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Reports Reveal Majority of US Pet Owners Couldn’t Afford an Emergency Vet Bill

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Pets are a $72 billion industry in the United States, all thanks to the millennial majority of pawrents who spare no expense when it comes to their precious fur babies. But cute dog outfits and organic pet foods aside, what’s an average US pet owner’s budget for unexpected medical emergencies? Turns out, not much. 

According to research, 1 in 3 pets will have an emergency visit to the vet during their lifetime. Not only that this is extremely stressful for the owner, but can also be a costly affair. Petplan, a pet insurance company, puts the cost of such emergency vet visits at $800 to $1,500 based on their customer data. That’s a lot of money to get out of the blue! Especially once you take a look at the research done about the economic well-being of US households. This year’s research reveals that 27% percent of adults couldn’t afford to spend $400 on an emergency without having to borrow or sell something. And that’s half of the money needed for an average unexpected vet bill!

However, even though a lot of pet owners couldn’t afford an emergency visit to the vet (even with a rainy day fund), it doesn’t have to mean that owning a pet could mean racking up debt. Pet insurance is a simple solution for a serious problem of modern pet owners- paying a modest monthly premium could get the majority- if not all- of your pet’s medical expenses covered. Naturally, there are factors that could make insurance out of your budget, too- for instance, if your pet is obese or already sick, your premium could be too high. That’s why financial planners recommend you start a policy when your pet is still a puppy or a kitten- you’ll get the best rates.

While no one likes to think about the ugly ‘what if they get sick’ scenarios when they first get their puppy, it pays off to plan in advance- even for moments we dread. Pet insurance can be a great way to make sure you don’t end up in debt or worse, have to surrender your pet to a shelter if they get sick or injured. After all, your pets are family- the least you owe them is to make sure they get the medical help they deserve!


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