Protecting All-Legged Members of Your Family
“Man’s best friend.” Whether that phrase refers to your dog, cat, or fish, pets have been an important part of our families for centuries. Like other members of our family, we want to provide them the best care and protection when the unexpected occurs. Pet insurance does just that: protects our fury (or scaly) friends (and our wallets) in the event of an accident or illness. In this space, we share more about how pet insurance works and some of the benefits and other considerations.
What is Pet Insurance?
Pet insurance plans work similarly to our traditional health insurance plans. The policy pays for a portion of your pet’s medical bills, which in turn makes the cost of care and prescriptions more manageable.
Let’s review a few common types of pet insurance1:
1.) Accident and Illness Coverage
Accident and illness coverage is the most common plan that pet owners purchase. The plan helps to cover:
- Chronic illnesses and hereditary conditions,
- Accident and illness-related diagnostic tests, procedures, and hospitalizations, and
- Accidents and illness-related medical prescriptions
It is important to note that accident and illness coverage is typically the most expensive coverage, and it does not cover wellness exams for your pet.
2.) Accident Only Coverage
Accident only coverage is the next option pet owners can consider. The plan helps to cover:
- Accident-related diagnostic tests, procedures, and hospitalizations, and
- Accident-related medical prescriptions.
As the name suggests, accident only coverage does not cover illness, nor does it cover hereditary issues. Like accident and illness coverage, the plan does not cover wellness exams.
3.) Wellness Coverage
Wellness coverage serves as a supplement to accident and illness coverage and cannot be purchased as a standalone policy. Wellness coverage helps to cover:
- Wellness exams,
- Flea, tick, and heartworm prevention, and
Wellness coverage reimburses you for costs associated with your pet’s regular checkups2. Whether the checkups are done annually or semi-annually, the costs can add up quickly from required vaccinations and/or a simple physical. Wellness coverage provides peace of mind that your little one is always covered.
How Does Pet Insurance Work?
Unlike regular health insurance that often has a co-pay or coinsurance, pet insurance operates on a reimbursement basis3. This means that the cost of a visit or procedure is paid out of the pet owner’s pocket, up front. The owner can then file a claim with the insurance company for the reimbursement of qualified expenses.
The Yeske Buie Team’s Beloved Pets
Benefits of Pet Insurance
Several benefits of pet insurance include:
- Peace of Mind: When the unexpected occurs, a source of comfort can be found in knowing that you have provided coverage for your beloved pet. Money isn’t always your focus when you’re caring for an ill or hurting pet.
- Cost Savings: Providing necessary medical treatment for your loved ones, including your pet, can put a strain on your wallet. Having pet insurance helps to mitigate the costs of scans, diagnostic testing, prescriptions, etc. that can rack up quickly.
- Choice of Providers: Unlike health insurance, you are not limited to a list of “in-network” providers to choose from. This allows pet owners to take their pets to the veterinarian they trust most without being restricted to a plan’s list of accepted providers.
Like other types of insurance, there are factors that can affect the cost of pet insurance premiums, including the following:
- Insurance Company
Similar to health insurance, pet insurance coverage does apply to preexisting conditions. It is recommended that coverage is purchased when your pet is young, so they are covered if any such conditions arise. It is also important to keep in mind that unless you have purchased wellness coverage, routine care for your pet is not covered by pet insurance.
It is no secret that the furry friends in our lives add joy and companionship to everyday life. But pet ownership comes with it’s own set of risks too – unexpected medical bills can take a toll on your wallet if you are not prepared. Pet insurance can provide an added layer of protection for your pet(s)’ unexpected health needs and peace of mind for you as a pet owner. Whether you are thinking about adding a four-legged friend to the family or you are wondering how to provide extra protection to your existing pet, we are here to discuss your options! We are great people to think with!