Pet Insurance

Pet Insurance: Top 10 Benefits of Pet Insurance from a Vet’s Point of View

By Odie Blog Editors on February 24, 2020

Many people have health insurance for themselves and maybe wonder what about health insurance for their pets.  There are many great benefits to having pet insurance. This article will cover some of the benefits of having pet insurance for your pet.

Why is Pet Insurance Important?

Most pet insurance companies will have different plans to meet your needs and budget.  Some policies cover wellness as well as accidents and illnesses, and some plans only include accidents or illnesses. Still, you have to pay for routine vaccines, heartworm and flea, and tick prevention.  The more that your pet insurance plan usually covers, the higher the amount you pay each month.

Veterinary care has increased in cost over the past few years due to the more available diagnostic testing and more advanced surgeries that can be performed.  In the past, there was a very limited amount of testing and procedures that could have been done.  When your pet was sick, all your veterinarian could do is to give your medication and hope that your dog got better.  Now with the advances in veterinary medicine, the specialized care, and medical procedures, your dog can sometimes receive even better than what people receive. Dogs can now have brain surgery and chemotherapy, just like people.  

What are the Benefits of Pet Insurance?

Many people already have health insurance plans for themselves.  When looking at health insurance for your pets, there are many great reasons to have pet health insurance.  These are the most common reasons that people have health insurance for their pets.  

#1 Pet insurance saves you money.  

When your pet is sick, you can use their health insurance plan to save you money.  Depending on what company you have a plan with, there is usually a small deductible that you have to meet.  After meeting this deductible, the insurance plan will then pick up a certain percentage of the vet bill, and you will pay the rest.    

#2 Pet insurance allows you to focus on your pet’s health.

By having pet insurance, you can focus more on the health of your pet and less on the cost of veterinary care.  You will be able to afford your dog to have the costly surgery that they need instead of worry about where you are going to get the money to pay for the procedure.  

#3 Pet insurance increases your options for treatment.

Pet insurance will allow you to be able to choose and afford many different options.  You will be able to provide life-saving surgeries or chemotherapy.  Without insurance, these will cost you thousands of dollars or may not even be affordable.   

#4 Pet Insurance saves you money on expensive treatments.  

When your pet is hospitalized, the insurance company will help cover the cost of the vet stay and any testing that is needed.  

#5 Pet insurance allows you to be able to pick your vet.  

Unlike human health insurance that requires you to see specific doctors, pet insurance gives you the freedom to chose what doctor you want to treat your pet.  You also do not need a referral from a doctor to see a specialist.  This is very beneficial for after-hour and holidays, as the specialty hospitals are the only ones open during this time.   

#6 Pet insurance is obtainable for all pets.

Even if your pet is older, you can still get coverage for them at affordable rates.  Pet insurance companies do not discriminate against different breeds or the age of your pet.   

#7 Pet insurance gives you peace of mind.  

By having pet insurance, you are providing yourself with peace of mind that if anything does happen to your pet, you can afford to take care of them. Many pet insurance policies will reimburse about 80% of the cost after you meet the deductibles. 

#8 Pet insurance helps budget the cost of pet care.  

When you pay for your pet insurance, you are helping spread the cost of pet care out over a few months rather than having to find a large sum of money in an emergency situation.

#9 Pet insurance keeps you from using your savings.  

When events happen, you do not have to drain your savings account to pay for your pet’s care.  Some people will try to have a savings account designated for their pets but will frequently use that money to pay for unexpected major expenses such as car repair with money meant for pet care.

#10 Pet insurance gives you the freedom to pick your plan.  

Most pet insurance companies will offer different types of policies.  Some of these just cover major medical expenses, and others will cover all vet visits.    

What Does Pet Insurance Cover?

Just like the health insurance you have for your health needs, pet insurance is important to help meet your pet’s health needs. Protecting your pet by a health insurance plan is not only a good financial idea, but it can help give you peace of mind when it comes to your pet’s overall health. After all, the benefits of pet insurance are numerous, and getting your pet’s medical bills covered is but one benefit in a long line of reasons to carry insurance for your pet.

