Renewing Pet insurance

in Pets & Pet Care
11 replies 1.5K views
Hi All!

We currently have insurance through PetPlan for our 2 Springer Spaniels, it's now renewal time and the premium has increased tenfold. This is partly due to 1 dog having a long term illness (which isn't actually covered by the policy anyway :think:)

I'm not sure what the best options are as taking out a new policy with another company, the dog wouldn't be covered for a preexisting condition anyway but the renewal hike is quite substantial

Any recommendations?



  • sherambersheramber Forumite
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    Petplan do not increase premiums if you claim.Most other companies do.

    Petplan are more expensive than some others but they are the Rolls Royce of pet insurance companies.

    A colleague had two dogs of the same breed and age- one had several claims and the other none. The premiums were the same for both dogs.

    Increases are due to increased running costs, particularly increases in vet fees across the board, and your dog's age. Older dogs are more likely to have claims so attract a higher premium.

    Most companies will give you reduced premium the first year as an introductory bonus but the premium will jump the second year.

    There is no easy answer.
  • Hoping to get some advice. I have a 6 year old Maltese who’s had a pre existing condition. I’ve been with John Lewis since she was 1 year old with their lifetime essential cover. At various points before renewal, I’d call and discuss possibly increasing the cover but opted not to. My cover has gone from 200/year to now £1780!! Not only that, I called them today to request an increase on cover to their next tier at £7500 as the dog is getting older and now they’re saying it’s not possible as we’ve claimed before (am due for renewal in a few days). Though I’ve been getting different stories from different customer service agents. Anyways, this policy change/ increase condition isn’t written anywhere in the policy documents (read it over 5 times) and the manager even said the same thing. He said “oh well we don’t write it in the policy papers and refer you to call us”. We feel so mislead and misinformed over the last 5 years!! I’ve tried to google search this “can’t increase policy because you’ve claimed in the past” but can’t find any information!! I understand you can’t increase it midway through the year, but this is for renewal!

    We feel so stuck because she has a pre existing chronic condition that won’t be covered with a new insurer. Has anyone had this experience?? Any advice?
  • sherambersheramber Forumite
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    If you increase the cover you are in fact taking out a new policy so the pre existing exclusion will apply whether with John Lewis or any new company.

    Compare what you would pay out for that condition in a year to what you premiums are for the year.

    If your premiums plus your excess are more then consider whether it is worth to move to another policy and pay for any medication etc for the condition.

    if your premiums plus excess are less that what you pay out then you are still benefitting.

    Any increase in cover would of course incur a higher premium.
  • gettingreadygettingready Forumite
    11.3K Posts
    Zara is over 13 now, t the age of 10 I was already paying £180 per MONTH for her insurance and when we moved I called to let them know my new address. Few days later I got a letter they were now asking for almost £300 per MONTH due to address change (according to them busy area) - it was not even time for reneval at the time.

    It was Argos and I have to say that over the 10 years they have paid out A LOT (over 30k) fr Zara's vet bills.

    But with her being 10 yo by them and me not thinking of her having any more major surgeries (I would not allow it at her age) - I cancelled the policy.

    Fast forward 3 years, Zara is still with me and yes she is on medication (few a day, various issues) but I get prescriptions from the vet and order at Animed so keep cost down.

    Over the last 3 years I did not spend anywhere near what I would have paid for insurance.

