Grenloch, New Jersey
PetPALS of Southern New Jersey, Inc. is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that works to improve quality of life for pet owners in need. PetPALS helps low-income seniors, disabled and chronically ill pet owners with basic care of their companion pets, to reduce suffering and ensure our community members don't have to surrender their beloved pet pals to a shelter. We are a group of volunteers who work to keep people and their pets together, as we recognize the important role pets play in a person's life:
• Pet ownership, particularly dogs and cats, has been shown to reduce blood pressure. Petting a dog and feeling a cat purr has an effect on the human cardiovascular system that lowers the blood pressure response to mental stress.
• Pet owners have higher one-year survival rates following heart attacks.
• Pets have an impact on depression and feelings of loneliness.
• When someone is diagnosed with dementia, it is often assumed that keeping their pet is impossible. Studies show that pets have been known to increase the health of those with dementia while providing them with a friend to spend their time with.
• People suffering from cancer who have pets have reported decreased pain and a decreased need for pain medication, lowered psychological distress and less fatigue.
Whether pet ownership gives pet owners cause to exercise, helps to abate loneliness, or gives them loving companions to care for, lessen worry, anxiety and pain, we recognize that animals can influence both our happiness and our health.
Pets are an important part of our emotional support network. They offer a source of warmth, trust and unconditional love, asking for very little in return. The terminally ill and elderly face many changes in their lives. They experience loss of health, often coupled with loss of financial stability, employment and even friends. In these times, the companionship of their pets offers real emotional and psychological benefits.
We have found that as people face financial difficulty, one of the hard choices and sacrifices they need to make is in their pet's veterinary care and, eventually, their food. This often leads to pets missing crucial vaccinations, regular exams that are able to diagnose and prevent serious (and costly) injuries and illnesses, and pets becoming overweight due to lack of exercise and a diet more reliant on human food, rather than pet food. This often places our target client demographic in a difficult position of having to choose between caring for themselves or caring for their pets, which leads to more pets being set free or surrendered to shelters, or being euthanized due to the inability to care for them.
This is where we operate. PetPALS of Southern New Jersey offers low- or no-cost services to financially-qualifying clients, including delivering food and supplies, medicines, preventive and emergency veterinary care and more to keep animals happy and healthy, and to help lessen the demands on a fixed-income client.
Our services include:
• In-home pet care: We aid our clients in maintaining the health and wellbeing of their companion animal, including delivery of food, supplies (e.g., cat litter), and preventive medicines (e.g., flea and heartworm medication).
• Veterinary care: We can provide help in obtaining professional pet healthcare through our network of partner veterinarians - everything from regular exams to emergency surgery, therapies and much more.
• Pet grooming: Basic grooming services to help improve animal quality of life, including dog nail trimming and coat mat removals.
• Transportation: Our volunteers can offer transportation to grooming and veterinary appointments for our clients' pets only. (Due to insurance limitations, we are not able to transport our clients.)
• Education: We act as a resource and referral network and can provide health and educational information, including "safe pet" guidelines to owners. We also offer a speaker's bureau about our programs and the issues we are concerned with.
• Long-term planning: Assistance may be made available in planning to ensure continuous pet care, and legal resources and referrals for wills and power-of-attorney documents.
PetPALS of Southern New Jersey was founded to provide services to pet owners, offering food, medicine, grooming and preventive veterinary care for our clients' companion animals. Our volunteers offer fellowship and pet transport to help your pet pal stay healthy and with you as long as possible. Our assistance is available to pet-owners who have a terminal or chronic illness, or a financially-needy senior citizen, and who reside in Camden, Gloucester or Burlington counties in New Jersey.