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    • Natty68
    • By Natty68 13th May 11, 12:54 PM
    • 2,621 Posts
    • 37,169 Thanks
    Natty68
    • #2
    • 13th May 11, 12:54 PM
    • #2
    • 13th May 11, 12:54 PM
    Can I just say there are some insurance companies that will allow you to insure your pet if you don't have the annual vaccinations. For example you have an indoor cat etc. They just won't pay out for the illnesses these jabs cover against.

    I only know as I have just switched my two cats over to Direct Line and they aren't jabbed, mainly because they are indoor cats. The two dogs are with Axa and are jabbed because they go out regularly and come into contact with other dogs.


    Struggling financially

    Mortgage Free as of 20.9.17
  • ashbtvs
    • #3
    • 13th May 11, 3:02 PM
    • #3
    • 13th May 11, 3:02 PM
    Very easy to follow and thorough. One thing I would stress is that although the purpose is money saving, pet insurance is the one thing I would never scrimp on, as the cheapest of policies are usually the worst policies!!!

    Also, I am with More Than for all three of my pets and (at least for the dogs), they offer two different quotes, a cheaper one and a more expensive one (which obviously covers more). Dont know if it would give both results on comparison sites.
    • rising from the ashes
    • By rising from the ashes 13th May 11, 4:19 PM
    • 12,321 Posts
    • 59,551 Thanks
    rising from the ashes
    • #4
    • 13th May 11, 4:19 PM
    • #4
    • 13th May 11, 4:19 PM
    Hi, very easy to follow & lots of great information. A couple of comments/suggestions:

    Comparison sites
    On my many searches (!) I've come across http://www.pet-insurance4you.co.uk/ - you may want to have a look/try to see if you think it's worth including:

    Direct payments to vets
    It's maybe worth pointing out (sorry if I missed this in the information) that although some insurers say they are happy to make a payment direct to your vet, many vet practices won't actually let you do this (and you still have to pay at the time and claim the costs back yourself).

    Reasons given to me have been that a) the insurers take longer to pay the claims to a business rather than the policy holder and b) if the insurer refuses the claim it leaves the practice often having to accept installments for the treatment or out of pocket.

    Other insurers
    I've found PDSA give very competitive quotes and offer different levels of insurance so can suit many pockets/types of cover required. They also offer things other companies often exclude (or charge more for) such as no upper age limit & interest free monthly payments: http://www.pdsa.org.uk/how-you-can-help/pdsa-pet-insurance

    HTH (sorry for the long post)!
    Grocery Challenge 211/455 (01/01-31/03)
    2016 Sell: 125/250
    1,000 Emergency Fund Challenge #78 3.96 / 1,000
    Vet Fund: 410.93 / 1,000
    Debt free & determined to stay that way!
    • Tropez
    • By Tropez 13th May 11, 5:00 PM
    • 3,358 Posts
    • 11,789 Thanks
    Tropez
    • #5
    • 13th May 11, 5:00 PM
    • #5
    • 13th May 11, 5:00 PM
    With regards to Aviva, if you're an existing customer then they offer discounts on their pet insurance, although I cannot state with 100% certainty what other products of theirs qualify towards the discount. I have some other insurance with them and an investment product and although originally I did not receive a discount, they contacted me last year to tell me that after a review of their records they had seen that I was eligible for a discount I had not been receiving and comped me a couple of months cover as an apology.
  • hihopen
    • #6
    • 13th May 11, 5:25 PM
    • #6
    • 13th May 11, 5:25 PM
    I looked very carfully for an insurance that would any treatment on a year-by-year basis--meaning that the financial limit was on the year--not the condition. However, I made one claim--just for some day treatment when my dog was hurt and the next year my premium went up by double. I would just warn others that if there is an ongoing treatment, the premiums will go up--perhaps each year? The other problem is that we never know if our pet will develop a chronic or expensive illness, so if you go for cheap insurance, you take your chances. Good luck deciding!
    • hethmar
    • By hethmar 13th May 11, 5:56 PM
    • 10,399 Posts
    • 9,828 Thanks
    hethmar
    • #7
    • 13th May 11, 5:56 PM
    • #7
    • 13th May 11, 5:56 PM
    Hi, Ive only skimmed but it seems to me there is no mention of the different type of cover, that is, per condtion, limited period of claim or the proper for life policy where the pot is topped up every year? This is probably one of the most important points as many people believe they have a for life policy because the insurer will say something like "no limit" for claims - in fact More Than is guilty of using that misleading phrase (Ive argued this with them on several occasions now). Whilst you have no limit to the time in which you can claim for a condition with More Than and other insurers you most definitely do have a limit of the amount you can claim. Ive known a number of people who have been absolutely shocked to find that the pot is empty for their ongoing claims for conditions such as arthritis and they are on their own with costs of may be 100 a month or more to pay out, when they believed they were covered for life.

