Resources for Pet Owners in Need


There are many charities and organizations that have been created to help pet owners when veterinary care becomes a financial burden or when they are unable to care for their pet. Please contact the organizations below if they fit your current situation.


Frankie’s Friends is a non-profit foundation dedicated to finding cures and saving pets with cancer and other life-threatening conditions. We help save pets’ lives by providing grants to assist with the cost of life-saving or life-enhancing emergency or specialty care for pets whose families cannot afford the full cost of treatment.

RedRover Relief

RedRover Relief provides financial assistance grants and additional resources so pet owners and rescuers can care for animals who need urgent veterinary care. Visit for eligibility requirements and application. RedRover also offers financial assistance for victims of domestic violence and their pets. To learn more about this program, visit

The Pet Fund

The Pet Fund is a registered 501(c) 3 nonprofit association that provides financial assistance to owners of domestic animals who need veterinary care. Often animals are put down or suffer needlessly because their owners cannot afford expensive surgery or medical treatment. Companion animal owners must often make the difficult decision to put an animal down or neglect medical needs because of the costs involved.


Live Like Roo, a volunteer-run 501C3 organization, provides support and financial assistance to families whose pet faces a cancer diagnosis. They pay bills for biopsies, amputations, medications, growth removals and much more.


From GE Credit, CareCredit is a personal line of credit that offers special financing and low monthly payment options, no up-front costs and no pre-payment penalties so you can keep your pet happy and healthy.


  • Chicago: The Anti-Cruelty Society provides veterinary services to low-income pet owners in the Chicago area.

  • The Brown Dog Foundation provides financial assistance to low-income residents of Illinois, Iowa and Tennessee to help offset the cost of veterinary emergencies and treatment of chronic conditions.

  • Spay Illinois has a program called Project Families Forever that provides sliding-scale coverage for spay and neuter surgery, preventive care and, in some cases, emergency care.


Temporary Foster Homes

ANTI-CRUELTY SOCIETY’S Short-term Accommodations for Emergencies (SAFE)

Whether because of a house fire, natural disaster, medical condition, or domestic violence, people from all walks of life can find themselves temporarily displaced from their home.

Recognizing that there is a need for emergency sheltering of pets, The Anti-Cruelty Society has established the SAFE program. Providing 30 days of free care to approved applicants, this invaluable service keeps pets safe while their owners seek out new housing.

Blessed Bonds

BLESSED BONDS began in March of 2004 and merged with A.D.O.P.T. Pet Shelter in November of 2010. We have helped more than 900 pets of families experiencing a temporary crisis.

BLESSED BONDS is dedicated to preserving the human-animal companion bond and promoting its value.  We believe in keeping people and pets together.  Our vision is to keep pets out of the animal welfare system and in homes where they belong.

One of the top ten reasons people give up their pets is because of personal problems/medical crisis; for example, someone going into a hospital for 2 weeks or losing their home to foreclosure. This is where Blessed Bonds comes in. We offer temporary assistance to those who want to keep their animal companions but are having difficulties that interfere with their ability to meet their pets' daily needs. If you require assistance, please contact us at (630) 355-2299 or


Pet Food Banks


HOURS: First and Third Friday of the Month from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
LOCATION: C.A.R.E. Adoption Center, at 4927 Main Street, Skokie
APPLY: Online Form or Download Form or Clients can also fill out the application when they arrive at the Adoption Center. 

The C.A.R.E. Pet Food Pantry’s goal is to provide emergency food support for cats and dogs of residents of Skokie and surrounding communities. Program participants will receive dog and/or cat food that has been donated by area pet supply businesses. In addition to food, the C.A.R.E. Pet Food Pantry may also offer various pet supplies (leashes, bowls, toys, etc.) as available. 

“We want to help families keep pets in their homes rather than giving them up to a rescue group,” says Angela Love, the C.A.R.E. Kennel Director and a longtime volunteer at the Irving Park Food Pantry. 

C.A.R.E. Pet Food Pantry guidelines are as follows: 

  • C.A.R.E. will provide food assistance (one time per client per month) to pet owners. 

  • Pet owners must provide a document proving their pets have been spayed or neutered (veterinary record or adoption paperwork). If a pet cannot be spayed or neutered due to a medical issue, we ask clients to provide a letter from their vet on the animal hospital’s stationery.

  • Only one person per household may apply for assistance. An ID will be needed at time of application.

  • C.A.R.E. asks that clients agree to treat their pets humanely and provide medical assistance as needed.

  • We ask that clients refrain from adopting additional pets while involved in the C.A.R.E. program.

  • The amount of food clients receive will depend on the number and size of their pets.

  • Since our food comes from donated sources, C.A.R.E. cannot guarantee availability of particular brands.

  • C.A.R.E. does not provide shelter or medical assistance, but can provide clients with a list of low-cost spay and neuter clinics.

Irving Park Community Food Pantry

Pet Food Corner -  The mission of the Pet Food Corner is to assist unemployed and underemployed families who have trouble feeding and caring for their beloved pets. Pet Supply distribution occurs on Wednesday mornings from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. C.A.R.E. and other local organizations support this area of the pantry with food and supply donations!
3801 North Keeler Avenue
Chicago, IL 60641
Phone: 773-283-6296 or toll-free: 800-521-7560
Fax: 773-283-5945

Red Door Animal Shelter CAFé

CAFé is a pet food assistance program for low income pet owners. Food pantry participants may pick up food at the shelter at any time during regular business hours as well as on the last Friday of every month, from 1-2 p.m., at the Howard Area Community Center, 7648 N. Paulina, Chicago. Participants must be willing to get their animals altered in order to be eligible for pet food assistance.
2410 W Lunt Ave
Chicago, IL

PAWS Chicago Pet Food Bank

The PAWS Chicago Pet Food Bank provides emergency assistance to families facing unemployment, foreclosure, or other financial crises, thus enabling them to keep their pets. We provide pet food and pet supplies, such as cat litter, leashes, collars, cat carriers, and litter boxes until the family is able to provide these necessities on their own. In addition, owners can receive a voucher for free spay/neuter surgeries for their pet.


For many people, especially seniors, a pet is a beloved member of the family and stretching food to provide for an animal can be an overwhelming burden. Care for Real and the Bark Bark Club are working together to provide dog and cat food for pet owners in need. Local pet shops and veterinarians are donating pet food for monthly distribution through the Care for Real office.

Locations and Hours
Pet Food Distribution at Care for Real
5341 N. Sheridan Rd.
Contact: (773) 769-6182
Email office at

Pet Food Distributions: First Thursday of every month : 3:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.


Friendship Pet Food Pantry (FP2) provides pet food to Chicago residents in need. Food distribution takes place the third Saturday of every month at the Lincoln Square Friendship Center, from 9 to 11 a.m.

2733 W Lawrence Ave, Chicago


Tree House’s pet food assistance program provides free, supplemental cat and dog food, and supplies when available, to individuals facing economic challenges. Individuals must be approved by Tree House to receive assistance.

7225 N Western Ave, Chicago
773.262.4000 x. 101

Please contact the organizations listed above for the most up to date information on their programs.

Check for information on more programs.

updated September 2019