Embrace? not so much

Out of 10

I have a 14 months old German shepherd and I signed up with Embrace because the company claims to cover genetic or breed-specific conditions. German shepherds are prone to hip or elbow dysplasia. I signed with Embrace when my dog reached the age of 11 months. I wanted to be out of the waiting period by the time my dog gets his x-ray evaluation (I am a competitive trainer and my breed organization's minimum age for hip and elbow a-stamp evaluation is 12 months of age). I had my dog's x-rays taken a few days after he turned 12 months. His hips turned out great, but both of his elbows were dysplastic. Because my dog is still very young, his vet recommended surgery as soon as possible to prevent any ongoing damage. I asked Embrace to pre-approve my claim and to my surprise received a denial. When my dog was diagnosed with ED, I told the veterinarian that I never noticed any symptoms other than a slight limp on my dog's forelegs when he was about 5 months old. The limp however disappeared after about a week and some Glucosamine supplements (my dogs weight almost doubled since then and he now weights more than 100 lbs.) Embrace found this statement in the vet's notes and claimed that my dogs elbow dysplasia was a pre-existing condition because it showed clinical signs prior to insurance coverage. I responded to Embrace that all of my previous German shepherds limped at some point as puppies (I had 5 so far) but none of them was ever diagnosed with ED. That did not matter. To say that I am disappointed with Embrace is an understatement. I find it outrageous that Embrace advertises its coverage of genetic or breed-specific conditions but then argues that those were pre-existing when it comes to a claim. Of course they are pre-existing that's why we call them genetic disease. I am terminating my policy with Embrace today because I lost complete faith in their business practices. Buyer beware, if your dog has ever limped at some point prior to getting insurance with Embrace, any claims related to your dog's musculoskeletal system could be simply denied for that reason.

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Posted: 05/26/2009

I need to tell you that unless your dog received a formal diagnosis, Embrace can't deny your claim as a pre-existing condition. The Hartville Group (Pets Health Plan) tried this with me last year, I got an attorney, and found out that they can't do that. If you don't want to get an attorney, I would file a formal complaint with the BBB where Embrace is located. Unless someone stands up and complain, Embrace will never change their policy and people will continue to be ripped off.

Posted: 04/29/2014

I had the same experience! They denied my dog's rectal issue because he had an ear infection!