|Topic Review (Newest First)|
|07-23-2020 09:25 AM|
|Roxyyy03||It took me a long travel last month just to bring my puppy at a healthcare center. I was with my father, since he also was looking for a car detailing shop that time. I am so sad because when we got their the healthcare center is close due to pandemic. In this worst time, not only people are affected even our beloved dogs as well|
|01-15-2020 10:24 AM|
Originally Posted by Cressrb View Post
|01-15-2020 10:06 AM|
|Cressrb||Did you write this Gretchen? Do you have a new IG puppy? It was well done and thank you for submitting it.|
|01-15-2020 09:32 AM|
Originally Posted by Gretchen_Red View Post
What I can say is - do your research carefully. Know what's important to you. I highly suggest CALLING each company and walking through the policy. Don't rely on what people tell you on the internet. As an example, the above is not accurate (and I know you just shared it, Gretchen, not blaming you...). I have Embrace, and they pay me my actual costs, not "customary charges".
Each company has a little bit of a different policy. Ask if there are yearly and/or lifetime caps on payouts. Know what they are, and know if that matters to you. Understand if your policy has a deductible, and if that deductible is per incident, or per year. Know whether your policy covers the exam fee or not (for example, Trupanion does NOT, and those can be very pricey at specialists!). Know whether your policy covers prescription drugs, or if you need an additional rider for that (drugs add up FAST with some conditions!). Understand if your coverage includes specialists, if you need referrals, if alternative care is covered (things like rehab and chiro), if that matters to you, if you need an additional rider for that. Know if your dog needs to be spayed or neutered at a certain age. Make sure all hereditary/genetic conditions are covered. Find out if there are waiting periods for coverage for any conditions, and what they are. Insurance is still insurance - none of them are perfect, and I find that the complaints I read online are mostly people not understanding what they bought.
I will say I've been really happy with Embrace - I've had my policy with them for nearly 4 years. I've had lots of claims, all have been paid relatively quickly. One dog was previously on Trupanion. The policy there was quite different. I was happy with it, but the premiums were increasing fairly dramatically. I finally had to switch him over to Embrace, too. That was a process - I called, spoke with someone, we had a full chart review done so I'd know what, if anything, would be considered pre-existing due to his history. They were incredibly helpful. So I've been pleased. I certainly would not have another dog without insurance.
|01-15-2020 08:35 AM|
WARNING: VERY LONG POST |
ONLY READ IF CONSIDERING PET INSURANCE.
INTENDED TO BE HELPFUL
I recently saw a post asking ￼For recommendations￼ on PET insurance. They wanted to know if anyone had a good recommendation. After going back to copy something that I posted mid November, 2019, I was unable to retrace my steps and find the person‘s post to respond to it. So I am Making a public post in all my pet-related groups in hopes that that person will see what I post, and perhaps benefit from my research.
To all admins: If you deem this post inappropriate for your group, feel free to delete it. To the pet Loss grief groups I am a part of, I realize you have just lost your beloved fur child and may not currently need this info. However, considering the fact that many of us have more than one fur baby and that you may now be considering insurance for your remaining family member, especially if your rainbow bridge baby had no coverage and you went up to your neck in financial hardship trying to do all you could to save him or her, you might find this information beneficial. Or, if in the future you open your heart to another, you may choose the pet insurance route this time around. (That was my circumstance.....I lost my heart dog to illness. He was a rescue with pre-existing conditions and a few years on him, so I did not have pet insurance. Thousands of dollars later, four months after his passing, I got another fur baby....and this time decided to acquire insurance.
I spent over a month researching 16 different insurance companies, comparing every possible situation.
Here’s what I found.
You must read the fine print. Firstly, companies handle deductibles in a variety of ways. Some require an annual deductible that must first be met, before any expenses are covered. Other companies require a per condition deductible. Most companies offer you a range of deductibles to choose from, beginning at zero dollars all the way up to $1000. There are some companies that will only pay for accidents and illnesses, and will not cover well care for routine care such as dental’s, vaccinations, spays and neuters, blood work that is done prior to spay and neuters. The theory with these companies, is that if you choose to have a pet, you are already planning for well care and for those incidentals that come with pet ownership. The premise is that it is the unexpected illness or injury that will send you to the poorhouse.
