A pet insurance policy can help you afford the care that your pet needs, but choosing a provider isn’t as simple as just comparing prices. Considering factors like annual reimbursement limits, deductibles and reimbursement percentages can make all the difference.
Some companies focus on providing accident-and-illness coverage, while others offer specific options for chronic and hereditary conditions. Some even offer routine wellness or preventive care add-ons that can save you money on things like blood work and vaccinations.
Most pet owners are looking for a policy that covers veterinary exam fees, treatments and surgery costs — which is something most pet insurance providers offer. Some also cover hereditary conditions like hip dysplasia or cruciate ligament injuries.
The best pet insurance plans will typically include coverage for these common health issues, but you should pay attention to the exact terms and conditions. For example, some policies exclude coverage for certain hereditary conditions, while others may require a waiting period before they’ll cover orthopedic conditions like cruciate ligament injuries. You’ll also want to make sure you’re covered if your pet suffers an accident, which is one of the most common reasons for pet insurance claims.
In addition to coverage, you’ll need to decide if you want your plan to cover certain medical expenses, such as prescriptions or dental care. You should also pay close attention to the terms and conditions related to pre-existing conditions. Most insurers will define these as any condition that your pet has or had before you signed up for a policy, but some won’t consider them pre-existing at all. Others will only cover curable pre-existing conditions if your pet has been free of treatment and symptoms for 12 months.
Unlike human health insurance, most pet insurance companies don’t restrict which vets you can visit or which tests they will cover. However, most insurers will only pay for claims submitted by a veterinarian that is in their network.
Most companies will allow you to choose a deductible amount and an annual coverage limit for each treatment. While higher annual coverage limits mean higher premiums, they can save you more in out-of-pocket vet bills. Most companies will also let you set a reimbursement rate for each treatment, which can be anywhere from 70% to 90% of your actual vet bill. The lower the reimbursement percentage, the lower your premium will be.
Another important factor to consider is whether you’d prefer a fixed monthly or yearly premium, as well as how long you’d like the policy to last. Many pet insurance policies have age limits, meaning that once your dog reaches a certain age, you won’t be able to get a new policy. This is because the risk of illness and injury increases with age. Generally speaking, it’s cheaper and easier to get a policy when your pet is young. That’s why it’s a good idea to shop around and find the right policy for your pet early. It will pay off in the end. pet insurance for dog