Both pet insurance and preventative care plans are effective ways to reduce the cost of veterinary care over the life of your pet. Because most animals will have one or more of the following health care problems during their lifetime, insurance is a great way to defer the cost of not only preventative care but also treatments and procedures for injuries and illness:

       DOGS                                             CATS

  1. Ear infections                       1. Lower urinary tract problems
  2. Skin allergies                        2. Vomiting
  3. Hot spots                               3. Chronic kidney failure
  4. Vomiting                               4. Hyperthyroidism
  5. Diarrhea                                5. Diabetes

If you choose to buy pet insurance, here are somethings you should know. At the bottom you will also find a link to a chart that compares the various pet insurance options available.

PET INSURANCE 101: THE TOP THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW

1. Insurers differ

All pet insurance is not the same. Some insurance plans cover accidents to your pet, but not illnesses. Some plans cover treatment for cancer, some don’t. It can be confusing, so you will need to do some research.

2. Don’t just look at the price

A low price is no bargain if your insurance company denies your pet’s claim. Cheaper policies tend to provide less coverage. Will the cheapest pet policy cover your dog’s cancer treatment? Probably not.

3. You can use any veterinarian you want

Not sure if your existing vet takes pet insurance? Don’t worry, this is not be an issue. All pet insurance companies will allow claims from any licensed veterinarian.

4. You have to pay the veterinary bill out of your own pocket

With human health insurance, your doctor invoices your insurance company and you may never even see the bill. However, with pet insurance, you may have to pay your veterinary bill and then submit your claim to your insurance company for reimbursement. (This is because pet insurance is considered a form of property insurance.)

5. Pre-existing conditions are not covered

Not usually. Think of it this way: if you got into a car accident and then tried to buy auto insurance the next day, do you think it would be fair to expect the insurance company to pay for your accident? Me neither.

6. Is pet insurance worth it?

Pet insurance protects you from large, unexpected vet bills. If you are the type of owner who does not want to choose between going into debt or putting your pet down, pet insurance is for you.

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