It's a pet parent's worst nightmare. Your dog or cat has a terrible accident, gets attacked by another animal, is hit by a car, or gets a devastating health diagnosis from your Veterinarian.  What happens to your pet if you can't pay the Vet bills, and you never did get around to buying Pet Health Insurance?

Once the shock and pain have set in, the fear comes.  Not just the fear of;  Will my pet be ok, but the fear of How in heaven's name am I going to PAY for this?!  What if I can't pay and the Vet won't treat my pet?  After all, Veterinarians need to make a living too.  With medical school debt, malpractice insurance, staff payroll, expensive equipment and other costs, they can hardly be expected to act as charity institutions.  

Pet Health Insurance Helps Ease The Fear

Many people are turning to Pet Health Insurance to help ease the fear of being blindsided by a hugely expensive Veterinary bill they can't afford.

Pet health insurance, Dog health insurance, Consumersadvocate report on pet insurance,  Dog Health , Cats, Dogs
Finding good Pet Health Insurance can be a daunting task

Pets are Family, and every family member deserves medical treatment, especially in the face of an emergency or life threatening illness.  The fear of not being able to pay for Veterinary services in the event of a serious pet injury or illness has led to substantial growth of the Pet Insurance industry.

This post is sponsored by Consumers Advocate® . I am being compensated to share information about Consumers Advocate's  information and reviews of the Pet Insurance landscape and product offerings.  As always, we only share information we feel is relevant and helpful to our readers.

In 1982, Lassie was the first dog in the U.S. to have a pet insurance policy.  Since then, along with the rise in pet health care costs, the pet health insurance industry has exploded.  

The Insurance Information Institute stated that the total number of pets insured reached 2.52 million in 2019, up 16.7% from 2018. This represents gross written pet insurance premiums of $1.56 billion in 2019.  About 83% of insured pets in the U.S. are dogs.

The Insurance Information Institute pet ownership report shows:

🐶 There are nearly 90 million dogs and 94 million cats in the U.S.

🐈 Spending on Pet Healthcare in the U.S. reached around 16 Billion dollars in 2020, and it's steadily increasing.

🐶 The average annual cost of medical expenses for a pet in the U.S. can be upwards of $700

Pet industry expenditure as a whole is expected to reach $69 Billion.  Included in that $69 Billion is a hefty chunk of change that is spent on providing medical care for pets. 

Each year more people are purchasing health insurance for their pets, especially in the U.S.  According to NAPHIA, by the end of 2016, nearly 1.6 Million pets in the United States had pet health insurance.  The majority of those pet health insurance plans cover both illness and accidents.

Pet Health Insurance, Dog health insurance, dog health, pet health, dogs, pets
Pet Insurance companies and plans vary widely but finding the right health insurance plan for your dog or cat is vital. 

Consumersadvocate Provides Valuable Pet Insurance Information 

It seems so simple, just go out and buy a Pet Health Insurance policy and you'll never have to worry about being hit with Vet bills you can't afford.  Right?  If only it were that simple.  

Although there has been a huge increase in the number of pet owners purchasing health insurance for pets, not all pet insurance plans are alike.  In fact, navigating the Pet Insurance landscape can be mind boggling.  Prices, what's covered, when and why a claim may be denied, and what Veterinarians you can go to, vary widely from one pet insurance company and plan to another.  

Consumersadvocate does a great job of explaining the benefits and limitations of the many Pet Insurance companies and policies available.  

Check out this video to see how  Consumersadvocate can help you find the right Pet Health Insurance plan for your pet.

Years ago when Icy was a puppy, I won a year's worth of Pet Insurance at a fundraiser.  It seemed like a good thing to have in case of an emergency, but when I read the policy I saw that we would have to leave our beloved Veterinarian and use a Vet from their list of participating Veterinarians.  Because of that restriction, I never used the insurance.  Our fabulous Veterinarian was too important to us!

A financially devastating injury or illness can strike at any age in your dog's life.  Pet Insurance can help ease the fear of not being able to pay your pet's medical costs.  Pet health, Pet medical care, dogs, cats, pets, pet health insurance.
A financially devastating illness or injury can occur at any stage of your dog's life.

