If you’re thinking about pet insurance, now is a great time to shop around. Traditional plans are starting to give way to more flexible and useful plans that allow you to use services that make policies more useful for providing services to make your pet’s quality of life improved.
Think About The Services You Want or Need
Traditionally, the coverage options of veterinary insurance were pretty limited to two kinds:
comprehensive coverage or accident-only coverage. It has been pretty unusual in the past for any carrier to offer coverage for any sorts of holistic, wellness, or routine care costs (yearly physicals, yearly immunizations like rabies) as being included or covered. As long as it doesn’t pre-date the policy you have, usual coverage includes chronic and congenital healthcare problems, as well as hereditary illnesses.
Luckily, more and more, companies are offering add-on coverage for healthcare that you want to provide for your pets. These have been known as “wellness”, “preventative care” and “routine care” riders. Some of the very useful things that can be covered by riders like this are spay and neutering procedures flea and tick care, vaccinations, toenail clipping, ear and teeth cleaning, anal gland expression, and heartworm prevention.
Your Pet’s Age & Health Matters
When you are looking for care for your pet, you need some specific information to get a quote. Most companies need you to disclose your pet’s breed, age, current vet’s name, and contact information, any pre-existing conditions, and your pet’s name. You will also need to disclose whether your pet has (or has not) been examined by a licensed vet in the past year’s time.
Although most companies can give you a price quote very quickly, sometimes within minutes. However, it’s pretty common that a waiting period is involved before your insurance can be approved. This is to prevent people from signing up in anticipation of a big vet bill.
What Effects Premium Costs?
Your premium costs will be affected by some pretty obvious variables. Your pet’s pre-existing conditions are one of the biggest factors in cost. Conditions that greatly affect the health of the animal will make the procedures and treatments needed something that you will have to cover out of pocket.
Your pet’s age will affect your premium costs, especially if your pet is elderly. The best time to buy coverage is while your pet is still young.
Any preventative care that you add on will crank up the cost of your policy. If your plan covers accident or illness, as well as routine care, is referred to as “Comprehensive Coverage”.
Finally, the amount of your deductible will affect the cost of your premium. Lots of plans let you choose the amount of your deductible. This is the set amount of money you need to pay out of pocket before the policy kicks in. “Per Year” deductibles usually provide the best value for your money, while you should avoid “per incident” deductibles.
Buying insurance for a pet isn’t as complicated as picking insurance for yourself or your family, but it certainly isn’t “foolproof”, either. Don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions when you shop for pet insurance.
Newer companies are beginning to offer appealing add-on policies that allow for more comprehensive care, so your pet can qualify for testing and treatments that will establish first-line care, making their outcome after a traumatic injury or severe illness. Other types of add-on policies will allow you to provide certain things for your pet to increase their quality of life, throughout the lifespan.