What is PALS?

PALS Mission

“It is the mission of Pets Are Loving Support, Inc. to provide ongoing care and support to the pets of Atlanta area persons living with disabilities due to HIV/AIDS, terminal illnesses, and the elderly. With this help, pets and owners may remain together to share the healing power of love and companionship which flows from the human-animal bond.”

How PALS Started

Pets Are Loving Support (PALS), an Atlanta based 501(c)(3) organization,was founded in 1990 by two Atlanta business-women, Dr. Susan Wynn, a veterinarian, and Dr. Margaret Schulte, an educator, who met while doing volunteer work for Project Open Hand. Not only did they have a common interest in working with AIDS patients, but they were animal lovers. One day another volunteer mentioned that there was a person with AIDS who was living alone with his best friend, a cat. He was sharing his one meal per day with his cat and foregoing some of his medications in order to pay for vet care for his animal. Drs. Wynn and Schulte were very touched by the fact that this individual was risking his own health for the health of his only friend, the cat. They immediately realized that the human-animal bond was extremely important to persons living with AIDS. So many lose the support and contact of family and friends, not to mention their financial independence, jobs, homes, and savings. This was an area in the life of persons living with AIDS that needed to be addressed. So, they began collecting pet food. From this humble beginning started PALS.

Since its beginning, PALS has provided services to more than 1,000 clients and over 1,300 companion animals. Currently PALS assists nearly 200 animals with the help of more than 25 volunteers. PALS helps persons with disabled by critical illnesses and the elderly keep their companion animals by providing free pet food and delivery to home-bound clients in the Metro Atlanta area.

How PALS Helps

PALS pays for basic veterinary care including: annual immunizations, vaccinations, flea control, spaying and neutering services, providing free transportation to and from vet clinics, providing contacts for free foster care and adoption programs when necessary. PALS also provides health and educational information regarding “safety” guidelines to owners. PALS has developed relationships with area veterinary clinics which provide a minimum discount to our clients for specialty procedures. This also includes mobile veterinary services for animals that are not transportable.

PALS Programs

Disabling Illnesses:  Pets Are Loving Support, Inc. assists pet owners disabled by life-threatening illness to maintain their quality of life by enabling them to continue with the benefits associated of animal companionship. Numerous studies have noted the positive correlation between individuals with animals and improved emotional outlook and health stability.

Companionship for the Elderly:  Pets Are Loving Support helps low-income seniors over the age of 65 maintain their quality of life by providing assistance with the care of their companion animals. Numerous studies have noted the positive correlation between seniors with animals and improved emotional outlook and health stability.

Please contact PALS at 404-876-7257 and we will mail you the appropriate application or click the link below and print the application on your printer.

**We are currently only accepting new applications for terminally ill clients.  All new client applications will be added to a 30 day waiting list.  Once we have vacancies in the program we will open it to those new clients in order their applications were received.  There is no projected time frame for when new clients will be added.  We thank you for your patience.

PALS Application Disabling Illness

PALS Application Elderly

Details

Required Paperwork

Proof of Medical Disability and Diagnosis:  This must be a current letter from your medical provider, on letterhead, confirming your disability due to illness.

Income Documentation:  Social Security award letter, Disability award letter.

Proof of Georgia Residency:  Georgia drivers license, utility bill or rental agreement.

Pet Ownership Verification:  The most recent veterinary record must state your name and the name if your pet(s).  Proof of Spay/Neuter letter.

Please provide all these documents with the completed application.

Income

Income must be less than $25,000 per year, and proof of total annual income, including any disability award must be provided prior to enrollment. PALS anticipates that most clients will be medically unable to work full time, but also recognizes that some clients able to work full-time may still fall below this income level. If a client cares for dependents in the household, adjustment of the income level will be considered on a case by case basis. Pets are not considered dependents.

Expenses

PALS does not cover the entire expense of owning and caring for a pet. The program does not cover prescription medications, emergencies, x-rays, and examinations other than annual exams. Some clinics have agreed to partner with the PALS program by providing a discount for services. The Atlanta Humane Society offers PALS clients a 25% discount on veterinary services.

Pet Food

PALS provides free pet food. We will provide pet food for pet(s) on record for each client only.  Please alert PALS to the special dietary needs (quantity and quality) of the pet. If animals require prescription diets, we will attempt to make these foods available, provided we have a veterinarian-approved letter on file.

If you have transportation, PALS would like you to come by the our office at 1530 Dekalb Ave, NE to pick up your food.  Please notify us by phone prior to running out. If you are housebound, depending on your location and the availability of volunteers, food delivery will be provided. We request you be at home to receive the food delivery. PALS currently has delivery routes in the greater Metro Atlanta area.

Veterinary Care

PALS covers the costs of annual immunizations, vaccinations, heartworm preventative and flea control. PALS operates a shot clinic to provide these services to our clients. Clients are responsible for a $22.00 co-pay.