Since then, I have thought about getting Pet Health Insurance for Icy and Phoebe but it was really confusing.  There are so many companies and differences in policies that finding a pet insurance policy was too overwhelming!  The years ticked by and now my girls are both senior dogs, 12 and 13 years old.  

Thankfully my dogs haven't had health issues we couldn't afford to pay for, but I have friends with pets who have had prohibitively expensive medical issues.  Pet Insurance can be a Godsend in those instances, IF you have the right policy. 

Visit the Consumersadvocate Pet Insurance page  to figure out what questions to ask and see which companies offering Pet Insurance are rated the best.  They provide so much great advice and insight about pet insurance in general, pet insurance companies, and policies on their web site.  

If you're thinking about getting health insurance for your pet and want to learn more about how to go about finding the right plan, their web site is a great primer.  I suggest you go there first to start learning about pet insurance and the top pet insurance companies available.  

If you're lucky you'll find a great pet health insurance plan that can help pay for unexpected and expensive medical issues that may come up for your dog or cat.  If you don't, you could end up like some pet parents I know who were totally blindsided when they found out that their pet's medical treatment wasn't covered by the pet insurance plan they bought.

One of my blogger friends at McSquare Doodles has 2 beautiful Goldendoodles.  As a young puppy, her dog Bernie was diagnosed with atypical Addison's disease. Certainly an unexpected, serious illness for which you'd want your pet insurance to provide coverage.  

Unfortunately, simply because Bernie had been to the Vet once for vomiting 2 months prior to his diagnosis the pet insurance company denied coverage for any costs related to his Addison's disease, claiming he must have had a "pre-existing condition"!  

It's no surprise that she dropped that pet insurance, but the "damage" of being denied coverage was already done.  Learn more about Addison's Disease and how Irene deals with her dog Bernie's atypical Addison's Disease on her blog.

Conversely, my friend Jodi at Kohl's Notes, got insurance for her dogs, Felix and Kol.  She was lucky to have a great insurance plan that, over the years, covered several thousand dollars worth of treatments for Felix' torn ACL's and Kol's IVDD (Intervertebral Disk Disease) attack.

You want to make the right choice and find a pet insurance company and plan that is reliable and provides great coverage.  One that won't look for a reason to deny your insurance claim just when you need it most.  There is some leg work involved, but Consumersadvocate is a great place to start your research!


Pet health insurance, Dog health insurance, Pet insurance, Dogs, pet health
Choosing a reliable Pet Insurance plan that will be there for you when your pet needs it most is vital!

 Consumersadvocate provides reviews and ratings of companies across 110 different industries so you can make informed decisions when choosing a company or product.  Pet Insurance is just one area in which you can find helpful information and ratings to help you make informed choices.  You'll also find information and thorough reviews on Mortgage Refinancing, Travel or Car Insurance, Home Security and much more!  They make it easier for you by doing the legwork!

VISIT  Consumersadvocate  ON 

Have you ever had, or thought about getting, pet health insurance?  Tell us about it in the comments, we'd like to hear about your experience with pet insurance.


Irene McHugh @https://www.mcsquaredoodles.com said...

Pet insurance is complicated. Consumersadvocate sounds like a helpful resource. When our previous insurance company denied our claim, we were devastated. Bernie will have atypical Addison's Disease for the rest of his life, so treating him will be costly over time. Of course we'll pay to treat our boy, but we thought we were being proactive by acquiring insurance while he was a puppy. One of the things I learned about pet insurance from our unfortunate experience is that pet insurers don't have to limit their denial to a pre-existing condition. They can deny a claim based on a pre-existing symptom, which is different than human insurance.

Hindy Pearson said...

Consumer Advocate sounds like a great resource. I have never had pet insurance. It sounds insane when I say it, and I have no explanation for why I haven't, then when I started thinking about it my animals were seniors and I couldn't get coverage or it would have cost a fortune. When I adopted my first younger dog I thought about it for 5 minutes but my husband thinks insurance is a scam so we figured what's going to happen he's so young. Well, sudden paralysis and a £5000 bill (whatever that is in US money) shocked us. Serves us right I guess.

