How to choose veterinary insurance for your pet

Adequate health insurance coverage is important for you and your family, and it can be a lifesaver for your family pets as well. Taking your beloved pets to the veterinarian for the regular medical care they need, can be very costly, but without it the consequences can be tragic. Many serious medical conditions can be prevented or successfully treated through regular vet visits, and pet insurance can help make those visits affordable.

What Pet Insurance Covers

Most pet insurance companies offer a variety of packages designed to fit a variety of health needs and budgets. Pet insurance plans typically fall into three categories: Accident and Illness, General Wellness, and Premium Care. Some plans offer discounts for multiple pets. The procedures covered, the degree of coverage, and the costs of each plan can vary based on the age and breed of your pet.

Depending on your plan, your pet insurance coverage might include some or all of the following:

Spaying and neuteringHeartworm testing and preventionVaccinationsPrescrip tion medicationsRoutine dental careDiagnostic proceduresLab testsX-raysSurgeryHospitalizat ionLong-term and chronic conditions

Coverage for many other conditions and procedures is available with some plans. Most kitten and puppy packages cover vaccinations, booster shots, and spaying or neutering. Adult coverage may include yearly exams and dental care. Mature pets can receive screenings for liver, kidney and heart disease, cancer, arthritis, and other illnesses that become more common with age.

Choosing a Pet Insurance Plan

Deciding which pet insurance plan is right for you and your pet can be overwhelming. Prices can vary greatly depending on the plan and provider, the breed and age of your pet, and even the part of the country you live in. Pet insurance plans have premiums, deductibles, maximum allowable charge limits, and maximum allowable reimbursements per incident and per year, just like any other health coverage plan. It’s important to gather as much information as you can and then sit down with it and carefully compare the benefits and costs of each.

As with your own health care, the focus of your health care plan for your pet should be on prevention; serious conditions that are discovered in the early stages will cost less to treat, and your pet will have a much greater chance at successful recovery. If your breed of pet is prone to certain illnesses , such as cancer, or certain conditions like hip dysplasia, be sure to include this information when you’re doing your research. Most pet insurance providers offer free quotes; fill out the requested information in as much detail as you can, collect as many quotes as possible, and then examine and compare them carefully to help you make the right insurance decision for you and your pet.

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