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Pet Insurance

Pet insurance is gaining popularity as a more reliable way to manage unexpected expenses with our pets.  The staff at Steeplechase Veterinary Hospital recommend that our clients consider purchasing an insurance policy for their pets. And that they purchase it while the pets are young, before any chronic or congenital conditions develop.

At Steeplechase Veterinary Hospital, we have offered our employees pet insurance through Petplan USA as one of their employment benefits for a number of years.  We chose this insurer because their policies cover only illness or accidents with modest rates. Chronic and hereditary conditions are covered for life as long as they are not pre-existing.

In addition, we also are strong proponents of Nationwide Pet Insurance.  Their Whole Pet with Wellness plan offers you the ability to combine virtually all of your pet’s expenses into a simple monthly payment.  Our clients that partake of this are inevitably grateful for our recommendation.  In addition, we love that we can give your pet the best chance of a quick and successful recovery.

Although there are many pet insurances out there, Nationwide’s new Whole Pet with Wellness Plan offers the best bang for your expenditure.  It covers even routine healthcare such as dentals (as often as you want), vaccinations (whichever ones you choose) and even routine labs (even if it’s just for your piece of mind).  You can visit their website at www.petinsurance.com.

There are many things to consider when researching plans. The biggest issue we have found is when owners go for cheaper plans that have a large deductible or limited coverage.  Those plans tend to cost less, but as you almost never have an expensive enough visit to use them, they are often a waste of money.  If you go for a plan that has a very low deductible, and higher reimbursement rates, then you are much more likely to get something back for your investment.  In those cases, every visit to the vet, even for a torn toenail or ear infection, will result in your getting a reimbursement for your expense.

To put this another way, let’s assume that you get a full coverage plan for $50 a month.  This plan will therefore cost you $600 a year.  Now, let’s say that your pet has some allergies.  They are seen maybe 4 times during the year for itching and ear infections.  Each visit will cost you approximately $300.  If you have a deductible or co-pay, let’s say you have to pay $50 each visit out of pocket.  So the insurance and visits to the vet have cost you $800 total for the year.

Alternatively, let’s say you got a cheaper plan with a $200 deductible.  The cost per month for this plan is only $25, so half as much.  Over the year, it will cost you $300.  However, for those four visits, you will also pay $200 each time.  This results in a cost of $1100 over the year.  And the more your pet needs to see the doctor, the more the spread between those two scenarios grows.

For more information about what to consider, please visit the FAQ link on the home page. Also, feel free to talk to our staff about the insurances they have or have had in the past.