All About Pet Insurance
MRIs. Emergency room visits. Long-term hospitalizations. Cancer treatments. Blood transfusions. We’re not talking about a Grey’s Anatomy rerun, but the advanced medical treatments that are commonplace in veterinary hospitals around the country. Indeed, pet parents have more options available to them than ever before to extend the lives of their furry loved ones.
Modern veterinary technology is certainly amazing, but it’s not without a price. That is where pet insurance can make a big difference for pet owners. Like medical insurance for humans, pet insurance can provide financial peace of mind when your pet needs veterinary care.
Is Pet Insurance Worth It?
In short, yes.
Dog and cat owners in the U.S. spend roughly $250 per year on routine wellness visits for their pets. This may not seem like much, and if your pet is healthy and hasn’t needed emergency or specialty care yet, it’s easy to view pet insurance as an unnecessary expense.
The unfortunate reality is that most pets will require medical care beyond basic exams at some point in their lives. Whether it’s an emergency visit for an adult pet, an unexpected heart problem discovered at a wellness visit, or any number of health problems that could crop up as an animal ages, insurance can save a pet owner hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars.
Knowing you don’t have to pay for your pet’s treatment out of pocket also allows you to focus on what matters, which is getting your pet the best care possible.
Choosing a Plan
There are currently over a dozen companies that offer pet insurance in the United States. Because each company has unique plan options and stipulations, it’s important to do your research before you buy.
The following questions can help you decide which pet insurance plan is right for you:
- What are the monthly premiums and deductible amounts?
- Does the plan cover basic expenses (wellness visits, etc.) or only catastrophic coverage?
- Because some plans require the pet owner to pay up front and then submit the bill for reimbursement from the insurance company, will this work?
- Is there a copay? Are prescription medications covered?
- What are the limitations and exclusions?
- What is the payout maximum? Is there a lifetime limit?
- What about pre-existing conditions?
Make sure you fully read the fine print and get answers to any questions you may have before you make a commitment. Additionally, we recommend choosing a provider that allows you to bring your pet to any licensed veterinary clinic, emergency hospital, or specialist you choose.
A Lifetime of Health
Struggling with difficult decisions regarding a pet’s care and the associated expense is something no pet owner should have to do. At Wellesley-Natick Veterinary Hospital, we recommend taking the time to look into pet insurance before a health challenge arises. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to give us a call.