Pricing And Reimbursement Levels
Policy pricing will also vary by the dogs age and breed, reimbursement level and deductible, type of coverage, and your location. Not all companies reimburse on a benefit schedule approach.; Many reimburse on the actual veterinary bill.; Its extremely important to look into the reimbursement levels as you choose your level of reimbursementbut, that doesnt mean youll be reimbursed the actual percentage.;
Youre going to have to dig deeper and look into each companys maximum payout per diagnosis under what is called a;benefit;schedule.;
Howdoes Pet Insurance Work
Like most insurances,the specific coverage varies depending on the breed and age of your dog. Themost expensive breed to ensure is the Great Dane .The cheapest breed to ensure is the Cocker Spaniel.
Medical history andtrends of the breed is a major influence in determining the final monthlypremiums.
The coverage you getdepends on what options you select . Ifyou choose an accident only plan, then you are likely to get a cheaper plan.
With the accident onlyplan, you are basically limited to any injury that your dog sustains in anaccident. In other words, cancer or hip dysplasia are not covered.
If you are worried aboutmedical complications caused by genetics or illness, then the accident plan isnot for you. You should consider adding basic coverage to an accident plan.This plan is also called Accident and Illness plans. Your dog is covered againstvet bills associated with accidents and illnesses including cancer, geneticdisorders, and diseases.
The most comprehensiveof the pet policies is called a wellness plan. This full-featured plan coverseverything mentioned above plus dental check-ups and cleanings, routine vetcheck-ups, and vaccinations.
Almost every petinsurance company will not cover pre-existing conditions.
Most companies will suggest that you enroll your dog as soon as possible so that you are covered against any health problem that your dog may experience.
What Is Preventive Pet Care
Preventive treatments are important for keeping your pet healthy. They can help your pet avoid serious health complications that are both unpleasant and expensive to treat. Here’s a look at several common examples…
|Where to look|
|Allergies, fleas, mites, ticks, lumps, skin infections, ear infections||Your pet could suffer from hair loss, tick-borne infections, tick-borne diseases, and hearing loss|
Paying for a single preventive procedure, like a wellness exam, is relatively affordable, but the cummulative costs of wellness care can add up.
For example, the cost of a dog dental cleaning and wellness exam add up to about $150. If you have a wellness plan, you could get reimbursed $100/yr for dental cleanings.
If you just adopted a new puppy, now is the best time to purchase a wellness plan.
Most adult dogs and cats need to visit the vet about once per year for routine care, but your puppy will need several appointments for core vaccinations and exams within their first year to ensure they get a good, healthy start on life.
Similarly, your pet may need more routine care as they get older. Signing up for a wellness plan early will ensure your senior pet gets all the care they need, and it could save you significantly on pet insurance for older dogs if they stay healthy due to routine checkups twice per year.
Don’t Miss: Parking Tickets Insurance
Should You Get Pet Insurance
Like property insurance , you wont necessarily save or make money in an average scenario, but in the event of a catastrophe, you may find its worth the investment.
While you may not get the most bang for your buck with a relatively healthy pet, theres no way to predict what illnesses or injuries might occur, and for many pet owners, knowing they have a safety net in place is value enough.
According to data based on average claims from PetFirst holders, the most common dog treatments cost $252.75 on average, while the most common cat treatments cost $266.79.
Pet insurance can help offset routine medical expenses and can be especially helpful for the unknown, said Dr. Jennifer Welser, chief medical officer of BluePearl Veterinary partners in Tampa. Keeping the coverage may give you the freedom to make medical decisions for your beloved pets based on quality of life, not finances.
To get the most benefit from pet insurance, enroll your pet when theyre young for maximum savings.;
Talk to your vet to get an idea of your pets potential breed-specific health problems, and ask them which insurance theyd recommend. If you decide to choose catastrophic coverage , spring for the highest deductible you can afford.
How Much Does Dog Insurance Cost
Complete CoverageSM does not include preventive care coverage, but you can add it to your plan at a low additional cost. It can help you manage the costs of services that keep your dog healthy, such as annual exams, heartworm medication, vaccines, dental cleanings, and more.
- Pick your annual limit: This is the most you can get reimbursed during your plan year. We have annual limit options ranging from $3,000 to unlimited, but we find that a $5,000 or $10,000 limit is the right fit for most people. If you choose a lower annual limit, youll pay a lower premium. If you go with a higher one, youll have the potential to get reimbursed more per plan year.
- Choose your annual deductible: You can choose a $100, $150, or $250 annual deductible. If you opt for a higher deductible, you can reduce your premium. Just keep in mind youll need to satisfy that higher amount before you can start getting reimbursed.
