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As a pet parent, you have no doubt heard many pet insurance myths. Some of these may include the belief that pet insurance is too expensive, that it doesn’t cover anything, or that you can only join if your pet is young. While it’s understandable to see where these myths may have originated, they remain just that—a myth.
With insurance, it’s imperative to be knowledgeable on what’s fact and fiction and which myths can finally be debunked once and for all.
A long list of benefits comes with signing your pet up for pet insurance—that’s why millions of pets are covered. First and foremost, getting your cat or dog covered is a fantastic way to keep their health and well-being a priority. As experienced pet parents can attest, it can be overwhelmingly stressful when your best bud has fallen ill or is injured. You want to provide them with the best care possible, but it isn’t always easy to think about your options, particularly the price of procedures, tests, and treatment.
With pet insurance, you can focus more on which treatment option would be best for your pet, and then rest assured that you get to focus your time and energy on helping your pal get back to their healthy self.
An additional benefit of having various treatments covered with your insurance is that you could have more options than you initially thought possible. Without insurance, you may not explore the alternative methods since they could all be out of your budget, but with pet insurance by your side, you may find medicinal or therapy choices you never even thought of before.
Of course, one of the major benefits of pet insurance is that it can help protect your personal savings account. All pet parents have different ways of paying for their pet-related expenses. Some may pull money from their savings account, while others could have a specific pet account. No matter, with major veterinary procedures, it’s not entirely unheard of for one bill to be over a thousand dollars. With insurance, you can send in your claim, and if the procedure is covered, a portion of the bill will be paid, making you only responsible for a small part.
With pet insurance having so many moving parts, it’s not surprising that there are myths to accompany each facet, such as coverage options, reimbursements, plan restrictions, and overall costs. Having so much information swirling around can get confusing at times, thus why it’s important to debunk these common pet insurance myths.
Each pet insurance plan is unique in what it will and won’t cover, so it’s essential that you look through your options before signing up. With many providers, puppy vaccinations may not be listed under the ‘covered items’ for a basic plan, but they will be included if you do an add-on wellness plan.
You are able to enroll your pet for their own insurance plan at any time you please—no matter their age or health condition. That said, nearly every insurance provider has restrictions concerning pre-existing health conditions, which are issues that arise or show symptoms before your plan goes into effect. Many insurance providers also have regulations surrounding a waiting period, which is a set amount of time between when you sign your pet up and when their insurance plan goes into effect.
With people’s health insurance, you are most likely familiar with the process of finding someone that is in-network. In other words, a doctor’s office that will accept your insurance, so you don’t have to pay out of pocket. One of the many wonderful benefits of pet insurance is that you don’t have to search for a veterinarian that is in-network. Any licensed veterinarian should accept any pet insurance. This provides you with the freedom to choose your veterinarian, along with being able to visit another office if your veterinarian isn’t available or you are traveling.
Yes, pet insurance can cover multiple pets—you may just need a separate plan for each one. No matter the combination you have of cats and dogs, their breeds, and ages, you can insure every four-legged family member with an individualized plan that will fit them and their needs best. Rest assured, though you may need multiple plans, you can have all of these conveniently accessible through one account.
Depending on your insurance provider and the specific plan you choose, prescription food (opens in new window) could be under the items that are covered. Double check with your insurance company if prescription food is included in regular plans or if it is something covered by an add-on option. It’s also worth noting that some insurance providers will help cover the costs of prescription food only if it’s used to support a covered condition. If you are using prescription food for general weight management, then it may not be covered.
Some pet insurance plans will cover dental . If that is a feature you would like your plan to include, shop around until you find the best coverage option that fits you and your pet’s needs. However, with some providers, dental will fall under the category of a wellness plan, which can be an add-on to your existing plan.
Spaying (or neutering) your cat or dog is an important choice that can affect your pet’s health and behavior. There are many benefits to having this procedure done, so many pet parents sign their pets up while they are still at a young age. With this being a common medical procedure, most pet insurance companies will help cover these related costs. However, for some, this is only covered under an add-on pet insurance preventive care plan.
This type of plan can help get you some cash back for the routine services you are already paying for. Preventive care plans assist with costs related to preventive care practices such as annual exams, parasite preventives, flea and heartworm protection, dental cleanings, and spaying and neutering, to name a few.
There is a long-held belief that pet insurance isn’t accessible for everyone because it is too expensive. However, when you take the time to break down the price and see what you get in return, many pet parents would argue that pet insurance is invaluable and worth every cent.
Depending on how many pets you are covering, their age, breed, and existing health conditions, the monthly price for a plan can vary. However, most plans are equal to the amount of one tank of gas, one night out on the town, or an evening out at a restaurant.
The return for the monthly cost of pet insurance reaches much further than a material item you could have purchased for the same amount. With your pet being covered, you can rest assured that someone else has your back and is helping you watch out for your pet’s well-being. Instead of choosing between treatment you can afford and treatment that is best for your pal, you can focus solely on providing your pet with what they need. You also won’t need to stress about dipping into your savings account to afford expensive bills.
One of the many wonderful features of pet insurance is that you can customize your plan to fit your budget better. With some providers, you can alter your reimbursement percentage, annual limit, and deductible. There are also accident-only plans which are often a budget-friendly option to consider.
Many pet parents wonder if having a pet savings account is better than getting their pet covered by insurance. Though it is a good decision to set aside some money just for pet-related expenses, pet insurance could be a better financial choice (opens in new window) in the long run. In the instance that a large veterinary bill comes your way, in just one case, this could clear all the money you had set aside. Meanwhile, with pet insurance, you could have most of your bill covered and only have to pay a small portion.
As you toss around the idea of signing your pet up for insurance, be sure to do your research on various providers, ensuring that you’re picking the best option for your needs. Also, don’t forget to ask around and see if your friends, family, or veterinarian have recommendations. Of course, don’t hesitate to get the answers to any insurance-related questions you may have. By the time you sign up for a plan, it should be transparent which items are covered, what is considered a pre-existing condition, and all the ways your pet’s insurance plan can be beneficial.
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.
title: Debunking Pet Insurance Myths
author: Emily W.