December 29th, 2008, 06:15 PM
Hi, does anyone have any experience (good/bad) with any of the pet care insurance companies? I'm trying to decide which one to register with for my Bernese Mountain puppy.
Thanks in advance.
December 29th, 2008, 06:52 PM
Hi and welcome to pets.ca!
Yes, I do have pet insurance for Buster and luckily have only had to use it twice in 2 yrs...(once for a hot spot under his chin and most recently because he ate raisins and needed to be seen quickly)
Not sure where you live (USA or Canada?) but you need to shop around for pet insurance. If your puppy has any already identified problems, more than likely they won't be covered by insurance. Most insurances have an annual deductible, so if your deductible is high, you might not recoup any $$ on an ER visit (depending on how much your Vet charges)
Personally, I got the insurance because my other dog Harley cost me a lot in the last year of his life and I didn't want to go through that again with Buster.
If you do get insurance, take it as "peace of mind" and just hope and pray that you never need to use it!
Good luck with your new puppy.....got pictures?????
December 30th, 2008, 11:50 AM
Thanks for the reply.
At the moment, my dog, a Berner does not have any identified conditions, however, the breed is pre-disposed to hip dysplasia, cancer and a bunch of other stuff, unfortunately.
Could you let me know which provider you use? I'm in Toronto, but have noticed that some of the US providers also serve Canada.
Attached is a pic of Bernie.45981
December 30th, 2008, 01:16 PM
Bernie is very handsome! he has a smooooochable face and very nice eyes!:cloud9: be warned, you will be bugged for lotsa pics!
December 30th, 2008, 03:12 PM
You dog is adorable :lovestruck:
I have had experience with several pet insurance companies, and so far am very happy with my current insurance provider Vet Insurance. I find that they have quick repayment timelines and the customer service is good too. Its also easy to understand as there are no limits per 'category' or per year, just a lifetime limit.
December 30th, 2008, 05:42 PM
Gorgeous dog! If you are looking at Insurance, really read the fine print. I am with Vet Insurance as well and I checked out about 5 different companies and spoke for hours/reading fine print before I chose. The younger you get your Berner enrolled the better. You will find most companies have deductibles per condition/illness or accidents. As well you will want to ask what the increases are in the deductibles as the pet ages (one place, I believe it may have been PC Insurance went from 100.. to 300.. to 500$ as the dog/cat aged, it was mind boggling!)
I chose Vet Insurance since they have a 20k lifetime limit, they pay 90% of approved claims and zero deductibles, which most others didnt offer. I wasnt keen on the idea since my dog plays Flyball and Agility, that if he blew a knee I would only get a certain amount for that "accident" and then that was it. Research is key, finding a plan that fits your needs (and budget) is important.
You may also want to check with your vet to make sure they accept the plan you choose (most do.. but doesnt hurt to get your vets feedback on their experiences with insurance providers) I explained to my vet that I dont have a ton of disposable income or high limit credit cards in case something happens, but with my insurerer they have a pay direct system, were vetinsurance can authorize payment direct to the vet in case of something big happening, but best to check with your vet if they accept that sort of thing.
December 30th, 2008, 05:45 PM
Thanks for the compliments and the insurance info.
Bernie is quite the celebrity in our neighbourhood and actually he is surprised when we do go out and there are none of his adoring fans to pet him.
December 30th, 2008, 07:54 PM
I have vet insurance for Willie, my cat. I don't think they cover hip displasia though, I seem to remember reading that, but double check it.
December 30th, 2008, 08:30 PM
Vet Insurance doesn't cover Hip Displaysia unless the dog is under a year old when enrolled I think. I dont know how it affects premiums since Nitro was just under 2 when I rescued him. Might be a good option for those who have dogs prone to hip displaysia. A friend of mine just had a bad string of luck health wise and pet insurance really helped cover the expenses. I know for Nitro, we just enrolled not long ago, but prior to enrolling he developed an interdigitial cyst. The visit and prescription where $110.. thankfully its gone now but surgery to remove it would of been close to $500, thats what makes insurance worth it to me, thats more than a years worth of premiums paid for!
December 31st, 2008, 08:54 PM
I had previously used Vetinsurance as well, and was pleased with the company. Unfortunately, the puppy I had insured passed away and Vetinsurance was a huge help with the vet bills. I insured him because as a puppy, I just had this weird feeling that something may not be right with him...and low and behold, he got very ill later on and did not survive the illness.
I presently have five dogs, none of which are insured only because the premiums for so many animals just would be crazy....and how could you choose? I just pay the vet bills as they come now and hope for the best! :fingerscr
January 1st, 2009, 06:57 PM
I've just done the check-and-compare thing, then signed on with the new Purina insurance for my rescue kitten. Monthly premiums are reasonable, deductible is $250, and they cover things like preventive care - spay/neuter, annual boosters, dental care. So while I may never break even, I will probably have years when I end up getting my full money's worth. And if it turns out to be more hassle than I need, I can cancel. I'm going to touch base with my vets after the holidays since it's only my first month, so a cancellation would only set me back $22. But my regular and back-up vet clinics are both listed with the enrollment form, so I assume they're associated with the program somehow. I did have to identify which ones I would likely be using when I registered.
Lots of fine print, though. Some parts I didn't like - like claims assessment to see whether mine were at the top end of the scale, or above the normally-expected claims for whatever conditions applied. At age 7 the premiums go up to cover the greater likelihood of conditions related to age. But that's kind of logical.
I'm hoping that Purina will be keen to develop a satisfied client base since this is a new thing for them.