Containing the Costs of Pet Care

Recently the New York Times published an article on containing the costs of pet care. The Seattle Times re-published it the next day. This article offers pet owners advice on caring for their pets in the most budget-friendly way possible. One of the pieces of advice the article gave was to consider investing in pet insurance.

While it may not seem like a cost savings when you are paying a premium every month, the savings comes when your pet has a catastrophic illness or accident that you were not able to prepare for, such as a broken bone or diabetes. When this happens, you are able to save 90% on treatment and with veterinary care rising each year, this can equate to thousands of dollars. Those on a budget can appreciate this help, as the alternatives (maxing out credit cards, borrowing from relatives, opting for no treatment) can be heartbreaking and that much more added stress.

There is a portion of the article I would like to clarify, though. The author states:

But like health insurance for humans, pet insurance can be complicated and highly restricted. Some policies will not cover older pets or genetic conditions that certain breeds are known to have, such as hip dysplasia in retrievers.

Others limit coverage to only one treatment per illness. So if your dog develops asthma, for instance, some policies will cover just the first trip to the vet even though treatment will require multiple visits.

The author is correct that some pet insurance providers operate this way. Trupanion does not. Let’s look at each of these concerns separately:

1. Not covering older pets. Trupanion covers all dogs and cats that have been enrolled between the ages of 8 weeks and 14 years old.

2. Not covering genetic conditions. Trupanion covers treatment of hereditary and congenital disorders as long as all preventative care advised by the pet’s veterinarian was followed and the first signs and symptoms did not appear prior to the pet’s full policy coverage.

3. Not covering hip dysplasia in particular. Trupanion offers additional coverage for hip dysplasia for pets at risk of the condition who are under a year old.

4. Limiting coverage to only one treatment per illness. Trupanion does not have limits on coverage. If your pet needs ongoing treatment for a condition, it will be covered.

With the right pet insurance policy, you can rest assured your budget will remain in tact if your pet becomes sick or injured. What other ways do you save money on pet costs?

About Heather @FamilyAndFur

Heather Kalinowski lives in the Seattle area with her husband, newborn son, and two rescued pups – an Italian Greyhound named Ava and a Spaniel mix named Jackson. She enjoys reading, writing, spending time with her family, and volunteering with Italian Greyhound Rescue. Google+

2 Responses to Containing the Costs of Pet Care

  1. Paul says:

    Caring for your pets in a budget-friendly manner… until they raise the rates over 110%. What a joke this is. I’m canceling my pet’s policy as we speak.

    • Stacy K. says:

      Hi Paul,
      I understand how the new rate must be a shock, however our updated rates put us in line with the actual costs of veterinary care. If you compare our most recent rates with our competitors’ rates, you will see that we are in the same ballpark for pricing. Because we cover 90% of the actual bill with no limits, we must adjust our rates to keep in line with the amount of animal health care being delivered. Premiums are based on the cost of the average pet of your situation (breed, age at enrollment, deductible chosen, and geographical location). If your premium increases, that is a sign of more health care being delivered and more claims being paid out for the average pet of your situation. Please feel free to call us if you’d like to adjust your deductible to get a lower premium. Here’s some more info about our pricing: http://trupan.in/trupanionfaq

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