More and more pet owners are getting insurance for their pets to help save money with veterinary costs. Every year the cost of vet procedures rises, and it can become very expensive when a pet gets ill or has an injury. This is why more than one million pets are now insured in the US, with a collective cost of $595 billion.
A couple of questions many people ask themselves are these: how easy is it to get pet insurance and how fast can you get it?
Many pet owners worry about something happening to their pet, which means they want the insurance to work quickly, just in case the unthinkable happens. However, there are often waiting periods with pet insurance. Read on to find out more about these waiting periods and what they mean.
Applying for pet insurance
The process of applying for pet insurance is relatively quick and simple. Most people will use comparison sites to see what the best price is and what is offered with the insurance policy. To do this they need to enter in the details for their pet. This will include:
- The pet’s name
- Their age
- The breed
- The gender
- If there are any pre-existing conditions
Insurance providers will use this information to create a quote for the best insurance. Once you have decided on a provider, you will often go to their website and finish filling out the rest of the details or they will ring you. Once everything is signed and sealed, the policy documents will be sent to you where you can keep them for reference.
The waiting period for pet insurance
Unfortunately, there is no crystal ball that will allow you to see when your pet is going to be ill or have an accident. That is why it’s important you get pet insurance as soon as you can. If you own a young pet, set up the insurance after you bring them home.
If you are adopting an older dog, it is important that you do the same, but also that you are aware of any potential pre-existing conditions they have. This will impact what sort of insurance policy your pet can qualify for.
No matter which insurance policy you choose, most providers will have a waiting period for pet insurance. This is a period of time from when the policy starts that you won’t be able to make a claim on an illness.
For many pet insurance providers, the waiting time after signing up lasts 14 days before the cover starts. However, some policies offer cover from 10 days and there are even some insurance providers that have no waiting period at all.
The waiting period doesn’t always apply to injuries, but it depends on the policy and insurance. Some will cover injuries and allow you to make a claim after 48 hours. There are other providers who don’t have a waiting period for accidents at all.
When can you make a claim?
A claim can only be made once the cover on the policy has started. Most of the time you will need to wait two weeks. If your pet contracts an illness or injures themselves in this time period, you will have to cover the vet bills yourself. This is why it is important to get pet insurance as soon as possible.
However, if you choose an insurance policy that has no waiting period, you are free to make a claim as soon as needed.
When you make a claim, it is important that you do so quickly by calling them. That way you can fill out all the necessary forms and they can help to pay the veterinary bills within 30 days of the form being submitted. In some cases, you will need to pay the vet bills before the money from the insurance arrives, but you will be reimbursed.
Frequently Asked Questions About Pet Insurance
Is pet insurance worth the cost?
Pet insurance is a good option for people who might not have a lot of savings. Without insurance, any vet bills would have to be paid by the owner. In some cases, these bills could cost hundreds or thousands of dollars, which would force the owner into debt.
If you are worried about whether you could afford the treatment for your pet, it is a good idea to invest in pet insurance. After all, you have no way of knowing when your pet might come down with an illness. If you can’t afford treatment, you may have no other alternative but putting your pet down.
What if my pet isn’t a cat or a dog?
Most people think about getting pet insurance for their cats or dogs, but what if you own another animal as a pet? The number of insurance providers who provide insurance for other animals are limited, but they are out there. It is possible to insure birds, small mammals, reptiles and other animals.
Can I get insurance if my pet has a diagnosis?
If your pet has been diagnosed with a medical condition, you might be wondering if you can still get insurance for them. The answer is yes, you can. However, the condition they were diagnosed with will be classed as pre-existing. Most insurance providers won’t cover a pre-existing condition as it is seen as a risk to them.
A pre-existing condition is one that happened or showed symptoms before the pet’s insurance cover started. A pre-existing condition can also be one that was related to one that happened before, such as an injury caused by another. If you want these conditions to be covered, you will often have to pay more.
Choose the right insurance policy for your pet
It is important to remember that once you take out pet insurance, you will have to wait before a claim can be made. Not everyone realizes this, and it can cause financial stress if a pet is ill within that time frame. However, if you purchase the insurance as soon as you buy or adopt your pet, you can keep them safe indoors until the waiting period is over.