depending on the speed and complexity of service you need. Theyll give you a quote before you get started so there wont be any surprises.
Other Options Related To Financial Assistance
If you have a purebred dog or cat, check to see if there is a breed-specific club or rescue that can offer assistance.
Most vet schools treat pets at a reduced cost. In Nevada our closest vet schools are UC Davis in Davis CA and Western University of Health Sciences College of Veterinary Medicine in Pamona, CA.
Consider purchasing pet insurance for your pets.
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Solutions For Vet Costs
For Emergency Vet Care
For General Vet Care
Negotiate An Installment Plan
You may be able to negotiate an installment payment plan with your veterinarian, says economist Eric Tyson, author of Personal Finance for Dummies. This typically involves making monthly payments until the debt is repaid.
Kevin Gallegos, vice president of new client enrollment and Phoenix operations for Freedom Financial Network, a debt settlement company based in Arizona, says theres no typical repayment period. The terms that consumers negotiate with their vets can vary widely.
Its completely up to the veterinarian, Gallegos says.
Some practices offer interest-free repayment for a specific period of time. Others may require clients to apply for external financing. One option for financing is CareCredit®, a credit card that offers financing options at certain veterinary facilities.
Tyson says that many people are too shy or embarrassed to negotiate, but youll never know how willing your veterinarian is to work with you until you ask.
While some vets may be wary of installment plans, because theres no guarantee that theyll be fully repaid, Dr. John Clark, a veterinarian in Vero Beach, Florida, says your vet may be more likely to trust you if youve already established a relationship with them.
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Fundraising And Temporary Credit
- Ask if your veterinarian accepts Care Credit, a credit card specifically for health care expenses, including for pets.
- Try a fundraising platform such as GoFundMe, which enables you to create a personal fundraising page.
- Consider Waggle, a pet-dedicated crowdfunding solution that channels funds directly to verified veterinarians for a pets care.
Get Help With Vet Bills: Updated For 2020
Much like healthcare costs for humans, the prices for veterinary services are rising quickly. According to the American Pet Products Association, Americans spent more than $18 Billion on veterinary care in 2018, and with that number growing by around 5% each year it will reach almost $20 Billion in 2020. So when your furry family member falls ill or needs surgery, it can be tough to find ways to pay for medicines or procedures. Fortunately there are several organizations determined to help with vet bills, and we’ve got an updated list for 2020.
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The Onyx & Breezy Foundation
This nonprofit organization was born out of the memory of two beloved dogs, Onyx and Breezy. Their memory lives on, helping other dogs live happy lives through funding for spay and neuter programs, rescuing animals from kill shelters, support for cancer research, and much more.
In the event of an emergency, this organization offers immediate financial assistance for veterinary care, with grants usually between $150 to $200. RedRover responds to applications within two business days.
Veterinary Care Charitable Fund
About: Veterinary Care Charitable Fund is a donation-funded charity that covers vet costs for pet owners in need. Unlike some other programs, your vet must apply for your aid using the groups website. Your vet must also be enrolled in the Veterinary Care Charitable Funds program.
Location / Region Served: USA
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