IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT Sep 11, 2019:
Tails of Help temporary suspension for approvals of funding applications effective immediately

Tails of Help is working hard to keep more Alberta pets healthy and with their loving families. It is clear that the need for this program has surpassed our current capacity to fund it. 
We have reached a point where Tails of Help is now on the verge of having allocated all our available charitable funds for providing pet treatment aid.

Effective immediately, as of September 11, 2019, Tails of Help will have to temporarily suspend accepting applications to aid pet owners in need.

How can you help? Everyone can help by making a gift to our program that helps clinics to serve more pet owners in financial need!

Clinics and veterinarians can also help by signing up to participate in our upcoming fundraising campaigns ( tailsofhelp.ca/alberta-challenge ), and by spreading the word to your clients about this worthy cause, asking them to visit our website to learn about us and donate to support this valuable charity.

Since December 2013 the Tails of Help charitable foundation has been providing financial assistance for low income Alberta pet owners who find themselves unable to afford essential health care for their ill or injured pet. During that time, the number of applications submitted on behalf of low income pet owners has continued to grow. In 2017 Tails of Help provided aid for over 120 pets and owners, in 2018 we provided aid for over 180, and after just 8 months in 2019 we have provided aid for almost 120 pets and owners, on pace to surpass last year’s total. Based on past history patterns, we expect that need will continue to increase even more in the coming months.

Here are some other things that clinics can do to help:

  1. Put Tails of Help brochures and donation canisters on the front desks of their clinics. You can order donation canisters and brochures here: http://www.tailsofhelp.com/donation-kits .

  2. Post information about Tails of Help on clinic social media pages. Contact us if you need help with what to post.

  3. Hold a fundraiser event (e.g. charity BBQ or in-clinic competition) either now or as part of the Alberta Challenge. (The Alberta Challenge will take place in November and December, and further details will be provided in the coming months.)

  4. Encourage clients and staff to participate in our Howloween dog walk event on October 26th, 2019 if they live near Calgary. More information will follow in the coming months.

  5. Email us if you know of any clients that have received funding that would be willing to be interviewed. We are looking for more success stories to share!

(For any of the above, contact us by email here: info@tailsofhelp.ca )

In the coming weeks Tails of Help will be rolling out further public communications about our current situation, and about fundraising campaigns to rebuild our reserves for this vital charitable activity.

Approved by the Alberta Veterinary Medical Association, Tails of Help is a registered charity dedicated to pet health care education and improving access to essential veterinary care for pets of low income and at-risk families in Alberta.


How does Tails of Help work?

Tails of Help is dedicated to providing financial assistance for pet owners who find themselves unable to afford essential health care for their ill or injured pet. Approved by the Alberta Veterinary Medical Association, Tails of Help assesses qualified applications and provides funds to assist with care of the family pet.

Applications are made by participating veterinarians, and are determined by available funds and meeting the program criteria for financial and medical need. If the application is approved, funds are disbursed directly to the treating clinic.

  • All applications for Tails of Help assistance are made directly by participating veterinary clinics.

  • We do not keep a listing of participating clinics.

  • Any Alberta clinic can participate at any time.

Essential health care is considered to be treatment without which the ill or injured animal will die, require humane euthanasia, or cause undue suffering to the pet. 

If you do not have a regular veterinarian, you can find one here.

We are currently conducting annual fundraising efforts to develop our reserve fund. As of December 2013 Tails of Help began approving applications and providing funding for treatment to keep pets healthy and with their loving families.

What to do if your pet needs help:

  1. Read the qualifying information further below here for details about pets and owners that can qualify for Tails of Help assistance.

  2. Contact your veterinarian

  3. Be prepared to show supporting documents for proof that you are:
    • An adult resident of Alberta
    • In need based on one of the Financial Need Categories as shown below
    • Prepared to contribute to the cost of care for your pet and follow the veterinarian's instructions regarding after care

  4. Your veterinarian will do the rest.
    Please feel free to ask them to contact us for any questions that they may have about submitting an application.

Qualifying Patients:

A veterinarian or their designate will need to evaluate the animal to determine eligibility for funding. The following  will be considered:

  • Is an "owned animal" presented to a participating veterinary practice

  • Is ill or injured and veterinary care is required

  • Is the condition such that failure to treat would result in the death of the animal or would require euthanasia for humane reasons, or would necessitate the surrender of the animal.

The intent of the program is to provide essential health care for ill or injured pets. Services such as wellness exams, vaccinations, and elective spays and neuters currently are not funded through Tails of Help.

A Qualifying Owner: 

  1. Is an adult resident of Alberta

  2. Agrees to contribute to the cost of care for their pet

  3. Agrees to follow the directions of the veterinarian regarding aftercare

  4. Provides the nominating veterinarian with supporting documentation of financial qualification in one of the following categories.

FOR ALL CATEGORIES OF APPLICANTS, applications for Tails of Help funding must be submitted by the veterinary clinic. ALL PET OWNERS SEEKING AID FROM TAILS OF HELP MUST SEE THEIR VETERINARIAN for their pets' diagnosis, treatment, and any application for Tails of Help funding.

The application process now has 2 major financial need categories in which potential applicants may be eligible:

  • Specific Criteria Applicants

  • Low Income Declaration Applicants

1.   Specific Criteria Applicants - this category has simple clear criteria where the pet owner must provide specified documentation to demonstrate the financial need: 

  • · Assured Income for Severely Handicapped (AISH)

  • · Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS)

  • · Alberta Works

  • · Resettlement Assistance Program Form

  • · Letter from a Registered Social Worker

  • · Letter from a Domestic Violence Shelter

2.    Low Income Declaration Applicants - If a pet owner's household income is below the low-income cut-off (LICO) rates adopted by Tails of Help, then they may meet the financial needs criteria.

Annual LICO Rates as of Oct 1st, 2018:

  • Family of 1 = $27,100

  • Family of 2 = $33,700

  • Family of 3 = $41,500

  • Family of 4 = $50,300

  • Family of 5 = $57,100

  • Family of 6 = $64,400

  • Family of 7 = $71,700

FOR ALL CATEGORIES OF APPLICANTS, applications for Tails of Help funding must be submitted by the veterinary clinic.

ALL PET OWNERS SEEKING AID FROM TAILS OF HELP MUST SEE A VETERINARIAN for their pets' diagnosis, treatment, and any application for Tails of Help funding.

  • We do not keep a listing of participating clinics.

  • Any Alberta clinic can participate at any  time.

If you do not have a regular veterinarian, you can find one here.