It is midnight and you are in the emergency pet hospital with your dog. It turns out that he broke his back leg and this requires orthopedic surgery. The operation will cost $ 2,500 with hundreds of dollars in physiotherapy and treatment. Does this sound familiar or scary? This is why the pet insurance industry is one of the fastest growing pet related industries.
How pet insurance works
Pet insurance companies are not charitable groups that seek to help you in times of financial need. They are profitable businesses. The reason they are profitable is that they know that the risk of a payment to pet owners is less than the money they receive in total monthly premiums. They also know that the chances that your pet will need intensive care when he is young are so low that you will have paid more than enough in monthly premiums by the time he has paid in the last few years of the animal. Why not take advantage of the same facts? Be your own insurance company and keep any unspent money.
Pet savings accounts
Quality pet insurance policies range from $ 35 to $ 75 per month depending on coverage and deductibles. Why not put the same amount in a savings account for your pets? In one year, the account would be worth $ 420 to $ 900. According to statistics on pet ownership by the American Veterinary Medical Association, the average household spends only $ 378 a year on dogs and $ 191 a year on cats in veterinary care. Your account would easily cover these expenses.
During the life of your dog, the account would increase to provide care in the last years of the animal. If you consider annual exams and vaccines a “deductible” and pay for them out of your own pocket instead of the account, especially during the first healthy years of your pet, the account would be even larger in the following years.
Another way to protect your pet savings account in the early years is to consider adding a “catastrophic” pet insurance policy. These are less expensive than major policies and protect against serious injury or illness. Finally, the policy can be removed as the savings account grows.
The analysis of pet insurance policies in Consumer Reports agrees that self-insured pet plans are superior. The odds are in your favor that your pet savings account will have money after the death of your pet. You keep the money that would have been spent in the form of monthly premiums and profits for insurance companies. Feeding quality food and maximizing the health of your pet will also reduce veterinary bills and increase the value of your pet savings account.
by Dr Ken Tudor