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Hard Times
Funds that help strapped guardians are struggling.
AAHA Helping Pets Fund put Marley back on his paws.

Meet Marley, left. (Not that Marley, but just as cute.) He was injured in a dog attack and suffered a broken jaw. Being just a pup, he healed nicely, but he was bandaged and required intravenously feeding for two weeks. Marley’s veterinary team treated him with tender loving care, and when the cost of his care became too much for the family, found him a new, permanent home. He’s doing much better now and is once again playing the part of the mischievous pup. A grant from the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) Helping Pets Fund helped cover Marley’s expenses.

Regardless of all those stories about green shoots and the start of an economic recovery, increasing numbers of dog and cat guardians need help paying for everything from big vet bills to routine animal care—at precisely the same time resources for these programs is shrinking. Inquires for assistance from the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) Helping Pets Fund have tripled, and earlier this year the fund suspended grants, according to a story in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association.

JAVMA News also reports that the balance is decreasing at the Lucky Fund at Michigan State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, which as been subsidizing veterinary bills for owners whose pets have a good chance at recovery and otherwise cannot afford the care or obtain credit to finance it since 1995. Due to limited funding, NY SAVE (Save Animals in Veterinary Emergency) has been turning away pets weekly, and could deny funds for 312 pets by the end of the year—without help. NY SAVE is a philanthropic program of the Veterinary Medical Association of New York City, serving the five boroughs since 1998.


Lisa Wogan lives in Seattle and is the author of, most recently, Dog Park Wisdom. lisawogan.com

Photo of Marley courtesy AAHA Helping Pets Fund.

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