Pet Health Insurance

Many Americans consider having health insurance for themselves and their families as a necessary commodity, but may not even be aware of the fact that there is such a product as pet health insurance! It isn’t exactly a new product, but it has never been widely advertised so many people are just simply unaware that such a thing exists. Pet health insurance is most often provided for domestic dogs and cats and there are several good companies that offer pet health insurance at competitive rates. Although pet owners are becoming better acquainted with the availability of pet health insurance, it is still a product that is often not understood.

Types of Pet Health Insurance Plans
Similar to plans that provide health insurance to humans, pet health insurance plans can be written as simply major medical policies that cover emergencies, surgical procedures and pet hospital stays when necessary. Then there are Preferred Provider plans with co-pays, plans that are contingent upon meeting deductibles, plans that allow preexisting conditions, plans that place an age limit on the pet, plans that cover routine visits, vaccinations and heart worm preventative and many other types of coverages that are specific to the type of pet insured.

Cost of Pet Health Insurance
The cost of pet health insurance is structured similarly to health insurance for people. It goes without saying that the more optional coverages you carry for your pet, the higher the premiums will be. Also, the higher the deductible, the lower the pet insurance rates will be. Of course, there are other programs that resemble pet health insurance but are not, in the strictest sense, health insurance so be careful thinking you can save money by subscribing to those plans. These plans, such as Pet Assure, do not offer pet health insurance but what they do offer is a discount on services or goods in exchange for a premium you pay. Understand that this type of ‘discount plan’ is not insurance so you would need to carefully consider whether or not you would actually realize a savings when paying for discounts!

What a Typical Plan Covers
A typical pet health insurance plan will cover such things as accidents, illnesses, hospitalization, diagnostic tests, lab fees, x-rays, surgeries and medications. Of course most plans do have a deductible attached to them and according to surveys, typical deductibles start at $100 but a higher deductible will naturally lower the premiums. Then there is pet health insurance that is more comprehensive that covers such things as annual exams, behavior training, prescription flea control/medication, heartworm protection, vaccinations and boosters and spaying or neutering. There are plans specific to dogs and others that are specific to cats, but both will have a basic major medical plan available along with an assortment of comprehensive coverages which can be added on by endorsement for an additional cost. While most pet health insurance policies allow you to choose the vet of your choice, some may only offer preferred providers.

Pet health insurance is a growing industry as more and more pet owners understand that there is actually health insurance for their domestic animals. It is possible to find a policy that would simply cover emergency care or major medical but it is also possible to find pet health insurance that covers every aspect of your pet’s health from prevention to treatment. There are several ways to find an insurance plan to fit your needs as well as your budget, which would include checking with your veterinarian to see if they suggest any particular insurance companies or plans. However, most people like to shop around online so that they can compare prices in order to get the best plan for the lowest cost.

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