I have a general pet question, asking for my son.  Has anyone had pet insurance-is it worth it, do they pay, etc. Any specific co. stand out? I missed the dog flu on the news, friend called to let me know and my son, who is in Chicago area, His new pup was boarded last week and now has a respiratory thing going on-apparently neg. for the flu. But on meds.

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Pet Insurance can underwrite costly veterinary bills but you need to check what exclusions apply: pre-existing conditions, reducing coverage as dog gets older, insurance being used to fund excessive intervention as end of life approaches. However, there is no doubt that responsible pet ownership may require considerable financial outlay.

Based on Vicky Hay's observation on how much Ruby cost her in her first year, I am now following her advice to put aside a small sum from every pay check into a special account for canines only. I checked how much insurance was going to cost me and that is how much I am trying to save monthly.As your dog grows older, you increase the monthly savings plan, just as the insurance premia would rise. 

I am reluctant to place my hard earned shekels into yet another large corporation,(since here in Ireland, we the people have underwritten several major banks and will be paying for them until kingdom come!!) so I have opted to fund the dogs' care in this way.

For balance, you. probably also need feedback from those who have had positive and negative experiences with pet insurance

Hope this helps

I purchased pet insurance for my pups first year.  She was really expensive because she had recurring UTIs.  The insurance company wouldn't pay anything toward any of my vet bills so I dropped them.  Maybe it has worked for others but it didn't for me.

i dont have insurance for Baden but what i did end up doing, and so glad i did!, is i ended up going with banfeilds protection plan. it covered his dental cleaning, blood work, urine tests, shots, etc. which paid for its self in just the dental cleaning ($40 a month) and then just a few weeks ago Baden got really ill and itchy and covered the vet exam and meds they prescribed. they even have huge discounts on flea/heartworm prevention. every time i get a receipt of what they did and how much it would cost i am blown away by how much i save.

 they have different plans that fit your budget and no need to send in any paper work to get your money back. i hope this helps :)

Thanks to everyone that replied to my question  :)

Be very careful.

A former colleague at ASU had several dogs -- they were his life. He bought pet insurance for them. Some years later one of them developed an expensive ailment that required several surgeries. The insurance covered exactly NOTHING. Zip. Zero. For every single thing that went wrong with the dog -- and there were several -- the insurance fraudsters had an exclusion.

He would've been way ahead of the game to have built a special emergency veterinary savings fund with a little bite out of every paycheck. You can either get your bank's system to make an automatic transfer on a set day of the month, or sometimes if your employer direct-deposits, you can split the amount of the deposit between two accounts.

Personally, I would not have it and I have several dogs. I have NOT heard anything positive about it.

I was originally turned off from pet insurance by the way my vet was shoving it on me for my puppy's first check up.  I had already planned to set aside money each month in a savings account, rather than signing up for pet insurance.  It felt like she was shaming me into signing up and I just didn't buy it.

Little did we know that our 6mo puppy would be hit with pneumonia hard and fast.  (he's fine now)  I don't actually know what would have been covered if we had insurance.  Possibly ultrasounds and xrays, maybe the oxygen, but I can imagine not very much.

The preexisting condition clause is really what gets you into trouble, I think.  If we decided to get insurance after Jerry was out of the woods, he wouldn't be covered for any respiratory complications until 365 days after he was "cleared" of pneumonia.  If your son signs up for insurance tomorrow, and his puppy is already having respiratory issues, the dog won't be covered for any complications from that issue until your vet says he's clear. 

Everyone I know has never had it when they needed it, and never used it when they finally had it.  Obviously I can't actually speak to the benefits, but we've been fine without it now that Jerry's first serious issue has passed.  Do what feels right to you, and consider what you feel comfortable doing with your money.  Saving it and gaining interest, or paying out every month and not knowing for sure (but gaining coverage if needed).  Obviously we want to do what's best for our dogs, but when it comes to money, we also have to consider ourselves and how we want to manage it.

Thanks-sounds like poor Jerry has been through a lot

I reviewed the policy options in detail when my corgi Dooley became ill with cancer last year, and again in preparation to consider getting another corgi puppy. I looked at the most "popular' vet insurance in this area, VPI. I was disappointed to read through all the pages of fine print and see that there are very strict limitations to what they will cover, and what conditions they will cover, are all capped, for a max of around 500-2000 depending on what the condition is. Dooley's chemotherapy, plus the diagnostics to discover what was ailing him initially as well as the end-of-life care he received his last days on earth, easily topped ten grand. If I had paid six years' worth of premiums the insurance company would probably still come out ahead and to be honest, two grand out of ten wouldn't have helped that much. I have chosen to skip purchasing insurance for my current and any future pets and I will instead pay out of pocket for their medical needs, which are far cheaper than human medical care!

Right on! Pay the premiums to yourself.

To my enfeebled mind, it's sort of like the dental insurance you buy on the open market (rather than through your employer's plan): covers almost nothing. If you paid $20/month into a savings account, in nine years (when you could expect your pooch to start having expensive problems), you'd have $2,160 in emergency savings. Not enough, but better than a hit in the head...especially given that most pet insurers have 87 gerjillion reasons not to pay out.

Here's one at "Pet Insurance Review" (http://www.petinsurancereview.com/dog.asp) that, hevvin help us, charges $76.79/month for a 20/80 plan, with a $100 deductible. And maybe they'll cover "some" long-term conditions. Let's plug $77 into Excel... Hot diggety DAWG: $8316 in emergency dog savings after nine years.

If you could afford $77, you could probably afford to set aside $100/month for your poochie. Okay...if you put $100/month aside over 10 years, you'd have $10,800 in savings after 9 years. That would cover most catastrophic pet illnesses.

Considering what we spend on dog food alone, maybe we should think in terms of sacrificing a few dinners out per month by way of preparing for a rainy pet day. For someone my age who can remember when $10 would buy a week's worth of groceries, $100 seems like a lot of money. But in reality, for a working couple in 2015 it's pocket change.

From the one experience I had with it I wouldn't spend the money.  We adopted a cat from a shelter, we got something like 3 months coverage as part of the adoption.  Emmy developed a serve swallowing problem and they did pay towards the vet bill but naturally they started right away trying to get me to renew it for when the 3 month time was up.  Kicker was that wouldn't cover any similar problems in the future..pre-existing condition they said. That turned me right off. 

We have Healthy Paws insurance. Haven't had to use it yet but we got it for the more "catastrophic" type issues (back surgeries, etc). We have two corgis and had a savings account set up but determined that an insurance plan was better for our needs.

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