Having grown up with dogs, Katie (self-confessed ‘crazy dog lady’) soon found that her affinity with man's best friend went beyond just enjoying their company. She can often be found practising behavioural training, Heelwork To Music and grooming tips on her five dogs; Deano the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Prinnie & Merloe the Chihuahuas, and Eric & Boudicca the French Bulldogs. Today Katie talks to us about the importance of pet insurance, details of the claim process and the best place to look for the best cover at the best price.
1. Are all dogs required by law to have insurance?
No, it is not a legal requirement, however it is recommended as vet fees can be extremely high.
2. How much does it cost, and does it vary between breeds and ages of the dog?
Yes, the cost can vary a lot between breeds. Some pedigree dogs are pre-disposed to suffer from certain conditions, with some more serious than others. This will have cost implications when taking out a policy. Age is most certainly a factor as well, as they are more likely to develop age-related conditions. The older the dog, the more expensive it is likely to be.
3. Where is the best place to look for insurance?
I have always found the best polices on a comparison website. You enter all the dog’s details just once, and you are given a choice insurances polices and their benefits. Choose the one that is right for you.
4. What is the process when a claim needs to be made?
Each company is different, but most commonly the owner will request a claims form from the insurer and fill out the owner section. This is then it is passed to the vet who will then fill in their side of the form. Most vet practices send the form back to the insurance company on behalf of the owner but check this with your own vet. If the claim is accepted, then payment will be made to the owner.
5. Does insurance pay out every visit to the vets?
Unfortunately not. Insurances companies rule out all routine procedures. For example vaccinations, neutering, dental treatment, and flea/worm prevention are typically not covered. There will also be an excess on your policy, meaning that you are liable to pay the first £50/£100 etc. of the claim amount. This should all be explained clearly when you take out the policy.
6. What happens if a dog needs repeated treatment for the same condition, will this be covered?
Depending on the policy you have taken out, yes, it may be covered. Check with your insurance company when you renew each year however, as some insurers will cease to cover some conditions if your dog has suffered with something throughout the year.
7. Some people may feel premiums are quite expensive, could they take a chance without insurance?
Premiums can be very high depending on the age and breed of the dog, which can make taking out insurance tricky. Some dogs may live very healthy lives and never have an expensive vet bill… something we hope for all our dogs. Insurance is all about peace of mind however. Insurance covers for accidents too, and as we know these are never expected. So it nice to know that if something was to happen to our beloved pooches, we can focus on getting them better with lots of TLC and not having to worry about the finances.