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Pet insurance for new puppy- worth it?

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  • Pet insurance for new puppy- worth it?

    We are getting a puppy in a couple weeks from a rescue and I'm wondering if people find pet insurance worth it? I know puppies can get into so much trouble even with good supervision and care- wondering if insurance would be a good idea, even just for the first year or 2. Thoughts? Recommendations of insurers?

  • #2
    My company is affiliated with Healthy Paws. I am not an agent so am not licensed to sell the product and only know a little about it. However it does not pay routine care such as shots, deworming, spay/neuter. It never pays for office visits for sickness/injury only the actual treatment and diagnostics. It has pre-existing exclusions if the dog/cat already had symptoms or been treated for a condition when you enroll. However it pays for a lot of alternative therapies such as acupuncture, chiro, etc... something like 95% of the bills are paid within 3 days of receipt so turn-around for payment is quick.

    I would talk to your vet to see what insurance company they have liked to deal with and which ones to avoid. Since they frequently interface with client's insurance companies they probably have a feel who is easy to get payment and who gives the pet parent a run-around.
    Oh, well, clearly you're not thoroughly indoctrinated to COTH yet, because finger pointing and drawing conclusions are the cornerstones of this great online community. (Tidy Rabbit)


    • Original Poster

      Thank you- that is terrific advice! Would not have thought to ask vet that. I will add to my list of Qs when we go for pup's first welnness visit.


      • #4
        Be forewarned - my vet and staff would not give ANY advice on pet insurance - did not offer any help whatsoever !

        color me
        Disappointed •

        the “don’t want to get involved’ attitude due to ? Legality ?
        Zu Zu Bailey " IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE ! "


        • #5
          I have used ASPCA that last two years for my cats and dog. The dog went over his deductible the first year on pure bad luck alone and we got our money back, sarcastic yay! Cats were kittens and I was afraid they would die if I looked at them funny, it’s cheap”er” when they are younger, so I thought what the heck. Now I don’t want them off it because there are no pre-existing conditions and that’s nice. I will say that knowing your pet is on insurance takes every moment of thinking is this a vet incident decision a lot easier. I can doctor a lot but now if I’m in question I just go.

          My vet takes trupanion which pays the vet directly, and I’m pretty sure they would allow my insurance to do the same if I ever needed it, haven’t had to ask, but most are pay up front and get reimbursed.

          I don’t know if I will keep my dog on it when the prices go up as he gets older and the prices go up significantly, but I’m happy with it for now.


          • #6
            FYI, you can get “wellness” with your insurance and it more than paid back the price when I got my kitties first wellness exam. Might want to look into before you go just for that.


            • #7
              You can pay for various levels of coverage, just like any insurance. If you want every vaccination and visit covered, most companies probably have that option, if you're willing to pay high premiums. Or just get catastrophic type coverage and pay lower premiums.

              Embrace has the best coverage that I found when I was comparing companies a few years ago. They covered more and did a better job, with better reviews. YMMV.
              Proofreading is your friend.


              • #8
                yes! I started with VPI and it was purchased by Nationwide so now it's Nationwide. I have 2 dogs, signed both up as puppies. One dog is 8 years old now, one is 4. They've paid out well over 10k, 3 MRI's countless meds and diagnostics etc. The younger dog unfortunately has hip dysplasia and will need meds for the rest of her life. Even if I pay the monthly amount for the rest of their lives they will sill have paid me out more.

                Aside from the money issue the peace of mind, when my older dog was partially paralyzed and had to be rushed to the emergency vet and they wanted to do a 2k MRI to see if she needed spine surgery or if rest would be ok I didn't even have to blink or stress I just said yes do it. Even for minor issues, go ahead and xray if you want. It gives your vet the ability to treat the dog regardless of cost which I think is worth it.

                Submitting claims is really easy online I just need a copy of the invoice and they pay out quickly way before my cc bill is due.


                • #9
                  Whether it's worth it really depends on the health of your dog, which is difficult to predict in a puppy. Some dogs will use it, others won't. Bought an Embrace policy for my Doberman when I first got him because I'd heard what health traps Dobes are. My guy turned 10 years old in April, and he's only used it maybe twice in his life for very minor issues. It's not cheap for an "unhealthy" breed like a Doberman, and I likely would have been better off putting money into a checking account for him every month - that way, when he is gone, I'd have whatever money is leftover for the next dog. But there's no way I could have predicted all this when he came home at 9 weeks old. So, not a real helpful post other than to point out that you might pay a lot for it and never use it if your dog is lucky to live a relatively healthy, long life!