As many pet owners will tell you, their pet is often treated like a member of the family. If that pet becomes ill or suffers an injury, most owners will do anything to ensure their beloved pet gets the treatment it needs. Depending on the treatment needed, the cost can leave the owners with huge veterinary bills.
To prepare for such an occurrence, many owners are taking out insurance for their pet, to offset any costs that may be incurred and to ensure their pet gets the best treatment. Insurance can come in many flavors. The most basic insurance plans will only cover injuries and accidents such as car accidents, broken bones, swallowing foreign objects or poisons. These insurance plans will often cost around the 15-20 dollar per month mark. Although these are quite cheap, they are limited in what they cover.
The slightly more expensive pet health insurance plans will cover your pet against illness as well. These insurance policies will cover long term best insurance for guide dogs treatment for diseases such as cancer or other illnesses such as flu. Another often overlooked benefit of these more expensive policies is boarding for your pet. This can be invaluable if you yourself are taken ill and your pet needs to be homed whilst you are hospitalized or otherwise unable to care for your pet
When deciding which pet insurance policy to take out, don’t just look at the monthly cost. Take into consideration exactly what is covered for your pet and whether you are getting what you pay for. As a guide, here are some of things you should be asking :-
Does it matter how old my pet is? – Some pet insurance policies will not cover pets over a certain age or will have a higher premium for older pets.
Am I insured if my pet goes missing or is stolen? – Sometimes pets can go astray or get stolen. Should this happen, will your pet insurance policy cover the cost of advertising and or the cost of putting up a reward for safe return of your pet? Some policies will even reimburse the purchase price of your pet.
Is third party liability cover for my pet available? –
Nowadays, with claims for compensation becoming more and more common, it makes sense for you to insure yourself in case your pet causes damage to somebody else or their property. Third party liability cover against this up to an agreed value.
Will I have to pay an excess if I make a claim? – Most pet insurance health policies will carry an excess. This simply means that for any given claim, you as the policy holder will be liable to pay a certain amount towards the claim. More often than not, the policies with a lower monthly premium will have a higher excess. It is best to confirm that the excess is something you can afford before taking out an insurance policy for your pet.
As with most insurance policies, there are limitations and exclusions. It is wise to look into this before taking out any policy. It’s much better to find out now what is not covered than when you wish to make a claim.
In particular, check for limitations on how soon you can claim after the policy is taken out. Some policies will not allow a claim before a certain number of weeks have passed. Also check to see if preventative treatments are covered. Things such as fleas, worms, vaccinations, pregnancy etc.
Something else to consider is whether you will get a discount for insuring more than one pet. Some insurance companies will offer a 5% discount or similar if you insure all your pets on one policy.
If you require optimum coverage for your pet, you will find that insurance companies will allow you to add extra cover for a given charge. Additional cover may include:
Holiday cancellation – If your pet is ill and you need to cancel a holiday to get treatment, some policies will provide reimbursement for this.
Hospitalization Of Owner – If you are taken ill, your pets boarding costs will be covered.
Taking your pet abroad – Quarantine costs and emergency expenses when abroad can be covered.