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Monday, 17 December 2012

Pet insurance: why might you need it?


Most people—including most pet owners—are unaware of the option of investing in pet insurance. This is definitely not one of those everyone-talks-about-it types of insurance. That said, its relative obscurity isn't necessarily proportionate to its value for those who could benefit from it. Until recently, treatments for pets were not nearly as advanced as healthcare techniques that are available to humans. Now, however, there are more treatments available to pets than ever before, and they span a much wider range of prices. For example, pets today have access to treatments like radiation therapy, and even kidney transplants. Treatments for life threatening illnesses for pets can cost anywhere from $1000 to well over $5000. Given that this is the case, investing in pet insurance may be worth your while. The benefits of investing in pet insurance include:

  • It comes with flexibility: you have the freedom to choose whichever veterinarian you prefer. This makes for easy claim payment: all that is required of you is to provide your insurance broker with your veterinary bill in order to be reimbursed for the expenses that qualify.
  • Pet insurance is available to animals of all ages and breeds, and usually rates are unaffected by either of these variables. That said, you can lower your pet insurance premium by getting insurance as soon as you bring your pet home, rather than waiting until later.

  • Having pet insurance eliminates the distraction that comes with worrying about finances, and allows you to make clear decisions about the well-being of your pet. When financial stress is not a factor in your decision making, this gives you the freedom to select treatments on the basis of how suitable and beneficial they are to your pet, rather than on what you are presently able to afford. 

  • Knowing that most animals require serious medical attention at some point or another, the wise thing to do is budget a little bit for this purpose regularly. Paying into pet insurance provides you with a really easy, trackable way to do this. You can pay at intervals of your choice (one every months, once every three months, twice a year, once a year, etc). This allows you to budget this area around other expenses you may have with great flexibility. 

  • You often receive discounts when insuring multiple pets in one household. 

  • You don't have to reach into your slush fund when your pet's health takes a turn for the worse. This means your emergency savings won't be depleted as quickly, and can be directed towards other crises.

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