One of the reasons you must read the fine print is that many of the companies I looked into state that they cover “Usual and Customary” veterinary charges. What this actually means is that they have a predetermined amount that they have decided is reasonable. That is the amount that they are willing to pay. The problem lies in that most vets charge above and beyond that amount, so whatever amount your vet bill is above what they consider is reasonable, You end up having to pay. Furthermore, many insurances also exclude breed specific health concerns. For example, boxers tend to have a high incidence of cancer, so some of the insurances exclude cancer in boxers.Likewise, Italian greyhound puppies are known for their frequency of leg breaks. Some of these insurances exclude leg breaks for the first two years of the puppy’s life. Labrador retrievers commonly have problems with hip dysplasia, so many of the companies will not cover that. So if you are considering insurance, be sure to check what their exclusion policies are.
Almost all of the insurance companies, with rare exception but for a very few, will not pay your walk in fee. That is the charge that your veterinarian bills you for the initial exam when you walk in the door. Insurance companies consider that that is a cost that is an expected one, And generally they will not cover it.
The other really important issue to consider and to ask about, is what the company considers their Pay out Cap. Some companies have a per-illness Cap, some have a yearly￼ cap, and some have a lifetime cap. That “Cap” is the total amount that they are willing to pay out for your pet. Once you reach that Cap, they will not pay one more cent and you are left with the rest of the bills... be that for that illness, that year, or your pets lifetime. This is an important consideration in the event your pet suffers from a very high cost disease, such as cancer or an ongoing costly chronic condition.
All of the insurance companies boast that their’s is the best, or highlight the most positive and lucrative part of their coverage. Almost none of them go to the lengths to explain the difference between actual vet bill pay out versus usual and customary payout.￼
I literally called five different vet offices asking what their actual charges would be for various illnesses, conditions, surgeries, and hospitalization fees. None of them fell in line with the usual and customary charges that the insurance companies said they were willing to pay. All of them quoted charges that were significantly higher than what was considered usual and customary.
So beware. This jargon and type of payout can really hurt you in the long run and I would recommend that you not go with any insurance company that only pays usual and customary fees.￼
After much research, I narrowed down my choices to four companies: Trupanion, Nationwide, Healthy Paws and Pet Plan. They all had certain attractions/hindrances. Of those four, I then narrowed it down to two: Nationwide and Trupanion.
I chose Trupanion.
One thing I liked about nationwide is that they had a well care plan. It was their most expensive plan, called whole pet. If you purchase this plan then they did not pay usual and customary, but rather paid on the actual bill. They also covered routine care, vaccinations, dentals, Etc. the problem, however, was that the price for this policy was exorbitantly expensive. If you sat down and actually figured out what your vaccinations and dental’s and well care costs for heart guard, flea and tick meds etc. would add up to be in a year’s time, the extra amount they charged for the whole pet policy came out much more expensive than what those things would add up to be if you paid for them out of pocket. Additionally if you did not get that most expensive plan, then they resorted to paying usual and customary fees, but had no lifetime cap. Regardless of not having a cap, the fact that they would only pay what they determined it was reasonable for any given situation, did not appeal to me.￼￼￼￼￼
Initially I was attracted to the fact that they paid for well care, but after doing the math and crunching the numbers I realized I would end up paying more for my insurance than what those items would add up to be and one of the things I clearly wanted was an insurance that did not have any sort of Payout restriction In the event my pet ended up ever having a serious Chronic illness or a situation where his bills mounted skyhigh.￼￼￼￼
I ended up choosing Trupanion for several reasons. The first was that they did not have a monthly, yearly or lifetime Pay out. The second was that they paid on the actual vet bill and not on usual and customary terms.￼￼
As with most other pet insurances, they do not pay for well care. So things like dentals, vaccinations, spay and neuter’s, heartworm testing, flea and tick medicine’s or heartworm medicine’s, are not covered.￼
￼They have a unique deductible situation, that can be viewed as both positive, or negative, depending on how your pets health plays out in the first several years of his life. Rather than having a yearly deductible that covers all health situations, they have a per illness\per symptom deductible. For instance: if your dog breaks a leg, you would first pay your given deductible for the leg break. Then any charge that ensued after you paid the deductible for that but was related in anyway to that leg break, would be covered for the rest of your pets life. That’s right: that wasn’t miss speak. Any charge related to that leg break, after you paid the deductible, would then be covered FOR THE REST OF YOUR PETS LIFE (as long as you stay insured with them). Now, say three months later your pet develops bloody stool and diarrhea and you take your dog into the vet, Trupanion would once again charge you a brand new deductible for that condition. You would have to pay the deductible that you agreed on in your policy again because it was a “new”condition, unrelated to the leg break. After that deductible is met, you would also have to pay the walk in exam fee. After those items were were paid/met, Trupanion would then pay out the percentage of payout you signed up for (either 70%, 80% or 90%) of the remaining actual veterinary costs of that visit￼￼.
