Frugal Living, Pets

4 Ways To Afford A Service Dog

Owning a service dog can have a transformative impact on your everyday existence, letting you cope with all sorts of struggles and retain your independence in the face of significant challenges, both physical and mental.

Of course there are costs which come with acquiring and owning a service dog, and it can be an expensive asset to have. So what are the options for making this more affordable? Let’s go over just a few of the best solutions.

Apply for a grant

Whether you are looking for service dogs for your mental health, or to assist with physical disabilities, you can get financial assistance in the form of a grant from a number of nonprofits.

Most of these organizations are focused on helping people who fall into a particular group. For example, the Department of Veterans Affairs can connect people who have served in the armed forces with funding sources for service animals, especially if the conditions they are coping with are as a result of injuries or experiences that occurred in the line of duty.

Whichever grant you pick, you’ll need to meet whatever eligibility requirements the provider puts in place. Just make sure to check the extent of the funding that this affords you; some grants will just cover the cost of the animal itself, while others will include ongoing costs like food and veterinary care.

Start a fundraising campaign

A great way to lower the expense of owning a service dog is to create your very own fundraiser. Get your friends and family to help out if you can, and encourage the local community to contribute.

Everyone loves giving to a good cause, and it’s all the more likely that you’ll gain traction if you are appealing to people who already know you, because they’ll be able to see the positive impact that their contributions are making from day to day.

Also remember that social media is a powerful fundraising tool in the modern era, and you can create crowdfunding campaigns to pay for service dog costs.

Get a loan

While you might be happy with the ongoing costs of owning a service dog, the steep price you’ll pay to acquire one in the first place might be the main barrier you need to overcome.

This is where taking out a personal loan can be a good way to fast track your access to an assistance animal. There are all sorts of lenders out there who will help out, so long as your financial circumstances are generally solid.

If you do use a loan to afford a service dog, remember to try to pay it off promptly and to hit all deadlines, or your credit score will suffer.

Use insurance

If you’re lucky enough to have done the calculations and to have determined that a service dog is manageable as part of your current monthly budget, that’s not the only cost you need to consider.

If your animal has a medical emergency and needs treatment from a vet, this can leave you with a huge bill that you’ll be compelled to pay, or else risk losing your lifeline to independence.

You can soften the blow if you have insurance for your service animal, with the right type of cover keeping you minimally exposed to the costs of treatment and surgery.

As you can see, there are lots of ways to afford a service dog, and a combination of these options may actually work best. Because of this, it’s sensible to explore every funding avenue and plan thoroughly to make the right decision.

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