Have a four-legged family member? Fur-tunately, your pet can have insurance too!
Did you know that about 90.5 million families own a pet, according to the surveys conducted by the American Pet Products Association?
More than 63 million US households own dogs and more than 42 million have cats.
We all know the many health benefits to us and our children of owning a pet, like decreased blood pressure and lower cholesterol levels. Besides better lab tests, studies show that cat and dog owners are generally happier, less stressed out, and healthier too.
With so many gifts we get from our four-legged friends, it is only fair that we take great care of them in return.
Having Pet insurance is one of the ways to show your love and appreciation for your furry family member.
Did you know that the largest share of insured pets resides in California, New York, and Florida? Way to go, California! We do love our furbabies.
There are usually 2 policy options: Accident & Illness and Accident, Illness & Wellness.
Accident & Illness Plan
An Accident & Illness Plan often would cover the following:
- Accidental injuries (including to permanent teeth)
- Illnesses (including cancer, influenza and kennel cough)
- Alternative medicine
- Behavioral therapy
- Hereditary and congenital conditions
- Ingestion of a foreign object
- Euthanasia or anesthesia
- Cremation and burial expenses
- Accidental death
Accident, Illness & Wellness Plan
An Accident, Illness & Wellness Plan provides coverage for everything listed under the Accident & Illness policy, plus fixed payment amounts for the following:
- Wellness exams
- Routine dental cleaning
- Flea and tick prevention
- Prescription medications
- Boosters and vaccinations
Depending on the insurance company you may find certain eligibility requirements even before you are able to purchase Pet insurance, such as proof of a prior physical exam.
As with any type of insurance, a Pet policy is not a stranger to its own restrictions:
- Like the most common 14-day waiting period before coverage kicks in for illness or injuries due to an accident. However, for something more serious like hip dysplasia, the waiting period can often be somewhere between 6 to 12 months.
- Age restrictions for dogs over 13 years old and cats over the age of 15. This restriction is only for a new Pet policy. If your dog or a cat has been insured – the company will renew their coverage regardless of the pet’s age. Some insurance companies have this feature known as a “guaranteed renewable”.
What’s not covered?
It is important that you understand any insurance product you buy, because each company and policy they offer may be different and unique. Yes, there may be some exclusions too, so it is imperative to know what is covered and what is specifically excluded so there are no surprises after the fact. Here is an example of some common exclusions and out-of-pocket costs you may find in Pet insurance:
- Pre-existing conditions
- Breeding and pregnancy
- Organ and tissue transplants
- Experimental and investigative treatments
- Professional or commercial use
- Unlawful acts
- Cosmetic procedures
- Hereditary and congenital conditions
How does Pet Insurance work?
Pet insurance is a reimbursement-based plan. Because of that, it is applicable for treatments at any licensed veterinary clinic in the U.S. or Canada, including treatment from licensed specialists and emergency facilities. So, here is how it works:
- You take your pet to the veterinarian for a covered treatment and pay the vet’s bill at the time of service.
- Submit a claim to your Pet insurance for reimbursement.
- Insurance company will reimburse you 70% to 100% for Covered Expenses, minus any applicableDeductible
Get Pet insurance and enjoy a wonderful life adventure together with your pet. Go ahead and finally take that road trip without worrying about your dog’s possible injuries while in another state. Everyone needs a friend. So, go on walks and play with them, and let your cat or a dog be the companion they are meant to be.