Pet Insurance

(28 Posts)
catbus Sun 13-Apr-14 23:15:43

Hoping some of you might be able to point me in the right direction regarding this, please.
We are going to be getting a puppy at some point in the near future, so currently researching options - getting a bit confuddled with all the options. confused
We have three cats also and am aware there are multi pet policies out there...
Any recommendations welcome smile

ErrolTheDragon Sun 13-Apr-14 23:17:00

We use petplan - seems like a reliable product but it's not cheap.

catbus Sun 13-Apr-14 23:19:42

Do most people go for the lifelong cover? Because from what I can see, the other options only cover one accident per year? (Possibly wrong there blush)

catbus Sun 13-Apr-14 23:20:24

Can I ask roughly how much people are paying per month, please? smile

Aked Mon 14-Apr-14 07:18:03

Lifelong cover is not a must but as a VN i always recommend it. It basically means conditons arent excluded the following poilcy year, there is a pot of money per condition per year, and each year the pot is refilled. Without lifelong cover, the pot isnt replaced the following year. (Just updated my petplan training, got that one from them!)

Personally I think it is worth the extra money, I have lifelong cover for all mine. Petplan are very good, pay out quickly and are very fair from what Ive seen. I dont work for them! Just research well and read the small print. Some may catch you out with paying not just your excess but also a percentage of the final bill. (Petplan do this to all policies once the animal turns ten.)

My dog is a crossbreed, and I pay around £25 a month. She is 11 months old. The cat is about £15 a month now, and she is seven.

There are a few we refuse to claim direct from at work, due to them not paying out often. Equine and Livestock is the one I can remember offhand, but will have to check and see what the others are!

£18 per month for a 4 year old Golden Retriever through John Lewis pet insurance. Life long cover here.

Lonecatwithkitten Mon 14-Apr-14 07:52:06

I have just had an example of why lifelong cover is so important. Little dog was a bit itchy last spring, this spring very itchy ripping itself to shreds investigations reveal allergies to house dust mites and storage mites requiring lifelong treatment.
Sadly owners had one year policy for which renewal was January it won't pay out the £600 for investigations this year and last years episode was below the excess level.

basildonbond Mon 14-Apr-14 08:03:42

£36 per month for lifelong cover here - and that was one of the cheaper quotes ... We have a rare breed which seems to have forced up the price (despite his breed generally being very healthy and despite the fact that all his relatives have been extensively health checked and tested grrr)

Atbeckandcall Mon 14-Apr-14 08:10:24

I have used PetPlan for all of my pets and have never had any issues, ever!

I would recommend whole of life rather than just 12 month cover. I say this because if they get diagnosed with a life long condition or reoccurring conditions e.g. diabetes, cardiac problems, digestive issues, they will only be covered until that 11 month period runs out. Then they will be classed as excluded (can claim for anything but the long term illness).

Also PetPlan will contribute towards complementary therapies like hydrotherapy and acupuncture.

They are by no means the cheapest out there by INE with pet insurance you get what you pay for. Also, PetPlan's underwriters have vets and vns to refer to. They also have great relationships with most veterinary practices so issues are resolved much quicker.

Lastly, at the practice I work at, they really don't mind doing direct claims with PetPlan. In other words, you pay the excess, complete a form and the practice will claim the balance on your behalf. My practice will not do this with any other insurance company.

Hope this helps and congratulations on the pup!

Owllady Mon 14-Apr-14 09:26:14

I am with morethan and their customer service has been excellent.

hairypaws Mon 14-Apr-14 09:54:37

I'm with M&S and pay £12 per month for lifelong cover. I'm expecting it to jump up this year as I have claimed twice on it unfortunately.

I would recommend lifelong cover purely for peace of mind. I have had a diabetic dog in the past and it was very expensive to keep her.

SilverShadows Mon 14-Apr-14 10:00:21

I have lifelong cover with my 2, from Direct Line.
I pay £55 per month for both, but our older dog has had a fair few claims.

All I would say, is when you get your pup they will probably come with 4 weeks free insurance. I didn't realise that policies have a 2 week exclusion period at the start, so started my new policy the same day as the free one ran out. I needed to claim for a cut paw on day 11 and wasn't covered, so be aware of that - apparently this is quite common.

