Pet Insurance?

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by crazedACD, Nov 27, 2012.

  1. crazedACD

    crazedACD Active Member

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    Do any of you guys carry health insurance for your pets? I've been going back and forth on it for years now and I am still considering it, especially now that the policies have opened up a little to include hereditary disease. I'm carrying a credit card right now for emergencies but it would be nice not to have to pay it back, haha.

    What brand did/do you have? Any recommendations?

    Are there any companies that can be billed straight off the bat, without having to have the money up front? Or is that case by case with the vet clinics? I have credit cards and ways to borrow if necessary, but if one of my dogs needed a $2000 emergency surgery paid up front tonight, that might be problematic.

    I'm also curious about pre-existing conditions, how would they know?? If something was 'cured' previously but comes back, is that covered? The whole thing confuses me..
     
  2. JessLough

    JessLough Love My Mutt

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    I've looked into it....but with a senior dog, it just wasn't worth it. Nothing would be really covered for her. Only one company will ensure ferrets, which would be nice, but again, I'm not sure how much they would have covered, seeing as I tend to get the harder to adopt out rescues with health issues.
     
  3. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    I have PetPlan for 3 of the 4 dogs - they reimburse you so you do have to pay up front at the vet's but they also cover most hereditary conditions and the price is reasonable for the basic illness/injury/accident only plan I have. I pay about $20/mo/dog for $8000 in coverage and a $200 deductible.
     
  4. Brattina88

    Brattina88 Active Member

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    I've looked into it several times, with a couple different companies and I never found a plan that was cost effective. Each company has their own policies on pre-existing conditions. Some that I looked into didn't cover illnesses common in certain breeds (such as the cocker) either. Frustrating. I figured if I put the money into my own account annually I would be fine and that's always worked for me so far :)
     
  5. SevenSins

    SevenSins Guest

    I use Healthy Paws pet insurance.

    http://www.healthypawspetinsurance.com/Frequent-Questions

    I used this website when I was shopping for pet insurance...
    http://www.petinsurancereview.com/reviewStart.asp

    I pay $33.06/month for one dog, my annual deductible is $100 and reimbursement is 90%, no lifetime or per incident limits. Very straight forward policy. If it's an accident or illness, they cover it, period. They don't cover preventative care/vaccinations, dental or behavior modification drugs/training, or easily preventable parasites. I just filed a claim actually and they paid back exactly what I expected them to, very quickly.

    That said... Pet insurance always has to be paid up front to the vet, but vets are typically pretty quick to get the claim forms and paperwork faxed over to your insurance. I think mine got back to me within a week, mileage may vary.

    As for exactly what your policy covers and doesn't cover, what they consider pre-existing, max lifetime limits, etc, that's completely independent of company you go with. For example, some companies consider hip dysplasia to be a pre-existing condition because it's inherited, some will only cover one side because of the likelihood of the other side becoming affected (my insurance doesn't have bilateral exclusions with the exception of cruciate injuries), etc. Your vet will have to fax them your pet's entire medical file prior to writing your policy.
     
  6. SpringerLover

    SpringerLover Active Member

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    I've actually heard Trupanion is good, but all of my pets are too old to be eligible now... ;) They have to be 13 and under!
     
  7. JustaLilBitaLuck

    JustaLilBitaLuck New Member

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    I've looked into it multiple times, and it just isn't worth it to me. I looked into three or four plans, and did the math, and I wasn't saving a whole lot, especially since some plans don't cover preventative, others have really high deductibles, etc. So, instead I set up a savings account for veterinary bills, and I use my CareCredit to the best of it's advantage. I have ways of paying for an emergency, and I would much rather have those measures in place rather than pay a lump sum every month just in case an emergency may happen.

    Megan - Do you know if Trupanion won't take any new pets that are over 13? Or does the policy exclude pets over 13 entirely? Like, if I enrolled my 11-year old cat now, will she still be covered in three years when she's 14? Or does it "cut off", so to speak?
     
