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To most people, a family pet is a part of the family just as much as any other member. Pet owners today go to great lengths to be sure their pets are cared for, dressed well and treated like royalty. Toy dogs are the new must-have accessory and these little puffs of fluff don’t come cheap.

Pet Health InsuranceVeterinary bills for a perfectly healthy pet are around $140 for a kitty or puppy and up to $350 for older pets. According to the American Pet Products Association, of the estimated $45.4 billion Americans spent on their pets in 2009, 27% of the total cost was expected to be devoted to veterinary care. Because of the increasing rates of veterinarians, some people are choosing to purchase Fido his own insurance policy. The American Veterinary Medical Association estimates that in 2007, 72 million dogs and nearly 82 million cats were kept as pets in the U.S. that is over 154 million pets, yet there were only 850,000 pet insurance policies in effect that year, according to the National Commission on Veterinary Economic Issues.

Some people baulk at the idea of purchasing a health insurance for an animal, and insist that they simply would rather choose to euthanize than to treat an ailing animal, but when the time comes, and the family is in turmoil, the choice is much harder when it comes to your pet or your pocketbook. Pet insurance generally covers pets in case of accidents or illnesses as well as options for wellness care, much like your family health insurance plans.

Just like your children, your pets are curious individuals who are just as susceptible to getting hurt or sick. Treating a broken leg can cost anywhere between $2,000 and $5,000, similar to a comparable hospital bill. In addition to accidents, cancer is now the leader cause of death in older dogs and 60% of dogs older than 6 years old will develop some form of cancer. Today, there are more lifesaving treatments available for pets, like surgery and chemotherapy, but they are also more expensive, which is why many are now considering pet insurance for their furry friends.

Pet insurance might be worth looking into if you have a particularly susceptible dog breed, if you are passionate about your animals, or if you have young children who may be devastated by the death of the family pet. Pet insurance is definitely a better alternative than going into debt, even if he is man’s best friend.

If you think that pet insurance might be a good choice for your family, be sure to shop around to find a premium and a deductible you can live with. Ask about co-pays and caps, which may limit payouts by incident, year or the animal's lifetime and check with your state to be sure your pet insurers are registered with your state regulators.

If pet insurance is not the best choice for you, follow some of these simple guidelines to keep your pet happy and healthy without breaking the bank:
1. Ask your vet about low-cost clinics for shots.
2. Ask for samples of the most popular medications.
3. Spend more money on pet good. Better-quality food can pay off in fewer health problems.
4. Keep your pets weight under control.
5. Don’t let your pets roam the neighborhood. Always keep them indoors, in a fenced area, or on a leash.


By Matt Reynolds - Google+
Posted 6:51 PM  View Comments

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Louisville, KY 40258
Phone: 502-933-2255
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