Pet Insurance (USA) - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 01-03-2012, 08:15 PM
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I thought there was an existing thread on this topic, but I can't find it.

I have three cats, and very little money right now. (I'm expecting my financial situation to improve sometime this year.) I don't have pet insurance. I was thinking that when I become more financially stable I should start buying some, but there are now several different kinds of pet insurance, and I don't know which to choose!

I was in Ralphs supermarket last week (owned by Kroger) and picked up a card in the pet food section. It seems they have their own insurance, or partner with a company.

There is also coverage provided by the ASPCA.

There are probably others I don't know about at the moment.

Does anyone have pet insurance for their pet(s)? What do you think of it?

The Ralphs insurance has three plans. The cheapest of course is the basic "wellness" plan, but I have two cats that are seniors. They're both in good health (knock wood) and are strictly indoor cats, but their health could change as they continue to get older. So I'm thinking that the most expensive comprehensive plan might be best. I really don't know how to choose.

Help!

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#2 Old 01-04-2012, 09:45 AM
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I don't for my bunny and snake, but that's because from what I've seen you have to pay the vet upfront anyway, and then hope the insurance reimburses you. They're also still young. I think I would take something like that much more seriously when my pets get older, it's probably a good idea for senior pets if the insurance covers those kind of problems.
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#3 Old 01-07-2012, 05:05 PM
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I would avoid the company VPI, because some of my friends (and many other people, judging from online reviews) have had negative experiences with them. The last veterinary clinic I worked at was partnered with Trupanion pet insurance, and they were a really good company. They pay 90% of veterinary costs, cover partial costs of prescription diets, and don't increase premiums as pets age.

If you're going to go with the Kroger's insurance, I would spring for the Senior Comprehensive Plan- that way your routine care (preventative care, vaccines, annual exams) is covered, but you also get coverage in case of an emergency or illness.

Pet insurance is generally a good idea because they help make routine vet visits more affordable, and you will more easily be able to provide preventative care for your pet so they don't become unhealthy with age. The one thing to watch out for is that pet insurance companies do not cover pre-existing conditions, so if your pets are older and/or have previously been ill, injured, or have chronic conditions, pet insurance may not be a practical option for you. If your older pets are in good health, it's a good idea! It's a good idea to get pet insurance when your pet is young, so that as the pet ages, he/she is consistently covered and will not be precluded from insurance plans because of pre-existing conditions.

If you do decide to get pet insurance, I would really thoroughly research the different companies that are out there (there are many!) compare prices and coverages, and read customer reviews. Make sure that all your pet's needs are covered under the plan you choose. If possible, call the company and speak to a rep. Ask lots of questions! Ask about things like dental prophylaxis, emergencies, aging, etc. And again, remember that pre-existing/chronic conditions are not generally covered!

If pet insurance turns out not to be a good option for you, I would start a savings account and deposit money each month so you have something put away for pet emergencies.

Good luck!

Julie

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#4 Old 01-11-2012, 11:26 PM
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I would say no. Every company I've looked at, you have to pay the vet up front, and then MAYBE the company will reimburse you. It's better to have a savings account to use only for vet bills. (I also have a Care Credit credit card.)
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#5 Old 01-13-2012, 09:06 AM
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I looked into it before and for the # of pets I have, it wasn't really doable.

If you want to save some money on vet bills, research vaccines for indoor cats. Most pets are over vaccinated IMO and I know of vets who don't vaccinate their own pets on a yearly basis anymore.
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#6 Old 01-13-2012, 10:53 AM
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I have it, and it's definitely paid for itself. I don't do routine care, though. Just emergency stuff. One of my dogs recently had a tumor on her tail, and had to have the whole thing amputated. Insurance paid about 3/4 of the total bill.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vegbunny83 View Post

I would avoid the company VPI, because some of my friends (and many other people, judging from online reviews) have had negative experiences with them. The last veterinary clinic I worked at was partnered with Trupanion pet insurance, and they were a really good company. They pay 90% of veterinary costs, cover partial costs of prescription diets, and don't increase premiums as pets age.

Interesting. I've been really happy with VPI. Trupanion may pay out more, but they also wanted a lot more per month than VPI did.
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#7 Old 01-13-2012, 11:04 AM
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Buying pet insurance is a gamble. You might use it and you might not. I opted to remain self-insured. Insurance companies are in it to make money, remember.
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#8 Old 01-30-2012, 06:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Herbivorous B.I.G. View Post

Interesting. I've been really happy with VPI. Trupanion may pay out more, but they also wanted a lot more per month than VPI did.

That's good that you've been happy with VPI- maybe their service has improved! I have just heard so many complaints about it in the past.

"I remember the days when we talked for hours/And we were young, we thought we had superpowers/We weren't our problems, our age or our paychecks/And we weren't taking anybody's $h*t."
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#9 Old 06-04-2012, 06:11 PM
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