From that point forward, anytime that your dog presented with bloody stool related to whatever the condition was that was determined was wrong with your pet, he or she would be covered with no additional deductible for the lifetime of that condition and lifetime of your pet. ￼￼
In the short side, if you happen to get unlucky and your pet has eight things different from each other that happen during that first or second year, you will end up paying eight separate deductibles, which could be daunting depending on how much deductible you sign up for. So short term, That could really put a pinch on you initially. But if you are planning to insure your pet for your pet’s lifetime, then this is actually quite a good deal. Yes I’m paying a deductible for each condition. But if the condition reoccurs in anyway in the future, you never have to pay another deductible for that condition as long as your pet lives.￼
(Whew! That was a long oration, wasn’t it!!!)
I have a new I.G.puppy. I was terrified he could break a leg—the main reason I insured him.
Thus far, he has not broken a leg. (Knock on wood). ￼
But I want to report that indeed, I have had to use my insurance on my little Enzo already. And not in a small way.￼
With Trupanion, there is a five day waiting period before a person can make a claim in relation to an accident. There is a 30 day waiting period before a claim can be made for an illness. Very shortly after my 30 day waiting period was fulfilled, my little boy began having seizures. He was only four months old. I am now in the process of trying to find out what is wrong with my pup. This has required some very expensive testing and the costs are mounting. My vet bills and emergency animal hospital bills and diagnostic testing bills and blood work bills have come close to $5000 already. Without insurance, I would have had to put my little boy to sleep.￼
I can report that Trupanion has lived up to its claims. Even though my little Enzo had seizures just days after my insurance kicked in for him￼, Trupanion honored the timeline that they promised. Every single interaction I have had with their claims department and their customer service people has been nothing short of stellar. Submission of claims is very easy, and they are paying the percentage of actual vet and hospital bills that I had agreed-upon with them in my policy. They have shown care, compassion, concern, and a willingness to spend as much time on the phone with me as needed. On several occasions I have submitted estimates for things that needed to be done, And within 48 hours they came back to me with approval of those estimates. Some of my bills have already been paid, and some are still in the queue. But I am extremely pleased with how they are handling my situation and I am very convinced that my research paid off and that I chose the company that was right for me.
Everybody’s situation is different and people have different things that they hold as important. But for me, Trupanion was the right choice.
I hope this information is helpful.￼￼￼￼￼￼￼
Below is what I posted in mid November in my Facebook groups. If any of you have a need to discuss your situation or ask questions about my insurance experience, feel free to PM me. I will try to respond to you in a timely manner. Please be aware that I am dealing with a sick puppy right now, so it could take me a while to get back to you.
- - - ￼
￼￼￼ Decision made. Action taken. As of 7:30 this evening Enzo, also known as Zo Zo POP, is covered by Trupanion Pet Insurance. $0 Deductible, Added Recovery and Complimentary Care Ryder. 5 day Accident waiting period/30 day illness waiting period. 90% payout of actual vet bills for accident or illness. We need to Bubble Wrap him until Sunday, Nov. 24th and keep him illness-free until December 19th!
After realizing how much of a dare-devil, risk taker, and fearless personality he has, we decided being safe and not sorry was worth the peace of mind.