    One of my dogs has an ongoing condition and we are stuck with M and S because of that - but to be fair after 5 years they certainly havent bunged up the premium so much that it becomes a waste of money,the cost of his treatment is still double the premium we pay.

    Also, Im not keen on the "dont be afraid of switching" section. Id be very wary of switching once a dog has claimed or even just been seen for an illness or condition and although it mentions very serious conditions like cancer not being covered by a new insurer, in reality a very small previous problem can mean ANYTHING vaguely connected could also be excluded. Also, it does seem to say that your own insurer will stop paying out on an ongoing condition - again, not pointing out that a full "for life" policy wouldnt do that and you would be covered for the life of the pet as long as you continue to pay the premium.

    Comparison sites can be very misleading as they may only give the lowest premiums and not take into account the type of policy.

    Not read all the rest yet.

    NB, the type of cover is on there, but a long way down?

    Also, on the dont be afraid to switch part - I dont understand what this means?
    While you might expect this when first taking out an insurance policy, even when sticking with the same policy you won't be able to claim again for an illness once you have reached its specified limit - most insurers either cap the amount of time or money you can claim for, for example, cataracts.
    So unlike human medical insurance - which usually allows you to continue claiming on the same ailment for life as long as you don't switch provider - switching pet insurer carries little risk of a price hike.
    Last edited by hethmar; 13-05-2011 at 6:09 PM.
    • Waterfalls
    • By Waterfalls 13th May 11, 7:13 PM
    • 427 Posts
    • 483 Thanks
    Waterfalls
    • #8
    • 13th May 11, 7:13 PM
    • #8
    • 13th May 11, 7:13 PM
    with regards to the exclusion section. it is correct that most insurers wont allow you to claim for about 2 weeks to start with, but this is for medical reasons. if an accident happen. then most will allow this to be claimed for.

    also some surgeries will offer a months free insurance which is immediate cover for puppies and kittens as they have been checked over by the vet. its a good opportunity to us this month to find a cover to suit the owner.

    Vet surgeries are not allowed to recommend a pet insurance company by law

    the only way my boss will allow direct claims at my surgery is by doing a pre authorization. as we are an orthopedic referral, this is easier to do than some others practices. and he will also charge 30 admin fee for the privilege.

    just to give you an idea of most common operation prices: Cruciate ligament surgery (TTO) 2500-3500, and Total hip replacement 4000, Arthroscopy 2000
  • smileyt
    • #9
    • 13th May 11, 8:20 PM
    • #9
    • 13th May 11, 8:20 PM
    I also think that the 'don't be afraid to switch' part is a bit dangerous. Once your dog has a condition, another insurer is highly unlikely to cover it. My own insurance is with petplan, which is expensive but offers ongoing cover upto four grand a year, every year, for any condition (my dogs didn't have any pre-existing conditions when I initially insured them).

