A Message from the Vet - September 2009
It's Friday evening and Mr. Smith is on his way home. As he approaches his residence he notices his wife carrying their 2 year old Jack Russell Terrier. He quickly makes his way into the driveway and tries to get up to speed. It seems that Jack, being the resourceful terrier, has found his way out of their yard. Shortly after, he was struck by a moving vehicle. Mr. Smith and his wife rush Jack to the veterinarian where it is determined he has a broken hind leg. Unfortunately, this particular type of fracture requires surgical repair. The estimate is given for the procedure. Mr. and Mrs. Smith are faced with a decision. They care very much for their beloved pet, but financial costs are a concern. Pet insurance would make the decision simple.

Pet insurance is now available to make it more affordable for owners to provide for the best veterinary care. There are two main veterinary insurance companies available: VPI (Veterinary Pet Insurance) and Pets Best Insurance. It is important to review each policy to determine which coverage is right for you and your pet. Some policies will cover wellness veterinary care, including vaccines, annual laboratory tests, and routine dental cleanings.

Pet insurance can be especially helpful in the unfortunate event of a major trauma, injury, or chronic illness. A recent study performed by VPI determined the top ten claims for pet insurance: 1-Ear Infections, 2-Skin Allergies, 3-Skin Infections, 4-Vomiting/Gastritis, 5-Diarrhea/Enteritis, 6-Bladder Infection, 7-Benign Skin Tumors, 8-Arthritis, 9-Eye Infections, and 10-Hypothyroidism.

With pet insurance, you are free to choose the veterinarian of your choice without any restrictions, as with many human insurance policies. Pet owners are responsible for the payment due to the veterinarian; the insurance company retroactively reimburses the pet owner. It is important to research the policy to determine which illnesses may be considered to be genetic and therefore may not be covered. Additionally, pre-existing medical conditions are not covered (those diagnosed before the insurance policy was arranged), so it may be most beneficial to sign your pet up while he or she is a puppy or kitten. Policies are also available for exotic pet companions. To find out more about pet insurance, we have brochures available here at the clinic, or you can visit their websites at www.petsbest.com and www.petinsurance.com.

Candice Denham, DVM

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Last updated 2014 May 10.