Any pet owner can agree that having a pet is kind of like having an added family member under your roof. They add comfort and joy to your home and are always ready to provide unconditional love when it’s needed most. In exchange for that love, we as pet owners are responsible for keeping our furry friends healthy and happy. Part of this includes covering your pet with the right pet insurance.
Pet insurance helps cover the cost of veterinary treatments, emergency medical expenses, and a variety of other routine care costs. However, choosing the right plan that covers the needs of your animal friend is no easy task. To help in your search, we have broken down the different types of pet insurance and what you should look for when choosing the right one for you and your pet.
The Four Main Types of Pet Insurance
As it sounds, accident-only pet insurance covers vet fees that are a result of an unexpected accident. This type of policy will cover sudden injury which occurs within the 12-month policy period. This type of coverage is considered the lower-budget option as it does not include routine veterinary care and time, as well as financial limits, might apply.
With time-limited pet insurance policies, you can make a claim for a certain number of eligible medical conditions, and each condition will only be covered up to 12-months or until the financial limit is reached. Once the time or financial limit is reached, you will be responsible for any further costs, and the condition will be considered pre-existing in future claims.
A Maximum benefit policy covers each new medical condition without the time limit. This means that the claim remains active until you reach the financial limit, and you can make more than one claim for a particular condition. The condition will, however, become pre-existing after the financial limit is reached. This is considered a mid-budget option.
As you might have guessed, lifetime insurance policies are considered a premium option as they tend to offer the most comprehensive coverage. With a lifetime insurance plan, your pet is insured for all new medical conditions and injuries up to the financial limit. Once the limit is reached, you are then responsible for any additional fees. However, the financial limit will reset once you renew your policy. This does not include pre-existing conditions. A lifetime insurance policy should cover your pet throughout his or her lifetime as long as you renew it each year. This will allow you to cover any ongoing illnesses year after year.
Tips for Choosing The Right Provider
When choosing which type of pet insurance is right for you it is also important to know what to look for when comparing different providers. Many companies today offer their own pet insurance plans which means you’ll need to do your due diligence and shop around. Here are some of the key factors to look out for and compare while you do your research:
- Pricing discounts
- Add-on options
- Reimbursement plan
- Exclusions based on breed or pre-existing conditions
Choosing the right insurance for you and your pet is no easy task. But with the right amount of research, you can find the perfect plan that will ensure your fluffy friend gets the care that they deserve. For those unable to take on the financial weight of providing your pet with insurance, alternatives do exist. These include self-insuring with a savings account or reaching out to local charities that offer free treatment for low-income pet owners.