  8. sassafras

    sassafras mushinois

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    I've gotten the most consistent good feedback about PetPlan.

    I despise VPI. So much red tape, so many exclusions, a lot of monkey business surrounding denied claims (I've had to write more than one strongly worded letter to overturn a denial) and if you don't fill out their paperwork exactly right you don't get your full reimbursement.

    I've looked into it a couple of times and personally I agree that tucking a little money away and opening a Care Credit account is a really overlooked way to deal with veterinary bills and probably comes out better for most people at the end of the day.
     
  9. JustaLilBitaLuck

    JustaLilBitaLuck New Member

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    Agreed. I love my CareCredit, and I'm surprised that more people don't use it. I have a high enough limit to take care of an emergency, and the only place I've not been able to use it was at Jack's ophthalmologist - my regular vet and both emergency clinics I've been to accept it.
     
  10. SpringerLover

    SpringerLover Active Member

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    I didn't look that far into it. I suspect the continue to cover throughout the life of the pet if signed up before age 13?

    I also have a CareCredit and money put aside to use as needed. My problem is that these old animals are REALLY expensive! A tech at the clinic my cats are having dentals at said they get a lot of people with Trupanion... and it's quite useful for those non-routine dentals.

    I've paid off one of my CareCredit charges (Bailey's veterinary behaviorist appointment) and am now working on her leg surgery. I was also able to put extra money on my account at the clinic I used to work at with 18 months to pay it off so... I did that!

    I love CareCredit a lot!
     
  11. Southpaw

    Southpaw orange iguanas.

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    This is how I look at it too. I'd rather just put money away in a vet fund. If my pets never need it, awesome, I'm not losing anything; but it's always there if I do need it.

    I need to look more into CareCredit, it just always confuses me lol. As it is right now, I could afford an emergency, but I'd like to have some backup - my credit card limit is only $500 (which most of the time, is a good thing lol) so that would probably not be very helpful if I needed it.
     
  12. JustaLilBitaLuck

    JustaLilBitaLuck New Member

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    Once you have a CareCredit card, you can use it for medical charges anywhere that it's accepted. Once you make a charge, you have anywheres from between 6 and 24 months to pay it off (I believe it depends on the amount that was charged), without interest. You do have to make the minimum monthly payment, but its fairly low. On your statement, it will say the date you made the charge, the total amount of the charge, how much you have left to pay, and the date that you have to pay it off by. Payments always go towards the oldest charge first.

    As far as credit limits go, I would still apply. My CareCredit card has a higher limit than any of my regular credit cards - it was much higher than I thought I would get.
     
  13. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    Can you just apply for a Care Credit card online?
     
  14. SpringerLover

    SpringerLover Active Member

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  15. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    I should probably do that. But I'll be sad if they say I can't have one.

    Also, do you know if Lake Harriet takes CareCredit? Either of you? lol
     
  16. SpringerLover

    SpringerLover Active Member

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  17. JustaLilBitaLuck

    JustaLilBitaLuck New Member

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    Yep! www.carecredit.com

    Yes, Lake Harriet does take CareCredit, I've used it. As far as not getting one, I applied shortly after I turned 18, and I had pretty much non-existant credit. I still got approved!
     
  18. SizzleDog

    SizzleDog Lord Cynical

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    I've looked into it several times.... but what I've settled on is just sending my vet money every month to add credit to my account. That way I know every penny of what I spend on "insurance" will go towards caring for my pets. It's a large practice, and I don't intend to switch for a loooong time.
     
  19. SpringerLover

    SpringerLover Active Member

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    I thought that too but where Bailey had her leg surgery, the longest they had was 6 months... for any amount. At the clinic I used to work at, it was up to 18 months based on dollar amount. I only had six months for Bailey's veterinary behavior appointment (less than $500) at the University, so I don't know how long theirs can be for.
     
  20. PWCorgi

    PWCorgi Priscilla Winifred Corgi

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    But I'm scared. This is too much like signing up for a Credit Card, lol.
     

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