What Can Pet Insurance Do For You?
Our pets love us unconditionally and provide undeniable companionship that can’t be replaced. Pets enrich our lives every day by being adorable and affectionate with their everlasting love. When something happens to our best friends, high vet costs can come unexpectedly leaving pet owners in a crunch. Pet insurance can protect your best friend and your bank account with a plan that can help ease costs with unexpected occurrences and routine care.
Pet insurance plans will be built around factors like breed-related health risks, pre-existing conditions, pet age, and location. Once this is factored in, you receive a quote that will give you options for annual coverage, deductibles, and reimbursement.
Overall, having coverage is smart because an office visit, annual exams, necessary shots, and yearly dental cleaning is hundreds of dollars annually already. If your pet insurance plan can help with these annual fees, it will benefit your wallet in the long run, and keep Fido healthy.
Vet bills can destroy your budget fast with pets often needing anesthesia for procedures, blood work, seeing a specialist, and more. When something catastrophic happens, you want to be there to care for your buddy, not breaking the bank and overwhelmed.
Things to consider when selecting a plan
When shopping for a pet insurance policy, you will want to review what payout limits are, any deductibles, and the copay for visits. A plan with a high deductible may not help as much as you would hope and can still leave you in a tight spot.
Certain plans may require you to use only their approved vet list. If you travel or move a lot, a plan with restrictions may not be for you. Sometimes you can bundle pet insurance plans onto your auto, home, or life insurance policies and be rewarded for packaged coverage.
Unexpected emergencies are unfortunately common with pets since they cannot tell us “hey this tooth is bothering me” and next thing you know, it needs emergency extraction. You may have yelled ‘drop it,’ but dogs especially are infamous for needing an emergency extraction for eating a foreign object.
Having coverage for these unexpected emergencies is when pet insurance will be the biggest relief. You can focus on taking care of your best friend, not stressing about the bill incoming.
Most pet insurance policies will cover accidents and unexpected illnesses unless it was determined pre-existing. Congenital and hereditary diseases, which means health issues that your pet was born with can be covered, but sometimes are not. There are also breed-specific health issues that may not be covered in certain policies. These are things to consider and look for when choosing your plan.
There are also additional add-ons and features you may find in one policy versus another. There are policies that offer support when a pet goes missing and could help pay for things like enrolling them on a lost pet registry, for example.
Ultimately, when it comes to selecting a pet insurance policy, you want to make considerations as you would for a human health insurance plan. There are many options out there that are only discount programs, not true insurance plans.
Reading the details, reading reviews, and understanding your policy options is important, as it would be with any insurance purchase.
How does payment work?
Once your pet is covered, there are variances in the way payment is handled. Often you are still paying out of pocket for procedures directly to the vet and then being reimbursed by the insurance company.
It is also possible though, that your insurance company will pay the vet directly. This is all determined ahead, and you should get clear information on how this will work when you are enrolling in a plan.
Usually, you will file a claim when you want insurance to help out. This is a similar process to a homeowners insurance claim or making an auto accident claim for example. You will want to collect receipts and records, and the vet office may need to give additional info or fill out paperwork for the insurance claim as well.
Once the claim is filed, you can expect a few weeks until the claim is either approved or denied. Your deductible is what you are expected to pay out of pocket, so that will be subtracted from your amount.
Assuming all is approved, your insurance company will reimburse you with a check. If your claim is not approved, you can file an appeal, which can take several weeks as well. This can seem like a daunting process, but when you receive the reimbursement, you will be glad you had coverage to help ease costs.
In the end, having protection is a smart move for any pet owner. Animals can be unpredictable and being proactive with pet health coverage will ease your mind if something does come up.