Pets are so much more than just our animals. As one Emancipet client simply puts it,
“They are part of our family, and you can’t do without them.”
Best friends, therapists, cuddle buddies, soul mates- however we describe our relationships we share with our pets, one thing is certain; the human-animal bond is powerful. Emancipet understands this bond, and does everything to protect and preserve it.
For 19 years, Emancipet has kept the health of our pets at the heart of its mission. What began as an Austin-based clinic on wheels in 1999, Emancipet has now grown to included six brick and mortar locations and a mobile clinic. In 2017, Emancipet opened a branch in Philadelphia, its first outside of Texas. In January of 2018, Emancipet’s central Austin clinic moved into state of the art, 3,900 square foot space.
Emancipet believes vet care should be affordable and accessible to all pet owners. The ASPCA estimates that on average, a new pet owner can expect to spend more than $1,000 in pet-related products and services in the first year of pet ownership alone. Bills stack up, and can create significant financial strain for any family, especially when a pet becomes unexpectedly sick or injured.
Life happens. Pets get sick. People are faced with unemployment or other financial hardships. A family shouldn’t be forced to surrender a beloved pet because they can’t access affordable care.
Amy Mills, CEO of Emancipet, recognized the burden pet owners faced when it came to routine veterinary care for their pets. She wanted to ensure pet owners had a high quality, low-cost option.
“The most heartbreaking data point was that 40 percent of those lower-income people giving up their pets said that if they had access to free or low-cost veterinary care, they would have kept them,” Mills told the Austin American Statesman back in 2016, “We see a future where there is a safe, affordable vet clinic in every underserved neighborhood.”
Since 2006, when Mills was chosen to lead Emancipet, the future-minded CEO has taken the organization’s operating budget from $1 million to almost $14 million, increased staff, and continued to push growth. Breaking down barriers to care with zero judgment, is how Mills would put it- Emancipet offers quality vet care to all.
Today, Emancipet continues to lead the movement to offer affordable programs and veterinary treatment for underserved communities. In each of its locations, Emancipet offers wellness services and spay and neuter procedures. In Austin and Houston, Emancipet offers treatment for heartworms, a common condition for pets living in the south, and one that has been historically very expensive to treat. Most recently, Emancipet’s new central Austin location added special surgeries and dental cleanings to its quickly expanding menu of low-cost services.
Looking through the lengthy scroll of Emancipet client stories, no one tale is the same. Like the relationships we have with our own pets, each of these love stories is special. Emancipet celebrates the uniqueness of each client’s journey and focuses on providing the best care for pets, so these stories can continue to be told, year after year.
Just ask faithful client, Bobby Brown. While once living on the street, his dog as his only source of emotional support, Bobby was able to get his life back on track and keep his dog, Poopsy, healthy and thriving with the help of Emancipet. Without Emancipet, the reality of high veterinary care could have left Bobby in a much different world- one without his faithful companion.
“By my estimation. Not only did you save one life, but you saved two lives,” Brown says.
Emancipet believes each individual should have access to affordable veterinary care. It’s a simple mission with a great impact- for pets and the families who love them.