This little man is worth his weight in gold.
|01-15-2020 08:04 AM|
|bbdaisy||As I understand from this thread this is better to have pet insurance for my dog. I compared a few on Petinsurancefinder but I cannot choose between Pet Plan and Healthpaw. Share your experience with pet insurances, please|
|11-15-2019 11:17 AM|
Originally Posted by MeadowCat View Post
|11-15-2019 11:12 AM|
Originally Posted by KiloSwan View Post
|11-15-2019 10:52 AM|
I'm not necessarily recommending the organization that printed this or what they say here, because I just don't know, but maybe one of these recommendations can help you: |
|11-15-2019 10:29 AM|
We are actually in this situation at this exact moment. We are not the richest by any means, but we do okay. That said, our two year old (human child) had a rather large medical emergency earlier this month that literally wiped out our savings. Completely. |
Today, my 8 month old doberman is at the vet waiting to be x-rayed to see if his arm and shoulder are broken (not even sure how he would have done it). I'm at a loss on what we will do if it's broken. I literally have nothing to pay for a 3-4 thousand dollar surgery because of what happened to our two year old.
So judge me all you want for not having a nest egg for my dog. I love the dog just as a child, but unfortunately the child decided to get hurt before the four legged child.
|05-10-2017 03:53 PM|
|apollothedog||Just wanted to add that in the US you can usually go to a veterinary school and get very reduced cost care from a team of students supervised by a teacher. A lot of schools partner with local vet offices too to get their students exposure. And if it's a rare or really tough surgery that many students are unlikely to get to practice before being asked to perform it at a clinic they're more likely to take it and less likely to charge a ton. Same goes for less common animals / breeds.|
|05-10-2017 12:32 PM|
Financially speaking, I don't have a pot to piss in. My Dobe is, however, well cared for. I make sure his insurance is paid for every month & he gets medical treatment as & when he needs it whether the insurance covers it or not. My hubby & I go without to ensure he doesn't.
Don't be so judgemental about poor people. We can't all be rich as Rockerfeller, you know.
|05-10-2017 10:57 AM|
To address this particular question though, I’ve gotta throw in my two cents--dogs CAN cost a tremendous amount of money to care for properly--not just because the dog is a dobe, but for any kind of dog. |
In 2015, we spent 29 thousand dollars on our two dogs' vet care. We got Kip as an older dog, so we had no pet insurance there, and for Capri, I'm thinking a lot of her care would not have been covered even with an insurance policy.
Anyway, with Capri’s four surgeries for blockages--three for the same incident but which had peritonitis to deal with, and then another blockage (she wore a muzzle outside, but she got to some long grass anyway. Surgery turned out to be impossible but required multiple sonograms); Kip’s episode of bloat that year; surgery on him to remove a mast cell tumor; Capri with a pulled and/or ruptured tendon in her right wrist which required making an individualized brace and physical therapy; Kip’s five month long bladder infection with a very resistant bacteria; ongoing care for Kip’s allergies which needed a specialized food, medications and regular shots; a DCM diagnosis and medications; I’m sure other things I’ve forgotten *sigh*; PLUS routine vet care--dogs can be VERY expensive.
Some of that care was with their normal vet, but a lot of it required care from specialist vets.
An extreme and very bad year as an example, but still...each expense was what we thought was going to be the last for that year, so we went ahead with treatment--and it all added up.
How many people can come up with that kind of money in one year alone? I would advise that anyone getting a dog have at least enough money saved up for routine care, and a bit to cover emergencies too.
Does that mean you shouldn’t get a dog? I don’t know, but you should be prepared for the possibility that you may have to spend a LOT of money in any given year. When you look at the total for a particular year, it sure can turn out to be expensive.
|05-10-2017 09:47 AM|
Originally Posted by Rosemary View Post
I'm in total agreement here. This issue is not black and white. I bought my dog for $1800, have given him routine vet care every year, food, toys, training classes, etc. But what if my dog needed a $10,000 kidney transplant at age 7, does that mean I should have never gotten him in the first place because I don't have the $10,000 to pay his vet bill? It's not that simple. Of course you shouldn't get a dog of any kind if you cannot provide routine health care, but things happen and some people can't afford a $20,000 chemo treatment. That doesn't mean they shouldn't get a dog...
|05-10-2017 09:41 AM|
Additionally, your statement about the cost of pet insurance is simply false...costs vary from company to company, depending on the area of the country and what type of coverage you choose. While I strongly recommend pet insurance, particularly for Doberman owners, you need to read the rules of this forum before you continue posting. Please consider this a moderator warning.