- Select a reimbursement percentage: You can opt to get reimbursed 70%, 80%, or 90% of covered veterinary costs. A lower reimbursement percentage will give you a lower premium. However, youll get less back on your covered claims.
Don’t Miss: Best Homeowners Insurance
The Cost Of Medical Emergencies
Unforeseen emergency veterinary care is almost impossible to predict – and all too common. In fact, 1 in 3 pets will need emergency treatment within a given year.
Accidents like dog bites, fractures, and object ingestion can cost thousands of dollars to treat. A ligament repair in dogs can cost $3,000 to $7,000, not including X-rays, anesthesia, and follow-up care .
For cats, a urinary obstruction often requires lab testing, antibiotics, and even surgery, which can cost up to $3,000.
At the very least, the average cost for unexpected veterinary care can range anywhere from $800 to $1,500 or more.
Considering 69% of Americans have less than $1,000 in savings to spend in an emergency, its troubling to think what could happen to a family if they are suddenly overwhelmed with thousands of dollars in veterinary expenses.
In the worst cases, a pet medical emergency can lead to long-term expenses.
When this happens, not only do you need to cover the cost of your visit to the emergency vet, but you also have to factor in long-term costs to your yearly budget.
If your pet is seriously injured or develops a chronic illness, they may need regular treatment and medications to maintain their quality of life.
What Are The Cons Of A Pet Savings Account
The biggest con of opening a pet savings account ties in with the major benefit of opening one you can use the funds for anything, including personal needs, and it can be sometimes tempting to take the funds out for something that you’re not supposed to.
If you see a new outfit you cant live without, you may decide to dip into your pets savings account. But if youre able to handle your money well, as well as not to give into temptations, then having the money available may not be an issue for you.
Another con of opening a pet savings account is timing it takes a while to build up the necessary amount of money for larger bills. Lets say you decide to follow the path of many pet owners and deposit your pets estimated monthly pet insurance premium amount into savings account: for example, $40 a month. In a year you would have deposited $480 into your pets savings account.
Then, your pet has unexpected injury, such as a common knee ligament injury. Your $480 will not cover close to half the estimated cost of treatment. In 2016, the average cost for treating a dogs knee injury’s cost was estimated at $3,456.
In order for your pets savings account to successfully work for your needs, you must make regular deposits. You will also need to watch your usage of the savings account. Using the funds may be useful if you or a family member are in a rut. Its not wise to use them for things that arent needed.
What Should I Keep In Mind When Searching For A Dog Insurance Policy
Many factors go into your choice of which dog insurance policy works best for you and your pet.
1. Cost of Dog Insurance
One of the biggest things to consider is cost. You will want to determine what you can afford to pay in a monthly premium as well as how well you might be able to manage the deductible should your pet get sick. Often, plans with a low monthly premium have a higher deductible and vice versa. If you dont have much flexibility in your budget for a larger deductible, for example, it may be best to choose a plan that costs a little more each month in order to have a lower deductible.
2. Age of Your Dog
Age of your pet is also important to consider. Many plans require that a puppy reach a certain age before offering coverage. Additionally, some plans do not cover senior dogs. Plans that do cover senior dogs may have varied levels of coverage as your pet ages.
3. How Much You Want Your Policy to Cover
Finally, youll want to consider how much you want your pet insurance policy to cover. Besides accident and illness coverage, many providers now offer wellness plans that cover the cost of routine veterinary care, and advanced treatment for conditions such as cancer. Additionally, youll need to think about things such as dog dental care being included in your plan. Of course, plans that cover more often also cost more, so you will have to decide how much you will want to pay up front versus at the time your pet becomes sick or injured.
Should I Get Dog Insurance Pros And Cons
Is dog insurance worth it? This is one of the most common questions dog owners ask. Of course they know their dogs health is important. But, does dog health insurance really cover what you need it to, and are the premiums affordable?
Much like human health insurance, dog insurance helps you afford medical care. Unexpected accidents and illnesses can cost you a lot of money. When you purchase dog insurance, youll pay monthly premiums to help you balance the cost of medical care.
However, some insurance companies may charge way more than your budget allows. Therefore, its important to find a good balance between coverage and cost to provide the best benefits to you and your dog.
This guide to dog health insurance will cover some of the basics of dog insurance. Additionally, Ill go over some of the pros and cons to help you better understand what dog insurance is all about.
You May Like: Does Dental Insurance Cover Veneers
Dog Insurance For Breeding Pets
Regardless of if you breed purebred or designer breed puppies, you can add protection for breeding pets when you enroll in a Trupanion policy for an additional cost.
You must add this coverage to your policy before your dog is pregnant. This added coverage protects your pet for all new illnesses and injuries related to breeding and whelping.
If youd like to get a Trupanion policy with breeding coverage for your dog, give us a call. Signing up is quick and easy, and were available 24/7 to answer any questions and get started.
