Due to the high demand, we’re currently assisting only the military families most in need. If you’re not faced with financial hardship, but could use some assistance, please review other local resources listed on this page.

To Qualify for Help:

As funds allow, Helping Paws provides grants for military families whose pets are in urgent need of veterinary care. Each pet is considered on a case-by-case basis. To qualify, the following exists:

  • Complete the Help Request Form.
  • The pet should be seen by a Helping Paws participating hospital and be in need of help.
  • Applicants must prove financial hardship to receive funding.

How to Apply:

  • Request an appointment from one of our participating Helping Paws hospitals
    and obtain a treatment estimate.
  • Be declined by Care Credit by all adults in household.

If You Choose Not to Apply:

  1. You must show proof of financial hardship (screenshot or documentation of current available balances for both checking and savings accounts OR 1-month of current bank transactions (most recent) OR if you do not have bank accounts, other acceptable forms of income include:1040 tax form; Social Security income; Unemployment or government assistance paperwork)
  2. Have proof of military ID (Military ID Card, VA ID, DD-214, DD-215, DD-256, NGB-22, NGB-22a, Veterans designation on Driver’s License, State Veterans ID or Veterans Group Membership)
    • Provide a photo or video of your pet.
    • Documents and images may be faxed to 760-480-0083 or emailed to info@helpingpawssandiego.org
    • If you are applying after 5:00 p.m. or on weekends, all paperwork must be emailed.

Helping Paws will notify you once your application has been submitted and grant funding status will be sent to you and the veterinarian. Please note that Helping Paws cannot always provide funding for the entire cost of the procedure, so we recommend reaching out to other organizations, family members and friends to secure additional donations for your pet.

For a list of helpful resources, see www.sdshelters.org/ HelpingTheCommunity.html.


  • Applicants must pay what you can toward the treatment for your pet.
  • Recipients of Helping Paws grant agree to allow Helping Paws to use their story, photos, and video. Recipients are encouraged to share/like/post on social media- Facebook, Twitter, etc.
  • Recipients are asked to pay it forward to do whatever they can to enable Helping Paws to help more military families. This may include volunteering and participating in fundraising events.
  • Helping Paws encourages all grantees to acquire pet insurance for their four-legged family members.