You have insurance for your health, your home, and your car.
However, what about your pets? Do they have pet insurance coverage?
While pet insurance has existed elsewhere since the early 1900s, famous TV collie Lassie received the first pet insurance policy issued in the United States in 1982.
According to the North American Pet Health Insurance Association, 3.45 million pets are insured in North America and pet health insurance has been increasing at an average annual growth rate of 23.4% over the past five years.
Why the surge in coverage? Because medical treatment for pets is expensive.
We consider our pet family members. We want the best for them. Pet insurance helps cover the cost of medical care for your furry friend.
It can reimburse you for expenses for routine medical checkups, emergency care, prescription medications, and surgery.
How does pet insurance work?
Like human health insurance, pet insurance companies help alleviate some of the costs of keeping your pet healthy.
Pet owners can typically choose from three types of coverage: accident and illness, accident-only, and wellness plans.
Wellness plans tend to cover preventive-care visits, such as routine vaccinations, and you can buy one as a stand-alone policy or as an add-on to an accident and illness policy.
Take time to review different levels of coverage. Just note, that each plan offers a monthly or annual premium based on how much coverage you choose.
Just like human insurance, read the fine print before purchasing. Understand your policy’s deductible, reimbursement rate, and maximum payout.
Also, know that most insurers have caps on the amount they will pay based on an annual or per-incident basis.
Whether or not you opt for pet insurance, start an emergency fund now for veterinary care to make sure you can handle unexpected out-of-pocket costs.