Thousands of dog owner find themselves faced with large vet bills when their dog insurance fails to pay out.
I had to check all this out for my Lurcher and so I have put what I discovered in a short simple guide to help you avoid any pet insurance pitfalls.
With a lot of the Comparison Websites steering us towards the cheapest Insurance cover we can easily end up with a product which is not what we wanted.
To avoid this it is vital to know just a little about the terminology that is banded about by pet insurance providers.
So here is a short guide to what we as dog owners want and some of the restrictions that we may be faced with.
I hope it helps.
Four Types of Dog Insurance
There are four distinct types of dog insurance although you will find some policies that include more than one.
But this is a good place to start
- Accident Only
- Time Limited
- Per Condition
So lets take a look at each in turn.
Accident Only Insurance
Even I can follow this one unaided. This will provide cover for accidents but for nothing else. Any other illnesses will be down to you.
This may not appear to be all that attractive but, for those on a limited budget, it’s far and away the cheapest.
With a Lurcher , a Greyhound or any sporting dog this may well protect you from the most likely type of illness.
Time Limited Insurance
In this case the period of cover is for a limited time only, most commonly 12 months. This will protect against accident and short term illnesses.
I have found many dog insurance offerings that state that cover lasts from puppy-hood to say 6 years.
This takes a lot of thinking about because your dog is more susceptible to illness as they age and this is the time that the cover ends.
The chances that you can get affordable cover for an older dog are almost nil unless you take out cover of the next type.
Again It is self exoplanetary over the whole of it’s life, however this is the most expensive of all the types.
It sounds very straight forward but there can be restrictions within the protection that it affords.
I will delve deeper into this in the “restrictions” section.
In this case any treatment, be it injury or illness, will have a time or financial limit.
It’s worth noting that if you reach your limit on, for example, a broken leg and then you have another separate injury or illness then the second problem should still be covered.
Insurance is Never Quite that Simple
Ok so the four types of policy do not, at first glance, present any great problem.
But, and it’s a big BUT, the Insurance policies offered may be a combination of more than one of the basic types.
Once you start looking at quotes for insurance it’s easy to be led in directions that you don’t really want to go.
So I would advise you to decide what type of cover you want before you go looking.
Some Common Restrictions
I have already mentioned some of these but I will list them again with some additions.
Pre-existing Illnesses – As with most human illness you can’t get protection for something that you have already had. Except in the case of injuries.
Age Restrictions – These vary but will prevent you getting new insurance for an old dog. if you want cover up to the end of your pets life it’s as well to take lifetime cover before it’s too late.
Financial Restrictions – Usually in terms of Thousands of pounds. One thing that surprised me was just how much Vets bills can come to. Xrays, Scans, surgery and aftercare can easily get into the five figure number area ( £10,000 or more) so ensure that you have enough cover.
Here is a link to a really reliable comparison site who specialise in Insurance ( Quotezone).
Armed with the information above you should be able to find the exact cover for your Pet.