Pet Insurance - Is it Worth it? - Havanese Forum : Havanese Forums
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-25-2019, 01:08 PM Thread Starter
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Pet Insurance - Is it Worth it?

My baby is an 11-month old female Havanese, named Patti. I've owned several dogs and never considered pet insurance. Didn't know there was such a thing. After receiving a lot of AKC emails about various things, I ended up purchasing Healthy Paws Insurance for $28.40 per month. It does not cover well checks or optional surgeries such as spaying. The insurance does not pay the vet. A bill that has been paid is submitted to Healthy Paws for reimbursement.

I'm thinking about canceling this insurance.

I'd like to know what people think about pet insurance. If you considered it and then didn't buy it, why? Or, if you have it how do you think you'll use it? Or, has anyone ever used pet insurance?

Thanks!
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-28-2019, 04:51 AM
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It is definitely a dilemma. I do have it and might never get full "value" out of it. But Perry hurt his leg last year and we might have ended up with 1 or 2 surgeries if it hadn't healed well enough on it's own, and if that had happened we would have gotten very good value out of it. My Mom doesn't have pet insurance and there is a strong possibility that her dog will need gallbladder surgery which will end up costing me $3500 - so I wish I had thought about pet insurance when she first got him because it might have been better value if we had (but then again it's almost at the breakeven point right now - because if we'd pay $29/ month and he's around 10, that's just under $3500).

If something majorly goes wrong you'll be glad you have it. If nothing goes wrong you'll probably regret paying for it all those years

I will say that when I did use it last year for Perry's orthopedic vet appointment re: his leg, they processed the payment very quickly.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-28-2019, 09:13 AM
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It's something everyone needs to decide for themselves. But the bottom line is insurance companies are in the business to make money. They need to, overall, make more money on the premiums they collect than they pay out on claims. We made the decision to "self insure". Which means that instead of paying monthly premiums, we keep enough money in the bank to cover any medical bills for our pets out of pocket. I am SURE that even with a few rather expensive medical escapades, between the three of them, we still would have paid more in premiums than we have paid in health care.

But for some people it is easier to manage that once a month bill than it is to face a big, unexpected bill. that's what each family has to weigh and decide.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-28-2019, 10:50 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Krandall and Melissa. You've help me make the decision. I'm going to drop the insurance. We can self-insure.

Even if you have insurance how much it will pay toward the procedure is a big unknown. And, the insurance company could decide it isn't a procedure they cover.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-28-2019, 11:05 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Melissa Brill View Post
It is definitely a dilemma. I do have it My Mom doesn't have pet insurance and there is a strong possibility that her dog will need gallbladder surgery which will end up costing me $3500 - so I wish I had thought about pet insurance when she first got him because it might have been better value if we had (but then again it's almost at the breakeven point right now - because if we'd pay $29/ month and he's around 10, that's just under $3500).
Melissa ... at what age would the insurance company keep paying for expensive medical treatments? Do the insurance companies decide when a medical procedure is appropriate?

I know it's hard to accept when it's time to let go and people will go to extraordinary efforts to save an animal. And, some doctors will perform an expensive surgical procedure if they can get a patient to lay down.

I'm not saying this is the case of your mother's dog.

Just wondering .... who makes those decisions?
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-28-2019, 02:49 PM
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We have Healthy Paws insurance. I almost decided to drop it, but so glad I decided to keep it for our two. Scout had to have two ACL surgeries within nine weeks. Both surgeries, x-rays, tests and medications were completely covered. Medical care is so expensive! No forms to complete. The hospital took care of everything. Highly recommend Healthy Paws!
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-28-2019, 05:49 PM
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Most companies allow you to design a plan to be catastrophic coverage...I pay around $150 a year for a plan (Pet Best)that has a thousand dollar deductible (per year, not per event) and 70% coverage. I only wanted to be protected against something “big”. I recovered the preminums when we needed to get an ultrasound at the end of the coverage year (i.e. reached the deductible with a series of small, manageable vet visits). Most of the time I don’t expect to use it, but it is a nice backstop for a minimal premium...but I bought it when we got her so there are no preexisting conditions to worry about. Most of the time, people get pet insurance when bills start to add up and it doesn’t work that way for pets (of course, before health care reform, humans got hit by pre-existing condition exclusions, but not any more. Pets unfortunately still have pre-existing condition exclusions).

Do research if you decide to get pet insurance..lots of guides and reviews on web. For example, the difference between deductible for event or for a year can be a huge difference depending on your need. My premium was lower also because I pay once a year rather than monthly.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-29-2019, 10:29 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks!!! for the feedback. Cassandra, Heather and Melissa stories have made me give this a second thought. I'll be hanging onto the pet insurance.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-29-2019, 11:25 AM
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Late to the party, but with my last baby we didn't have the insurance. Multiple days in the doggy ER and a $10,000 bill later.

With Chewie we have it and I have no problems paying the bill just in case. I'll be perfectly happy to pay it and never have to use it, but if something DOES go wrong, we won't be having to take quite the hit.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-29-2019, 01:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Firedad View Post
Late to the party, but with my last baby we didn't have the insurance. Multiple days in the doggy ER and a $10,000 bill later.

With Chewie we have it and I have no problems paying the bill just in case. I'll be perfectly happy to pay it and never have to use it, but if something DOES go wrong, we won't be having to take quite the hit.
It's always a chance with insurance. I agree with Firedad. It's great to save over time, but an injury or illness can happened to a puppy or a young dog. Then the decision is a very expensive bill or not having the treatment or surgery done. The insurance I have does not include well checks or dental, but completely covered two ACL surgeries.

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