Do you need help with emergency vet bills? 15 Sources of Help

man hugging his dog
| 5 min read Financial Assistance

If your beloved pet ever has an accident, falls ill or gets a scary diagnosis, you always do your best to make sure they get the best care possible. Then, once your furry friend is in recovery, you breathe a sigh of relief – until the bill arrives. Does that sound familiar?

In 2016, American pet owners spent over $15 billion on veterinary care. Routine visits to the vet cost dog owners an average of $231 a year and cat owners an average of $193 a year. When pets required operations, those annual vet bills increased to $621 for dogs and $382 for cats.

That’s quite a lot of money in anyone’s book. Even if you’ve already got pet insurance, it isn’t uncommon to find yourself needing help with unexpected veterinary bills.

Where to go for help with paying vet bills

First, talk to your vet about options for reducing your bill. Some veterinary surgeries can help with payment plans to spread out your expenses. Your vet may also offer discounts if you pay in cash.

Many pet owners have used crowdfunding to raise money for their pet’s medical expenses. So keep up the fight for your fluffier counterparts and let pet fundraising help you get them back to normal in no time!

If you still need help, here’s a list of 15 organisations dedicated to helping you financially through your pet’s recovery.

Organisations that help with vet bills

1. Paws 4 A Cure

This organisation helps cats and dogs of any breed, age or diagnosis. Pet owners with a limited ability to pay for care may qualify for assistance with vet bills.

2. The Big Hearts Fund

If your pet is diagnosed with heart disease, The Big Hearts Fund is there to support you. It offers help with bills, resources on what to feed pets with heart problems and options for veterinary cardiology.

3. GoFundMe

Consider using crowdfunding when you need help paying vet bills. GoFundMe is the world’s largest online fundraising platform because they believe in turning compassion into action. You can raise money to pay for your pet’s medical expenses without having to worry about a platform fee.

4. CareCap

If you’re interested in setting up a payment plan for vet bills, CareCap can help. Once you and your vet sign up, the insurer creates a custom payment plan based on your budget. Note: CareCap charges a 1% fee each month.

5. The Pet Fund

This non-profit organisation helps pet owners pay for non-basic, non-urgent care for chronic conditions, heart disease and cancer. If your pet needs this type of treatment, you can get help with your vet bills.

6. Brown Dog Foundation

If your pet is diagnosed with an illness and is likely to respond well to treatment but you haven’t got the funds available to cover the vet bill, turn to the Brown Dog Foundation. It was created to help pets whose families aren’t able to do so themselves.

7. God’s Creatures Ministry

This organisation wants people to treat all animals with kindness. It supports that mission by providing financial help to pet owners facing vet bills.

8. United States Department of Veterans Affairs

If you’re a veteran with an assistance dog, the United States Department of Veterans Affairs will cover the cost of veterinary care along with any equipment related to the service that the dog provides. Veterans Affairs doesn’t cover unrelated costs such as over-the-counter medicine or flea treatment.

9. Joshua Louis Animal Cancer Foundation

This non-profit organisation focuses on raising awareness and funds for animals with cancer. When pet owners are not able to the cost of treatment, the foundation can help with financial support.

10. Diabetic Cats in Need

This organisation offers financial aid for insulin, helps find new homes for unwanted cats with diabetes and sets up local rescue projects to help diabetic cats get adopted.

11. Magic Bullet Fund

For people who aren’t in a financial situation to pay for their dog’s cancer treatment, this non-profit organisation helps you meet those costs. Magic Bullet Fund will fund from $600 to $6,000 of the cost of canine cancer treatment.

12. The Mosby Foundation

Since 2003, this organisation has been working to help neglected, ill and abused dogs. Dog owners can apply for funds to help cover operation and treatment costs. However, the foundation cannot help with any vet bills that you’ve already incurred.

13. Handicapped Pets Foundation

This organisation’s mission is simple: to provide disabled, injured and elderly pets with wheelchairs. Its gift of mobility helps these pets stay active.

14. The Onyx & Breezy Foundation

This charity was born out of the memory of two beloved dogs, Onyx and Breezy. Their memory lives on, helping other dogs live happy lives by funding spaying and neutering operations, rescuing animals from kill shelters, supporting cancer research and lots more.

15. RedRover Relief Grants

In an emergency, this organisation offers immediate financial assistance with veterinary care, with typical grants of between $150 to $200. RedRover responds to applications within two working days.

At GoFundMe, we’re here to help

As well as turning to these generous organisations, we encourage you to consider using our crowdfunding platform. GoFundMe is the No.1 and most trusted fundraising platform in the world. We believe in turning compassion into action. Launch a fundraiser and let those who love your pet lend a hand.

Start a vet bill fundraiser