Pet insurance? yes or no?

posted 3 years ago in Pets
Post # 3
2052 posts
Buzzing bee

I don’t have pet insurace.

Instead I have an account with Banfield.  Some days their customer service is better than others, but for 32 a month I’ve got free visits and I started my dog on the plan when he was a puppy and they paid for everything-His nuetering, all of his shots/vaccinations and it’s nice knowing that when I’ve had ’emergencies’ (I once thought that my dog had kennel cough-he didn’t), I was able to bring him up there free of charge.

I also get discounts on Trifexis.  

Post # 5
46 posts
  • Wedding: April 2015

@XmasBride2014:  I don’t have pet insurance either, and I also have a Banfield account.  Banfield is a “wellness” plan, so it covers my dog’s yearly vaccines, checkups, ect– it definitely pays for itself. I like it because we never have to pay to walk into the vet whereas most vets will charge you $70 just for a visit.  

My biggest issue with insurance (and I’ve looked at a lot of plans) is that none of the reasonable ones cover everything, and there are a lot of loopholes as to what they’ll cover and what they won’t. I think a better idea is to put savings aside every month for pet-related emergencies.

Post # 6
2687 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2015 - Ketchum, ID

@XmasBride2014:  I have Pet Insurance through Banfield. I think it’s $35 a month, or so, and it’s saved us quite a bit of money so far. 

Post # 8
11772 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: May 2013

I’ve never had it, but I’ve never had a sickly pet (and all my cats were indoor/outdoor, so when they got sick, they just stopped coming home)

Post # 9
1056 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2014 - Cedar Lake Cellars

I’m a vet and they talked about it in school a little bit. All of our profs and the articles we read said it’s not worth it, from most companies anyway.

I’m not an expert but even my clients who have had it don’t seem fulfilled.  

Wellness plans, as mentioned above, tend to be more financially rewarding. 

Post # 10
2565 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

For big things (if they are covered) it would be worth it, emergency/orthopedic surgeries, critical care etc that can really add up.  If it covers dental cleanings that would be helpful because depending where you live those can be pretty expensive.

Post # 11
7664 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2013 - UK

This has also been something I’ve considered… the thing is, I have 3 cats. One of them will need a very expensive operation at some stage. However, it would not be covered on his insurance as it is congenital anyway. Plus insurance does not cover cats over 10, and that sort of thing. It would be so expensive to cover my three cats that I don’t bother… I tell myself that it would be about £300 a year to cover them all, and that we are unlikely to spend that much on their emergency care within a year.

Even the really expensive cat ops are in the £3,000 range here… that’s 10 years of pet insurance. Do I think that one of my three will need that level of care at some stage in this decade? Er… probably not, no, but even if they did then I would be unlikely to have to pay out twice in a decade, if that makes sense. So I would still probably come out on top by not paying for insurance.

Post # 12
730 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2014 - South Bonson Pier & Community Centre

@XmasBride2014:  my friend had pet insurance for his pup, and good thing – the very next week, she broke her little leg and there were sooo many bills. 

Post # 13
502 posts
Busy bee

Anyone I know with pet insurance had it do them no good. Whatever their pet came down with, somehow the insurance didn’t cover it. It made them feel good for covering the little costs (e.g. vaccinations), but not the ones when it mattered. And because they thought they were covered, they were horribly unprepared financially when something big did happen.


Post # 14
1116 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

If you live in the US, no, not a good idea. The plans there are VERY restrictive. THey usually have a schedule of max benefits that outline the specific treatment they cover and how much they cover. Most of the treatments actually cost WAAAAY more than what the plans cover, and then if the same issue re-occurs, you have even less for the second occurence. There’s also so many things that aren’t covered. 

If you live in Canada, it might be a good idea, as plans here are a lot more flexible. Most have a yearly/lifetime limit on what they’ll pay, either per condition or per accident or just per pet, some of them may be worth it. To figure it out, think about what you would do, worst case scenario, if your pet needed a $5000 surgery to correct a 100% treatable problem- after the surgery your pet might need some follow up visits, maybe physio or medication for a bit, but after a short period of time, he or she will be back to normal. If you have $5000 or so that you would willingly spend, then maybe pet insurance isn’t 100% necessary. If you would have to euthanise your pet because you can’t afford the $5000 surgery, then you should probably consider pet insurance.

Oh and don’t forget too about ongoing treatment, that can really add up too. I used to work for a pet insurance company and we paid one of our clients well over $30,000 for her dog’s various treatment. Considering there was also co-pays and deductibles that she had to cover? That was a lot of treatment. Most of it was for easily treatable issues, it was diabetic, had an eye condition where it needed drops, had skin issues so it needed treatment for that occasionally etc.

Post # 15
2869 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

I started a thread on this when I first adopted our dog and based on that and my own research I decided not to do it. Over a year later I am still happy with my choice to not purchase it, it just is not worth it. 

Post # 16
11 posts
  • Wedding: September 2014

@XmasBride2014:  I actually have both the Banfield Wellness Plan (with PetSmart) and pet insurance.  As the other bees have stated, the Wellness Plan has really been beneficial.  You get free office visits, annual vaccinations and dependent on the plan you choose you also get a percentage off on other services not covered in their Wellness Plan. 

For the pet insurance, I’ve been pretty lucky to have only had to use it once about a month ago.  My dog had pancreatitis but it took a bunch of testing to figure it out.  I payed a little bit over $350 and the pet insurance gave me $250.  It didn’t cover everything but it helped.

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