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What You Should Know About Dog Health Insurance

By: PetPlace Staff

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Is dog health insurance right for your dog?

Consider this scenario - It's a dog owner's worst nightmare: Your cherished pooch is suffering in pain and you're faced with the agonizing choice of facing huge veterinary bills you can't afford or putting your dog to sleep.

Fortunately, more dog owners are learning that reasonably priced pet insurance is readily available in the United States. This is especially good news since so many treatments that were once confined just to humans are now readily available to pets.

It is now possible, for example, for veterinarians to do hip replacement surgery, kidney transplants or surgery for cancer. According to Alejandra Soto, spokeswoman for the non-profit Insurance Information Institute in New York, "dogs are three times more likely than people to contract cancer and 45 percent of dogs die from it."

These advances in veterinary medicine mean that pets can live longer, more rewarding lives. But they can be expensive and dog owners need to be prepared for the expense.

Few Dog Owners Have Pet Insurance

Even so, not everyone is aware about or taking advantage of pet insurance with less than 2 percent of America's pet owners having enrolled their dog, cat, bird, rabbit, reptile or other exotic pet. Often pet owners may not be aware of the costly amounts associated with veterinary care until their pet is stricken with a sudden illness or suffers an injury.

Like human medical insurance insurers of humans, pet insurance companies charge premiums and there are deductibles for the different policy plans offered. Pet insurance policies offer different levels of coverage depending on how much you pay. Routine veterinary check-ups may not be covered in the base plan but offered as an endorsement. There might also be exclusions for older animals, pre-existing conditions and breed-related problems may be excluded. Be sure to examine every pet insurance policy closely to make sure that you understand what you are buying and call the pet insurance company with questions.

Key Dog Health Insurance Issues to Consider

  • The age of your pet. Pet insurance premium costs rise as pets grow older and enter the years when they are more likely to suffer serious illness or injury.

  • Pet insurance levels of coverage. Pet health insurers offer basic policies and upgrades. There are various deductibles with some companies that can be anywhere from $50 to $500. And there are various levels of coverage such as 80% reimbursement to 100% reimbursement.

  • What's covered in a pet insurance policy. Basic dog health insurance policies generally cover treatment for accidents, injuries and illnesses. Beyond that, some policies may cover vaccinations & routine care coverage. Some endorsements may include spaying and neutering along with dental and other routine care treatments.

    Many companies offer a variety of options to allow you to choose the plan and ultimately the payment that will fit in to your budget.

    We hope this gives you more information on dog health insurance.

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