    What I am trying to say - work out how much your dog's medication cost per year... do the figures and make a decision
  • edited 10 December 2019 at 10:06AM
    PlumjamPlumjam Forumite
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    edited 10 December 2019 at 10:06AM
    I have a crossbreed who is nearly 2 years old. He was insured originally with Argos and now with L&G through Asda. I pay just under £24 per month but know that this will increase as he gets older. In the 18 months that we've had him, we have paid out close on £500 in vets bills for sickness bugs, ear infections and conjunctivitis - we didn't claim first time round through Argos as, being first time dog owners, we didn't think our puppy would need a vet for minor conditions (very naive) and, trying to keep our premiums down, we agreed a £100 excess on top of the £65 compulsory so the bills were less than the excess. They are now considered pre-existing conditions and so are not covered.
    We have come to the conclusion that pet insurance could well be a waste of money. I am going to cancel our policy and put the money into premium bonds instead. I'm going to set up a standing order to buy one a month for the first year, then 2 a month for the second, 3 a month in the third year and then 4 a month for the rest of his life. If we don't need it, then we save - if we do, then we'll have some money tucked away. We are in the fortunate position that if something happens whilst he is quite young (before we have any 'insurance savings), then we have money with which to pay vets bills.
  • sherambersheramber Forumite
    12.6K Posts
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    if you had stayed with the first company then you would be covered.

    Changing insurance companies when you have had previous vet visits needs to be looked at carefully.

    Better do your research before buying.

    However, some companies will consider covering pre exisitng conditions after a set time with no recurrence or treatment.

    Those who do not have large claims think insurance os a waste of money.

    Those who do have a large claim think it worth it.

    I claimed £3000 for one dog for an operation. It took 10 years premiums to reach that sum so for these 10 years she had cover for anything else but I had had more from the insurance company than I had paid them.
  • KxMxKxMx Forumite
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    I was happy paying insurance for my late cat purely as peace of mind, as I am on a low income.

    In the end Pet Plan paid out nearly £3k (which was diagnostics not treatment), I'd been with them 3 years so I got loads more than I paid in with them, in fact more than I had paid in over her lifetime for all her insurers.

    The insurance meant we could see a specialist vet and get the right diagnosis, which unfortunately was terminal. That diagnosis meant when the end came I had made all the decisions about how I wanted everything to happen.

    Even if I hadn't claimed I'd have been happy paying for that peace of mind every month.
  • thriftytraceythriftytracey Forumite
    313 Posts
    Part of the Furniture 100 Posts Name Dropper Combo Breaker
    Yesterday I had my Direct Line Pet Insurance renewal invitation for my dog who is 3 years old and has no existing health conditions or illnesses. It has gone up from £204 pa to £358 pa. There was a paragraph in the letter which stated that it had gone up due to the increasing cost in veterinary care, older pets (Scrumpy is 3), and an introductory discount. So yet again I have to spend an hour finding an alternative insurer. I have a £100 excess as well. Ridiculous. I think Direct Line are one of those insurers who hook you in with an introductory offer and then rely on people not bothering then to shop around.
    16/04/2021  Property on market
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  • RelievedSheffRelievedSheff Forumite
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    We made sure we insured Sydney as soon as we got him prior to any visits to the vets so that he would be covered for any problems or illnesses that the vet found.

    We insure with Pet Protect on their lifetime policy. We had a claim in the first year for a persistent dew claw problem that was for far more than we had paid into the policy. We were expecting the renewal to shoot up when it came through in April but it was exactly the same price as the year previous at £12 per month.

    Syd is 3 now so we do expect that the premiums will increase as the years go by and he gets older.
  • SensibleSarahSensibleSarah Forumite
    316 Posts
    Fifth Anniversary 100 Posts Combo Breaker
    I have 4 cats and 1 dog. I've paid for insurance for all of them for the entire time I've had them.
    Cats - 2 x 17 years, 1x 15 years, 1x 6 years
    Dog - 8 years (got her when she was 3, so she's now 11)
    Have been incredibly fortunate not to ever have to make a single claim on any one of their policies to date. A few little things have needed treatment but have always come in at around the excess so I haven't bothered - or dentals, which aren't covered by 98% of pet insurance anyway. Freaks me out to think what I have paid out in premiums over the years - I don't really dare do the sums! Premiums haven't increased ridiculously over the years for any of them though - which is the only good thing. For the older cats, this year will be last I insure them I think - I wouldn't put them through any major treatment now.

    With future pets, which will always be rescues, I'll probably start off insuring them, but if they don't end up being risk-takers then I'll start self-insuring instead.
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