Is it really worth it to insure the health of your pet when he or she is still young and healthy? Let’s find out…
May pet owners will push off any recommendations to get pet insurance for their young cat or dog as they are healthy, young, and living their best lives – only to find themselves having a look at some pet insurance brochures while in their vet’s waiting room after their pet has suffered from an accident or injury and is in need of surgery.
Here are a few reasons why getting pet insurance for your young and healthy pet will not only save you money, but also allow you to get the best possible care for your pet…
Premiums are lowest when your pet is healthy and young
As your pet ages and grows, they are more likely to develop a chronic condition and encounter some serious health issues.
To cover for this expected increase in medical care for older pets, pet insurance companies will increase their monthly premium rates for older pets getting pet cover.
By purchasing pet insurance when your pet is still young, this might end up being more economical as your insurer will take into account that your pet is less likely to suffer from health issues related to age.
A pre-existing condition is a medical condition that presented clinical signs before your policy began. This means that your pet has either been diagnosed with the condition or he or she showed symptoms of it.
Pre-existing conditions are more likely to present themselves in older dogs. For example, let’s say that your dog develops cancer and then you decide to purchase a pet insurance policy after he or she has been diagnosed. Pet insurers have certain waiting periods in place for things like pre-existing conditions.
This means that you will have to wait a certain amount of time (typically 12 months), to have cover for any treatment costs relating to the pre-existing condition.
By purchasing pet insurance now, if your pet is diagnosed with any serious illnesses or conditions 3 months after your cover begins (this is the case for most pet insurers), then he or she will be covered for these medical expenses according to the exact limits of your policy.
A limit is the maximum amount of money your insurer will pay you for a claim.
Peace of mind
You need to be realistic with yourself.
If you are able to afford a monthly premium – some of the most basic plans range from R55 a month and the more comprehensive plans range from R390 a month – but you cannot afford a terrible accident or illness, then insurance is the right choice for you.
Most insurers offer a range of different plans. Oneplan, for example, offers 4 different plans. The most basic plan starts at R80 a month and includes covers for accidents and pet death.
Their most comprehensive plan costs R430 a month and this includes:
- Visits to the vet
- Routine care
- Accident cover
- Illness cover
- Kennel cover (if something happens to you and you cannot look after your pet)
- Burial/cremation/euthanasia cover
What I really like about Oneplan is that they pay you BEFORE you see your vet of choice.
This means that all the hassle of paperwork and waiting to be refunded by your insurer is eliminated. As far as I know, they are in fact, the only pet insurance company who offers this kind of benefit.
Cover for emergencies
The thing is, you cannot predict when things are going to go wrong, and chances are, you might not have enough cash to pay for a pet emergency when they do.
Puppies and kittens are particularly curious and might tend to escape your property and run into the road, fall from a height or make some other form of silly mistake that an older dog might not.
Which is why it pays to have pet insurance in cases such as these and to know that your medical bills are taken care of.
So, what now?
Well, we suggest you do your research and find out what pet insurers are offering, what their plans include, what they cover and more importantly, what they do not. As the end of the day, it is a personal decision and you need to decide on what is best for you and your pet.
But the point of all of this is that pet insurance should be something you purchase as soon as your pet is old enough to be insured.
Trust us, you will thank me for it.
Until next time,
The petinsurance.co.za Team