Is Pet Insurance Really Worth It?

sick dogIf you’re considering pet insurance but find yourself wondering, is pet insurance worth it, and then we’d like to take a moment to answer that for you. Yes, pet insurance is absolutely worth it. Let’s consider the reasons why pet insurance is a good idea.

Large, Unexpected Expenses

The point of insurance – any insurance – is to help you cover large, unexpected expenses. Pet insurance falls into that same category. Consider what would happen if your pet became seriously ill, or had a terrible accident. You’d probably rush them to the vet, and then when you got the estimate of $3,000 or more to care for them, you’d probably have a panic attack trying to figure out how to pay for that. Perhaps your solution would be to open a savings account for pet care. Although that’s a fine idea, it’s not something you should do instead of getting insurance.

What happens if you open that account and start saving, but a couple of months into it, something happens, and you have a big bill with not a lot of savings to cover it? Or, what happens if a car emergency comes up, and the only money you have saved up is in the pet savings account? Would you have the discipline to consider other options for your car, or would you dip into the pet savings account? Insurance helps make sure you’ll be able to take care of these expenses when they come up.

Customizable Policies

An excuse many people like to use for why pet insurance isn’t worth it is that there are too many breed restrictions and exclusions like hereditary problems and chronic diseases. The truth is, most pet insurance companies have improved the coverage they offer. Dozens of companies allow you to customize your policy to suit your needs. That means you can choose your deductible, your reimbursement rate, what type of coverage you’d like to have, and co-pay options. Because you have such control over the policy, you can choose a premium that fits your budget. And, since insurance companies have improved the coverage they offer, they’ve also lifted many of the old restrictions against breeds and hereditary problems.

Rising Healthcare Costs for Pets

Another factor to keep in mind is that healthcare costs for pets are on the rise. Whenever there is a serious medical concern for your pet, most veterinarians want to refer those cases to specialty doctors and hospitals, which cost more. Specialization is expected to increase in the future, as well. In a blind survey, many pet owners said they’d be willing to spend any amount to care for a sick pet. However, according to several vets, when pet owners are faced with an actual decision rather than a theoretical question, their answer is rather different. When facing a $10,000 vet bill, many families choose euthanization over treatment. However, pet insurance gives families a way to care for their beloved pet in these situations.

Reimbursement Concerns

Another complaint many people have with pet insurance is the reimbursement structure. It’s certainly not what people are used to with their own insurance; however, that doesn’t mean the insurance doesn’t have value. If you’re questioning whether pet insurance is worth it, for this reason, then you need to research insurance companies. Yes, paying for care up front and then waiting for reimbursement is difficult, but that doesn’t mean the insurance isn’t worth it.

First of all, if something happens and your pet needs care, you’re not completely out that money. Most insurance companies reimburse you within five to 14 business days, so you don’t have to wait a long time. Second, there are some companies who are willing to send the payment directly to your vet so that you can work out an arrangement that doesn’t require you to pay out of pocket. Either way, without insurance, you’re out the entire amount if you want to help your sick pet.

At the end of the day, we think pet insurance is worth the cost. Your pet receives the care they need when they need it, rather than waiting until you can afford it, and you’ll have peace of mind knowing you can help them. Pet insurance is designed to help you deal with large, unexpected expenses, and it protects your money and your savings. It’s a tough decision to put your family in debt for a beloved pet, and although there are some who are willing to do that, there are other families who make the difficult decision to euthanize their pets. Avoid such a choice by getting a pet insurance policy.

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