The Pets for Vets Act
Veterans living in California can now adopt a pet for free at their local shelters. The SB 245, named the Pets for Vets Act, went into effect on January 1, 2020.
How Do I Adopt a Pet Using SB 245?
Veterans must have a valid driver’s license with the status “VETERAN” on their ID to be eligible to receive the adoption fee waiver. The Pets for Vets Act waives adoption fees, but other fees, such as licensing, may not be covered.
Only one dog or one cat may be adopted with the waiver every 6-month period. At this time, only dog and cat species are listed explicitly in the bill. It’s always a good idea to check the local shelter for restrictions on waivers and types of animals (e.g., reptiles, rabbits, birds.)
Private shelters are under different legislative rules and aren’t required to fulfill the waiver adoption fee.
More on Pets for Vets
Currently, there are 2 million Veterans living in California, the largest Veterans population in the country. Many suffer from invisible wounds like PTSD and depression. Animal companionship can help Veterans transition into the civilian lifestyle.
The bill’s creator, Senator Ling Ling Chang hopes reduced costs break financial barriers for Veterans. Senator Chang said about the new bill, “As the saying goes, a dog is a ‘man’s best friend.’ My four-legged companions are a part of my family and bring me joy and laughter when I’m home. Our brave veterans deserve the same happiness.”