    You may find this company useful http://www.vip4u.co.uk/ Please note I am not connected to them in any way, shape or form other than that I have used them to get my own dogs' insurance set up! I'm not on commission or known personally to them.
    Aspire not to have more but to be more.
    Oscar Romero

    Still trying to be frugal...
    • rising from the ashes
    • By rising from the ashes 13th May 11, 8:39 PM
    • 12,321 Posts
    • 59,551 Thanks
    rising from the ashes
    just to give you an idea of most common operation prices: Cruciate ligament surgery (TTO) 2500-3500
    Originally posted by Waterfalls
    Any kind of treatment varies enormously depending on where you live. We were referred to a specialist in a neighbouring county (this op not performed locally) and it was 1600.
    Grocery Challenge 211/455 (01/01-31/03)
    2016 Sell: 125/250
    1,000 Emergency Fund Challenge #78 3.96 / 1,000
    Vet Fund: 410.93 / 1,000
    Debt free & determined to stay that way!
    • annaojbee
    • By annaojbee 13th May 11, 11:03 PM
    • 92 Posts
    • 6,547 Thanks
    annaojbee
    A couple of points from my own experience with Direct Line:
    1. They have a 'back log' on payments' - taking up to 2 months to pay. They've had this 'back log' for over a year!
    2. Phoned to add an extra dog, and found that I didn't have to pay for legal cover as it can be claimed under hoousehold insurance - only saves pence, but worth knowing.
    • hethmar
    • By hethmar 14th May 11, 9:28 AM
    • 10,399 Posts
    • 9,828 Thanks
    hethmar
    Yes, thats another point, most household insurance covers public liability.

    With NFU dog insurance you can choose to exclude that part of the cover from their policy to lower the premium a bit.
    • albacookie
    • By albacookie 14th May 11, 1:23 PM
    • 268 Posts
    • 1,201 Thanks
    albacookie
    A couple of things - Bernese Mountain Dogs are not considered aggressive dogs, they can however be difficult to insure as they are prone to several serious illnesses.

    As a vet I've filled in thousands of insurance forms and I've never known a company refuse a claim for one type of cancer if the pet has previously been treated for another type. There is usually a section on the form for the vet to say if the 2 conditions are related.

    I also agree that the don't be afraid to switch part could be dangerous - if there has been any treatment for a condition I'd stick with my current insurer.
    ETA - It may also be worth pointing out that branded policies (Tesco, Sainsburys, M&S) may change underwriter and hence your terms and conditions (for example M&S launched with no excess on their policy and then changed this a couple of years later) if you've got a pet with an ongoing condition you won't be able to get it covered elsewhere. For this reason people on the sticky post often recommend Petplan, NFU and axa who underwrite their own policies.
    Last edited by albacookie; 14-05-2011 at 4:22 PM.
    ......
    • albacookie
    • By albacookie 14th May 11, 4:51 PM
    • 268 Posts
    • 1,201 Thanks
    albacookie
    Another couple of points.
    Pre existing conditions - some insurers will offer cover after a period of time has elapsed without the pet needing treatment.
    If your pet dies many companies will deduct any premium outstanding from the final pay out.
    ......
    • juliebunny
    • By juliebunny 14th May 11, 8:23 PM
    • 1,633 Posts
    • 7,972 Thanks
    juliebunny
    Hello, I don't have pet insurance because I have a lot of cats - I tend to get the 'lost causes' from the rescue shelter where I help and foster kittens so mine often are old or have pre-existing conditions which wouldn't otherwise be covered. I heard it's expensive to cover old cats too.

    My advice to people homing from me regarding pet insurance as to whether or not to take it is that if you can't afford a big vet bill - take out insurance.

    So without insurance, you have to make sure you have the funds that let you make decisions which aren't based on money but on your pets needs. If you are rich, or with a good job (athough we all know they aren't secure these days), not a problem. If you are average like me - consider self insuring. I have a standing order each month that goes into the 'pets' bank account. Over a year, I worked out vet bills for vaccinations, wormer, flea treatment, etc etc, then a contingent for a large vet bill of say around 2000 (which I have already had once!). I also considered what the monthly premium would be per cat for insurance.

    I then added in other expenses for my other pets (goldfish ) and worked out what would be a reasonable amount to put away each month to build up a contingency fund, bumped it up and bit, to be sure, and set up my SO.

    All vet bills and regular meds now come out of this. Even if I have a humungous vet bill that isn't covered by the fund, at least it makes a good start towards it!

