Pedigree Pets takes a look at the importance of pet insurance and how to find the perfect policy for your pet. PLUS: get a rundown on all the jargon and fine print.
It’s a two-edged sword…insure or not to insure? Some will argue that putting some money aside each week will cover all your needed vet bills. While others will stress that if something serious occurs it will never be near enough.
So, let’s look at the facts.
For high-end vet treatments you can be looking at some pretty hefty bills. If Rover ingests a pile of socks or something more sinister you could be looking at anything from $1,000 to $12,000+. For top end cancer treatments – anything from $25,000 to $30,000 per year.
For the less serious stuff, pet insurance can help with the day-to-day care of your pet including vaccinations, worming treatments and more.
Basically, if you do not have quality pet insurance, you may not be able to afford to treat your pet. Sadly, this is a notion many owners and vets face on a daily basis. Pet insurance can normally get you around 80% of the costs back, depending on your insurance provider, excess, caps or any other restrictions on your policy.
Pet insurance can also help with the following:
- Cost of surgery
- Anaesthetic costs
- Hospital stays
- Lab testing
- And more depending on your pet’s condition
It’s important to remember that not all conditions and treatments are covered by pet insurance. Check with your policy and your provider for your cover.
But how do you choose the best one?
Read the fine print. All of the professionals in the industry stress the importance of reading the fine print and getting a full understanding of what you are covered for and what you are not.
It’s also a good idea to read on-line reviews from a trusted source on your chosen brand, this is the best way to gauge how the company interacts with their clients and real-time testimonials.
Some information you need to understand before you sign up are:
- What are your caps per treatment or vet visits each year?Some treatments or visits will be capped at a certain amount. Check what these amounts are and if they are for the entire policy or just yearly amounts.
- What waiting periods (WP) are there on claims when you first sign up?Some policies will have a waiting period for certain issues like cruciate ligaments. Check what these are, in some cases you can get these waivered if you can prove (normally at your expense) that your pet does not have any symptoms of the particular condition. Check with your provider.
- What pre-existing conditions apply to me?Pre-existing means any aliment, or relating problem, your pet has seen the vet for. Meaning; if you have seen your vet for a skin condition before you signed up, chances are you will not be covered for any skin related issue. To avoid this, sign-up as soon as your pet is able – normally eight weeks of age.
- Excess?What excess do you have on your policy? Remembering this amount will be deducted from the claimed amount.
- Old age?Understand that your premiums will increase yearly and as your pet ages, however, check that your pet will still have cover for everything after the age of nine. Most older pets will not have access to comprehensive illness cover (accident only) after the age of nine unless they have already held the policy before they were nine. Check with your insurance provider.
- Read the Product Disclosure StatementThis is the statement your provider or possible provider will give you to read that will outline all of the fine print of your policy. It is vital you take the time to read this statement before you sign-up. Most providers will have this document on their websites. Highlight all the points you do not fully understand and write down all of the facts outlining your policy.