We love our pets, but medically caring for them is not cheap. You may have asked yourself, “Should I get pet insurance?” Consumer Reports says the answer isn’t always easy — and one of its experts is speaking from experience.
Brian Wines is an investigative reporter at Consumer Reports. He is also the proud owner of a dog named Lugo and a cat named Phoebe. Her cat was recently injured.
“We opened the door and Phoebe came in and she was very skittish and down on the ground with a little scar on her back leg,” Vines explained. “And we were like, ‘What happened?'”
The Vines didn’t have pet insurance, so getting Phoebe treated would be completely out of pocket.
“Pet insurance was always one of those things in the back of our minds, like, ‘Oh, we should do this,'” she said.
But is pet insurance something you should consider? for the first time, Consumer Reports reviewed and ranked eight pet insurance providers. Based on a survey of its members with insured pets. It looked at things like premiums, what’s covered, the claims process, and whether people have a choice about which doctors to see.
“We found that most people are not satisfied with their pet insurance,” Vines said.
Six of the insurance providers received only a middling overall satisfaction score:
Nationwide pet insurance
Two providers are below with unfavorable ratings:
7. To bring
If you’re considering pet insurance, Consumer Reports says there are a few things you should know:
Pre-existing conditions are usually not covered.
There are usually annual caps. If you hit that limit, you’ll have to pay out of pocket.
You may be responsible for paying the provider directly and then filing for reimbursement with the insurance company.
Whether or not pet insurance is worth it can depend on each pet owner.
“If you’re looking for a return on investment, maybe not so much, but if you value peace of mind, pet insurance might be something you want to pursue,” Vines said. said
Another option is telehealth, or virtual care, which Vines used. It cost $25. She received instructions on how to clean the wound and a prescription for antibiotics delivered to her door. And Phoebe was all right.
You can also check out low-cost veterinary services available for dogs and cats throughout Northeast Florida. You’ll get lower costs for routine maintenance and preventative care, as well as things like spaying and neutering. Helpful links we found include the following:
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