Dogs become an very important part of pet owner's family. As like all of us our pets also fall sick and are prone to accidents. It is true that medical advancements today have ensured that our loved pets stay safe and healthy but it is also the fact that the medical costs have increased significantly too. While all pet owners want to provide best medical services to their pet dogs, they are sometimes constrained by money involved in the process. This is where dog insurance comes to pet owner's rescue. It ensures that your pet dog gets all the required medical attention.
Reasons to Take Dog Insurance
There are two basic reasons making it necessary to take dog insurance. These reasons – increasing medical costs and pet care treatment quality.
- There is increase in the third party claims every year.
- Every third dog stumbles upon the unexpected vet visit due to illness or accident every year.
- There is 10% increment in cost of vet treatment every year and average billing amount is around $100.
- There is a rise in the level of vet medication which means that many other aspects can be covered for the wellbeing and health of dogs
Thus, as you can see there is significant increase in the cost of medicines along with advent of newly developed medical treatments. Many of these treatments are equivalent to the human treatments in terms of expenditure as well as sophistication. Serious treatments can cost up to $5,000. It is impossible to predict the illness or accident. Diagnostic costs have also increase due to the increased cost of diagnostic equipments as well as testing. Due to this bar of pet care treatment quality have been raised and so have been the cost.
Need for Assessment before Commitment
Before purchasing dog insurance, dog owners should assess the coverage aspects of the insurance company. They need to check if insurance company is providing coverage against routine checkups and accidental injuries. They also need to ask about the types of injuries and illnesses covered under the policy guidelines of the insurance company. There are some regular but severe problems like hip dysplasia and ear infections in some dog breeds which are not covered by some insurance companies. At this time, dog owners may need to find out the insurance companies covering the aforementioned diseases. Questioning is an essential part of assessment before committing to any of the particular insurance companies.
Genuine dog insurance companies would provide minimum 80% coverage against the vet costs. Dog owners should commit to insurance companies permitting them to select the licensed veterinarian of their choice. Ideal insurance companies would not pose age restrictions and yearly limitations but they can increase the premium rates.
How Dog Insurance Works
Dog insurance policy begins with a standard procedure of the dog owners paying monthly premium amount to the insurance companies. If the particular dog falls sick or meets an accident, insurance company would take care of the associated costs of the treatment. Indirectly, insurance policy holders contribute their money to a pool with their monthly payments. They can take out their money from the pool as per the requirement generated from the vet fees.
There are variations in all the dog insurance policies catering to distinct circumstances. After committing to an insurance policy, only policy holder is responsible for the aspects which are covered or not covered. These are some of the important aspects of coverage which dog owners should check before committing to the insurance policy:-
- Long term illness
- Emergency care
- Third party cover
- Dental work
- Routine treatments
- Alternative medicine
- Lost or stolen dog
- Accidental injury
- Holiday reimbursement for dog owner
- Swallowing foreign objects
Advantages of Dog Insurance
All the dog owners want to provide the best treatment to their dogs without any drawbacks. Basic advantages of dog insurance are:-
- third party claims if someone is bitten or injured by the dog
- elimination of enormous veterinarian bills
- elimination of mental pressure to weigh the dog health against the treatment cost
- mental peace
Disadvantages of Dog Insurance
According to recent surveys from MSN News, there are three reasons limiting the amount of coverage for the pet dogs. These reasons are co-payments, deductibles, caps and sometimes, monthly premium also. Some companies do not provide coverage against the pre-existing conditions and there can be increase in the premium amount for older pet dogs. There may be certain cases where insurance companies would not provide insurance for older pet dogs. Some companies do not have direct connection with vets and dog owners would need to pay upfront for the treatment of their dogs. It has to be followed by the submission of claim for the reimbursement. There are variations in the policy terms and condition from one insurance company to another.
Dog Insurance – Smart investment or wastage of money
Dog insurance plans are very similar in structure to the human health insurance with of course a few variations. After taking the insurance, dog owners just need to fill in the claim form with the help of their licensed veterinarian.
Dog insurance penetration is still low, according to estimates only 1% of the total pets are covered in the irrespective of mere $25 monthly cost. It can help dog owners in relieving their financial strain without any need to think about the financial aspects pertaining to the vet fees. Dog insurance is one of the best gifts you can give to your loved pet dog ensuring its well being and long healthy life.