Our beloved pets can live up to 20 years, so there are many years where accidents and illnesses can occur. To be sure you can afford to care for your pet when something unfortunate happens, it’s a good idea to buy pet insurance.
Is pet insurance worth the cost?
Cancer and other illnesses affecting pets are on the rise. Procedures and medicine to treat these problems can cost thousands of dollars. If you don’t have pet insurance, you’ll either need to spend a large amount of money to deal with the problem or may be forced to put your pet down.
The reason pet insurance is so expensive is that treatments for pets are also very costly. Chemo and radiation for pets can cost up to $10,000, which is very overwhelming if you have to pay for the full bill out of pocket.
To simply get your cat’s ailment diagnosed, it can cost $500 to $1,000. Surgical procedures are often between $800 and $2,000. If your cat has cancer, chemotherapy can run you up to $5,000 and radiation may be as much as $8,000.
If these amounts seem insurmountable, getting insurance for your pet is probably a good idea.
What are the main types of insurance plans?
As the name suggests, accident insurance plans cover your pet’s treatment when it’s involved in an accident. For example, if your pet gets hit by a car, swallows an expensive watch, or has eaten something toxic.
Depending on the type of insurance policy you take for your pet, illness pet insurance can cover everything from minor illnesses to costly treatments like cancer.
Standard insurers have regulations on what they cover, in order to maintain their pocket-friendly fees. If you want to make sure even the most expensive diseases are covered, you will need to cough-out some good cash for pet insurance. In return, they will cover complicated and expensive treatment procedures.
Most pet owners don’t see the need to buy this type of insurance since is covers basic procedures, which in most cases are not costly. Wellness pet insurance includes vaccinations, grooming and regular check-ups.
It’s important to be aware that accidental and illness pet insurance policies do not cover wellness, so if you want to be covered in all 3 areas, you’ll need to get a complete package and read carefully to see what it covers.
What are the benefits of insuring your pet?
You might be wondering why you should take pet insurance. First, make sure to research whether your pet is prone to any costly genetic illnesses like cancer or diabetes. If your pet’s breed is more likely to get certain illnesses, it could be beneficial to get a comprehensive policy.
If your breed is known for being healthy, you might choose a more basic plan. This, of course, accepts the risk than you may end up investing in expensive treatments. Getting pet insurance puts you on the safe side when illness or accidents strike your pet.
In addition to getting your pet insured, it’s good to have a medical emergency savings account. This will make sure the worst doesn’t happen when you urgently need cash to pay for things that insurance doesn’t cover.
How do they determine the price of pet insurance?
Your pet may seem healthy now, but this won’t always be the case. A few factors that make the insurance companies charge so much include the breed, age and location of your pet. These factors and the type of insurance you prefer determine how much your policy will cost.
Many insurers cover hereditary, congenital, and chronic treatment and medication, which make the insurance policies very expensive. If your pet doesn’t have any particular condition which requires special treatment, the best insurance policies will cost more than you would probably end up paying out of pocket.
Young pets are cheaper to insure
One common tactic insurance companies follow is targeting pet owners of puppies and kittens, or other young pets. Getting pet insurance for young animals is usually very cheap, so it seems like an affordable investment for families.
However, in most cases young pets are far less likely to develop any illnesses or conditions. So, caring for a young animal is cheap and rarely requires large vet bills or insurance coverage.
What insurers often fail to let you know, because they want to keep you on the hook, is that insurance premiums get higher as pets grow older. Towards the end of life, insurance can be too expensive and unaffordable for middle-class clients.
Then pet owners are left with no option other than letting their pet insurance policy lapse, even though they spent a lot of money on it over the years. For example, when the insurance plan gets to be more than $200 per month, it may not be cost-effective anymore.
Tips for choosing pet insurance
Check what is and what’s not covered
This one should come first when you are checking out policies and regulations of an insurer. Understanding this before settling on a given insurer, prevents disappointment at the time when you need your insurance to lessen medical charges for your sick adorable pup or kitten.
The best time to get your pet enrolled in an insurance plan is at 3 months old or younger. Did you know you can register your pup or kitten when they’re as young as 6 weeks old?
The reason to sign up for an insurance plan at such a young age is to get on the lucky side, as many pre-existing conditions start showing when the pet is over 12 months old. If a pet already has a pre-existing condition when you sign up for your plan, it won’t be covered. Or they will just deny you coverage completely.
Wellness and routine care
You can cut insurance costs by choosing a more basic package. All-inclusive insurance packages that cover all your potential needs and things like grooming are very expensive and often not worth the cost.
The take away
Getting an insurance policy brings peace of mind to many pet owners. People don’t want to see their beloved pets get ill or injured. It can be a very expensive part of your budget, but sometimes a pet’s wellbeing is priceless.
If you are considering getting pet insurance for your pet, make sure to take its health into consideration and read the insurance terms and conditions very carefully, so you fully understand where and when you’ll be covered.