How does pet insurance work?

Pet insurance is an insurance policy much like your own car insurance, health insurance, or renter’s insurance. Each month you pay a premium – a designated amount that keeps your pet enrolled in the insurance policy. When your pet becomes ill or injured, you visit the vet. You pay for treatment for that illness and ask the veterinarian to fill out a section on your claim form. You then submit the claim form with the related invoice to the insurance company. When your claim is approved, you may be reimbursed for up to 100% of your costs, depending on your deductible, your individual policy, and your pet’s past health history.  Be aware that all pet insurance policies are reimbursement policies, meaning that you will first have to pay the bill and then submit the claim requesting reimbursement.

What insurance company should I use?

There are about a dozen companies that offer policies at this point in time – and the policies that are available vary greatly in coverage amount, premiums, and what services/treatments are covered. Your best bet is to do some research to find out if there is a policy that works for you. We also have brochures available from a variety of pet insurance companies in our “Client Resource Library”.

Do they cover all of the veterinary care my pet needs?

Yes and no. Every company’s procedure for determining whether or not to pay a claim is different. There are also different levels of policies available. For example, some policies will cover only claims relating to illness and injury; others will cover preventative care and vaccines.

What about pre-existing conditions?

Most policies will NOT cover any pre-existing condition, meaning your pet that has had a health condition in the past, he/she will not be covered for that condition if it was diagnosed prior to your enrollment in the policy. Some policies also exclude certain genetic diseases. Check to see what other pet owners have to say or contact the insurance company with your specific questions.