Pet health insurance is one of those things that can be rather personal. A lot of people feel strongly one way or another, and that is fine. There are a lot of considerations to make before deciding to get or not get insurance for your pet. Mom has had insurance for all us dogs since she moved back from Germany in 2007 and it gives her peace of mind. Let’s look at what you need to know to make the right decision on this topic.
One of the most common things we hear from people is to just put the premium payment each month in a bank account instead of paying it to an insurance company. The idea is a nice one, but the problem is you don’t know when something may happen and how much it will cost. At thirteen months old, Nelson had eye surgery that came to over two thousand dollars. Had we depended on savings for that, we would have come up very short. Madison has had an expensive year with her leg injury last winter and the recent incident. Had we put away the premium amount in savings rather than with pet insurance, we would have not quite had enough to cover it all. Remember you also have the regular expenses every year of exams, immunizations, flea/tick/heartworm medications and possibly other things.
How many dogs do you have? If you only have one, savings may be more feasible, but if you have multiple dogs, things add up fast. Two years ago our cats both had some bigger vet bills and they didn’t have insurance. Their bills can also be quite high, but dogs tend to end up costing more in the long run.
How much money do you make? Can you afford to save enough for everything including pet emergencies? Are you willing to take out a loan if need be, or put the bill on a credit card and pay that off over time? There is no right or wrong answer, only factors to consider.
Which Pet Health Insurance Is Right For You
There are a lot of different companies out there to choose from when it comes to pet insurance. We started out with one but it got more expensive and then we moved to one that suits our needs better. Bailie was unable to switch as she was over the enrollment age but she still is insured by the old company.
One big thing to think about is whether you want unlimited yearly and/or lifetime benefits or not. Bailie is with Nationwide and her last injury stopped paying before treatment was done because she reached the limit on that injury. We are talking about $1000 or so. Cancer can be ongoing and expensive, and other conditions may need lifelong care.
Will the insurance cover breed specific or hereditary conditions? Many will not.
How about coverage for everything including annual exams, medications, immunizations? If this is important to you, make sure the company covers those items.
Can claims be filed on line, do they offer direct deposit, are claims paid out in a timely manner?
These things seem obvious, but you really need to look into what is important to you to make sure it is covered.
Don’t Wait To Enroll Your Pet
Don’t wait to enroll your pet. We were all enrolled as new puppies. As soon as your dog has a medical history, it can become more difficult to find insurance if there are any pre-existing conditions. Some companies require dogs to be under a certain age or they won’t insure them.
Peace Of Mind
At our house, we’re thankful we have pet health insurance for Mom’s piece of mind. Our insurance of choice is Healthy Paws. They are friendly and helpful, and they pay out claims usually within days of submitting a claim online. You can choose direct deposit or check which is also nice. The price works for us and most importantly, there are no yearly or lifetime limits on benefits. They allow you to choose a deductible and that determines your reimbursement percentage. That’s our take on pet health insurance. As long as you make an informed decision, that is all that matters. Your furry ones depend on you and as with humans, their health can take a bad turn in seconds and you need to be ready to be there for them.
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