Petplan pet insurance and the National Police Dog Foundation (NPDF) have joined forces to improve access to veterinary care for active and retired police K-9s.

In addition to hereditary health conditions a K-9 officer’s breed may dictate, occupational hazards like gunshot or stab wounds, lacerations, tail injuries, and exposure to highly toxic substances like illegal drugs all threaten a police dog’s health.

Providing adequate veterinary care to treat both acute injuries and degenerative disease presents a huge financial burden to police departments, so protecting K-9 officers with pet insurance like Petplan makes good sense for municipalities.

Unfortunately, K-9 units often lack the funds for such an investment—even though Petplan can save them thousands in the long run.

To address this need, the NPDF and Petplan recently launched a K-9 Health Insurance Grant. The endowment will cover one year of comprehensive pet insurance for five currently active police dogs and is open to police and other working K-9 units throughout the US.

“Police dogs may have the heart of a lion, but their bodies aren’t always so brawny—and they deserve the best protection in return for their years of heroic service,” said Natasha Ashton, cofounder and co-CEO of Petplan. “When [cofounder and co-CEO] Chris [Ashton] and I learned that K-9 units are notoriously underfunded and that police dogs are at risk for shorter and less comfortable lives because of the burden of the cost of their medical care, we knew we had to get involved.”

The NPDF K-9 Health Insurance Fund, which is supported by donations, backs the grant awards. While the initial grant is for active working dogs, Petplan and the NPDF plan to expand the program to include retired K-9s, when the burden of their medical care shifts to the adopter. As donations to the fund grow, more grants will be made available to K-9 handlers.

“Petplan’s support of the K-9 Health Insurance Grant, and their passion for improving quality of life and access to essential veterinary care for K-9 officers, dovetails perfectly with our mission,” said Jim Reilly, NPDF president. “Our hope is that this grant program will not only help cash-strapped police departments take the best care of four-legged officers, but also that it gets the message out to the public that there’s a simple way they can help ensure K-9s get medical treatment—and that is by donating to the grant fund.”

The first five pet insurance grants were awarded in early August based on direct application to NPDF from interested police K-9 units. To learn more about Petplan’s sponsorship of the NPDF, visit  

To learn more about Petplan and how we support AAHA practices as the exclusive provider in the AAHA Member Values Program, visit or call 800-212-2692. 

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