For many of us, our pets are family members, and we would do anything to keep them healthy and happy. Food, toys, and grooming are a must, but we can’t forget about medical care. Visits to the veterinarian can be expensive, which is why some pet owners turn to pet insurance.
Pet insurance works very much like human health insurance and covers both routine check-ups and emergency care. In spite of its growth in popularity, many pet owners still regard pet insurance as optional. If you’re still on the fence about purchasing pet insurance, here are two pros and two cons to help you make your decision.
Pet insurance is a lot simpler than human health insurance. For the most part, any pet over eight weeks of age is eligible for coverage. Most policies allow you to choose any veterinarian you wish. Most policies also offer multiple coverage levels, so there is an option for every budget.
It gives you peace of mind
Perhaps the greatest benefit of pet insurance is the peace of mind it can offer to worried pet owners. A basic, accident-only plan can cost less than a dollar a day, and it’ll be well worth the cost in the event of an actual emergency.
It might not save you much
Unless your pet is very sick or accident prone, you might end up paying more in premiums than any benefits you receive. Also, many plans require you to pay first and apply for reimbursement later. Therefore, you still have to pay for the office visit upfront, whether or not you have pet insurance.
It might not cover preexisting conditions
A lot of plans will reject pets with preexisting conditions or charge higher monthly premiums for coverage. Some conditions won’t be covered at all if they’re common for the breed, such as hip dysplasia for German shepherds. Premiums can also rise with the pet’s age. If you have a pet with a preexisting condition, you would do better to direct money towards treatment, not insurance.
Your family’s needs will determine whether or not pet insurance is actually worth it. In general, pet insurance makes more sense for pet owners who are concerned about the financial consequences of a vet visit. If you’re able to maintain an emergency vet fund, you might not need pet insurance at all. However, pet insurance might be useful if you need a safety net in case of an emergency.