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Wed Dec 2, 2020, 03:23 AM

Any recommendation(s) for Pet Insurance?

Last edited Wed Dec 2, 2020, 04:52 AM - Edit history (2)

We've spend $5700 on our sweet Lab in the last 6mos & it time for some insurance.

In June she had a $3700 surgery for an ACL + meniscus tear (has a metal plate now).

Last weekend she was at 2 different emergency vet offices because her tummy was swollen like a watermelon. Overnight at 1st clinic, then sent us to another one on Sunday. Big charges at both clinics rounding up to $2k!!!
No diagnosis, they just drained the fluid & did unrelated test. 😠 Last 1 told us to come back to see their one of their specialist. Nope. It's a ~60m 1-way drive. And besides, our regular vet has the same visiting specialist.

Today, she's been pooping soft, yellow stools + her tummy is again distended but not as badly.

Our very trusted, regular vet is seeing her Tues. and we expect a lot of test & perhaps even more surgery. The issues are:
1) diagnosing the cause of her yellow poop & swollen tummy &
2) Repairing her ankle injury or at least discovering why it's yet again swollen & painful. It's the same leg that was operated on.

The new injury occurred WHILE she was IN VET ER CARE!! They mishandled her? Or kept her enclosed in a space she couldn't stretch that leg as she needs to??
Anyway, her ankle is swollen & she's having trouble walking again.

So, we expect more MAJOR bills coming our way.

THANKS, EVERYONE. Any suggestions will be appreciated.



Btw, we have 2 🐕 doggos.

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Arrow 14 replies Author Time Post
Reply Any recommendation(s) for Pet Insurance? (Original post)
Duppers Dec 2020 OP
TexasTowelie Dec 2020 #1
Duppers Dec 2020 #5
BigmanPigman Dec 2020 #2
Duppers Dec 2020 #6
BigmanPigman Dec 2020 #13
Desert grandma Dec 2020 #3
Duppers Dec 2020 #7
peacebuzzard Dec 2020 #11
Polly Hennessey Dec 2020 #4
Duppers Dec 2020 #8
Bayard Dec 2020 #9
Duppers Dec 2020 #10
peacebuzzard Dec 2020 #12
Duppers Dec 2020 #14

Response to Duppers (Original post)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 04:10 AM

1. Check to see if the insurance covers pre-existing conditions.

Congress hasn't passed the ACA (Affordable Canine Act) yet.

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Response to TexasTowelie (Reply #1)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 05:12 AM

5. ACA. 😅

Thanks for the chuckle.


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Response to Duppers (Original post)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 04:10 AM

2. I had pet bills at the end of my first dog's life,

about $4,000 in 6 months but she had a relatively healthy life with few costs. After she died and I got a new dog I got pet insur. It was pretty expensive but I considered the savings and got it. I think it was over $700 a year. I kept it for about 12 years and it did pay one big bill. I couldn't work and had to discontinue it but I wouldn't have used it, she was healthy until she died last June at 17. Her big problems were when she was a puppy, before insur. I seem to recall that I wondered how much I would've saved if I had it for my first dog and I think I would've broke even (the medical bills vs insur.). There also seemed to be a lot of things it wouldn't cover and there were a lot of things it did cover too. I got my vet to fudge one dental surgery and it was able to be covered.

If I had a new dog I would have to look at my financial situation and decide based on that. If you can afford it, go for it. I forget the name of the company but my vet said they were all pretty much the same.

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Response to BigmanPigman (Reply #2)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 05:18 AM

6. Thank you, B.P.

Much appreciated.

Luckily, we can afford it - it'd be less expensive than these bills. But unfortunately, I have just learned it doesn't cover preexisting conditions, so we're sunk.


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Response to Duppers (Reply #6)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 05:25 PM

13. Yes, they were a pain about preexisting conditions.

If it is a puppy that works well but if you have had the problem in the past with an adult pet coverage sucks. That is the problem I had so my vet fudged the paperwork on her dental surgery.

