All four of Molly’s legs were broken when a snow plow hit her. Surgery could save her, but the sweet three-year-old dog faced death instead because her person couldn’t afford it. A Marine and veteran of the Iraqi war, he was so poor that he couldn’t even afford euthanasia, so he asked veterinary staff about bringing her back to her New Hampshire home to die of her injuries.
The staff at Manchester’s Center for Advanced Veterinary Care wouldn’t let that happen. The veteran told them Molly “was his life,” said Center owner Dr. Deborah Kelloway. They asked him to surrender Molly to the Center so the staff could do whatever was needed to get her better.
Molly’s plight is all too common. Many people who cannot afford veterinary treatment resort to “economic euthanasia.” Dr. Kelloway prevents these tragedies through her non-profit, All Better Pets (ABP). So far she has treated and re-homed 200 animals (others returned to their previous families), spending $100,000 from her own pocket. ABP is desperate for more funds.
While the Center and ABP saved Molly’s life, Molly proved to be a guardian angel for ABP, which is based at the Center. The non-profit appealed for donations for Molly’s care. As her story spread, donations poured in. Generous strangers gave all the money Molly needed in just one day. When the money kept coming, it went into ABP’s account to help future animals who could be saved but for their owners’ lack of funds or unwillingness to spend them.
There are other resources for people whose pets need veterinary care they can’t afford. At least two organizations, IMOM and RedRover, exist to help animals in this predicament. A company called CareCredit offers credit cards that let holders pay for veterinary expenses over time (this isn’t an endorsement — I’m just providing information). Another possibility is to launch a fundraising drive through a website like GiveForward.
The Humane Society of the United States offers a number of other suggestions including negotiating a payment plan with your regular vet; offering to barter your labor (e.g., cleaning kennels) for treatment; going to a vet in a less expensive location; and finding out whether local veterinary schools offer low-cost clinics.
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