Pet Health Insurance

Family Health
on September 1, 2009
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Your pet's health needs can be pricey, no doubt about it. One solution: an insurance policy for your furry friend. But how do you know whether to make the investment? Consider these questions.

How big is your bank account? If your Siamese or Sheltie gets sick or hurt, could you afford to pay for surgery, blood tests, X-rays? Repairing a torn cruciate ligament — a common knee injury in large breeds of dog — costs $2,000 to $4,000. The average fee to repair a broken leg is $2,000. Compare that to annual insurance premiums that range from $200 to $500.

Are you inclined to take the "do-everything-possible" approach? The price tag for aggressive veterinary care is considerably higher than for conservative approaches. If you answer "yes," insurance might be well be for you.

What best suits your peace of mind? Will you sleep better at night knowing that, if something happens, insurance will allow you to pay for excellent, top-of-the-line care? Or, will you lie awake fearing that you've thrown money away on something that might never be needed?

If you think pet health insurance is a good idea, interview a number of providers before signing up. You'll want to find out how they handle inherited diseases, for instance, and claims processing. A little due diligence will pay off in the long run.

Found in: Family Health