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Ask The Vet: What Do I Need To Know About Pet Insurance For My Dog?

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Pet insurance is not like human health insurance. It is designed to be more like automobile insurance, helping you prepare for the costs of large medical issues. Subscribers pay a monthly premium (prices vary depending on plan and company) instead of being surprised by a major illness or injury. It is like a safety net to catch you when you fall. It is certainly nice to have in an event where price is the last thing that you want to worry about.

When your dog is critically ill or injured, the last thing you want to think about is money. Her life and well-being certainly are priceless, but unfortunately budget must be a consideration.  When your pet is covered with pet insurance, you can focus on the important things and know that the price tag is taken care of. It is one less thing to worry about when worry is all you can do.

There are many companies and brands to choose from.  There are certainly charlatans (like in every industry) and you should ask for referrals from people you trust, like your veterinarian or fellow animal lovers. Good companies are more than willing to discuss their products and offerings.  Call around and talk with several and if you do not feel comfortable with one, mark them off your list.

There are a lot of options out there for pet insurance.  You can choose your carrier, your plan and deductible. The plan and the company need to be right for your pet’s needs and yours. See if you can find out what would be the best fit for your pet, taking into account his age, breed, lifestyle and health up that point. Make sure the premium is something that your budget can live with and that the plan covers your specific pet’s requirements.

Each company and plan has specifics that you should familiarize yourself with. Most have age and preexisting condition limitations. Pet owners hesitate to explore pet insurance because they hope that will never need it. If you do not, you can consider yourself lucky and if you do, you will be grateful for the policy.

Human health insurance covers preventive care in most cases. Some pet insurance companies offer riders to cover preventive care as well as catastrophic care too.  Make wellness coverage a part of your research, so that you know the variables of the plan, like deductible and premium. Preventive care is an issue that touches every pet because all pets need it. Ask your vet to estimate for you an average yearly cost for routine care, so you will know a good value when you research it.

If you are the type of person that can set aside a monthly amount on your own to plan for catastrophe (or dog-astrophe), you might not find benefit from an insurance plan. But if you would prefer having a safety net that is planned f0r you, pet insurance is an important consideration.

Being proactive about the things you can prevent and having pet insurance are things that you can do to keep your pet and your budget happy and healthy!

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