Seville at Nerissa's Life said...

If my peeps could find a pet insurance company that would cover ALL of us for a flat rate, they'd likely get it, but when they looked into insurance way back when, because of the number of us, it was a lot cheaper to self insure. purrs

LaylasWoof said...

We are very blessed to belong to a non profit called PAWS who has some amazing assistance for us : 1. Free Annual check ups and now that Layla is a senior she gets them twice a year, they have at their office a vet clinic where I can go for free on certain days only if necessary plus my vet clinic costs are covered by them if there is an emergency. So I am blessed not having to worry about vet costs

Sonja of MontecristoTravels said...

I am STILL looking for a pet insurance that will cover medical costs when overseas and not just in North America. We travel all over and honestly that is my #1 concern. That and getting him home if we are both injured or worse....I have yet to find such a thing.

Dash Kitten Crew said...

What a great post. So many people don't have insurance and don't realise there are things like this, and pet loans to ensure their pet stays healthy.

Will share this!!

M. K. Clinton said...

It is difficult to choose a pet insurance and something to consider before getting a pet. Consumersadvocate sounds like a wonderful resource.

DawgBlogger said...

There is nothing worse than not having the money to pay for treatment or diagnostics your dog needs. We've been there in the past. The second worst thing is if you do scrape enough credit but then you pay it off forever and it messes up your whole life. We've been there too. We now absolutely won't go without insurance. Though the premium for comprehensive insurance is pretty stiff too.

Unknown said...

This is a great resource to help people through a very confusing decision. Thank you for sharing! ~ Dear Mishu

Sweet Purrfections said...

I've had pet insurance with Trupanion for the girls since they were kittens and with my previous cat. I was able to select my deductible and copay. I pay a little higher premium to have no deductible and reimbursement at 90% but it's worth it. I do have to pay upfront at most vets (that's why I have a Care Credit card), but get reimbursed within a week.

Truffle recently had surgery to remove stones from her bladder. The total costs (including two visits to the vet, tests, medications, surgery, labs, etc.) was approximately $1300. I was reimbursed a little over $1100 and it was in my bank account today (one week later). It's definitely worth it!

Beth said...

We don't have pet insurance, but I'm going to look into it. With 3 dogs over the age of 8, and a cat who is 17, I'm not sure we can find a policy that will cover what we need, but it is worth finding out more.

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

I think it's so unfair that your insurance company denied the claim. A pre existing Symptom?! That is absurd. I'm so sorry you had that experience, I know it will be costly to treat Bernie for many years to come. Consumersadvocate does a great job reviewing & rating pet insurance companies.

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

It's definitely a great resource, for pet insurance and so many other products & services! Pet insurance is something people are just beginning to get onboard with. I wish I had looked for a good plan when my dogs were younger, now they're seniors. Too bad I didn't know about Consumersadvocate years ago!

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

I think it has changed & evolved a lot, it's worth another try. Healthcare for several pets can get so expensive. Maybe give it another try?

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

Wow, that truly is a blessing! I'm so glad Layla is well protected. Good for you!!

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

I think North America is the biggest market right now, but I'd be surprised if it didn't start catching on overseas as well. International is always a bit tricky. I hope you do find something, and if you do please share. Might be worth an email to ask someone at Consumersadvocate if they know of any companies outside NA you might look at.

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

Thank you! I'm so glad you like the post, Marjorie. I wish I had found a good plan years ago. I've not heard of pet loans, that's interesting.

The Daily Pip said...

I don't have pet insurance. I know I should look into it but haven't. My pets often arrive with pre-existing conditions and I assume they would not be covered - the same way pre-existing conditions are covered for people.

Sadly I know many people give up their pets because they can't afford the vet care. Fortunately we have a care credit card for emergencies and large vet bills.

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

They are a terrific resource, for so many things. I was really pleased to see how much information they shared on their web site! Pet insurance is definitely something that can give so many people peace of mind.

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

I agree! I can't even imagine not being able to provide my pets with the care they need. Insurance is always costly, but the alternative is pretty bad too. You just never know what could come up.

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

Thanks Mishu! I appreciate the kind words. It really is a tough decision, there are just so many differences in pet insurance companies and plans.

