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dog insurance

(14 Posts)
cassie2and2 Sat 28-May-16 21:48:43

advice please.
I want to insure my puppy with life-time cover but am aware the premiums
on this cover goes up radically each year and the insurance companies
won't negotiate, its a catch 22, either accept their terms or cancel.
any-one out there with a decent policy they can recomend

Get PetPlan - the premiums and the excess do go,up over time, but when you need them, they are great.

Last year ddog2 needed three knee operations, lots of x-Rays and consultations and treatment for a gastric ulcer (from the painkillers she was on for her knee), which cost over £10,000 in total. PetPlan paid up without a single murmur, and were even able to pay the vet hospital direct (so we didn't have to find the money then claim it back) - though not all vets will do this.

Even after such a massive claim, our premium didn't go up massively this year, nor did the excess - and to be honest we were expecting both to go up.

It is a gamble - if your dog never needs any serious treatment, you could end up paying more than you ever claim back - but it only takes one serious accident, or a run of problems like dog 2 had (ruptured crucuate ligaments in each knee, each needing orthopaedic surgery, consultations and x-Rays, a dislocated knee cap, that also needed orthopaedic surgery, admission for a collection of fluid in the wound, and the ulcer), and you could be looking at major expenditure.

WottyMcWottFace Sat 28-May-16 21:57:13

Try animal friends, I changed years ago from petplan and saved a fortune, they've been great so far

TrionicLettuce Sat 28-May-16 22:21:37

I'd be wary of going with anyone underwritten by RSA. They've introduced a "Preferred Referral Network" which means that there would be an extra £200 excess if the pet owner wanted to be referred to a specialist who isn't on RSA's list. There are only 27 of these approved specialists and there's a real issue with distribution across the UK. It also means potentially having to pay extra just to be able to see the most appropriate specialist for the job if they happen to not be on the list.

I think so far only Tesco and More Than have actually introduced the clause but it's likely that other RSA companies (John Lewis, Homebase, M&S and Argos) will follow suit at some point.

It's also worth checking who, if anyone, your vet will deal with directly. Some surgeries will deal directly with certain insurers whereas some always ask the owner to pay up front then claim back off the insurer.

partystress Sun 29-May-16 10:27:01

Have to say PetPlan have not been great with me. Had a good experience with Tesco, but they became V expensive once dog reached 9.

stonecircle Sun 29-May-16 10:30:32

Am currently thinking of cancelling my pet insurance altogether as premiums for 2 dogs and 2 cats have now gone up to £204 pcm

cariadisnaehappy Sun 29-May-16 10:33:33

I've got my 2 cats & 2 dogs insured through MoreThan - same life cover for conditions as PetPlan but cheaper. Have had to use them for both cat and dog and they've been great every time.

Madbengalmum Sun 29-May-16 10:33:36

Petplan, has gone up incrementally every year, but not massively so.
They pay out though.

RebuildingMyself Sun 29-May-16 11:43:30

Petplan start out a little bit more expensive than other companies but never increase premiums by much, even when you make on going, expensive claims, so work out cheapest over the lifetime of a pet. Most vets can be paid directly by them too.

I know of one dog who costs pet plan more in medication per month than the insurance premium (and has done for over 4yrs now). The owner was shocked when they kept renewing with only tiny price increases, despite the dog needing these expensive meds for life. That same dog also had thousands spent by pet plan on surgery as puppy too.

I know other dog owners who've found pet plan prices barely increase even though they've made very large claims or ongoing long term claims too.

imonaplane Sun 29-May-16 16:47:02

I have used Morethan for many years but this year the premium for my 2 dogs increased by 80 (yes 80) %. I have not made any claims and the dogs are both under 4 years old. I phoned them to find out why and just got a scripted reply about vet bill increasing and inflation. I changed to NFU but you have to have home insurance with them as pets are an add on to that policy. I wouldn't touch Animal Friends or E & L as both have bad reputations for paying claims. My vet does direct claims but will not if you are insured with either of these companies.

Stonecircle - our story shows how much vet care can cost. Would you be able to find £10,000 for orthopaedic surgery if your dog needed it?

MrsLouisTomlinson Sun 29-May-16 21:23:39

We're with morethan, puppy broke his leg 4 weeks ago and has an external fixator, was operated on by an orthopaedic surgeon and had a 5 night stay at the animal hospital. No idea how much it has cost as the vets have dealt with it all. No matter what the premiums rise to next year we've had our money's worth and then some 😱

stonecircle Sun 29-May-16 21:50:09

SDT - yes we would. But obviously we'd prefer not to. Cats are 13/14 (rescue so not too sure), dog 1 is nearly 10 and dog 2 is 6/7 )again, rescue). So premiums will go up again I imagine.

We've only made a few claims and never more than about £300. Of course the big bill could be just around the corner so it's a gamble. Definitely hand over £2.5k in the next 12 months or risk this being the year of the big bill.

The last claim we made was for one of the dogs who had to have a broken tooth removed. It cost about £350 and we got about half back from direct line once they'd taken off the £80 excess and the cost of cleaning the adjacent teeth (they refused to pay for this even though vet said it was necessary to avoid any infection getting into the gum)

GreyHare Sun 29-May-16 21:52:34

Pet Plan or Co-op who use the same underwriter as Pet Plan are the only companies I would consider insuring with, whilst the premiums may be higher to start with, they don't tend to do huge yearly price hikes, my dog had two big orthopaedic surgeries but his premiums have on gone up by a few pounds, and my cats are still almost the same as when I took the policy out and they have had several big claims on them although I am expecting them to jump either this year or next as the hit 7 this year.

I think it is telling that most vets will deal PP direct and that they will often claim direct from them, whilst most others you have to pay the vet upfront and then claim the money back from your insurance company.

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