If you’ve been on the fence about insuring your pet, there are numerous sources online about the benefits of pet insurance. The financial benefits, the health benefits, the expanded care available to you, and the expert opinions that are at your fingertips are just a few. But maybe you already know all this. Maybe you already know why most people have pet insurance, and what the perfect plan might include. Maybe, instead, you just need a sign that you wouldn’t be wasting your time and money by signing up. And you’ve come to the right place. Below are five of those signs, and if you find yourself relating to any one of them, we recommend you go get yourself a pet insurance policy asap.
Your Dog’s Breed & Size Put it at Risk
Not everyone is aware of how a certain breed of dog, not to mention its size, can make it more likely to develop a genetic condition at some point in life that will require medical care – and often serious medical care. The first types of dog often mentioned are purebreds. Studies have shown that a handful of genetic disorders, like hip dysplasia and kidney disease, are significantly more likely in purebreds than in mixed breeds. Many of these conditions are dormant until later in the dog’s life, but when they appear, they require significant and typically expensive veterinary care. And if you have a larger purebred dog, the risk of genetic disorders is even higher, particularly for joint and ligament problems. Great Danes, English Bulldogs, Boxers, and Saint Bernards are just a few examples of purebred dog breeds that are even more at risk than others.
This being said, for these kinds of purebred dogs, the cost of insurance may be slightly higher. Like with other kinds of insurance, the more at risk you are, the more you’re likely going to pay, because the chances that you’ll actually have to use that insurance are much higher. But with these types of genetic disorders, the higher cost of insurance is worth it to cover the medical care required. It might be a little extra a month, but when you’ve put in the time, effort, and money to bring a purebred dog into your home, it’s worth it to have it covered so it can live as long and healthy a life as possible.
Your Pet is Indoor/Outdoor
If you live in a woodsy area, or a suburb, or anywhere that you feel comfortable letting your pet go in and outside as it pleases, then hear me out: get pet insurance now. There are so many risks, even if you live in an extremely safe area, that you likely haven’t even considered. Naturally, cars are a threat for all pets that go outdoors. Even if the outdoor space is fenced in and even if you live in an extremely rural area where few cars pass through, the risk is always there. And sometimes in those cases, you get a false sense of security and when you let your guard down or stop paying attention for just a moment, the worst occurs.
Your Pet is a Chewer
Regardless of age, some dogs (or cats!) will be big into chewing on things their whole lives. It’s not just puppies, though puppies are certainly expected to chew; it’s all pets. We’ve all heard horror stories of a pet eating or just swallowing something while chewing on it that results in a trip to the vet or emergency room. My friend’s dog did this on Christmas morning, with so many new things to chew scattered all over the room, and she and her family then spent their Christmas paying a couple thousand dollars as they rushed to the emergency room to get the object removed. Not all dogs (or pets) are big chewers throughout their entire lives, but some are, and if you have a pet like that, it’s a good idea to just get it insured. That way, if you end up in the vet emergency room on Christmas day, your holiday won’t be ruined as you shell out half of your savings to get some tiny toy removed from your pet’s organs. A pet that’s a chewer is at a higher risk of this. Get ahead of the game.
But cars aren’t the only threat; there’s also other animals and diseases to watch out for. If your pet is attacked or in a fight with another animal, then it’ll likely need some veterinary care afterwards, even just to check it out and ensure that there’s no major damage going unseen. And speaking of unseen, you’ll want to get your indoor/outdoor pet regular check ups to ensure it hasn’t contracted any diseases. But to help prevent some of those diseases to begin with, you’ll want to get your pet vaccinated, which, of course, is included with many insurance plans. The bottom line is, if your pet is going outside frequently, get it pet insurance asap.
You Have a Tight Budget
If you, like most Americans right now, aren’t sitting on a huge mass of savings or a trust fund and instead budget your life carefully, pet insurance is the best way to go. As you’ve read above, there are numerous what-ifs when it comes to a pet, numerous potential accidents with a massive price tag that could occur, and if you want to save your budget (and your savings), pet insurance is your best bet. It protects not just your pet from future accidents, but also your bank account from the unknown, from the potential emergency room visit that you’d never really think to budget for because you don’t expect it to happen. With pet insurance, you can budget for its monthly (or quarterly, depending on your plan) costs, knowing that if a catastrophe happened, it’s mostly already paid for. Insurance makes emergencies budget-able.
You Don’t Need Any Extra Stress in Your Life
For the reasons mentioned above, pets can be stressful. A pet is like a child, like a family member; you’re going to worry about its health, and the idea of an emergency is devastating. And from a financial perspective, pets are certainly an added stress on the bank account; you’re already not only paying for food and toys and any other necessary gear, but also potentially trainers, pet sitters, dog walkers, and more. Add to that the potential cost of an emergency? You’ve got a living, breathing being in your house that’s causing you extra added stress that you don’t need to be worrying about. If you’re prone to anxiety, or even if you just live a life that already has plenty of demands and external stressors, it’s worth it to just remove this one stress when you have the option. And with pet insurance, much of the anxiety surrounding your pet is alleviated. If there’s ever something wrong, you have the ability to get it checked out without paying massive fines, and if an emergency happens, you’re covered.
The Bottom Line
There are lists and lists of reasons to get pet insurance. This list doesn’t even touch on the various kinds of care and therapy available to your pet if it’s insured – that’s for another day, a whole new article. This is just an initial checklist, before diving deeper, and if you check any of these boxes, you should definitely get pet insurance. Like, yesterday.