If you have a dog or cat, I would highly advise having pet insurance. Accidents happen all the time, your pet could be stricken with cancer, or some other illness or needed procedure could arise. All of these are very expensive, pet insurance (especially the right one) can help ease the financial burden. Yes, you would have an annual or monthly fee, but overall, you could still be saving. In this time where we all are watching every penny we spend, I know thinking about another expense seems silly, but without the insurance, think of what you would have to spend.
Petside.com published a Beginner's Guide to Pet Insurance to assist pet owners in selecting the best insurance for them. Below are the tips they outlined in the article, I hope you find it as interesting and informative as I did.
Insurance companies advise getting coverage as early as possible in your pet's life. This is because many policies don't cover pre-existing conditions and because puppies have a higher incidence of claims than dogs older than a year.
For most pet owners this is a new area to be venturing into. So where do you start?
The first step is picking an insurance company.
The first (and easiest) way to look into which insurer to select is to ask your veterinarian. Your vet should also be able to recommend an insurance company for your pet's breed since some companies have breed-specific limitations.
Try to choose a company that doesn't have a network, advises Wallace, so you can choose which veterinarian you go to.
Then check into whether you're dealing directly with the insurance company or an administrative company, advises Chris Ashton, co-founder and CEO of PetPlan, which is one of the latter.
The insurance company should have a name you recognize and should be rated A or A+. This rating should be easily found on the insurer's website and if you can't see it, a customer service rep should immediately be able to tell you the rating by phone. If there's no rating, steer clear, Ashton advises.
Find out how long the insurance company has been in business, too, he cautions. "It's not necessarily best that they've been around longer, but it's a good indicator."
Once you've culled a short list of companies, head online. Thoroughly browse the insurer's website. A good company will present its information to you in a very clear way, and a transparent company is one that you want to work with.
Also, look at the speed of a company's turnaround time and their reimbursement policy because you'll be out of money upfront.
Then compare the companies you like at www.petinsuranceuniversity.com and www.petinsurancereview.com.
You've made a decision and selected a company. Now you need to evaluate its policies.
Most important, says Ashton, is to find out what's covered and what's not in the policies you like.
"Companies can be a little economical with the truth," he points out. A particular favorite practice of some companies is to cover you for a certain issue one year, but discontinue that coverage the following year, so make sure you ask about ongoing coverage.
Some companies don't cover dental treatments or drugs so check into this. Also verify whether the deductible is per year or per incident, so you know how much you might have to pay.
There should be no surprises in an insurance policy. The information in your policy should be readily available and clearly presented on the company's website.
Says Chris Middleton, marketing manager of Pets Best Insurance: "If there are surprises there, who knows what other surprises you'll have down the road."
For the complete article, bark on the link: Bark!