Dog Insurance Pros and Cons

Amy Tokic
by Amy Tokic
Going over the good and bad of dog insurance

You’ve been antagonizing over the decision of whether or not to buy dog insurance. Sure, your puppy may be healthy now, but what about in the future? You can’t predict if your dog will get into an accident or get cancer and require costly treatment. On the other hand, your dog may only require yearly vet visits for many years. So what should you do? Let’s go over a few pros and cons of dog insurance… we hope it will make the decision a bit clearer for you.


  • There are lots of dog insurance companies to choose from, and all of them offer a variety of policies and coverage. These policies cover all types of vet care, from annual checkups and immunizations, to long-term treatment and rehabilitation.
  • You can pick your own vet. It doesn’t matter which one you go to, as long as they are licensed. Just submit the bill to your dog insurance company to file a claim.
  • If your dog gets ill or is in an accident, the vet bills can reach into the thousands. Dog insurance could save you from making the painful decision of going into debt or putting your dog down.
  • If you have multiple dogs, you can save on certain insurance policies.
  • Peace of mind that comes with knowing your dog will get the treatment it requires when it gets sick and you won’t have to dip into your saving account to pay for it.
  • Now that dog insurance is gaining popularity, some larger companies are offering it to its workers as part of a benefits program.
  • Depending on which company you go with, some policies include prescription foods or alternative therapy, such as acupuncture or chiropractic care.
  • Many dog insurance plans are customizable, which means you can pick and choose what coverages you’d like on your policy.

Let’s go over a few pros and cons of dog insurance… we hope it will make the decision a bit clearer for you.


  • You have to pay for the vet bill out-of-pocket first. Only after you pay are you able to send in the paid bill to get reimbursed.
  • It can be expensive – there are deductibles, annual premiums, limits on pre-existing conditions, and exclusions for hereditary defects.
  • You can’t claim pre-existing health conditions. If your dog already has cancer, the dog insurance company won’t cover any treatments relating to the pre-existing issue.
  • Benefit limits can be low. Be sure to read the fine print – if you go with a cheaper plan, it’s not going to offer you and your dog much coverage. Some policies only cover accidents and illnesses, so be sure you know what you’d be paying for.
  • Some policies have age-limits set within its plans. If you have an older dog, it may have reduced coverage or it may not even qualify for coverage.
  • You’ll always have to pay something extra, on top of what you’re paying the dog insurance company. Most dog insurance policies pay between 50 and 75 percent of the total medical charges. Check for the maximum amounts a dog insurance policy will pay.

No matter which option you go with, always have enough money saved for the unexpected. If you don’t go with dog insurance, set up an account where you can put a certain amount of money into it monthly – that way, you’ll be able to cover your dog’s health issues when they pop up.

Amy Tokic
Amy Tokic

Amy Tokic, Editor of, is a passionate animal lover and proud pet parent of Oscar, a Shih Tzu/Chihuahua cross, and Zed, a Japanese Chin. Her love of animals began in kindergarten, when she brought her stuffed dog Snoopy into class with her every day. Now, she writes about her adventures in pet ownership and tirelessly researches products, news and health related issues she can share with other animal enthusiasts. In her free time, Amy loves perusing used book and record stores, obsessing over the latest pet products available and chasing squirrels with wild abandon (a habit attributed to spending too much time with her pooches).

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