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Pet Insurance – Is It Worth It

January 19th, 2012 Leave a comment Go to comments

I just wanted to give you a quick update on Charm and Daisy. They both came home from the emergency clinic last week, and are doing fine. You would never know anything happened to them if it weren’t for their shaved legs from where the IV’s were inserted. They did have some diarrhea which was probably a side effect of the medication, but other than that they’re back to normal. Thank goodness!

This whole ordeal got me thinking about pet insurance and how, in this instance, it would have been a big help. This would not be the first time I’ve thought about pet insurance. I’ve looked into it in the past, but I’ve not pursued it because I felt like it would be a waste of money. There are so many things you should consider when you’re evaluating the different pet insurances, it can be overwhelming. This video offers a few things you should pay attention to while you review the different providers.

How to Evaluate a Pet Insurance Policy

Here’s another video that provides a very basic comparison of four different pet insurance plans.

Pet Health Insurance Comparison by VNN.com

When I was doing my research I did find one company (Pet Plan Pet Insurance) that would continue to cover conditions diagnosed while on the plan. They would do that as long as you continued to renew your policy and did not lapse in your payments. Sounds great right? It is until you read some of their fine print. The deductible you have with this provider is PER CONDITION per year. That means if your pet is diagnosed with diabetes and then later on in the year is also diagnosed with arthritis, you are paying two deductibles, not one. I also had to laugh when I read their policy on covering prescriptions:

“Coverage for prescriptions is included in all Petplan policies, provided that they have been prescribed by the treating veterinarian as treatment for an illness or accident and the illness or accident is not a pre-existing condition. All prescriptions must be FDA approved for pets, subject to policy provisions. Nutritional supplements and vitamins are not covered by the policy.”

They might as well have said that they don’t cover prescriptions. Notice the “pre-existing condition”, “must be FDA approved for pets” and “nutritional supplements and vitamins are not covered” statements. Many prescription drugs used in the veterinary world are FDA approved for human use, not pet use. For example, of the eight different things my pets are on, only one is FDA approved for pet use (Derramax), 3 are not FDA approved (Tramadol, Lactulose, Piroxicam) and the remaining four are supplements (Azodyl, Epakitin, Vetri-Liver and Dasuquin).

There is one other thing to be aware of if you’re thinking about pet insurance – You’re still responsible to pay the vet bill. Your vet will want their money upfront. That means you still have to cover the full amount of the bill at the time of the service. You will be the one responsible to submit all of the paperwork to the insurance company, not your vet. The insurance provider will reimburse you based on the terms of your agreement.

If you’re interested in doing further research, I’ve compiled a listing below of some of the different pet insurance providers I’ve found. I doubt this is a comprehensive list. I’m sure there are others out there. I don’t endorse any of the companies, nor have I researched each one. I just thought I’d provide you with a one-stop shopping list for those of you interested in researching further.

So do you think pet insurance is worth it? Are any of you already using pet insurance? I would love to hear your opinions on the topic.

Pet Insurance Providers:

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  • http://trupanion.com/pet-insurance-comparison Michelle@Trupanion

    I believe knowing you can do everything possible to treat or save a pet is worth it. Part of this is making sure the pet insurance policy that you choose does not have payout limit or a benefits schedule–to know my cats are covered regardless cost.

    My two cats are always there for me and I want to always be there for them–pet insurance gives me that peace.