There is no denying that more people than ever are buying pet insurance. That being said, this industry still has a lot of opportunity for growth.
Generally speaking, many pet owners are torn on whether or not buying insurance is a good idea. There are definite pros and cons of buying pet insurance. As a pet owner, you should compare pet insurance benefits and downsides, while also considering how it might fit with your personal and financial situation.
Benefits of Buying Pet Insurance
- Much like private health insurance for humans, when you buy insurance for your pet you are protecting yourself against expensive medical bills. A pet insurance policy may cover all or part of the costs of regular visits, immunizations, injury, and illness.
- Another benefit of pet insurance is that many plans allow you to choose your own vet. This gives you the ability to continue to see your current vet, making it simple to add a policy without any hassle.
- Puppies and kittens (a few weeks old and upward) will almost always be eligible for pet insurance cover. On top of this, many companies charge less when you buy insurance for your pet at an early age. This is a benefit if you have, or intend to have, a young pet who will grow up with you.
Drawbacks of Pet Insurance
- There may be exclusions and limitations to your pet insurance cover, such that a particular illness or accident is not covered, or a certain treatment may only be covered a specified number of times per year. Make sure you read the fine print and are fully aware of what is and is not covered.
- Paying out of pocket is common. There are not many pet insurance policies that cover 100% of all pet care costs. Most policies have either an excess, or a pre-set annual limit for claims.
- Limited treatment coverage networks. Even if your pet insurance policy allows you to select your primary vet, what happens if you need to seek emergency or out-of-town treatment for your pet? Become familiar with how you can access treatment from other vets when necessary, and how it will be paid for.
If you decide that pet insurance right now is a good idea for you and your pet, be aware that if you later decide to cancel your policy, some pet insurance plans have a cancellation penalty. In other words, they may charge you a fee to end your policy early. A pet insurance comparison will help you find insurers that do not charge this type of fee.
With many benefits as well as a few drawbacks, pet insurance may or may not be right for you. To decide if buying pet insurance is a good idea, arm yourself with as much information on the topic as possible. If you compare the pros and cons, you will be able to make a decision that you are happy with.
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This article is opinion only and should not be taken as financial advice.
Filed Under: Pet Insurance