best Understanding pet health insurance
Pet health insurance, like any form of insurance, is a risk. You are dead sure that your pet will need it.
But, nowadays, because of the limitations and caps on the policy that a company is selling you, you’re actually wishing that your pet wouldn’t.
Many people say it’s really hard to understand in a moment’s notice what goes into your pet‘s insurance policy. So, before you finally decide if you are getting a pet health insurance, it is beast to scrutinize all its details,
contents, benefits and other “charge” that are initially hidden from you. Being knowledgeable and meticulous in getting a pet health insurance will not only help you save up some money but can also ensure that you have something that will take care of your beloved pet companion.
To help you understand what are the underlying principles contained in most pet health insurance offers, here are some points that you should look into:
– A network or provider list. Asking if the pet health insurance is one of the best ways in knowing if the insurance will work.
If you’re looking to remain with your vet, tough luck, most of the insurance companies have their own list of providers that they approve.
This is provider’s list is given to you so you have a clear-cut idea of who you can go to for pet care. But if your vet is already accredited then it’s much better.
– Exclusions. The next question that would probably come to mind is, “Are there exclusions?”. Asking if there are is a wise move because all kinds of health insurance policies have exclusions—which are part of the pre
-enrollment conditions—or as insurers describe it, “injuries, medical conditions, hereditary diseases and other symptoms prior to enrollment.”
These conditions are usually part of the exclusions and should be covered. This is why it is a must that owners of a pet with a pre-existing medical condition should be aware that their cat,
dog, bird or other pet may not be eligible for coverage. In addition, pets who have previously suffered a medical problem or been involved in an accident may not
be eligible for reimbursement on future costs if the future problem is found to be directly related to the original incident—providing that original incident occurred before the insurance policy became effective.
– Deductibles and the co-pay. Some companies have deductibles that are on a flat rate. These deductibles are usually for claims that are caused by excessive visits to the vet or other incidentals.
– A “one size fits all” policy. You can’t really say that there is a one size fits all policy. Most of the time the terms and conditions of policies
are greatly dependent on the need of the pet owner and the pet, there are plans that include services that are exclusive for dogs or cats or vice versa.
Some policies cover some situations that other policies don’t. Some companies have higher premium prices than others.
That is one of the reason why the pet owner should be aware of the different needs to their pet so they could get the most out of their policies.
– The coverage of the said policy. When choosing pet insurance coverage, first consider what kind of insurance customer you are.
This decision will lay the groundwork for your final choice. Make sure to check for coverage of pre-existing conditions as well as breed-specific genetic ailments, such as hip dysplasia for large dogs.
Some plans refuse to cover these conditions while other place limits on annual, per-incident, per-illness or lifetime costs.
AKC Pet Health Insurance
You either love them or you hate them, the members, breeders, and owners who are affiliated with the American Kennel Club.
Puppies who are registered with the American Kennel Club are the aristocracy of the dog world, granted entry into the finest clubs and most exclusive clubs.
The breeds not recognized by the American Kennel Club or dogs that are of a mixed ancestry often feel like outsiders or commoners.
For all the hoopla surrounding the American Kennel Club only members actually seem to know what it really is.
The American Kennel Club is the largest registry of purebred dogs in the entire world. In 2006 there were over nine hundred thousand dogs registered with the American Kennel Club.
In addition to registering dogs the American Kennel Club also host several large shows including the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show (it is actually older then the kennel club) and the AKC/Eukanuba National Championships.
The American Kennel Club has been registering puppies for over one hundred and twenty-two years. In 2006 the AKC signed a contract with the pet stores Petland but later rescinded the offer after a flurry of controversy.
In addition to hosting dog show and overseeing the registration of hundreds of thousands of dogs each year the American Kennel Club also takes an active interest in canine health research.
Some dog owners are familiar with their current advertising campaign promoting their commitment to healthy dogs.
Because the American Kennel Club realizes that the high cost of veterinary care can be difficult for many dog owners to afford they now offer AKC pet health insurance.
The American Kennel Club Healthcare Plan is designed to help offset the high cost of Veterinary treatments, surgery, and prescriptions.
On the American Kennel Club website they have a list of claims that have recently been paid to dog owners who have purchased an AKC pet health care plan.
These claims included a $2,600.00 doller claim for poison toadstools, for a recent case of bee stings they paid a claim of $2,200, and the owners of a
dog that was bitten by a snake received a check for 1,262, $2,000 for an intestinal resection, and $2,800 paid out for a ruptured ligament.
The biggest claim currently listed on the website is for a ruptured vertebral disc that would have cost the owners an additional $3,329 out of their pockets
The American Kennel Club estimates that the average daily cost of a healthcare plan for your dog is approximately sixty-eight cents a day (this is based on the Essential plan’s annual price).
You can pick from four different types of healthcare insurance plans, you have a variety of wellness options you can choose from that will help cover dental cleaning, shots, and checkup.
Applying for the insurance is supposed to be easy and you can choose to pay monthly or yearly. You get to continue to use you very own veterinarian. The American Kennel Club also offers coverage for cats.
One of the really nice features about the AKC pet healthcare coverage is the sixty-day complimentary trail period.