Forum rules here: Doberman Forum : Doberman Breed Dog Forums - Announcements in Forum : Site News
|05-10-2017 08:56 AM|
|05-08-2017 02:18 PM|
oh man this is what upsets me .. If you can not take care of a pet financially please dont get one . |
Pet Ins is not more than 60$ a month if that and if a pet owner can not even do that they have no business owning a animal... Animals can cost thousands people please treat them as your kids .
|06-12-2014 06:28 PM|
I used to work in medical admin. I can't tell you the insane complaints about the cost of things we received daily. Things like "I can't afford that medicine for my kid. I have to pay the cable bill because they'll shut it off soon so how can I buy these pills?" Loved the family of 5 that came in with McDonald's bags for each of them ( a good $40 on junk), then got nasty and complained when they had to pay their $3 copay or not be seen by the doctor. |
I also volunteer at the food bank. I have all the sympathy and respect for those who walk or ride their bike to come get food for themselves and their pets. Can't say I have much respect or tolerance for people who show up with their iphones, wait in their cars with the engine running and ask for dog food for their 8 week old purebred puppy, etc.
What people claim to be an unavoidable shortage of funds is almost always very avoidable. People don't want to hear you have to be responsible and make intelligent choices so you can afford emergencies. If you are living on welfare or entitlement programs; you can't afford to feed or properly care your own kids so you honestly can't afford a pet.
People should be saving for the pet LONG BEFORE they go puppy or kitten shopping but because saving isn't fun, they don't bother to do it. Responsible shelters and rescues take this into account when people want a pet. Adopters who can't afford to care for the animal they want get denied. Then they make the effort to save for a purchase because there is rarely any evaluation or background checks done there....then they go right back to bad irresponsible spending habits.
Still honestly can't afford vet care and quality food for a pet? Do your research and adopt a pet who has a lifetime care plan set up by their previous owner. They usually don't cover everyday expenses like food but generally cover all medical expenses. If you're still willing to sacrifice the health and quality of life of a pet in favor of getting the exact breed/age/color, etc you want but can't afford; SHAME ON YOU.
We regularly evaluate if pet insurance would be worthwhile and for us it wouldn't at this point. We are super committed to prevention, daily exercise, quality food, low stress, not letting our dogs run loose, etc. We also get a fair discount on our vet bills because we foster a steady stream of dogs at our own expense and have been going to our super awesome vet for years. Our vet is sick of people paying $$$ for bathing, grooming and expensive dog clothing then complaining they have no money for vet care.
Sad but not all vets are respectable business people or they may love animals but have poor diagnostic skills. just like saving before you get the pet, it's really important to utilize a well recommended vet before you have health emergencies.
|03-04-2014 04:52 PM|
There are plenty of us responsible owners that researched the breed, knew what was/could be to come, and after making the choice to expand our families to include a fur-baby have faced unexpected lay-offs (in my hubby's case) or illnesses in many cases, etc.etc.etc. |
Our financial resources were substantial when we "adopted". We are temporarily not in such a rosey situation now, though be it temporary. But if Zahne were seriously ill at this stage we couldn't just pay the bill like we would have been able to. We would find a way and sell anything we could- she's family and that's what you do, but not having the means doesn't make us irresponsible owners either. Anyone can be thrown on hard times at the blink of an eye...
|06-17-2013 11:45 PM|
I think that pet insurance is a good option if you have enough money to have it from the get-go. |
My philosophy is this:
I know going into it, that I can't afford a $10,000 kidney operation on a dog or a cat or a $20,000 round of chemotherapy. Most people, actually .... can't. It is an imperfect world, and truth be told, most dogs have little more than a decade lifespan anyway.
I go into pet ownership emotionally prepared to face this. I realize that this is not a popular answer, but I am telling the truth.
Cats and dogs don't think like we do. They are cats and dogs. They don't think "oh if I had three more years, I could watch my grandpuppy graduate from Petco's good canine citizen class" ... no. They live for the moment.
If one of my pets went through something as painful as chemotherapy, s/he would probably be wondering why.
My philosophy is that prevention is the best cure. For example, solve problems before they happen, such as spaying, neutering, vaccinating, microchipping, leashing, put a tag on his collar, heartworm prevention, etc. Feed the dog a standard diet etc. and don't do stupid stuff like feed him weird stuff or play mind games with him or leave him alone with kids or freaky people. I honestly think that the basics have been in place for decades now, and they are reasonable and affordable, and if you follow those rules, your pet is likely to die of old age.
