Questions To Ask about Pet Insurance Cover.
What important points do I need to consider closely when choosing
my pet's insurance policy?
The level of veterinary fees covered.
Do the fees provide for life long
cover for each condition? Usually a set amount for
each condition reinstated each policy year.
Or cover each individual condition for a set amount with
no time limit?
Do the fees cover each condition for a set amount for 12
months in total?
The basic level of cover costs less than you may think. The more
comprehensive the level of cover, the more expensive the policy
is going to be.
Take care however that you are not paying for cover that you
are never going to use; for example paying for travel cover under
the pets passport scheme if you will never be taking your pet
Premiums are usually set in the following ways:
Rated by the species, breed, age and where
you live; ie. tailored to your circumstances.
- A standard rate what ever your circumstances, which may mean
that high-risk animals are subsidised by low-risk animals.
You can usually tell how a company sets
it's premiums by the questions it asks. If you are asked
more detail about you pet and where you live you are probably
being rated on an individual basis.
Premiums will generally rise as your pet
· This is the amount you pay when
you make a claim.
Most pet insurance companies require payment
of an excess in every year for each condition claimed.
The amount you pay may be a fixed amount
per condition, or a fixed amount plus a percentage of the fees,
or simply a percentage of the fees.
The amount you pay may depend on where you
live, the breed and age of your pet.
Some companies give you the option of a
lower premium and a higher excess.
Most companies will ask you for a bigger excess payment once
your pet reaches a certain age.
Make sure you check the exclusions to ensure the cover provided
meets your needs.
Preventive/elective treatment eg. vaccinations,
neutering and worming.
Illnesses arising in the first 10-30 days
of the policy date.
Working dogs and dogs restricted under the
Dangerous Dogs Act.
Certain dental treatments. Certainly
worth checking as dental disease is one of the most common problems
treated by vets. Some companies will only cover dental claims
arising from an injury. Some companies will cover more routine
dental work but insist that the insured pet has its annual health
check and vaccination on time, and will not pay out if this
checkup is even 1 day overdue.
- Traveling abroad.
This is not a complete list. Please read
all policy documents carefully
Is 3rd party cover automatically included?
Most pet companies offer 3rd party liability
cover for damage caused by your dog for which you may be legally
Some companies offer 3rd party cover as
an optional extra
With some companies 3rd party liability carries a higher
Some companies only charge an excess for
veterinary fees and boarding fees.
Does the policy provide cover for Euthanasia?
Not all companies will provide cover for euthanasia or there
may be an age limit.
Does the policy cover veterinary fees for whelping &
Some pet insurance companies offer cover as standard for such
Does the policy cover Death from Accident or Illness?
Many pet insurance policies do provide cover for Death from Accident
or Illness but there may be age limit.
Age of your pet.
Check the policy to see what happens when
your pet gets older. The premiums and/or the excess may increase.
It is important to note that may companies
have a lower age limit for certain higher risk breeds, either
to start the insurance or when the excess changes.
What other cover might be provided?
Hospitalisation of the owner- cost of boarding
fees if you are hospitalised for a specified time.
Cover abroad if travelling under the Pet
Retrieval cost if you pet goes missing.
Some companies offer a discount if more than one pet is insured
or if the policy is purchased online.