Has anyone had experience with this pet insurance company? http://www.petcareinsurance.com/us/d...-accidents.asp
Payton is a BIG time chewer and will eat anything. My coworker's lab just had a $3000 surgery after ingesting a handi-wipe (He's doing OK now.) I am considering this insurance for the next year or so until she (hopefully) grows older and is less likely to eat everything in sight.
What do you think?
I had insurance for a very short time in '02-'03. Honestly, I cannot remember if this was the company. There were two major ones at the time and I went with one of them.
At the time, Buddy was about 5 and hadn't had any of his limpoma surgeries or the big dental issue yet. For some reason, I do remember the premium was around $27/month.
When he was younger, he ran into a moving car. He didn't sustain any visible injuries. In fact, my vet didn't even charge me to see him in my frenzy that day. But it was noted in his file.
When he first started with his on and off limping (years later), they refused to pay for any of the visits, x-rays, etc. because THEY decided that whatever was causing the limp HAD to be connected to him running into that car.
I ended up dropping them.
I've heard some people say they started a separate bank account and deposited what would be a monthly premium into it faithfully, that way, if they ever needed major services, they would have some money stashed away. I think that is a better idea, but that's just me. If there is absolutely NOTHING in your dog's folder at your vet, you shouldn't have any problem.
Buddy had surgery last week and I opened an account with CareCredit.com. The whole bill went on that new card and I will make payments at a reasonable interest rate for the next 2 years. A lot of vets are offering that now. If you don't go with insurance, you may want to see if your vet takes the CareCredit plan.
After doing much research over the last couple of years, I went with petcare insurance last month. I got the quickcare policy for my pup Ben that's one step up from the one shown in your link. It's $17.95 and includes illness coverage as well as the accident coverage shown in your link. PetCare looks pretty good compared to others in terms of rates, coverage and customer service. I haven't put in a claim yet so I can't comment on that aspect.
BTW, I found a great way to get your pup through the heavy chewing period. Get a bunch of the large heavy duty Kong toys and stuff them with raw ground beef, raw ground pork, tuna fish, sardines, etc. Put the Kongs in the freezer and bring these frozen treats out to give them something more desirable to chew on than things around the house or yard. It really works great and keeps them occupied for hours.
I had insurance for my Rottie several years ago. It provided discounts on immunizations and services and I thought it was really good UNTIL I needed to use it in an emergency. You see, the insurance only works if you use THEIR specific vets. Well I don't know about you, but I have insurance to take care of unexpected emergencies, not day to day expenses. Emergencies rarely happen M-F 8-5 when the vet is open. In my case, my dog had an eye injury and had to go the ER. The insurance refused to pay. He had to go to an eye specialist for surgery. Again, the insurance refused to pay. I dropped them after that.
I think a better idea is the one Pam mentioned...open a savings account and put your "would be premiums" in there instead.
I researched four different companies and then contacted anyone I knew that had a dog and asked if they had such insurance and their opinion.
I found three friends that had the insurance with three different companies. One had not made any claim other than discounted services, i.e. vaccinations, neutering, etc. He had paid significantly more in premiums than what he saved.
The other two, one had an emergency vet for a cut paw, the other had a a similar emergency vet cisit and a regular vet visit to find and remove an intestinal blockage. The insurance companies did not cover the emergency vet visits, and the intestinal blockage claim took 6 months to receive the payment and then at only have the benefit the policy stated.
The three vets we talked with prior to getting our pup told me that their clients that had the insurance seemed satisfied with it, but it was a very small percentage. Also that they charged for provided anything beyond a copy of their bill, i.e. filling out any special forms, copying of any test results, xrays, etc. The fact that the vets won't accept future payment from these companies, require full payment at time of service, kind of told me that they have been aware of issues with these insurances policies actually paying in any kind of timely manner.
I decided this insurance was more a scam than reputable insurance. I simply adjusted our emergency fund reserve to cover the unexpected with the dog.
Hershey Kisses, In charge of getting Ed out to the dog park so that he gets some exercise.
There are no doubt SOME people whose payments to pet health insurance companies are LESS than what they'd pay to vets out of pocket if they did not have the pet insurance. But they're the exception, just as lottery winners are.
American human health insurance companies absorb about 30% of every health care dollar for administrative, etc., expenses.
Pet health insurance companies would certainly be no less and, I suspect, usually more since they are definitely in it to make a profit for their shareholders.
Consumer Reports (Page 8, July, 2007) in a brief followup comment (titled "WHY PET INSURANCE IS USUALLY A DOG") to a longer article they did several years ago, said:
"....Annual surgical vet visits cost, on average, $453 per dog and $363 per cat....If your pet is older and more likely to need extra treatment, and you can find an accident-and-illness policy that costs less than those amounts, consider it. If not, put the amount you'd pay in premiums into an interest-bearing fund."
The same article had previously noted that most pet insurance policies exclude pre-existing conditions, hereditary and congenital problems, ailments during the first month of coverage, and many reduce payments for dogs older than 8 years. And as some posting replies have noted, some companies restrict which vet your pet has to receive treatment from.
Puff [YF, AKC field line (from competing HT/FT breeder) 62 lbs, dob: 8-'01]
Bess [BF, AKC bench line (from competing show breeder) 55 lbs., 1967-1981] "Poor Bess, the Wonder Dog":
I appreciate the replies....
We have a policy with VPI (www.petinsurance.com) for Kody. We got it when he was just a couple of months old and he is now 6 years old. It has more than paid for itself already. I think a lot of people have a misconception of how the policies work and what is covered. They cover a lot of things and use a payment schedule type of setup. As an example, say your dog is treated for a limping problem. They will pay $50 towards the visit, $100 for labwork, etc. They have set amounts for everything. So if your vet charges $150 for the labwork, you will end up paying $50. My prices are just for example. You pay out of pocket and then submit a claim for reimbursement. You can go anywhere you want for treatment too.
I look at these policies as peace of mind. It's nice to know that if something major happens, we will get a chunk of money back.
Kody suffered from renal failure 2 years ago and almost died. After 2 vet visits, he spent 6 days hospitalized with round the clock care at our local vet specialty hospital. Total cost was $4500. We got a check from VPI for $2000. That alone made it all worth it to us. Of course this all happened at a time when we had major home expenses and finances became very tight. That check really helped and made the $250 a year premium well worth it.
We've made a total of 3 claims against the policy to date and have been very happy with the results.
I agree that putting money aside for an emergency is a great idea, but you better have a good amount to start with. If you could put away $200 a month for a year or two that would be great, but that can be difficult for a lot of people.