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Do you currently have or plan to have pet insurance on your dog(s)?

  • Yes, on all my dogs

    Votes: 7 18.4%
  • Yes, on one or some of my dogs

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • No

    Votes: 31 81.6%
  • Other

    Votes: 0 0.0%
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Discussion Starter #1
I was looking through the insurance premium for my parents' dog over the week-end and got to thinking about what I will do for my mini pup.

For now (barring any unforeseen illnesses that crop up), I plan to have insurance for at least the first 3 years. Once my pup is 2 years old I will be x-raying hips and cerfing to ensure that there's no problem there that isn't yet visible. Assuming all tests are ok, at around 3 years old I will switch from paying for insurance to paying money into a set "pet health" account. Fingers crossed I will either never need to use that money or will only need to use it once my pup is at a good age.

My parents' choice is to have insurance on their single dog for now, then most likely switch to paying into an account once they have more than one dog. Insurance is expensive! But so are vet bills...

So what do you all of you do? Bearing in mind there's no right or wrong answers on this, just personal choice. :)
 

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I don't have insurance on the dogs. The kitten came from the shelter with free 45 days of insurance. (they get to spam me like crazy during those 45 days so not exactly free I guess LOL) With this particular insurance company I don't really see the benefit so won't be continuing coverage after the free period. Between the deductible and monthly/yearly cost, regardless of plan, it doesn't make sense for us to buy it.
 

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After having to shell out almost $10K on a sick kitty, I learned my lesson about not having insurance. I couldn't get it on her because of her pre-existing conditions, but I got it on my younger cat and on my puppy. I'm just thankful that I was able to pay for the treatment for poor Gizzie, but it really strained the finances (still paying off part of it on a credit card).

In my experience, animals always seem to have the more expensive illnesses as they get older. My old cat Murphy had to see a cardiologist and I ended up having to have him PTS because his heart disease was too far advanced. That bill was $1,700.

But the thing is, you can't get insurance on them once they start getting sick.

As you said, no right or wrong here, but just what you feel you need to do to protect yourself financially.
 

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I dont have insurance on them, but If I have an emergency or something, we have a running account at the vet's office. I think this is a good system if you have a client who's only other option would be having to euthanize a beloved pet because they couldn't come up with alot of money in a short amount of time.
 

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I agree, but my vet doesn't offer that. They offer to hook you up with GE Credit or someone so you can pay lots of interest.
 

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I am really interested in the responses to this question. For those of you who have insurance, which company are you using, why, & have you made any claims? We are trying to decide whether or not to carry pet insurance.
 

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I don't have pet insurance as I am a vet tech and don't have to pay for medical care for my guys (as long as I don't go outside our hospital - I have gone to a couple specialists in the past and take my guys to a chiro on a regular basis). We have quite a few clients that do have insurance and really like it. They have to pay their bills up front and the insurance company sends them their money.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'm finding it interesting that most people said no to this so far! I can see why. My parents pay $50 per month for their dog, so just about $600 a year. It's a lot of money. And it goes up the older the dog gets, I think it started at closer to $40 a year but now Ziggy's 4.

Of course our most recent big vet bill was on Sam, for emergency surgery for his hemangiosarcoma. He was 10 at the time and had no insurance because the premiums were so much for a dog his age. That cost about $3000 or so. It was the first illness he ever had outside of regular vet checks, so insurance would have been a waste in his case, unless we had kept it up until he was 11. But our spend over 11 years would have been way more than $3000!

It's hard to know what to do, as you can never predict what will happen as your pet ages!
 

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I had it through petsmart for my cat for a while but it was a waste. It didnt even cover vaccinations. I have heard its hard to get shar pei pet insurence because they have so many health issues but have thought of looking into it for my dogs through a different company. I don't know if it's worth it though, if I do go for pet insurence Im going to read the fine print to find out what they do and don't cover. I have a feeling most won't pay for non necessary xrays and the like, but if anyone finds one that does Id love to find out about it.
 

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if ya want to pay something, set up a savings account and put your $50 a month into that. Most big health issues come along when they're older, by then you'll have a decent amount in the savings account! Of course it will mean it'll take a while to accrue money, so if something big does happen in the first year or two you'll still be hard pushed, but at the same time you'd have a wee bit in there to at least reduce it!??