Texas Pet Health Insurance
The general population thinks of cowboys, Quarter Horses, rattlesnakes, Brahma bulls, and Longhorn steers when they think about the livestock and pets typically found in the Lone Star State.
When they think of pets they probably think of Australian Heelers, Heinz fifty-seven mixes, barn cats, and other ranch related working animals. What you probably don’t think of is English Cocker Spaniels.
You should. Texas A&M University School of Veterinary Medicine just announced that they have a new genetic test for Familial Nephropathy in English Cocker Spaniels.
Familial Nephropathy is an inherited renal disease that is recessive. Breeders of English Cocker Spaniels have been aware of Familial Nephropathy for more them fifty years.
Typical symptoms of Familial Nephropathy are excessive drinking, excessive urination, the dog is suddenly loosing weight because they don’t have much of an appetite, vomiting and diarrhea.
Most signs of Familial Nephropathy start to show up when the dog is somewhere between six and twenty-four months old.
Dogs that are going to develop Familial Nephropathy are difficult to predict because they are born with two completely normal kidneys. As the dog grows and develops the kidneys start to deteriorate from the lack of a certain type of collagen.
Familial Nephropathy is normally fatal. Because it is a genetic disorder most pet health insurance plans will not cover the cost of any treatments the dog owners wish to pursue.
In addition to researching Familial Nephropathy Texas A&M University sees over 11,500 small animals a year. That is 11,500 pet owners that could have saved money by purchasing a pet health care policy for their family pet.
Some pet owners in the state of Texas like snakes, the more exotic the snake is the happier the pet owner. Like with all pets there are certain health care needs that snakes have that other pets do not.
Typical snake health care issues can be respiratory infections, eye infections, mite infestation, metabolic bone disease, abscesses, belly burns, and parasites.
The problem with pet snakes and other pet reptiles is that signs of health care issues are not as easy to identify as with their mammal counterparts.
A big part of maintaining the health and well being of your pet snake is finding a veterinarian. One of the first things
you need to do when selecting a veterinarian for your snake is making sure they are comfortable around snakes. The reality of the world is that everybody has phobia and lots of people are phobic about snakes.
If your veterinarian is uncomfortable handling your treasured snake they will not be able to accurately diagnosis any health problems it might be having.
In addition to the typical dogs, cats and horses, many Texans also have exotic pets such as ferrets, wallabies, glider squirrels, and Coatimundi’s.
People who purchase exotic pets should realize that the more exotic the pet the harder it is going to be to find the proper veterinary care and the more the veterinary care is going to cost.
Before you purchase an exotic pet you might want to research how much you could potentially spend on veterinary care during the pets life time and find out if it is possible to purchase a pet health insurance plan.
Pet Health Insurance in California
In 1849 hundreds of men made the grueling climb across the Rocky mountain range before stepping onto California’s soil.
These men, who history remembers as forty-niners, came to California with dreams of striking a mother lode of gold and spending the rest of their days in the lap of luxury.
Few of these forty-niners had possessions worth speaking of, just the tattered torn clothes they were wearing, a shovel, a pan specially designed to sift through river sediment, and an old mule to haul their find out of the mountains.
Over a hundred and fifty years have passed since the last forty-niner made their final trek across the Rockies with only his own voice and a cantankerous old mule named Worthless for company.
In this new modern world a different type of person is journeying across the country seeking the answers to all their dreams and prayers in the warm California sunlight.
Today its students, freshly armed with brand new high school diplomas and a tiny sub-compact car loaded down with expensive clothing and glamour shots, seeking not gold but rather fame under the bright lights of an acting studio.
Like the fortey-niners, many of these future stars have only their CD collections and a family pet to keep them company on the long drive across the country.
What many of these Hollywood hopefuls don’t realize is the animal health branch of the California Department of Food and Agriculture has rules and regulations for bringing pets into the state.
Most of the rules will involve the young pet owner to take their pet to the veterinarian for a round of shots and an exam before leaving for the land of movie stars and millionaires.
The purchase of pet health care coverage can sometimes let the youngsters get the routine vet work out of the way without forcing them to dip to heavily into their savings.
Domestic cats that are infected with a contagious disease are not allowed into California. Cats are not required to have a current rabies vaccination nor do they have to have a Certificate of Veterinary Inspection before they cross the state line into California.
They must have a health certificate if they are coming from an area that was under rabies quarantine. If you are coming into the state of California via airplane check with the airline about what health requirements they enforce before allowing your cat to fly.
Before you leave your home town for the California shore line, ask your veterinarian what can be done to make the trip as comfortable and safe for your cat.
Just like cats the California Department of Food and Agriculture will not allow dogs that are carrying an infectious disease to cross the state line into California.
Any dog over four months of age is required to a certificate stating the date of its last rabies vaccination, the type of vaccination used, the manufacturer lot number of the rabies vaccine used, and the name of the vet who gave the injection.
If you are traveling by plane ask the airline about any additional health requirements your dog must meet before it is allowed to fly. The sooner you contact your airline the better.
If you are bringing a more exotic type of pet, such as a potbellied pig, into the state of California you may be required to have an entry permit.
