Posted: 02 Jul 2011 10:18 AM PDT
Pet insurance is becoming almost as popular as medical insurance for humans. We love our pets and want the best for them, but is pet insurance the way to go for you?
With better medical care for pets, they are living longer. Some of the conditions that used to require them going to sleep, have been reversed with surgical procedures or medicines. What does all this mean? Your pet can visit the veterinarian to the tune of several thousand dollars over their lifetime.
In an effort to finance this, people have begun using pet insurance policies. But, before you go out and get one of these policies, evaluate other ways that you can fund your pet's medical bills.
1. Talk to your vet – Some vets have payment plans that you can use to cover emergency care costs.
2. Do some research – Different pet breeds are predisposed to different conditions. Find out about the possible medical reasons you'd need to visit the vet and what they might cost.
3. Utilize a savings account – Just like you'd set aside money for anything else, also set aside money for pet medical expenses. Have a certain amount of money deducted from your check each month to your savings account. Start now before you need it.
When you may need more
With the advent of new medical treatments, diagnostic visits are much the same for pets as for their human owners. Using scans to detect problems early can run in the thousands of dollars. Many people don't have that much money just sitting on hand.
Each year the cost of pet care increases. In the past three years people have begun to spend upwards of over $10 billion on pet veterinary care. Much of that is out of pocket.
But, there is a choice for you. If you have more than one pet or are facing potential pet costs, you can opt for pet health insurance.
Talk to your employer. More than 1,500 companies now offer pet insurance as an optional benefit. Your company may be one of them.
Talk to your veterinarian. Veterinary Pet Insurance is one of the leading and oldest insurers of pets. Check to see what plans they offer. Just like with human health insurance, there are premiums, deductibles and co-pays at the vet office.
Be very diligent in reading the fine print. Some pre-existing conditions for your pet breed or species are not covered by certain companies. Those that do cover it may have higher premiums for doing so. They also look at age, so older pets may also have more costly premiums.
Weigh your options. If you need pet insurance, it is there for you and your four-legged family members (or possibly two-legged!).
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