In saying that, I don't do anything. I DO have a little money in a savings account for emergencies, but it's not much!
 

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I voted No but ive always been intersted in it....i googled it and found a good local company called Trupanion. It doesnt go up because the dog is aging...sounds good to me. Anyone else heard of it?
 

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if ya want to pay something, set up a savings account and put your $50 a month into that. Most big health issues come along when they're older, by then you'll have a decent amount in the savings account! Of course it will mean it'll take a while to accrue money, so if something big does happen in the first year or two you'll still be hard pushed, but at the same time you'd have a wee bit in there to at least reduce it!??

In saying that, I don't do anything. I DO have a little money in a savings account for emergencies, but it's not much!
I think this is a great idea flyingduster! instead of shelling out the premium to a third party- save it up yourself!
I'm still waiting for my company to offer pet insurance, there have been members of the company at almost every "townhall" meeting that have brought it up at least once. :)
 

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No i dont, and i probably never will. I just have seen too many clients that had it and one day the insurance decides they dont want to cover certain things anymore and make it "pre-existing". They are slowly widdled down on what things it covers and becomes a waste. Too many loop holes, breed genetics not covered, age limits, pre-existing (like if they are treats for an ear infection once, all future ear problems wont be covered), etc.
 

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No i dont, and i probably never will. I just have seen too many clients that had it and one day the insurance decides they dont want to cover certain things anymore and make it "pre-existing". They are slowly widdled down on what things it covers and becomes a waste. Too many loop holes, breed genetics not covered, age limits, pre-existing (like if they are treats for an ear infection once, all future ear problems wont be covered), etc.
What she said.
They are a huge pain to deal with and look for any way 'out' they can find. :(
 

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haha, and with a savings account of your own, you gain interest... I have heard of others who have a credit card that is kept locked away and is only used for animal emergencies too, but of course that has a limit as well, but perhaps the amount they'll spend on their pet has a limit as well.

The other thing with a savings account I like, is that if your dog goes through it's life needing very little of the money stored away for it, you have the money sitting there to buy the next pup one day as well. lol!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
haha, and with a savings account of your own, you gain interest... I have heard of others who have a credit card that is kept locked away and is only used for animal emergencies too, but of course that has a limit as well, but perhaps the amount they'll spend on their pet has a limit as well.

The other thing with a savings account I like, is that if your dog goes through it's life needing very little of the money stored away for it, you have the money sitting there to buy the next pup one day as well. lol!
I'm a fan of the savings account approach as well, and as I mentioned, it's what I plan to switch to once the pup is a little older. The reason I like the idea of having insurance the first few years is bc that's when genetic problems are most likely to crop up. So if my dog has some sort of issue that requires ongoing medication for its life, then hopefully it will crop up while the dog is insured and I can then continue with the insurance. BC if it occurs and you don't have insurance, then you can't get it!

For a mini, the first couple of years is when Legg Calves Perthes or Patella issues will be evident. Those surgeries are expensive, so it's worth having the insurance I think if something were to happen with my pup.

Hmm, it is all interesting to think about. I definitely think insurance gets way too expensive for those with multiple pets.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
No i dont, and i probably never will. I just have seen too many clients that had it and one day the insurance decides they dont want to cover certain things anymore and make it "pre-existing". They are slowly widdled down on what things it covers and becomes a waste. Too many loop holes, breed genetics not covered, age limits, pre-existing (like if they are treats for an ear infection once, all future ear problems wont be covered), etc.
That sucks, just like insurance companies. :( I guess if you do have it you have to be very careful regarding which policy you select. The only reason I would get it is to cover genetic/ breed specific issues that might come up!
 

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Just be sure to read Everything and All the fine print! I have heard of alot of pet insurance companies that have limits on genetic disorders (like hip dysplasia in labs for example and wont cover for it).
 

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Well, I have a 17-year-old cat who has been relatively healthy his entire life, but since last June I've spent $2000 on him for various ailments. It has made me consider buying pet insurance on my dog and future dogs and kitten. I want to investigate the different companies and talk to the vet about them, whether they know if they companies actually pay off, or if there are so many exclusions that the policy is not worth it. Also, you can only start buying the insurance until they reach a certain age, for one company it's age 7.

Hate to be making decisions about a "family member" based on what the cost is. The savings account idea is attractive because usually the pet is healthy for at least the first 5 or so years.
 
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