That said, there are different types of pet insurance available, and it’s important to get the right one for your pet and your financial considerations. The first type of pet insurance is known as accident coverage, then there’s illness coverage and, finally, wellness. Depending on your needs, you can sign up for one, two or all three, though some providers may not offer all types of plans.

Accident Coverage

While an accident is something you can never predict, accident coverage can help you plan ahead with comprehensive coverage when it matters most. That’s because accidents can cost a fortune before an issue is fixed and your pet is allowed to go home again. The good news is that accident coverage is the most popular form of pet insurance and it covers things like torn ligaments, broken bones, bite wounds, object ingestion, poisoning, eye trauma and most injuries or emergencies. 

Illness Coverage

After accident coverage, illness coverage is an important form of pet insurance that is beneficial to both your pet and your pocketbook. Unlike accident coverage that addresses mostly physical trauma, illness coverage is for things like skin infections, cancer, arthritis, UTIs, allergies, ear infections, vomiting and diarrhea, obesity and parasites. Unfortunately, some insurance companies may not offer illness coverage as your pet ages, which means that it may be important to get your pet covered before some kind of preexisting condition pops up — but the earlier you start, the more you can reduce your monthly cost and save more money.

Wellness Coverage

The third type of pet insurance coverage is known as wellness coverage. It’s often an optional coverage, but wellness covers the things that you’ll have to pay for during the year, such as annual exams, spay/neuter, routine testing, vaccinations, teeth cleanings, and flea, tick and heartworm treatments. While you could always skip the wellness coverage and pay out of pocket for these expenses, why do so if your coverage can help foot the bill? Without coverage, it can be tempting to skip that next checkup or to go without a cleaning or vaccination, but then you’re putting the health and safety of your furry friend at risk.

Why Your Pet Needs Pet Insurance

Most pet owners agree that pet insurance is worth it. For starters, the advantages of pet insurance are numerous, and you can get reimbursed for much if not all of the costs associated with your next vet visit just by having pet insurance. After the visit, you’ll likely see your reimbursement check within a couple weeks, which can help you pay off that vet bill and get caught up before the finances of it all catches up to you. 

As an example, if you saved about $50 a month for the first five years of your pet’s life — an average monthly pet insurance cost — you’d have $3,000 in savings to put towards your pet should they get sick. But $3,000 won’t go very far since that’ll pay for just a few tests and treatments, which could be easily gobbled up by just one accident or issue. With pet insurance, you’ll save far more over your pet’s lifetime that you could possibly save in the meantime.

Success Story of Pet Insurance.

Many people wonder if pet insurance is worth the cost.  When Scout, a German shorthair pointer, visited me on a Sunday afternoon after vomiting for 2 days.  Her owner was worried that she might have eaten something that she should not have.  After taking radiographs, I noticed that something was stuck in her intestines and needed emergency surgery to remove this foreign object.  Scout has eaten a sock, and it was stuck in her intestines.  Her owners had pet insurance and only had to pay about $200 to $300 for this emergency surgery and hospital stay.  The total for this procedure would have cost them a little over $2,000. After 2 months, Scout had found another sock despite her owners being very careful about where they left their socks.  She also ate this sock, causing Scout to be sick and have another hospital visit.  Fortunately, this sock was much smaller, and she able to pass this sock on her own, but she did have to spend a night at the veterinary hospital.  Pet insurance allowed Scout’s family not to have to worry about the cost of care and allowed her to get the best care possible.

Final Thoughts

Pet insurance is an excellent investment for you to make.  Many companies offer a discount if you have multiple pets too.  There are many great benefits of having pet insurance. The main advantage is to allow you to give your pet the best possible decision on your pet’s medical care without having to worry about the cost.  Pet insurance is a great way to help you afford to keep your pet happy and healthy. 

To keep your pet healthy, get a quote for your fur babies today!

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