Should I have pet insurance?
With the excitement and delight of owning a pet or several pets, it is quite usual that this question is overlooked. Or should I say it is a question that pet owners would prefer not think about, due to the cost.
In this blog, I will explore this important question.
Hopefully, you’ll get a good idea of whether pet insurance is for you.
If you decide that pet insurance is for you, I have included information on the best ways for you to save. This is so that you can enjoy a happy and fulfilling life with your furry friends. With the savings, you can buy some treats or accessories for your beloved pets.
(This post contains affiliate links, which means I may receive a small compensation if you purchase something through the links. This is at no extra cost to you. Please read my disclosure for more information).
Why pet insurance?
Consider these sad statistics (from Pet Insurer):
6.6 million dogs and cats are injured by vehicles in the USA every year. That’s over 18,000 of our pets every single day.
The typical cost to treat a pet that’s been injured by a vehicle is almost $9,500.
Let’s face it.
Vets are not cheap. Neither are they charitable organizations.
So this is why you may have to take steps to protect your finances and your pets’ wellbeing.
I have included several useful websites below which will hopefully help you to make good decisions.
I have done research and spoken with pet owners, including a cat adoption manager, so that you’ll have a good idea of whether you should go ahead with getting pet insurance.
I have presented them in the form of case studies below:
Case Study 1
A friend of mine Caitlin* has 4 pets: 3 cats and a dog.
(* not their real names)
On one occasion, she had to spend $1,430 on vet treatment fees for one of her cats, which staggered home one evening with a mangled limb.
Sadly, that cat wasn’t insured at all. So she had to foot all the vet costs herself.
Recently, for some unknown reason, one of her cats scratched her dog’s eyes. It wasn’t a minor wound. Fearing an infection, she took her dog to the vet. Again, her dog wasn’t insured. So, she had to again fork out the costs of medication and the vet fees.
That set her back her nearly $720. A total of $2,150 on vet fees.
At this point, my friend was practically growling with rage.
Hmm . . . it was painful not just for her two pets, but a serious blow to her pocket as well.
The interesting thing is, out of her four pets, only ONE has insurance. Guess which pet.
It was the cat that scratched the poor dog’s eyes!
Case Study 2
Another friend Kath* has 5 cats and an aging dog. The latter, at 9 years old, needed to have 7 of his teeth taken out. It cost her $640.
She had to borrow the money as she didn’t have an emergency fund.
The sad fact is she couldn’t have insured any of her pets, as they all have pre-existing conditions like cat flu and other ailments.
Case Study 3
There is another case of an aging dog which needs on-going hydrotherapy treatment as he suffers from arthritis.
I didn’t want to ask my colleague how much this costs, but a quick search on the Internet shows it’s about $34 per session.
Case Study 4
A vet nurse insured her two cats for $10 a week. The yearly cost is therefore $520. When one of her cats needed treatment, her insurance company paid $357 towards its vet bills.
So, the all-important question is: Should you pay for pet insurance?
According to a cat adoption manager, it’s an absolute YES.
If you are seriously considering pet insurance, try to insure your pets when they are young and healthy. It would be much harder later on, if and when they start to develop debilitating conditions.
There are some other things that you as a pet owner needs to consider:
1. How many pets are affordable for you?
If you love animals and have no pets yet, you could start with having just one pet. Give yourself time to really know what pet ownership involves, and how much it costs in terms of things like pet food, accessories, toys and vet checkups.
If you’re already trying to care for many pets, you might need to think about reducing the number of your pets. It’s a painful thought, but it may be better to have fewer pets and the ability to look after them well.
Ask around. Your friends or neighbors might like to adopt some of them.
The plus side is that you’ll still get the opportunity to see your former pets.
2. Do you have an emergency fund of, say, at least one or two thousand dollars?
If you don’t have an emergency fund for unexpected expenses like pet injuries and vet fees, it is advisable to budget for pet insurance. This is because unexpected things can and do happen. I know of an aging feline that was set upon by another animal. It needed surgery and prolonged treatment to gradually recover. Its sad owner (who doesn’t have pet insurance) is still recovering from the shock – both psychological and financial.
Moreover, as pets age, they tend to need more medical attention, just like their human masters 🙁 So, having pet insurance can really help both you and your beloved pets.
3. A strategy like mine.
I do not have any pets at the moment. I would dearly love to have pets. But they do need time and attention, and it wouldn’t be fair to my pets if I’m not able to give them the best attention and care that they so deserve.
When I take walks, I’m usually on the lookout for friendly dogs and cats to play with or to lavish my attention on.
Four useful websites you can go to for more information:
If you’re wanting to know more about pet insurance and why it’s needed, Pet Insurer would be a good place to start.
You can get quotes and they guarantee the lowest prices.
An important reminder is to always carry out your research to check out the latest information before you decide.
The next website you can check out is Healthy Paws Pet Insurance. It tells you what you need to consider when you take up pet insurance.
Do be aware that it is a Healthy Paws pet insurance site, so Healthy Paws is placed favorably at the start of each comparison.
Another useful site is Pet Insurance Review.
You can read reviews given by different customers about their satisfaction level with different pet insurance companies.
What I like about this site is that it is both comprehensive and organized.
Relevant and important information is presented in clear categories, so that you can quickly see at a glance what you really need to know for each review.
Customers give ratings for each different insurers and the ratings are explained.
The detailed and helpful information include:
-the amount customers claimed
-what the claims were for
-when the customers made the claims
-details of their pets such as breed and age are also stated. So you get a very clear picture of why they are happy or not with a particular insurer.
Yet another great resource is reviews.com
All the hard work has been done for you. By consulting vets and pet care specialists, review.com are aware of the essentials that are crucial in a comprehensive pet insurance. They provide a thorough analysis of policy details and coverage, and even tested out the customer service of the top insurers that they had hand-picked. Therefore you get peace of mind, knowing that their top picks have undergone stringent checks and testing.
Armed with new knowledge of what is most suitable for your pet situation, you should be able to choose the best insurance plan and save money as well.
This post will steer you on the right path towards a happy and fulfilling life with your furry friends.
Do you have pet insurance?
Will you consider buying pet insurance? Why or why not?
Please share in the comment section below any experiences you have had.
If you find this post helpful, share it with others. They’ll love you for it!