Why Insure your Pet?
Pet insurance is designed to help cover unexpected veterinary fees should your pet need. A good policy will take away the financial constraints and worry when your pet needs medical attention. It also covers you for third party claims should your pet cause an accident or injury to another party.
One in two insured dogs make a claim and one in four insured cats make a claim each year.
What types of insurance policies are there?
There are wide range of insurance companies availble and within these companies difficerent levels of cover.
12 Month Schemes
These policies will pay out for the first 12 months only, even if the limit is not reached, after which any further cost incurred are your responsibility. These policies are cheaper than some other options however be aware that ongoing costs can be substantial.
Please be aware that as a result of being a 12 month policy, any condition see may be excluded the following year. This includes any lumps/bumps found, any skin complaints, ear disease etc.
This policy is not recommended as it does not give your the best cover available.
Cover For Life Schemes
These policies cover a condition for the life of the pet. They will pay only for the initial diagnosis and treatment, and any long term medication. With each rolling year, as long as the policy is maintained, no exclusions will be placed.
Such schemes are naturally more expensive because they have to budget for possible payments over many years.
Cover for life schemes either offer a maximum figure that can be spent per condition, or a maximum figure that can be spent per year.
Cover for life schemes are by far the best option for most people.
What is an excess?
All companies requires the policy holder to pay for the first part of a bill, this is called the excess. The excess may be a a one off amount usually £50-£110 per condition.
Some companies also require the policy holder to pay percentage of the total bill. This varies with each company, be sure to check your policy what you are required to pay if a claim was required.
What conditions are not covered?
Routine preventative treatment is not covered, as it is considered as part of the ownership of a pet. These include:
- Flea Products
- Foods and diets
- Neutering operations
- Congenital problems (in some policies)
- Dental work – unless as a result of an accident, some policies may also cover acute conditions such as a tooth root abcess.
A note about specific exclusions:
All insurers will impose additional specific exclusions on conditions that existed prior to the policy being taken out. On your application form, you will be required to give details of all previous illnesses or those within a certain time scale. If you do not declare a problem then you may find your policy will not pay out if a similar but unrelated problem occurs. In the event of a claim the insurer will ask us for full medical details and we have to declare them, so that could put us in a awkward position and you may find your claim is rejected.