Health Insurance is a topic on the minds of Americans these days. Medical coverage and the peace of mind that comes with it is highly valued. Bills for medical procedures and treatments continue to skyrocket higher and the problem just seems to get worse.
While people debate this important human issue, family pets are often overlooked when it comes to health care coverage. You just don’t hear too much about medical insurance for dogs.
However, vet care spending is rising much faster than human medical care. Veterinarians are increasingly using more sophisticated equipment and advanced diagnostic tools at their practices which are among the reasons for higher costs.
Should I Get My Dog Health Insurance? Answer: No, read why
You’re encouraged to shop around but there’s a better strategy than getting a dog insurance plan.
While dogs don’t live nearly as long as people, they still get sick and hopefully grow old. The idea is if you pay a monthly premium, your dog is then covered for treatment of unexpected illnesses, surgeries and even medications.
But instead, why not just set aside a fund for your canine’s future medical bills. These companies providing insurance coverage for pets seem to have many unhappy customers. Sad stories about how they somehow wiggled their way out of paying for treatments are all over the internet. The reviews are in and I’m not impressed with health insurance for dogs.
K9 Medical Insurance Rant
Being let down by an insurance company when you most need it, after years of paying premiums, is something I am personally unwilling to risk. Yes, there is risk in insurance, an oxymoron I know! Furthermore, co-pays, annual caps on payouts and deductibles are all part of the pet insurance industry just like traditional health insurance works! Throw in extra fees for older dogs, rules on pre-existing conditions and you’ll probably need a doctor yourself after learning, “what’s the catch” in the dog insurance industry.
In truth, most these companies providing pet insurance are making a killing with your hard earned dollars. The math just doesn’t seem to add up. Consider that the average pet, even with the ever increasing medical costs, will usually need about $4,000 to $7,000 worth of treatment over their lifetime. You have to be realistic about how much you can actually do for your dog medically, no matter how much you love them.
Best Solution for Treatment
Networking with neighbors, who also own dogs, is something I find very helpful regarding this topic. I pick up some great tips from other knowledgeable folks who live around and access the same community facilities. These people are likely to have visited the very same veterinarians and other specialists that you may need for your dog in the future.
If you make routine vet visits, I highly encourage you to discuss pet health insurance with them. You may even meet a veterinarian willing to cut you a deal regarding certain types of long term health care, including preventative care, for your canine.
A Personal Example
A neighbor I know has often volunteered at an animal shelter which hasn’t gone unnoticed. It’s likely her dog will be well taken care of if something should happen to her. She has earned dog health insurance through a combination of networking and her good deeds.
Conclusion on Health Insurance
Get your finances in order. Instead of paying a company, say $30 per month, set aside that same amount for a dedicated 401k-9 (that’s a joke folks!) Ideally, you would start doing this when you have a puppy. After a few years, the fund will be there for your dog. Depend on yourself more than an insurance company whose main objective is to control costs and maximize profits. When it comes right down to it, they don’t really care about your dog. If you disagree and are pleased with a dog insurance plan, please reach out and share your story.