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Pet insurance – the facts

Pet insurance provides cover for veterinary fees in the event that your pet becomes injured or unwell. It can provide peace of mind that you’re in a position to afford all the veterinary care your pet may need.

With veterinary medicine employing expensive medical techniques and medication, and with pet owners caring more and more about their pets’ health, pet insurance is becoming increasingly popular.

There are many pet insurance companies now available, with many different levels of cover and policies to choose from. Insurance companies will cover most accidents and illnesses; some may cover dental treatments – but it’s important you read the policy terms and conditions as some companies may not. Preventative treatment (such as vaccinations & flea and worm treatment) is not covered by insurance companies.

To help spread the cost of preventative treatment, we provide our own Pet Health Club. Being part of the Pet Health Club AND having a separate, appropriate insurance policy will enable you to provide your pet with the best possible veterinary care – both routinely and in times of emergency.

As a veterinary practice, we support the idea of pet insurance but are unable to recommend any one individual insurance company. However, we can advise on the best type of policies to look out for.


The benefits of pet insurance

Pet insurance mainly provides cover for veterinary fees if your pet is injured or becomes ill. However, other benefits may include:

  • Third party liability cover if your pet injures someone or damages someone else’s property
  • Paying you the price you paid for your pet if they become lost, stolen, or die as a result of injury or illness
  • Paying the costs of looking after your pet if you have to go into hospital for emergency medical treatment
  • Paying the cost of your holiday if it’s cancelled due to your pet needing emergency surgery close to the date you were due to leave
  • Paying the cost of emergency veterinary treatment for your pet if you take them abroad under the Pet Travel Scheme

Types of pet insurance policies

Common Types of Policy:

12 month/Annual Policies:

These policies will cover a condition for 12 months from the point when it started; after that time, the condition will be excluded – even if no treatment has been given. Financial limits will also apply.

Maximum Benefit Policies (Individual Condition Cover)

With this type of policy, you can claim a maximum amount for each condition without a time limit. After the maximum has been reached, the condition will be excluded.

Lifelong Cover

Lifelong policies provide cover that ‘recharges’ each time the policy renews. As such, these policies provide ongoing cover for long-term conditions (arthritis, heart/kidney problems, skin disease etc.) Benefit limits can be ‘per condition’ or an annual amount for all conditions.

Policy types and cover included vary between insurance companies. Please read the terms & conditions for each policy carefully.


Our practice strongly advises that you seriously consider insuring your pet

The true cost of veterinary care can be a surprise to many people. Pets, just like their owners, can develop illnesses that need lifelong treatment, such as diabetes or skin conditions, from a very young age. Not all pet insurance is the same, so it’s important to choose your policy carefully.

When shopping around ask insurers the following 5 key questions:

  • Will this policy cover ongoing conditions for the rest of my pet’s life?
  • Does this policy cover congenital and hereditary illness?
  • Does this policy cover dental treatment and behavioural problems?
  • Will you place exclusions at renewal on this policy?
  • Will you increase my premiums or excess if I claim?