Insurance is a necessary part of life, whether it’s for your car, your home or your health. You also have the option to take out insurance for your pet, in case of ill health or injury. As with any type of insurance, it’s good to have but you hope you don’t need it. Before you leap out and buy pet health insurance, there are some things you need to know to help you choose the best policy for you circumstances.
· You may not always have a stash of money available to you if you need to pay an unplanned veterinary bill. Even if you do have some cash put aside, vet bills can increase quickly beyond your capacity to meet them. Sometimes advanced tests or referrals to specialists may really stretch your family’s finances. Health insurance will help you meet these expenses and give your pet the best treatment that is available.
· There is a wide range of policies that have different levels of levels of cover so to some extent you can choose how much you pay each month in premiums. Some policies cover illnesses and injuries, while others will cover some of the costs of routine pet care. You can also choose how much excess you pay, and by agreeing to cover a larger percentage of any claims, you can pay a reduced monthly premium. It’s essential that you do read all that fine print in the policy paperwork to make sure you know what you’re signing up for.
· Pet insurance is like any other insurance. You pay premiums month after month after month, and you don’t benefit unless you need to make a claim. If your pet remains healthy and doesn’t have any accidents, then it can be thought of as wasted money. One alternative that many people choose is to save some money each month into a high interest bank account and keep that for any pet health emergencies. This is fine, but your savings may not last if your pet has more than one emergency in quick succession. Another alternative is using credit facilities specifically established to help with veterinary bills. You may pay some interest when you’re paying it back but it might just work out cheaper than pet insurance in the long term.
· There are always exclusions and waiting periods in insurance policies, and there may be certain limits to claims made for specific breeds of dog. Many people have been caught out when they claim for an excluded condition, so be prepared to have some money set aside for such incidents.
· You’ll need to have some money handy because the majority of pet health insurance policies won’t pay your vet directly. They’ll expect you to pay the vet bill then they will reimburse you.
Whether or not you choose to take out a pet insurance policy is up to you; there is no right or wrong answer. If the monthly premiums fit into your budget, then having such a policy will mean you don’t need to worry so much about money when you’re stressed about your sick or injured pet.