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Response to Duppers (Original post)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 04:17 AM

3. I have pet insurance on both of my dogs.

The problem is that there is NO pet insurance that covers pre-existing conditions. The pet that has not had major problems can probably be covered. All of these companies require medical history from your vet. I have had Pet Plan insurance for many years on our older 8 year old poodle cross that had a major illness in July of 2019. The cost was in the $9000 range. The insurance covered 90 percent of the cost after a 300 deductible. They were very prompt regarding reimbursement for her medical costs, and we were very happy with their service. We could not change companies now, even if we wanted to because of that prior illness. We have our other 2 year old terrier on Healthy Paws. We had also considered Trupanion, which is an insurance plan that will pay the vet direct, so you don't have to end up using Care Credit until the reimbursement arrives. My daughter just got a new kitten that she enrolled in Lemonade, which is a fairly new but reasonably priced plan. For a dog with pre existing conditions you might check out "Pet Assure". It is a discount card that gives you a 25 percent discount for all services at a participating vet. There is no pre-existing condition clause. The vet used must be part of their participating vet network though. link is www.petassure.com Good luck!

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Response to Desert grandma (Reply #3)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 05:21 AM

7. Thank you for all this info!

You've been most helpful - I'm saving your post!



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Response to Desert grandma (Reply #3)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 02:37 PM

11. thanks for the tip. I have used both Trupanion and Pets Best

and had slow paying reimbursement experiences from both companies. In addition, they require lots of additional information during the claim filing procedures. It is very uncomfortable to do while a pet is very ill or worse, if the pet passes away.

I will look into Pet Paws and Lemonade.



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Response to Duppers (Original post)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 04:23 AM

4. I have two dogs. Scout, a mixed breed and

Alexander, a Great Pyrenees. We rescued both at seven months old. I decided pet insurance made sense. We have used two: Embrace through USAA with a $750 deductible and Nationwide Pet Insurance with a $250 deductible. Three times I have put in a claim with Nationwide and received reimbursement. The claims were for minor problems nothing as severe as yours. I left claim forms with my vet and they notified the insurance. In the past, I have had enormous bills for similar problems with previously owned Golden Retrievers. That is why I decided on pet insurance for Scout and Alexander. So far we have been satisfied. 🐾🐕

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Response to Polly Hennessey (Reply #4)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 05:46 AM

8. 😂 Alexander, the Great!

Hi, Polly. That's a cool name for a GP. My bestie has GP's. Gorgeous dogs!!

Our girl was a rescue too. Remember DUer MiniMe who fostered the Lab momma dogs with their puppies? She posted many threads with pics. Our Missy girl was from one of her litters. (I think she only does FB now, I think.) Some mos ago I asked her if she saw that moon up there...."Missy put it there!!"😁 Missy's the light of our lives! She's such a sweet dog.

Thank you so much for all your info! Our home & car are insured with Nationwide but I didn't realize that they also have pet insurance. That would be very convenient, so thanks! I'm just sorry that preexisting conditions wouldn't be covered.

Thanks again!

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Response to Duppers (Original post)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 12:36 PM

9. Poor Missy Girl!

And you've been through so much with her, but what else are you going to do? She's your baby, in sickness and in health.

Sending healing vibes to her, and much love to you, Dupps.

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Response to Bayard (Reply #9)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 01:02 PM

10. Thanks, my dear, caring friend.

You've been there for me & I love you too.



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Response to Duppers (Original post)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 02:45 PM

12. I am sorry about your sweet lab. I have used insurance before.

and do recommend it, but take care in choosing a company. I have had less than remarkable service when a big claim occurs. Which if there is a recommendation I would give, after many years of claims for my dear sweet pets is to get a high deductible and have a savings plan to cover the smaller expenses or the large deductible in case of big bills. Your insurance bill will be less, and if you can swing the Care Credit or a savings account just for this purpose I think it will help. The pet insurance companies I have used were really slow in their claims processing. The worst one was Pet First I think was the name. They may not be in business anymore. But I have used both Trupanion and Pets Best with slow claims payment on the larger bills. Pets First must be C or D rated.

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Response to peacebuzzard (Reply #12)

Wed Dec 2, 2020, 09:13 PM

14. Thank you, peacebuzzard!

Very good advice - you've given me lots of info too. Sounds as if you've had a LOT of experience caring for your sweet pets and paying for their care.

High deductibles will keep our premium lower...and I'll ask our vet & staff which companies they prefer too.

I wonder how poor folks pay for any vet care - at least my regular vet accepts some charity cases, another pet owner told me. No wonder humane societies* & pounds are full, especially now, during covid pandemic. Owning a pet isn't cheap, if you really take care of 'em.

* These charities are where most of my "giving tuesday" dollars went - I just have a huge soft spot all critters.

Thanks again, dear lady.



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