Pet Health Insurance Veterinary eye Concerns for Pet Dogs
Owners who are considering purchasing pet health insurance for their dogs should make sure that the eye health of their dogs covered by the insurance policy.
Because many insurance companies will not insure the eyes of a dog whose breed is habitually diagnosed with chronic eye problems may want to consider purchasing their puppy from a CERF (Canine Eye Registration Foundation).
Breeders who are recognized by the CERF have been publicly acknowledged as breeding puppies without known health problems.
In some cases insurance companies might also require that the owners have genetic screening done on the puppies before they can be insured.
Glaucoma is a common eye condition that begins with very subtle symptoms such as dilated pupils that don’t respond well to light, and eye that appears to be red, poor vision, and corneas are often cloudy.
One California-based veterinarian claims that because the initial symptoms of Glaucoma can be very subtle many California pet owners to not immediately bring their dogs and for an examination.
If Glaucoma is not immediately seen by a veterinarian within 24 to 48 hours the increased pressure in the eyeball can lead to permit it cases of blindness. In severe cases of untreated Glaucoma veterinarians have been forced to remove the pet‘s eye.
Any dog who has the developed an irritation in their eye that causes them to square to produce extra tears is called a “squinting dog”.
Most cases of squinting is caused from a minor irritation such as an in turned eyelash or minor scratch to the cornea. However some cases of squinting dog has led to the early diagnosis of diseases such as cancer and Blastomyosis.
The Dermoidis is a benign corneal neoplasam. It is sometimes referred to as the third eyelid. Hair growing from the Dermoidis can irritate the dog’s eye which can cause discharge and occasionally cause an ulcer to appear on the eye.
Once you have seen a person or animal with cataracts you will always be able to diagnose them. The official definition of a cataract is opacity of the lens.
When you look into an eye that has a cataract it looks as if a darkly tinted contact lens has been placed over the lens. If the cataracts become too thick the pet will go blind.
Shar Peis. Cocker Spaniels, Labradors, and Rottweilers are susceptible to eye condition called Entropion. Entropio, happens when an eyelid fold inward toward the eye and causes the eyelashes to brush against the cornea.
The irritation of the eyelashes rubbing the cornea generally gives the eye a squinty drippy appearance. Bulldogs, Poodles, and Cocker Spaniels are often diagnosed with a condition called Cherry eye.
Dry eyes is the term used to describe the eyes of a dog that isn’t producing enough tears. Lhasa Apso, Pugs, and Shih Tzus are breeds that are particularly susceptible to dry eyes.
Dog owners should bring their dogs to the veterinarian as soon as they notice any of the following conditions; squinting, tearing, pawing at the eye, cloudiness, bloody eyes, a blind eye
(this can happen very abruptly), constantly dilated pupils, and swollen eyelids. Dog owners need to understand that early diagnosis is often the key to preventing further eye issues.
Pet Health Insurance for VIP’s
When most people think a pet is spoiled feel that it is getting to many treats, has too many expensive toys scattered around the ground,
or it’s allowed to sleep at night in bed with its humans, normally taking up the entire bed and hogging all the covers.
I once even saw a pot bellied pig who was so spoiled that its humans designed an built the miniature porker its very own out house so it wouldn’t get cold answering natures call.
Japanese pet owners take the term very-important-pets to a whole new level. In Japan well loved pets enjoy aromatherapy, acupuncture, trips to the doggie spa where they a lovingly massaged, and in some cases have their very own personal trainers.
It is a well known fact that we tend to spoil our pets because we love them we want them to have the best of everything but recent studies have shown that pampering our pets might actually doing as much harm as good.
One recent study from an undisclosed source claims that we are actually making our beloved pets stupid by spoiling them. We are in such a hurry to make their lives easier that we take away their need to problem solve on their own.
The less they have to loose their brains the less they can do on their own. This problem is especially common in households were the dog seems to be running the show. What would happen to that pet if it really had to think for itself?
A concern veterinarians have regarding spoiled pets is weight. The more spoiled the pet the more obese it seems to become. The obesity can lead to later health issues that can actually decrease the life of the pet.
Weight can affect the skeletal system until hip problems start to develop, obesity can cause respiratory and cardiac problems, the extra pounds of blubber constantly pushing on the joints can start to create stiffness and discomfort.
It is not uncommon for veterinarians to see a lot of the spoiled pet as it enters into the last few years of its life. The problem with older overweight pets is that
every time they are brought to the vet clinic they are exposed to more germs, bacteria, and viruses that can lead to still more endless trips to the vet.
For the most part the humans caring for the very-important-pet don’t have to worry about the increasing number of the visits to see a doctor.
Most doting parents bought pet health care insurance during the early years of the pet’s life. All of the pet’s health care needs are essentially bought and paid for.
I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if in a few years you didn’t see pet health insurance companies raising the rates of their VIP customers.
On solution to the pudgy, somewhat shallow house pet is the appearance of specialist animal slimming clinics.
Pet owners can go to these clinics and learn all about their pets nutritional needs and exercise programs that will help the spoiled child start to shed some of those unnecessary pounds.
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