Questions You Might Be Afraid to Ask About Pet Insurance
There is no need to be embarrassed because I’ve already asked every question you’ve ever wanted to know about Pet Insurance. You’re welcome!
Pet insurance is undeniably a hot topic nowadays! Not only do we have to make tough decisions for our fellow human family members, but now take on the task of considering our pet’s medical care. Thankfully, I’ve gone and bombarded the inboxes of every pet insurer so that you don’t have to.
I know just how important it is that you make the right decision with your pet insurer. To help guide you through your search, here are the top 10 questions you might have been too afraid to ask and their answers!
Question 1: Okay, but what exactly is pet insurance?
I will be the first person to tell you that the internet can make this an incredibly difficult question to answer. With so many competing definitions it can all get a little confusing. So, to help you out, I’ve kept the definition short and sweet:
Pet insurance is an agreement between you and your insurance company that guarantees that they will compensate you for your pet’s healthcare-related expenses in return for a set monthly premium.
Question 2: Is my pet too old for pet insurance?
This is one of the most frequently asked questions when it comes to pet insurance. And I get why you’re curious about it. You want to ensure that your pet is eligible for coverage and all of its included benefits.
As you know every pet insurance company is different, however, the general rule of thumb for both puppies and kittens is that you can enrol them in pet insurance once they are 8 weeks old.
Generally, most pets over the age of 14 years old can no longer be enrolled in comprehensive pet insurance. While your senior pet may not be eligible for full coverage, some insurers do offer emergency cover for older pets.
If you aren’t sure of your pet’s age, head over to your nearest vet where they will be able to best pinpoint the age of your pet for you!
Question 3: Are pre-existing conditions not covered?
Well, for starters we must define what a pre-existing condition is before talking about whether or not it’s covered.
There are a lot of definitions for a pre-existing condition, however, most commonly, it is known as a medical condition that has shown clinical symptoms before your pet’s coverage has started. Now, pre-existing illnesses will not make your pet ineligible for pet insurance, but certain illnesses/symptoms may not be covered.
Generally, pet insurers will NOT cover pre-existing illnesses, so any costs associated with it will have to be covered out of pocket.
That being said, there is one pet insurance company that does cover pre-existing conditions. Tap here to find out more about this elite insurer.
Question 4: What are waiting periods?
Like any insurance policy, you will be expected to go through a specified waiting period. You must understand what a waiting period is as this is indicated when your pet’s policy takes effect. This means that during this period, you are not eligible for any coverage.
Every pet insurer will have its own waiting period. This is dependent on many factors including what kind of pet you’re insuring, their medical history and various conditions. Essentially, the lower the waiting period, the better.
Question 5: What is a deductible, and do I have to pay it?
This is a valid question since it is the perfect example of typical insurance jargon. A deductible is what you have to pay out of pocket before the insurance kicks in. The amount is dependent on the pet policy plan that you choose. The idea is to opt for a deductible that you can afford.
Keep in mind that if you go for a lower deductible, your premium will be higher and vice versa.
Question 6: Is choosing my own vet important?
Yes, yes, and yes again.
Looking at the current markets, you will see that not all pet insurers give you the option to choose your own vet. While some of these insurers do have a pretty exhaustive list of network veterinarians, some don’t. The reality is that you want to be able to go to a vet of your choosing. One that is affordable, has a good relationship with your pet and one that is nearby.
Look at it this way: One of the most important relationships you will have is with your vet. At the very least, you should be able to decide with whom you embark on this relationship with.
Question 7: What is not covered?
Again, every pet insurance company is different when it comes to the agreed-upon expenses that will not be covered. The important thing is to ask your potential pet insurer for their list of exclusions. This will be the list of things that you will be expected to pay for out-of-pocket and they are not listed under reimbursed items.
To give you an idea of typical exclusions that you may encounter, here are a few:
- Pregnancy-related claims
- Pre-existing conditions
- Behavioural therapy
- Cosmetic procedures
- Costs that incur due to your negligence to your pet’s medical or healthcare needs
Question 8: Are pet prescriptions covered?
The truth is that pet medication can be just as expensive as our own. Having this expense covered will be a huge relief for you. Essentially given the fact that prescription medication is a non-negotiable part of your pets healing process.
Not all pet insurers offer this benefit, so where possible, try to opt for policies that have the option to cover prescriptions. Also, ask your potential insurer if they have this benefit as an add-on.
Both you and your pet deserve the very best when it comes to pet insurance, and finding it is a lot easier than you may think. Have this blog in your back pocket and you will only be left with the cream of the crop!
Until next time,
The Pet Insurance Team