Basically if I can prevent accidents from happening, I can prevent the subsequent vet bills.
I also think that if people don't have a lot of money they should get a medium-sized dog that is a mix of breeds so they have less medical problems. From what I have seen, some purebred dogs are complete lemons and so are some really large ones and really small ones.
If you can barely afford the doberman puppy, don't get one. Vets will probably not cut you slack, if they see that you have some fancy-schmantzy dog. That is like driving up to the food pantry in an Escalade.
In the case of a doberman owner who has suddenly fallen on hard times, and can't pay a medical bill, I would say that it depends on a few factors such as the age and temperament of the dog and the complication. Knowing he has fallen on hard times, he should be emotionally prepared to give the dog to a rescue, and even have one picked out, if the dog has something come up that is indeed repairable. Like if you know that your bank account is in arrears, already be in contact with a rescue, just in case something bad happens. That would be my advice. If the dog is really old, perhaps his time has come.
|06-17-2013 11:22 PM|
Brilliant system, isn't it? |
It penalizes you for having your **** together.
I mean ... you wouldn't want to do something like work for cash and put it in diamonds in a safe deposit box? That would probably be against the law I assume.
I am quoting Rosemary:
"Maybe if I stuffed the cash under the mattress. Seriously, our credit union has to report our account balance the first of every month to Social Security. Plus, I have to take in my husband's pay-stub every month, to report his income. And fill out annual paperwork about how the money the kids got was spent. There is more to it, but the full explanation would give any sane person a headache."
|06-02-2013 09:40 AM|
just an update about SND............ |
"Please be advised that we will no longer be accepting applications for financial assistance to private owners as of 15 March 2013. We will still provide information on fundraising and other concerns as we update our "Help" pages. "
Special Needs Dobermans - Helping Owned AND Rescue Dobes!
|06-02-2013 01:54 AM|
I spend at least 500 a month to 2000 a month in vet bills with my 13 year old rescue. I am 22 live in a small house. I have no car because of the sick dog i adopted. She has seizures, and has 43 tumours. I stand by her. But i can understand how if i had some sort of issue, or has children. How it could get tough for a person with a sick dog. |
And i learned a lesson. Don't just grab the sickest, saddest, most temperamental dog when adopting. Unless you are rich that is, and will ALWAYS be rich. Because 11 years down the line, she will need EXTENSIVE vet care just to stay happily alive.
Plus, i don't think people mean wrong when they are in these situations. **** happens. We get our dogs, 9 or 10 years down the line...our husband dies. Then our youngest child develops cancer. Then our dog ends up needed surgery. We cant afford it.
This doesn't mean the dog isn't in the best home possible. That the dog would be better off rehomed.. Or the person who got the dog is selfish or irresponsible.
Things happen in life.
I just wish there was more help out there for these good owners, in bad times.
|02-09-2013 05:51 AM|
In the UK there are 2 insurers I know of that will pay your vet almost immediately. Vetsure and more than. I'm with more than and I pay £32.08 (about $50) a month for each dog. My cover: vets fees including alternative medicine up to £7000 (about $11,000) per incident or illness. So he could have 4 separate illnesses in a year so technically I could be covered for £28,000 ($44,000) that in itself helps me sleep at night as there are no lifetime limits. Death from injury is £600 ($948) death from illness before 9yrs is £600 ($948) loss due to theft or straying £600, advertising and reward £600, kennel fees (not that I would ever put them in kennels, ever) £600, pet holiday protection £1250 and third party liability up to £2million ($3,160,000). When vetsure quoted me it was just over £50 ($79) for each dog per month but the vets fees not including alternative medicine was only up to £5000 ($7900) So for all the brits out there, if you can find a good vet that accepts more than insurance, you can sleep soundly at night. The policy is well worth what I pay monthly. |
The excess is £70 and 10% of the rest of the costs. So if you have to go to the vets and the treatment costs are £700 you only pay the £70 + £63 a total of £133 : ) Please look into it
|02-05-2013 12:38 PM|
I just found out about this today for residents of Alberta with a cancer dog. |
ACTSS | Animal Cancer Therapy Subsidization Society | Financial Assistance for Pets with Cancer
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