Mutt Mon 14-Apr-14 10:05:04

Animal Friends Lifelong is £11.85/month for our 7yo terrier. Swapped to them from Sainsburys as so much cheaper than them and other options.

We have an ongoing claim and they have been fantastic, settling quickly and so helpful when calling them. You don't even get held on the phone if they are busy, you just leave your number and they call you straight back when you reach your place in the queue.

moosemama Mon 14-Apr-14 14:33:22

We're with PetPlan and have a multi-dog policy with two large crossbreeds on it, which comes to a touch over £40.00 a month for lifelong cover.

I did lots of research and found PetPlan's policies to be the clearest in terms of what they will and won't cover and for not having any restrictions or caveats on things like cruciate repair and dental treatment. I also like the fact they will cover some behavioural and alternative therapies.

I've had dogs for over 25 years now and have never had a problem with PetPlan. I was going to go with someone cheaper this time, but after doing my research decided their policies are worth the couple of pounds or so extra.

catbus Mon 14-Apr-14 19:46:32

Thanks everybody smile
I shall do a bit more research!

Ephedra Mon 14-Apr-14 20:03:13

We use Healthy pets insurance it costs us about £25 per month for life cover and because our collie is broken its the highest cover they do (gold). They have paid out every year for the past 3 or 4 without any issues.

bakingtins Mon 14-Apr-14 20:15:29

Healthy Pets is not lifelong cover. I've chosen them for my own dog but as I'm a vet I'm looking for something a little different to most people. I would pay for ongoing medication etc myself, I want the option to refer a pet to a University/ specialist if necessary. The HP policies are maximum benefit I.e pay out up to a ceiling amount per condition (£1000/4000/7000) with no time limit, but when you reach that ceiling the cover stops. A proper life policy will renew the cover amount every policy year, but will be correspondingly more expensive.
They are pretty good value, cheaper than many 12 m policies, mine is £10/month for medium level of cover on 1 yr old small crossbreed.
Can I add a plea to everyone reading that as an absolute minimum you need 3rd party liability cover. You are legally responsible for your dog, and dog laws are due to be extended in the near future, there will likely be more prosecutions under both the dangerous dogs act and local regulations as a result. Most pet insurance will cover 3rd party up to £1million, if you choose not to insure your pet the cheapest way to get 3rd party only cover is to join the Dogs Trust. Here endeth the sermon.

Twunk Mon 14-Apr-14 20:15:52

We self insure. We did the sums and to me they don't add up, especially when you take policy limits and excesses into account.

However, we do have access to money to pay a large vets bill if needed.

bakingtins Mon 14-Apr-14 20:18:02

I'd also second the suggestion of asking your vet which companies they won't deal directly with, tends to mean they are slow to pay up and quibble over technicalities. wouldn't touch E&L with someone else's barge pole

Twunk Mon 14-Apr-14 20:21:43

Good point bakingtins. Though we have liability insurance (in NL, you need it in case you have a cycling accident or something) which covers liability for pets.

Ephedra Mon 14-Apr-14 20:29:32

Yes bakingtins you are right about the cover limit with healthy pets. We picked them as the vet accepts payment directly from them and they covered all the things we knew we would need for our collie.

I also second getting 3rd party cover by joining the Dogs Trust if you are not going to get medical cover.

catbus Tue 15-Apr-14 11:23:13

I've been informed that my vets do insurance also- must look into that too. The above advice is great- thankyou smile

Owllady Tue 15-Apr-14 11:33:20

My vet said quite a lot are difficult to pay out these days

catbus Tue 15-Apr-14 11:57:25

I'm just trying to factor in costs at the moment and as I don't have full details of dog yet, getting a quote is impossible. We think that we will probably get a collie/ collie cross (as this is the breed we have had in the past.)
We've not actually plumped for a specific mutt yet.
So the figures mentioned above are helpful.. Just gotta get gaps in hedges sorted now wink

catbus Tue 15-Apr-14 12:01:49

Can I ask in what ways the law may change, baking?
Also, is it now mandatory to have your dog microchipped? Apologies for all the questions!

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