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Dog Insurance UK - Advice And Information

The well being of your dog will naturally be of paramount importance for you and dog insurance can certainly play a big part in helping to ensure a healthy and happy life for your pet. With no free National Health Service for dogs, insurance really is the only way to be sure of avoiding huge medical bills. There is, however, more to insurance than just medical cover, and of course no insurance policy will cover absolutely everything, so it pays to give some thought to this subject before putting a policy in place.

Pet insurance is a huge industry, so there are a great many companies and policies to choose from when it comes to finding the best dog insurance cover for your beloved pet. It is worth understanding a bit about what you should expect form a dog insurance policy before you choose an insurer. Dog insurance companies tend to offer policies covering many things, but there are also some important variations that you need to be aware of.


What To Expect From On Line Pet Insurance Cover

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Selecting the best pet insurance company is getting more complex

Pet insurance used to be a very small market. Not everyone would take it out because of two main reasons. First, many people saw in the same light as an extended warranty – an additional cost that companies charged people to make money for doing nothing. Second, not everyone was aware of the potential cost of taking their pets to the vet or even having an operation, and this caused them to not purchase the insurance.

As people have become more educated about just how much vet services cost, pet insurance has become one of the fastest growing insurance markets. However, it is not just a case of an increasing number of people taking out pet insurance that has caused the market to explode. Pet insurance has moved from a mainly American market to a global market. Almost every country in the world offers pet insurance services, and the companies that offer it have grown into global companies that are even listed on major stock exchanges here.

How did this happen? The first reason is quite simple – education. As people became more aware of just how much it costs to hire a vet, pet insurance became a necessity if someone wanted to own a pet. People were not willing to just let their pet die, nor could they afford the thousands that some operations would cost. This caused more people to become aware of the benefits of pet insurance.

The second reason is that there is a relatively small amount of variation in terms of products. While there are many different types of pet insurance, each type is covered by just four classes – accident only, time-limited, maximum benefit and lifetime cover. With only a small number of classes available, people can easily choose a broad type of insurance for their pet.

However, despite the small number of classes, the introduction of additional different types of lifetime cover year after year has added more complexity to choosing the best pet insurance. As different countries have different rules and regulations, that does account for some of the increases, but some of them came about only to give consumers additional choices. However, providing additional choices leads to additional complexity. It may seem that having more choices is better in the long term for consumers since they are more likely to find an insurance package that suits their personal circumstances, but it does make it harder to find that insurance package.

Therefore, research has become an integral part of finding the right pet insurance package. It is no longer a case of just purchasing the insurance that your vet recommends. You need to actively examine the different options and find the package that offers the most cover while staying within your budget. The complexity may make things more difficult, but it does give consumers a wider choice of products than ever.

The most basic things you should be looking for with any pet insurance policy is paying for veterinary fees for any illness or accident, the cost of using a kennel if you are unable to look after your dog through your own illness or accident and third party liability in case your dog causes injury to anyone or damage to anyone else's property. The third party insurance is particularly important as you never know what will happen, and if you are the subject of a legal claim for compensation and legal costs, these can be very substantial.

Many insurers will also provide cover for the cost of placing adverts and offering a reward if your dog is lost or stolen. An additional extra that some policies will include is cover for the use of alternative therapies, such as herbal medicines, acupuncture and homeopathy. Depending on who you insure with, this may be included under your standard cover for vets fees, leaving you free to choose whether to use the cover for a conventional vet or spend it on alternative therapies. On other policies it may be part of a separate section with its own financial limit. A further optional extra offered under some policies is for dealing with any behavioural problems that your dog may develop.

Important Facts About Cover For Vet Bills

Having dog insurance in place does not automatically mean that you will be fully reimbursed for any vet bills that you need to pay. You need to check your policy carefully to understand what is and what is not covered. One thing you can be sure the company will not pay out for is any cost related to a pre existing medical condition. In other words, if it is known that your dog has any medical problem before you take out the insurance, any cost related to treating that problem will not be covered by your policy. This is a fairly standard arrangement, though your insurer may spell this out as an exception when you take out your policy.

The other type of vet bill that you will not be able to claim for is non-illness related treatments such as neutering or spaying. Clearly these are routine operations and do not relate to your dog becoming ill as such. However, if one of these treatments is necessary for medical reasons, then you may in fact be covered.

There are different types of cover available for veterinary fees, and you need to think about what type of cover you require. Some quite serious illnesses such as diabetes, arthritis and heart problems are of an ongoing nature, so the treatment and its cost could go on for years. Any cover will have some sort of financial limit, but some will only cover you for a set period such as up to a year for any one condition. This is of limited use for such ongoing illnesses, so this does need consideration when choosing the type of cover you go for.

The main options tend to be as follows:

Other Factors Affecting Cost

Like any other kind of insurance, the cost of cover for your pet will depend on many risk factors and likely costs that the insurers will consider when working out your premiums. In the same way that car insurance will vary depending on where you live and the type of car you drive, the cost of your dog insurance will in part depend on certain factors that affect costs and claims.

The breed of your dog is one thing that can have an impact on your insurance costs. This is because certain breeds are known to on average result in higher veterinary fees. Some of the breeds most likely to carry a higher cost include Old English Sheepdogs, Great Danes, Mastiffs, Bulldogs and Irish Wolfhounds.

Another factor that may result in a higher or lower premium is where you live. This is usually just because veterinary fees vary from one part of the country to another, and this has to be reflected in what you pay. There are sometimes ways you can get reductions on the cost of your dog insurance, including agreeing to pay by direct debit, insuring several pets at the same time and, with some insurers, being a senior citizen.

A very simple way to get an often substantial discount is to purchase your pet insurance on line. Some insurers give surprisingly large discounts for doing this, so it is well worth shopping around online.

Recommendations For The Best Dog Insurance Companies:

Top Recommendation - Pet Protect

Pet Protect provide lifetime cover, which is very valuable as it means you can go on claiming for as long as the condition lasts. They have been helping pets in the UK for over twenty five years and offer two levels of cover. They provide from £4,000 up to £6,000 of cover for vet fees and up to £2,000,000 in liability cover. Importantly, this includes cover for hereditary and congenital diseases, which many policies exlude.

Just complete the Online Form on the Pet Protect Website to find out what lifetime cover would cost for your pet.


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