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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

We recently added a new pup to our family and also have a 2 1/2 year old dog as well. After saying goodbye to our nearly 14yo girl last summer and with facing the rising cost of vet care, we decided to consider pet insurance.

I've been overwhelmed as I've tried to look into the options. WOW! Widely varying prices, coverage, limits, exclusions, deductibles, deductible types, and more. We'd like a policy with good coverage and higher limits (not one with a 10K or 15K annual limit). I think we'd also like 90% coverage.

Another thing that confuses me is the types of deductibles - and I cannot decide which is better or worse. Many are annual deductible. Straightforward. But some do a per illness/accident deductible. That sounds intriguing, should one's pup have a longer term illness but that also means that for each accident or unexpected short term illness, there's a new deductible.

I'm really overwhelmed. I just wondered if anyone has any insights or thoughts. Trupanion seems like a decent option and I'm also looking at Spot and pretty much any others. I'd love any advice. Thanks so much!
 

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Well, I don't know if my thoughts will be useful or not, because I dislike insurance companies intensely and feel that almost all insurance is a rip-off. I have never had insurance for any of my animals. What I do instead is I save money.

I have an emergency fund into which I always put money on a very regular basis, and never fail to contribute to it. That fund can be used if my animal companion needs surgery, if I need something medically, or even if my car needs unexpected work. If it is just regular vet care, I don't use the fund. By doing this, and keeping myself and my animals as healthy as I can, I have had enough money to pay for something really expensive for my dog when it was needed, without putting it on a credit card or borrowing the money which would of course have ended u p costing me a whole lot more because of interest.

If you can afford insurance, just put the same amount or more into a certain fund every month and you will have the money to pay for whatever comes along, rather than having to deal with an insurance company. Insurance companies never want to pay out and they will always try to find some way not to pay if you make a claim. Then, if they do have to pay, they will increase the amount of your premium, or will cut off your policy altogether, even if they have assured you that won't happen. They will just tell you there's some other reason for them charging more or cutting you off. Also, by the time you need it, you will probably have paid for the large veterinary bill anyway by paying the premiums, so why not just save the money in the first place.
 

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In the UK, insurance is more commonplace. But - @Madra Anamchara I completely get what you are saying regarding vet bills but what would you folks do if there was a third party claim, like if your dog bit someone or ran into the road and caused a vehicle to crash? And, on your side of the pond I believe you are quite compensation oriented so I can't imagine someone saying don't worry, accidents happen. Just curious.
 

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In the UK, insurance is more commonplace. But - @Madra Anamchara I completely get what you are saying regarding vet bills but what would you folks do if there was a third party claim, like if your dog bit someone or ran into the road and caused a vehicle to crash? And, on your side of the pond I believe you are quite compensation oriented so I can't imagine someone saying don't worry, accidents happen. Just curious.
That would require liability insurance, and I have never heard of liability insurance for a dog. I don't think you'd get very far trying to get such a thing from any insurance company, at least in this country. they'd be highly suspicious in the first place if you ever tried; they would figure your dog was vicious and wouldn't even consider it.

Basically, if something like what you mention were to happen, you would either pay the person or not, and might just fight it in court. In the case of the accident, it would be very difficult for the driver or anyone else to prove that your dog caused the accident, or to prove that you were liable even if they did. there would be many other factors to bring into play.

A bite....that can land you in court, but the fine will be the least of your worries. It won't be so much that you couldn't pay it without insurance; no larger than a traffic violation, and there's no insurance for such things. The big problem if your dog bit someone and they took it to court would be your dog's safety.
 

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Interesting. There are even some charities here (like Dogs Trust, a rescue charity) that give free third party insurance if you become a ”member”, and it's something we would always advise people to have here, even if they wanted to budget for vet bills in the way you described. It's very inexpensive,
 

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Yes, that's the thing about insurance - laws and what is provided are very different in different countries. In my experience here, it's not often inexpensive and it is rarely there when you actually need it. It's the only industry that legally gets away, time and again, with not delivering what the customer pays for. In my opinion, that should be illegal. But insurance companies are part of Big Business here, along with the pharmaceutical companies, large corporations, and the government.

Nice that the UK has such a thing as you describe. I wonder if it is also much easier to get the company to pay on a claim. Here, there are attorneys whose sole business is representing the insured person and fighting insurance companies who refuse pay, or who refuse to pay enough on a claim. It's a whole field of litigation.
 

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Personally, I've been looking at Pumpkin. They have a good chunk I like, like 90% reimbursement, no age limits, and covers prescription food, alternative therapies (like acupuncture), and behavior training with some stipulations. However, they're not perfect and I've been weighing those cons against the positives.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
That would require liability insurance, and I have never heard of liability insurance for a dog. I don't think you'd get very far trying to get such a thing from any insurance company, at least in this country. they'd be highly suspicious in the first place if you ever tried; they would figure your dog was vicious and wouldn't even consider it.

Basically, if something like what you mention were to happen, you would either pay the person or not, and might just fight it in court. In the case of the accident, it would be very difficult for the driver or anyone else to prove that your dog caused the accident, or to prove that you were liable even if they did. there would be many other factors to bring into play.

