Here at Lanes Vets we strongly advise insurance for all pets.
It’s not uncommon for veterinary fees to run into hundreds or even thousands of pounds, and having pet insurance helps to give you peace of mind should a problem arise. However, there are many different policies to choose from and selecting the right one can be difficult.
When looking for an insurance policy, you will need to decide on the level of cover you want for your pet:
True Life Policies
These policies offer a set amount of financial cover that is automatically renewed annually, no matter how much you have claimed for. They provide lifetime cover for ongoing illnesses and recurring conditions. This level of cover is advised by Lanes Vets for our clients.
These policies provide a maximum benefit for each medical condition therefore, once this limit has been reached, the insurance company will no longer pay out for the condition.
These policies provide cover for a maximum of twelve months from the first symptom, not just from the first claim. Any fees occurring after the initial twelve month period will be declined by the insurance company. It is therefore possible for your pet to be excluded for certain conditions without you ever submitting a claim.
Before signing up to a policy, always ensure you know exactly what you are paying for, i.e. what the excess is and whether there will be a percentage of the claim to pay. If you opt for an annual policy, be aware of the costs you may need to pay once the insurance company has stopped paying out for your pet. Any insurance is better than no insurance but you tend to get what you pay for and the cheapest policy usually provides only the minimum level of cover.
Insurance Terms and Definitions
Excess – this is the amount deducted by your insurer should you make a claim as your contribution. These amounts vary between insurance companies and often rise as your pet gets older. An excess is usually payable for each medical condition for each policy year. Some companies charge fixed excesses, some charge a percentage of the claim and some charge both.
Pre-existing Conditions – if your pet has a pre-existing medical condition this must be declared when starting up any insurance policy. An insurer will most likely exclude any condition that is pre-existing, ensuring this condition cannot be claimed for.
This is also something to bear in mind if you think about switching policies. If you have been claiming for a certain condition with one company and you decide to change companies, that condition will probably be excluded by the new insurer.
Preventative Treatment – this includes routine vaccinations, worming, flea treatment and neutering. These will not be covered by pet insurance as they all come as part of being a responsible pet owner. Pregnancy related conditions will also not be covered.
Inception Periods – with most insurance policies there will be an inception period. This means that for a certain number of days (usually fourteen) your pet will not be fully covered by the policy.
We cannot directly advise you on any insurance policy other than PetPlan, as an appointed PetPlan practice. However, if you wish to contact us for any general advice, please feel free to book a consultation with one of our nurses.
Pets under 12 months old can be covered for 4 weeks absolutely FREE – please ask at Lanes Vets reception for further details.