As we wrap up this discussion of pet health insurance note that this project has been a real eye opener. Our intent was to research alternatives to pet owner’s having to cover major, unexpected costly events without assistance. The quality of companion animal care has made huge strides forward over the past few years. The widespread awareness of dental disease and it’s complications, discovering ways to significantly extend the life of pets with chronic kidney or liver disease and the ability to image the “internal workings” of dogs and cats with Ultrasound, MRI’s and CT scans are all truly exciting. Finally, the “miracle” effect of treating many acute and chronic conditions with light (laser) therapy to dramatically improve the quality of our pet’s lives without without using potentially harmful drugs is the stuff science fiction used to dream about.
What we have discovered in the insurance arena exceeded our wildest suppositions. Medical insurance has moved light years from where it had been when we last explored the benefits. Plans are now available to cover up to 90% of costs associated with illness as well as wellness plans to help those concerned about being able to provide their pets with some of the basic care. Perhaps the most encouraging aspect of this search has been the response of representatives we have talked to in an attempt to read ‘ between the lines’ of some of the policies. It should be noted here that our calls were not prefaced with the fact we were reviewing health care companies with the intent to post online with recommendations. We merely cold called to clarify some aspects of certain policies. It seems as, at least for now, the pet medical insurance companies are actually concerned with the well being of their clients and their pets. Several companies actually offer a free trial with no charge coverage for the first 15- 30 days. But to ensure that the “uh oh” phrase pre-existing condition doesn’t crop up when you are looking to your company to cover an episode, have a thorough physical and history performed by your vet AS SOON AS you initiate coverage.
So who is the winner in the end? We are. The pet owners. We now have, within our grasps, the ability to prevent finances from ever forcing us into a decision about whether our pet receives the recommended care. Petplan USA, Trupanion, and Purina Care all appear to pass our muster. It behooves the pet owner to check out each one and evaluate which best suits your needs.. From our perspective you can’t go wrong with any one of them. It might take a little time for you to research but hopefully we have made it a bit easier. You owe that much to your special companion (s).