Each year thousands of pets are neglected and abused, winding up in a variety of different shelter programs around the country. While many of these owners deliberately abuse their pets, just as many have problems taking care of them, through no fault of their own. This can be because of a loss of their jobs, or they themselves are under some other kind of financial burden, or even just getting older and not being able to care for their beloved four legged friends.
What a lot of people in these situations don't realize is that there are actually an abundance of different programs available to help them take care of their pets, and many are just a phone call away. For example, there are many programs sponsored by the ASPCA that can help with the financial burden of neutering or spaying your cat or dog. Some have a yearly time set aside where you can bring your pet in to a place set up like a clinic, where for a nominal fee, just $10 in most cases, you can have your cat or dog spayed or neutered. In other areas, there are also vouchers that will reduce the price of getting your cat or dog fixed at a local clinic or animal hospital. This can, in some cases, reduce these costs by nearly half.
There are also many different programs that will provide you with pet food on a regular and timely basis. These programs are in place because it is much cheaper to help you than it is to have your pet at a shelter. They also understand how traumatic it can be for an owner to have to give up a pet, and try just about anything they can to prevent this from happening in the first place.
Here are just a few of the agencies you can contact for assistance:
The Pet Fund, and the United Animal Nations LifeLine Fund are two organizations that will help you with the expensive costs of having surgery, or medical treatments for your cat or dog, as well as help with the costs of getting neuter or spay surgery, and even sometimes with just routine vaccinations and other veterinary care. Other organizations that also help in this area are the Brown Dog Foundation, the Feline Veterinary Emergency Assistance Program, and Feline Outreach.
If your pet has some kind of cancer, or chronic disease, there are also agencies that can help with the expense of taking care of these special needs pets. There is the Diabetic Pets Fund, The Mosby Foundation, the Magic Bullet Fund, God's Creatures Ministry Veterinary Charity and many others.
Another great resource is IMOM, In Memory of Magic, an organization that helps fight for the lives of companion cats and dogs who are at risk of euthanized simply due to the fact that their caretakers are financially strained.
Cats in Crisis is another pet caring group that provides assistance to cat owners to help them pay for chronic or emergency medical care for the cats by way of financial and fundraising assistance.
You don't have to give up your cat or dog, or abandon them because they are sick, injured, need vaccinations, or even food. There are also many different programs that will help the elderly take care of their pets, walking their dogs, taking them in for routine checkups, as well as many others.
Don't be too proud to contact one of these agencies and ask for help, it is just plain stupid not too, with so many organizations that are available to help you and your cat or dog. If you are not sure where to start, one internet search can give you a lot of providers, or even just contacting your local Humane Society or ASPCA where you live can be a good start.
Photo Credit: Ollie Crafoord