    EDIT when I did ask at my vets about pet insurance, the practice manager there said pet plan are the ones who pay up with the least hassle. She said she uses them.
    Last edited by juliebunny; 14-05-2011 at 8:26 PM.
    Less stuff, more life, love, laughter and cats!
    Even if I'm on the shopping threads, it doesn't mean I'm buying! Sometimes it's good to just look and then hit the CLOSE button!
    • Lil_Me
    • By Lil_Me 15th May 11, 6:12 PM
    • 2,665 Posts
    • 4,143 Thanks
    Lil_Me
    My only tip would be to not get pulled in by a cheap first year deal. I insured both my kittens with Tesco and paid just 9.99 a month for the both of them for the first year, by the second year it went up to 18 a month! Unfortunately in that time I had to claim for one having a heart murmur so am now "tied in" with Tesco as any other insurer wouldn't cover any problems we have with her heart. I swapped the other cat to Petplan pretty quickly after and pay 10 to Tesco and 11 to Petplan.

    I wish I'd thought about the long term as from the second year onwards Tesco cost almost the same as Petplan would have done.

    Definitely worth the money though, we've claimed well over what we've paid out in premiums.
    • anna23
    • By anna23 25th May 11, 9:13 AM
    • 4 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    anna23
    Thanks for all the above info. My cat is 11 and I have just been quoted approx 27 - 30 per month by PDSA. Lucy is an indoor cat, and very touch wood is healthy. She has her annual jabs (for the cattery really) and has her annual check up for her flea treatment. She is not a pedigree and never goes out. Does anyone know of any pet insurance that takes this into consideration (ie a home cat?) Any answers gratefully received.
    Thanks
    Anna
  • Joto
    A couple of points if you are looking for pet insurance. Check with you vet who they recommend and more importantly who they don't, our vet will wait for payment from some insurers but not for others based on who queries every little thing, who takes months to payout.
    You also need to be aware that once you have a mature dog (usually 8 years old) new insurance companies won't take you so you are locked in with your current insurer
    In our case (E&L) our dog(12years old) had a growth on her leg a couple of years ago and although it was benign the company excluded and further growths including cancer from our policy, this year she has had pyometra and she has a heart condition. We have just paid out 1500 but because she is a mature dog the limit we can claim is 500 less 35% of vets fee the total we are due is 280 for the Pyometra and 130 for the heart. We haven't recieved the payout yet! but we have recieved a letter saying they will no longer cover the heart( the pyometra she can't get again because she had her uterus removered) We can't move because of her age. In our experience I would take out insurance for the first year when anything that your dog was born with show itself but after that I wouldn't insure again.
    Look after the pennies and the s will look after themselves
  • purplepiggy69
    Unfortunately with pet insurance companies you invariably get what you pay for. The other unfortunate thing is that vets, who know more about pet insurance companies than anyone else, are not allowed to advise clients on a professional basis. I probably spent nearly half of my life as a vet on the phone to insurance companies to ask them why they were being so slow at paying and why they were messing the clients around. As we were an equine practice we allowed many clients to wait for the insurance company to pay us directly, and believe me there were months differences between companies (slow payment invariably being due to a 'backlog'). I have also had a great deal of trouble with one of the two insurance companies I insure my own pets with.

    With car insurance going for a cheap policy is a good idea, since we like to think we won't ever use it. With pets it is not the same - I have had to claim for both of my animals twice for different things, and they are both under 4 years old! Please please please, DO NOT buy because it is cheap. Price is the worst criterion for selecting pet insurance, and the sooner the public realise this the better!!
    • Jojo the Tightfisted
    • By Jojo the Tightfisted 25th May 11, 12:08 PM
    • 25,718 Posts
    • 105,724 Thanks
    Jojo the Tightfisted
    I think there should be a section on the charities that provide treatment or assistance to the poorest people - the PDSA, for example.

    Oh, and what to do if you can't get affordable insurance.
    I could dream to wide extremes, I could do or die: I could yawn and be withdrawn and watch the world go by.

    Yup you are officially Rock n Roll
    Originally posted by colinw
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