Our fur babies are our best friends and constant companions. Whether they’re barking playfully during a walk or letting out sad meows when you take a few extra seconds to feed them, it often feels like our pets are talking to us. Unfortunately, our pets can’t tell us when they’re feeling unwell, which can happen without warning. Pet insurance gives you a financial safety net in case your fur baby gets sick. but do all vets take pet insurance? Let’s take a closer look at how pet insurance works, what vet insurance covers, and when vets will take insurance and when they won’t.
do you need pet insurance?
According to a survey conducted by bankrate, fewer than four in 10 Americans have enough money saved to pay for an unplanned expense of $1,000. With the average emergency veterinary bill costing more than $1,000, many pet owners could be faced with a heartbreaking decision regarding their pets’ medical expenses. Given the unexpected nature of most vet visits, pet insurance gives you the financial help you need when you need it most.
Reading: What vets take pet insurance
how pet insurance works
Technically speaking, pet insurance is considered a type of property and casualty insurance and does not fall into the category of health insurance. however, it is health insurance for your pets. Although it sounds confusing, pet insurance follows a simple and effective model. When you take your pet to the veterinarian for treatment, you pay the bill at the time of service, file a claim, and receive reimbursement for the cost of the visit, but not for the policy deductible or copay. Unlike your health insurance, you don’t have to worry about staying in network. this reimbursement-based model allows you to visit any veterinarian you choose.
what does pet insurance cover?
Most companies offer several types of coverage, including wellness plans, accident-only plans, and accident and sickness plans. accident-only plans cover injuries such as broken bones and lacerations, but do not cover costs associated with illness.
Although all insurers differ, the vast majority of accident and illness insurance plans cover the following:
- surgical procedures
- diagnostic tests such as x-rays
- recipe costs
- alternative therapies
- recurring ailments such as arthritis
- breed-specific conditions
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Some, but not all, insurance plans also cover:
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When selecting a new pet insurance policy, contact the agency and ask for a detailed list of what each plan covers. Like other forms of property insurance, most pet insurance plans have waiting periods before your plan starts, a deductible, an annual or per-visit (also called a per-occurrence) maximum, and a copay. /p>
what does pet insurance not cover?
Besides things like elective procedures and prescription foods, the vast majority of pet insurance plans won’t cover pre-existing conditions. however, there is a caveat with some insurers. If you can prove (via documentation from your vet) that your pet’s pre-existing condition is considered cured, some plans will cover it. Fortunately, there are ways you can help offset the cost of your pet’s veterinary expenses, even if your dog or cat doesn’t qualify for accident and sickness plans due to a pre-existing condition.
what you need to know about costs
According to lender ValuePenguin, the average monthly cost of pet insurance plans for dogs is around $25-$70. for cats, the monthly average is about half the cost of the dog plan, around $10 to $40. To get the most for your money, you need to insure your pet as soon as possible. Because your fur baby is more likely to develop a chronic disease when he grows older, pet insurance premiums rise as pets age. You can save yourself a significant chunk of change by choosing a policy while your pet is young and healthy. With most insurers, the cost of your pet’s premium will continue to rise. however, most companies allow you to customize your coverage to help keep costs down.
If you can afford to cover your pet’s veterinary expenses, regardless of the amount, you probably don’t need pet insurance. Thinking of pet insurance as an investment will only lead to disappointment, as it doesn’t cover many of the routine costs of pet care. Most fur babies in need of emergency assistance are suddenly injured or ill. When it comes to pet insurance plans, the real value is having the peace of mind that you won’t have to choose between covering your pet’s expenses and paying rent.