Who Might Not Want Pet Insurance
On the other hand, some individuals may want to skip purchasing pet insurance. Some of those groups are as follows.
Pet Parents With Uninsured Senior Pets
Maybe you adopted a senior dog, or you inherited one. Either way, since the cost will be higher, it may not be worth purchasing pet insurance. Rather, you might be better off putting some money aside every month into a savings account for when the need arises.
Pets With Existing Health Problems
Due to the pre-existing condition exclusion on the majority of pet insurance plans, pets that have existing health issues may not benefit much from pet insurance. Accident-only plans could be an option but you should weigh the cost and benefits.
Pet Parents Equipped to Weather Big Unexpected Expenses
If you can afford to handle large, unexpected bills, then you may want to skip purchasing pet insurance. Whatever money you would typically spend on pet insurance can be put aside and added to your emergency fund.
What Are The Alternatives to Pet Insurance?
If you decide to forego pet insurance, you aren’t completely without options. There are a few alternatives to purchasing a formal pet insurance plan. Here are some for your consideration.
Self-funding is a fancy term meaning that you don’t purchase insurance and instead pay for everything out of pocket. Rather than paying an insurance premium every month, you could put aside that money in a bank account for emergency pet expenses. You should at least consider going this route if pet insurance isn’t for you.
Find Cheaper Plans
Remember that insurance is a competitive market. If one company is quoting you for coverage at a price higher than you’d like to pay, others may charge less. It doesn’t hurt to shop around.
In addition, you could also look at changing what you’re covered for. Accident-only plans are less expensive than Accident and Illness plans with a wellness add-on. Consider what scenarios are most concerning to you and how much the plans are to provide that coverage.
If you don’t have the means to self-fund or to find less expensive pet insurance plans, you may be able to get a payment plan through your vet. Clinics and animal hospitals that are set up with companies like Scratchpay will allow customers to finance their bills, rather than go without the service.
For more expensive health issues, you may choose to crowd-source funding from sites like GoFundMe. You can ask friends and family to help contribute to your cause and obtain the funds needed to pay for your pet’s medical bills. This may work well for those who are short on cash but have a large network they can reach.
It is also worth looking into charity organizations for what services they may offer pet parents. Local animal shelters often sponsor low-cost spay/neuter clinics, for example. While organizations like The Pet Fund, Frankie’s Friends, or RedRover Relief give grants to those who can’t afford the care their pets need.
Pet Insurance or Savings Account?
As mentioned a few times, those who can’t purchase pet insurance, or choose not to, may opt to build a pet savings account instead. However, there are pros and cons to both. Here are some points you should consider.
With a savings account, you have the flexibility to add as much or as little money as you want. There are no claims forms that you need to fill out for reimbursement, and you can choose how you use the money. You can pay for routine expenses like grooming or leave it solely for emergencies.
On the other hand, you are in control of that money, which means you may be tempted to use it for other expenses. Also, it may take a while to save enough funds to use for an emergency. If your pet gets ill or injured before you have enough money saved, it may not be as useful.
Pet insurance, while it is a monthly expense, doesn’t make you pay a certain amount before you can be reimbursed. As long as your waiting period has been met, you can collect your reimbursement, even if you’ve only paid a month’s worth of premium. Pet insurance also gives you the freedom to stay on top of your pet’s health without worrying about the cost of treatment.
In addition to the fact that you have to pay the premium consistently, a downfall to pet insurance is that the price can change. In fact, the cost will most certainly increase as your pet gets older. You are also more likely to pay more in premiums than the insurer will pay out in benefits.