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Old 12-21-2011, 02:37 PM
 
Location: Illinois
718 posts, read 1,799,254 times
Reputation: 973

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As with regular human insurance, the best is usually "there" when you need it and pays as the policy dictates. There are so many, and I have found that Vets are not familiar with them at all and thus, are not a good source of referrals. I spent so much money in vain for my yellow lab last year and this year have decided that perhaps I need to insure my English Shepherd puppy and my 5 year old cockapoo. Any insight anyone can offer would be very much appreciated.
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Old 12-21-2011, 03:07 PM
 
4,919 posts, read 19,792,227 times
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Bset is very subjective. One thing I found in doing the research was they are seldom similar.

One may be exceptional in preventive care but pays lousy for emergency. Another may be great for emergency care but offers little for prevenive care.

Some have limits of the maximum payout per catagory of illness while others may have a maximum cap on overall payout.

Some look good initially but their rate increase history makes it cost prohibitive as the pet ages. Others are more level with high premiums at the start but not so much of increases as the dog ages. So have certain exclusions as the pet ages while others won;t.

Some have good claims paying reputaion and others are like fighting governement red tape. Some will pay with little hassles while others always find a reason to reject or reduce a claim.

So, which is best really depends on exactly what you need and how you expect it to perform when you use it.

Also to add that a vets or vendor recomendation isn;t always what its cracked up to be. Many (if not all) of the pet insurance companies offer incentive (commission, kick-back, referal fee, whatever they want to call it) to the referal source to push their product.

Last edited by PacificFlights; 12-21-2011 at 03:15 PM..
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Old 12-21-2011, 03:36 PM
 
Location: Illinois
718 posts, read 1,799,254 times
Reputation: 973
Thank you. You brought up some excellent points and several issues I hadn't even thought about. I guess, as with anything else, it is a crapshoot until something catastrophic comes along. I appreciate your time here.
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Old 12-21-2011, 04:47 PM
 
4,919 posts, read 19,792,227 times
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Pet insurance is regulated by each state insurance dept, but its not regulated as in human health insurance as to minimum coverage, minimum claim paying requirments, minimum coverage, requirments to provide X, Y, or Z. basically pet insurance is regulated in that whatever the company puts in their policy they must provide, otherise unlike human health insurance, they decide what and how and when.

So when shopping don't ever use price as a starting point because there is nothing to relate one price to another. It would be like seeing 2 travel sites advertised $100 NYC to San Diego fares, but not telling you if its by plane, bus, train or anything else but the price.

I will say that in looking at consumer complaints about pet insurance, the number of complaint are rising. Could be more people have it or could be that more people are finding out the limits aren;t what they thought. Good luck!
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Old 12-21-2011, 07:11 PM
 
Location: North Western NJ
6,591 posts, read 20,715,536 times
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my parents used to have VIP for thier cocker..but quite frankly, it was more trouble than it was worth...

they paid for the best coverage...then ended up haivn gto fight to get things that were supposed to be covered paid for...
this happend with friends and other pet insurance.

so what i did was look at costs...
and then i opend a high yeild savings account...
every month however much i would have spent on pet insurance goes into the savings account (about $20 per critter) this is my animal emergency fun.
i have a care credit card for immediate needs if the accnt is low ect...or ill pay it on the care credit and use the savings account to pay the card balance down...but thats all the care credit and that account are used for.
at least with this method theres no restrictions on WHAT i need done, i dont have to worry that something i need for my dog isnt covered despite me spending all that money every month ect...
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Old 12-21-2011, 09:05 PM
 
Location: On the sunny side of a mountain
3,182 posts, read 7,027,063 times
Reputation: 6544
Our new vet has a flat fee program that covers all visits, shots, blood tests and tooth cleaning, he also gives an additional 20% off anything not covered and medications. It works out for my old dogs pretty well.

On a side note, I am so jealous that you have an English Shepherd puppy. For years we thought that Sophie was a large, mellow border collie mix until we met an ES who was her twin. I would have loved to raise Sophie from puppyhood, but now that I understand her breed, I understand her much better.
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Old 12-23-2011, 03:32 PM
 
Location: Illinois
718 posts, read 1,799,254 times
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She is my first ES as I have been a Labrador lover and involved in showing, field trialing, judging, etc. However, my last beloved yellow Lab, Tess died this year at 8 and I knew that if I got another lab, I would compare her/him to Tess and that poor dog would always come up short. So my friend breed ES and I got this little girl puppy. Sweet, smart, easy to train...still has accidents in the house, but she is just shy of 6 months old. She lives with my cockapoo and he is a love, but another story. These ES are super dogs and I am happy I have a dog who can be her own dog and there is no comparison. I am still so wistful whenever I see a cute little yellow lab pup and they are EVERYWHERE....maybe one day. I would love to find a vet like yours. At least you know the costs going in, but I didn't think of an annuity for them for later, or something to that effect.
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Old 12-26-2011, 01:03 PM
 
455 posts, read 1,007,794 times
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I have five pets no insurance cover, I put a set amount every month into a separate bank account. I have done this for as along as I care to remember. The money is there no strings attached, and at the end of the day there has still been money in the account.

I have been very fortunately my pets have only ever needed the odd course of antibiotic/anti-inflamatory/pain relief.

I have found the most expensive time for a pet is in their twilight years, by which time there is plenty in their account.
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Old 12-26-2011, 01:07 PM
 
404 posts, read 723,313 times
Reputation: 518
We have Pets Best, it's been nothing short of fantastic. We have had three large claims &'every time they paid without question within 7days of me submitting (I fax it in) the claim. I pay around $400/yr for two dogs, each claim is $100 deductible then they pay 80%. At this point I've been paid to carry their insurance.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:06 PM
 
1 posts, read 2,383 times
Reputation: 10
Default Stay away from http://www.petshealthplan.com/

My dog has had pet health insurance for over 6 years. I started off paying U$ 30 a month and ended up U$ 90. The company is pet health plan. My advice to you all: please, spread the word about this pet insurance company. My dog was diagnosed with cancer last February and the policy is being renewed yearly (as cars, setc). Because of this and as the policy was renewed in March 2013, the treatment for his cancer is not covered. Can you believe this? To make matters worse, when I called the company to cancel the policy I had to hear: we know how you feel and we are sorry you feel this way about us. Their hypocresy was too much.
Please, stay away from pet health plan: [url=http://www.petshealthplan.com/
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