There is no doubt your furry friend is a cherished part of your family. They grow, play, and sleep right alongside you and your loved ones. And just as you care for the health of your family members, you are likely invested in the health of your pet.
Pet insurance can ensure your pet’s health is taken care of for life, because accidents and illnesses will happen. It’s important that you are prepared for anything. By looking into pet insurance plans for dogs and cats, you are making your pet’s care less of a financial burden. Jason Alderman writes in Huffington Post that while the choice to purchase pet insurance is ultimately up to the owner’s priorities, the base cost of veterinary care is on the rise.
“Veterinary science, like human medicine, has made incredible strides in recent decades so many conditions that formerly would have doomed an animal to being put down are now easily treatable — but at quite a cost,” he writes.
Even a simple tooth removal in your dog will cost an average of $403.82, while treating a torn ACL will set you back at least $769.20. And on top of that, you can expect to spend $235 on routine wellness checkups for dogs each year, and $196 for cats.
So, if you do decide to select a pet insurance plan to cover these veterinary bills, keep the following tips in mind.
Enroll Your Pet When They Are Young
This is one of the best steps you can take to save money on pet health insurance. While your pet is young, they are less likely to have preexisting conditions or other health ailments that aren’t coverable from pet health insurance plans. You are also more likely to be approved for insurance if your puppy or kitten is in good health, which most are.
Research a Provider’s Credibility
You wouldn’t select the first plan you find for yourself, so why do the same for your pet? Take the time to look into all possible pet insurance providers. Research how long they have been in business and see if any customer reviews are available. You should prioritize a company who has experience treating pets and seems to have ethical customer service practices.
Consider How Much Coverage You Want
Not every plan is created equal. While some plans may just cover emergency care and surgeries, others may also cover preventative care and checkups. While more thorough coverage may cost you more, it may be worth it for some pets. If you know that your pet has a health condition or is prone to eating things it is not supposed to, you might consider adding additional coverage.
Read the Fine Print
Before you sign on to any insurance plan, know exactly what you are getting into. Insurance companies can try to sneak exclusions into the terms and conditions of the pet health insurance policy, so try to find a sample policy packet to check if these coverage gaps are included in the fine print. If you do not clearly understand the policy’s language, call the insurance company and ask for clarification.
Ask Your Veterinarian for Advice
Your vet is a great resource for choosing a pet insurance plan. The office may have certain plans that they prefer. Your vet will also know the difference between pet insurance plans for dogs and those for cats. Also be sure to ask which plans are best for your animal’s specific health needs.
Above all, the benefit of pet insurance is the promise of long term care for your pet when the time comes. It’s the same as health insurance for humans. Pet care can get expensive as our animals age, so by making the investment now, you are saving yourself money and peace of mind down the line — and potentially saving your pet’s life.
About the Author
Chelsea Mull is a digital marketing manager at PetFirst Pet Insurance, where her office mates often have four-legs and get paid with treats and belly rubs. At home, her 9-year-old Shih Tzu rules the roost while enjoying his favorite activity of napping on the back of the couch.