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Pet Insurance for Dogs

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Pet insurance for dogs can be a gift that keeps on giving. No matter your dog’s age, breed, or size, they could be signed up for an insurance plan from a pet insurer. Any canine could become affected by an accident or illness in their life, at which point it can be reassuring to know that your pet is covered.

Before selecting the perfect insurance for your dog, it can be helpful to get your insurance-related questions answered and better understand how your dog’s insurance coverage will work.

Do I Need Pet Insurance for My Dog?

Deciding whether to get insurance for your dog is a personal choice. However, it never hurts to ask your friends, family, or fellow dog parents if they have considered pet insurance or if anyone currently has their dog covered. You can even inquire with your veterinarian since they may have some great recommendations or advice regarding what type of coverage you may need. (opens new window)

Although no pet parent rule states you need to have pet insurance, there is a long list of benefits (opens new window) if you do. For instance,

  • Peace of mind

    It can be a little stressful when your pup takes a tumble or is unusually lethargic. These types of accidents and illnesses often result in a trip to the veterinarian or emergency pet clinic. Although one of the most prominent items on your mind is getting your pet back to their happy, healthy selves, you also can’t help but wonder how much this little trip may cost you. Knowing that you have pet insurance on your side can help provide some peace of mind in a tough situation, allowing you to focus more on your dog and the issue at hand.

  • Financial assistance

    Many pet parents may weigh the pros and cons of setting money aside in a pet savings account or paying for pet insurance every month. Although having some money set aside specifically for your pet is a fantastic resource that can come in handy in many cases, the monthly cost of pet insurance can stretch much further. For instance, in an emergency, one veterinary visit could cost you $1000, which may be the entire amount you had saved, but with insurance, you may be able to get 80% of that bill covered, saving you a large amount of money overall.

  • Customizable plans for everyone

    One of the many great things about pet insurance is that some providers offer customers the option to customize their plans. This is a fantastic idea so that pet parents with varying budgets can sign up for what works best for them, and it allows you to choose different plans for your pets—since pets and their needs are all unique, just like people. Some insurance providers even offer add-on options or accident-only plans.

  • More options for treatment

    As you research and compare pet insurance companies, be sure to look into what conditions, and treatments are covered. You may be surprised at alternative treatment options you could have assistance in paying for that you otherwise may not have considered.

  • Join a community and gain helpful resources

    Many pet insurance companies welcome you as more than just a customer—you are now a part of a valued community. It can be endlessly reassuring to pet parents to know that the people working behind the scenes of their pet’s insurance are also dog and cat fans. Some pet insurance companies also have multiple helpful resources available to pet parents (even if your pet isn’t enrolled in a plan) simply because they want the best for your pet’s well-being. Some of these resources could include access to informational articles, recommendations for pet professionals, and contact information for various emergencies.

After considering all this information, it’s easy to see why so many pet parents place such a high value on their pet’s insurance. When deciding if they need pet insurance or not, some equate it in importance to having car or health insurance.

How To Get Pet Insurance for a Dog

Preparation should go into your research before you choose a plan on a whim. First, research various pet insurance companies and the plans they offer. You will want to consider your pet’s needs, current well-being, and your monthly budget. Take some time to compare all your different options, and you may find it relatively easy to narrow down your top choices.

The process itself of getting your dog pet insurance is relatively simple. With some providers, you can get a free quote, select a plan, and be officially signed up after filling out some basic information—though most policies have a waiting period before coverage technically starts.

woman paying pet insurance bill while dog rests on her leg

How Much Is Pet Insurance for a Dog?

The monthly cost of dog insurance coverage will vary based on multiple factors, so there is no one consistent amount. Since prices can vary from one company to the next, it can be beneficial to get a free quote before signing up for any plan.

When figuring the cost of your insurance, the price can be affected by:

  • The insurance provider
  • The specific plan you choose
  • Your geographic location
  • Whether you do any add-ons to your plan
  • Your dog’s breed, size, and age
  • Your dog’s current health

Of course, if you are enrolling multiple dogs in an insurance plan, this could also cause your price to be higher. It is also worth noting that when you renew your policy, some insurance providers will have a yearly rate increase—though this could be a minor amount. This is something to keep in mind and factor into your budget for the oncoming years.

It's a common concern among pet parents that their pet’s insurance will be too expensive, but the reality is quite the contrary. For what is equal in cost to going out for one nice dinner or filling up your tank with gas each month, you can rest assured that if your dog experiences an accident or they have an illness pop up, their health and rehabilitation can be prioritized.

Can You Get Pet Insurance for Older Dogs?

With some pet insurance providers, there is no age limit to when you can get pet insurance for your dog. In other words, if you adopt a senior dog and would like to cover them with an insurance plan, you are still able to do so.

Pet insurance for older dogs can be rather helpful since, naturally, as dogs age, they can develop more health concerns and become affected by items such as joint, hearing, or seeing issues.

Do I Need Pet Insurance for My Puppy?

Pet insurance for puppies can also be a fantastic idea. Puppies are notorious for getting into some sticky situations, whether it be a little tumble on the steps or eating something they shouldn’t. Not to mention, the first few months of welcoming a new puppy into your home can be a little stressful, so having that insurance coverage can help relieve just a few of your worries.

Another benefit of signing your puppy up at a young age is that there will be lower chances of your puppy having any pre-existing conditions. By waiting until your puppy is much older, there’ll be an increased chance of them developing a health condition, which could then be considered pre-existing, meaning that it may not be covered under most insurance plans.

If you decide to sign your dog up for pet insurance, you may have a short waiting period before your plan goes into effect. After which, it may be months or just a few days before you already begin utilizing your plan. One of the great benefits of most pet insurance companies is that you don’t have to worry about finding a veterinarian that is in-network. Any licensed veterinarian, emergency animal clinic, or animal specialist in the US or Canada should accept pet insurance. After your visit, you can submit your claim for your covered item and receive your reimbursement.

At first, insurance can seem like an intimidating topic. After learning more about the process and how it can benefit your canine companion, it’s easy to see why so many dog parents sign their dogs up for pet insurance every year.

The information presented in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute or substitute for the advice of your veterinarian.

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