Negatives Of Dog Insurance
Of course, dog insurance isnt perfect. There are hundreds of companies to choose from and they arent all created equal. In fact, some can be outright confusing to understand, leaving dog owners wondering, What pet insurance should I get? and Is pet insurance necessary?.
If you arent careful, you may end up paying more money each month than you need to. You may agree to coverage for more services than youll ever use for your dog. Additionally, theres a chance youll rarely have to use your dog insurance, making you pay more in premiums than in vet bills over your dogs life.
Furthermore, most dog insurance policies dont cover routine care, like vaccinations or vet exams, without adding on additional packages. In short, youll likely pay more money to have routine care covered on your policy. And, most plans also will not accept your pet with pre-existing conditions, so it can be difficult to find a policy for dogs who already have health concerns.
Don’t Miss: Do Parking Tickets Affect Car Insurance
Making A Claim Is Difficult And It Takes Forever To Get Reimbursed
Reimbursement doesnt take months. Most claims are processed within seven days of receiving the claim submission usually less. Missing information or the need for additional medical records from your veterinarian can cause a delay in reimbursement. Ensure that youve included everything the claims team will need to speed up the process and get reimbursed quicker.
Filing a claim is easy and only takes minutes. First, pay your veterinarian as usual and pick up your itemized bill. Then, submit your claim form and itemized bill via email, fax or postal mail. No vet signatures are needed.
Be Ready For Anything
Did you know that you can get comprehensive, everyday or emergency-only health insurance coverage for your pet that will reimburse eligible expenses for their health conditions? Plus, when you enroll two or more pets, you get an additional discount on your pets’ policies. Want to learn more? ClickÂ;here.
Dr. Hawkins received her veterinary degree from the University of California, Davis, and practices in Orange County, Calif.
Products underwritten by Veterinary Pet Insurance Company , Columbus, OH; National Casualty Company , Columbus, OH. Agency of Record: DVM Insurance Agency. All are subsidiaries of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. Subject to underwriting guidelines, review and approval. Products and discounts not available to all persons in all states. Insurance terms, definitions and explanations are intended for informational purposes only and do not in any way replace or modify the definitions and information contained in individual insurance contracts, policies or declaration pages, which are controlling. Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle, Nationwide is on your side, and vethelpline are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. Â©2021 Nationwide.
Recommended Reading: Does Travel Insurance Cover If Company Goes Bust
Are There Different Types Of Pet Wellness Plans
Most pet insurance providers offer multiple types of wellness plans for dogs and cats at different price points. Not surprisingly, the most expensive wellness plans cover more tests and procedures, whereas the lower-priced plans usually cover the basics.
When shopping and comparing pet insurance on Pawlicy Advisor, you may have the option to add one of two types of wellness plans to your policy. You can think of these as either a basic wellness plan or an enhanced wellness plan. These plans will have different names depending on the insurance company.
For example, ASPCA Pet Health Insurance offers two types of wellness plans:
- Basic Preventive Care
- Prime Preventive Care
You can add either one to qualifying ASPCA pet insurance policies. On Pawlicy Advisor, simply navigate to a quotes Overview and scroll down to see what the company offers under Routine Care Add-ons.
There, you can take a deeper look into each of these offerings to see which one is best for your pet. If you select one of these plans, it will be included in your total when you go to checkout. Pawlicy Advisor will redirect you to the providers website to complete the sale.
Keep in mind that each pet insurance company offers unique types of wellness plans, so they may not offer the same coverage across the board.
The Basic Preventive Care plan from ASPCA Pet Health Insurance doesnt offer coverage of flea and heartworm prevention. Youd have to purchase their Prime Preventive Care plan for that.
Pet Insurance For Dogs: Is It Worth It
If your dog is relatively young and healthy with no preexisting conditions, then it’s a good idea to get dog insurance. For younger dogs, monthly premiums are much lower and there’s a lower risk that an injury or illness will be considered preexisting. In these cases, having a policy will likely be worth it financially if your dog ever needs an expensive procedure.
For older dogs or for those with a history of illness and injury, the monthly premium will likely cost $60 to $70 per month. On top of that, insurers may deny coverage if your dog has had previous illnesses and injuries. However, if your dog does need an expensive, life-saving treatment that’s eligible for reimbursement, then your policy more than pays for itself.
Ultimately, the decision about whether to purchase dog insurance is an emotional as well as financial one. Dog owners who don’t have insurance will face a tough decision if they get a large vet bill. If you don’t have enough in the bank to pay for a major treatment and you can’t fathom the thought of putting your dog down then you should get a dog insurance plan.
Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the authors opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.
Read Also: Is Trustage Life Insurance Any Good