A bite....that can land you in court, but the fine will be the least of your worries. It won't be so much that you couldn't pay it without insurance; no larger than a traffic violation, and there's no insurance for such things. The big problem if your dog bit someone and they took it to court would be your dog's safety.
Actually, this is standard. When we first got our Renter's Insurance policy over 20 years ago, our ins company made sure to tell us that the liability that it included would most definitely cover any issues that our dog caused (dog bite, causing damage, car crash as the other poster mentioned, etc). It's not unusual at all. It's very straightforward coverage. I'm confident most Homeowner's ins would also include this coverage. We've paid extremely little all these years for insanely great coverage. It's simple peace of mind.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Personally, I've been looking at Pumpkin. They have a good chunk I like, like 90% reimbursement, no age limits, and covers prescription food, alternative therapies (like acupuncture), and behavior training with some stipulations. However, they're not perfect and I've been weighing those cons against the positives.
Can you share the things that you've found that are cons? I'm curious. Someone else mentioned Pumpkin but I'd love to know what you found that concerns you. I'd rather know before trusting them with my girl's lives than after. :) Thanks for responding!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Interesting. There are even some charities here (like Dogs Trust, a rescue charity) that give free third party insurance if you become a ”member”, and it's something we would always advise people to have here, even if they wanted to budget for vet bills in the way you described. It's very inexpensive,
As I mentioned in a reply to the other poster, in the US, something as simple as inexpensive Renter's Insurance includes liability that covers any issues one's dog causes. Our company told us straight out that it covers any dog bites, damage, etc. And Renter's Ins is super reasonable. I would think Homeowner's would also cover the same things.

But I also agree that the UK is better on insurance that the US.
 

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In The Netherlands we have WA insurence that is a public liabilty insurence that most people hold ( Id say 99%) it covers all members of the houshold including children and pets.. MY neighbout got a bill voor €500,000 when her son and his mate accidentally burned down a hay loft. it was covered by her insurence. My dogs are covered for damge to persons or property up to €1-milion.

Vet insurence is another matter here I think its a rip off.. Paying between € 25 and €45 per month for a max of about €5000 cover but once the dog is a senior or if there are long terms issues coverage is often refused of reduce or excludes exactly what you need it for.

I have a credit card and a saving account especially for the boys. I also know my vet and if anything happened he would be more than happy to set up a payment plan.
 

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Actually, this is standard. When we first got our Renter's Insurance policy over 20 years ago, our ins company made sure to tell us that the liability that it included would most definitely cover any issues that our dog caused (dog bite, causing damage, car crash as the other poster mentioned, etc). It's not unusual at all. It's very straightforward coverage. I'm confident most Homeowner's ins would also include this coverage. We've paid extremely little all these years for insanely great coverage. It's simple peace of mind.
OK, I didn't know that, and of course it makes sense. I was not thinking in those terms, only thinking of having insurance on your dogs in particular. Thank you for pointing it out to me!

I wonder how many people who rent have home insurance, though. This might be another reason to have it if a person doesn't.
 

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For me, it's mostly their pre-existing conditions clause. Which wouldn't surprise me since most have something like that, but they specifically mention ligament and knee issues. And, from my understanding, they can be dodgy if a ligament issue pops up even after being with the company for over a year. And certain breeds can be a lot more monthly, even if you were to get a dog with genetic healt tests and clearances.

While not a stand in for your own research, I liked this site/article to start.
 

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I just took out a policy with ManyPets for my 8 y.o. chihuahua/yorkie mix. It's $27/mo. with a $250 deductible, pays 80% and has no annual limit. Haven't submitted a claim yet.
 

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I have Trupanion and it's only $130 or $149 a month for my dog AND two cats. What Madra is saying is absolutely untrue. The cost stays the same for the life of the pet, I enrolled all my pets young so it's cheaper I doesn't go up as they age or have and develop chronic issues.
I have had tons of claims and chronic conditions on my various pets and the cost is still the same.
They pay 90 percent of everything and let me choose my deductible, unlimited for the life of the pet.
I have alternative and holistic treatments for my pets covered as well.

I had one cat that had cancer and numerous surgeries and treatments and supposed to be completely treatable. In six months he wound up being over $50,000. Trupanion paid every without a word.
Best one out there.
 

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What Madra is saying is absolutely untrue.
Well, I was speaking about my own experience, so that is not untrue. This is, of course, one of those things where different people have different experiences, which is why I said "In my experience".

Obviously, if other people have had better experiences with insurance, I am very happy to hear that. I am glad you have had good experience and I'm especially happy to hear that there's a pet insurance as good as you are describing, Shadowmom. Thanks for recommending it. What you describe is how all insurance companies should be (but sadly are all too often not).
 

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Pets can be incredibly expensive. By ensuring you have access to veterinary care when needed, it's easier to keep your pet healthy and happy in the long run. The majority of insurance companies provide similar benefits, but there are some things that can set companies apart in terms of affordability, coverage eligibility requirements, and customer support. Reviewing different policies is a good way to see which company best suits your needs at what price point. I recommend you checking pet insurance review, where I found good info about insurers and general reviews.

 

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I carry full medical with a $250.00 deductible. It started out fairly reasonable, but as our dog aged the premium went up and up and up, but still I get more than our premium back each year, so I see it as worthwhile. You have to get it when your pet is young and healthy with no medical issues, as virtually all pet medical insurance policy's will exclude any pre-existing condition.
 

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Well, I was speaking about my own experience, so that is not untrue. This is, of course, one of those things where different people have different experiences, which is why I said "In my experience".
I wasn't trying to say your individual experience was untrue and I'm sorry to hear you had that experience. You just had some generalizations that all insurances were and are difficult to deal with and never pay and aren't worth using which is absolutely not true.
I couldn't afford any of my past or present animals, especially as they get old and sick.
My young dog has had nothing but injuries and health issues since he was 2 and he's only 6 now with a whole bunch of chronic expensive issues and medications. Thank God I insured him the day after I adopted him at age 16 months.
The pet insurance even said they'd now cover his preexisting umbilical hernia which is a birth defect since it's never bothered him in years and it would be an expensive surgery if it did.

So it's absolutely worth the deductible and monthly fees. I pay hundreds of dollars just to walk into my ripoff vets office twice a year for a checkup and it's nice to get most of it back
 
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