New Bill May Make Your Pet’s Medical Bills Tax-Deductible And Lower Shelter Intakes


Pets are family members.  But who among us has not paid a visit to the veterinarian or local pet supply shop, seen the charges for our fur-buddy, sighed, then looked down at them and said, “too bad you can’t get a job…”

Well, this week one state assemblyman in California introduced a bill that would give pet owners a break on veterinary expenses, allowing dog and cat owners in that state to write off half the money they spend on vet costs, up to $2,000 per year.

Devon Mathis, R-Visalia, who is pet parent to two dogs and two cats, drafted the legislation.  If passed, Assembly Bill 942 would amend the state’s Revenue and Taxation code, take effect immediately, and remain a law until 1/1/2023, at which time it could be repealed, with any unused credits rolling over.  The tax credit would be in effect for each of those six years.

This bill is for qualified veterinary medical services,  including, but not limited to, vaccinations, annual check-ups, surgeries, and drug prescriptions.  For those who can’t afford the luxury of pet insurance, this may mean NOT having to make a gut-wrenching decision if your pet becomes ill, as well as cut down on shelter turn-ins AND increase adoptions!


Mathis said, “This is an incentive to do the surgery and keep them in the family.  It helps everyone across the state, every family and every pet lover out there.”



Always keeping his eye on how to best support his country, Assemblyman Mathis served for 10 years as a Sergeant in the Army National Guard, including two tours in Iraq.  He was awarded a Purple Heart after surviving severe injury in a roadside attack. He’s still giving back to his country and community.


His proposed legislation may be scheduled to be heard in committee in March.  To send your comments to your representative in CA, click here! If passed, not only would pet parents save some bucks on their furkids, but it would go a long way towards guaranteeing healthier, happier pets in that state. And that’s an idea everyone can get behind!


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Lisa Blanck

Writing articles about animals for more than 22 years, she dove into the rescue world with the onset of Hurricane Katrina. As an outspoken advocate for animals, she’s covered everything from paws to hooves, fins to feathers. She was the Orlando Animal Rescue and Worldwide Animal Issues Examiner for seven years. She’s always thinking pawsitive, looking for ways to improve the lives of animals. She lives with one dog, one cat and one patient human. She welcomes your suggestions and is thrilled to be part of the family!


  1. María says:

    This is a great idea for keeping pets healthier and in their home. The municipal shelters in my city are overwhelmed with relinquished and stray animals. Keeping animals out of shelters is going to save the city money in the long run. I hope CA sets the precedent!

  2. Angela says:

    I Pray that they pass this bill, cause it truly cost to take care of animals, they’re not cheap

  3. Bridget says:

    It’s about time! A thoughtful and practical proposal if enacted would benefit all taxpayers as we all contribute to continued operation of municipal and county shelters. As both an adopter and a rescuer I see so many positives for truly homeless pets such as having more time in shelter and greater chance of being rescued if I’ll surrenders aren’t taking up kennel space, in addition to the financial and emotional benefits to dedicated pet parents.

    1. Lisa Blanck says:

      Exactly my thoughts, Bridget! Though currently this is only proposed in CA, I can see that it would be helpful across the country, in so many ways. There’s a link in the story to contact your legislature, if you’re in CA. If you’re not in CA, feel free to share it with representatives in your own city!

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