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

Thank you so much for sharing your experiences, I think this will help a lot of people! I'm so glad you've had great experiences with Trupanion. You made a great choice!

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

Same here, my girls are both over 8 so I'm not too hopeful. I think they'll either be rejected or it will be too cost prohibitive. I wish I'd gotten pet insurance years ago!

Talent Hounds said...

I am wrestling with which pet insurance to get. I paid cash when Kilo got a check up and when he ate chocolate. I want to get it before he turns 6 later this year. I'll have to ask Jodi which one she uses as I did lots of comparisons for a post and still came out confused. Thanks for reminding me.

Anonymous said...

This is so true. Emergency vets are typically more expensive than regular vets as well. Luckily my dogs have not yet needed major surgery or even had big emergencies. Gracie got a cut on her eyelid once and I thought she had cut her eye. All she ended up needing was an ointment, but had it been her eye that was cut, I am sure it would have been a bigger issue. Yoshi has juvenile cataracts. Luckily his are very mild at this point and not impacting his vision. If the advance, he could need a $3,500 surgery to correct it. Of course juvenile cataracts are not typically covered by pet insurance.

Sadie said...

We also have pet insurance. We submitted a claim a few years ago for something we believed was unrelated to Henry's pre-existing auto-immune disease. The insurance company disagreed and the claim was not processed. We stayed with this insurance company as the cost, due to age(s) was less expensive than switching providers. Also, a pre-existing condition is the same regardless of which provider you use. I can't even imagine having to euthanize one of my companions, or hand them over to a rescue in order for their treatment to be covered, and have them adopted to someone else! I can't believe that happens!

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

I never got pet insurance for Icy or Phoebe, which I regret now. Those uncovered pre-existing conditions are so irritating! Seems so unfair.

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

I think it's too late for my dogs to get pet insurance, they're both 9 years old. Fortunately neither of them has gotten a serious illness or injury - I'm lucky for that.

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

Wow, $3,500 is a big expense to get hit with unexpectedly! Many things aren't covered by insurance, whether it be people or pets. You have to read the policy thoroughly.

Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them said...

I can't believe they refused coverage! I surprised you stayed with them, I hope they don't refuse to pay a second time. I would not ever surrender my pets for being unable to pay, I'd sell whatever I could conjure up among my possessions first! Thank you for sharing your experience with us.

Marjorie Dawson said...

These people sound as though they do a lot of th hard work for you. Insurance is an absolute sod. You are damned if you do and damned if you don't. We have pet insurance but I (honestly) am not sure if it would pay up for the cats).

Insurance people move the goalposts and their definitions all the time. After the Christchurch earthquake a decade ago, all of a sudden property insurance was transformed so it did not include rebuild costs.(See what I mean.....)

Dash Kitten Crew said...

These people sound as though they do a lot of th hard work for you. Insurance is an absolute sod. You are damned if you do and damned if you don't. We have pet insurance but I (honestly) am not sure if it would pay up for the cats).

Insurance people move the goalposts and their definitions all the time. After the Christchurch earthquake a decade ago, all of a sudden property insurance was transformed so it did not include rebuild costs.(See what I mean.....)

Jana Rade said...

Being unable to cover veterinary bills is scary and heartbreaking. We always got the money together but we are still living with the resulting debt.

Getting pet health insurance was the first thing I did when we adopted Cookie.

Britt K said...

This is such an important conversation. You never know when you're going to be hit with an unexpected vet bill. My girl Daviana has cost me a small fortune over the years as she is the biggest klutz I know - She took stitches across her muzzle because she ran face first into the side of a futon and got cut by the metal panel on the edge. You just never know!

That being said, even if you understand that you could benefit from having pet insurance, you find yourself trying to navigate a very complicated (and broken) system. From unrealistic expectations/restrictions to changing definitions. It's almost impossible to know what the right decision would be.

I am happy to know that our vet here in town has an Angel Fund that is available to step in if someone is stuck with a bill that they can't afford. It's a charitable fund that they have set up and fundraise for. One fundraiser that they do is a calendar each year, and Pippen is featured in the 2021 calendar for December :)

Post a Comment