What Your Dog Insurance Plan Covers… And What’s Left Out

Amy Tokic
by Amy Tokic
Just a few things you can expect your dog insurance plan to cover

In today’s homes, dogs are more than just pets – they are part of the family. And with the rising costs of veterinary bills, dog insurance isn’t just an option anymore. Routine check-ups, common injuries and illnesses can make a huge dent in your bank account. When you have dog insurance coverage, a burden is lifted off your shoulders.

While you’re shopping around for a dog insurance plan, you need to know what any particular package actually covers. Plans vary from company to company, so you can’t be guaranteed that a lower priced package will cover your dog’s needs. Let’s go into the nitty gritty of what you should insist is part of your dog’s insurance coverage and what not to expect (unless you want to pay more).

What Does Dog Insurance Cover?

You can expect that your dog insurance will cover the veterinary costs involved when your dog is diagnosed with an illness or is injured. In these cases, when you bring your dog to the vet, you’ll pay the bill out of pocket up front. When you submit the claim to the insurance company, you’ll be reimbursed. The costs that are covered in these instances include diagnostic testing, surgeries, medications, supplements, hospitalization, therapeutic pet foods, orthotic and prosthetic devices, carts, and other treatments.

What’s Not Covered Under Dog Insurance Plans?

Unless you pay a premium charge, you’ll have to pay for expected routine costs. What does that include? These items include exam fees, preventive care, parasite control, spaying/neutering, and dental scaling and polishing. As well, dogs that have pre-existing conditions (accidents or illnesses that have shown symptoms prior to the start of coverage) will not be covered under a dog insurance plan.

You may be asking yourself, “Why aren’t routine examinations covered in my dog insurance policy.” There’s a reason – it’s because these exams are routine, so it would raise your policy’s premium without providing additional benefits. However, it this is an important point for you, ask your dog insurance provider if it can be added to your current plan with an increase in price.

No two plans from dog insurance companies are the same, so don’t assume that they will all cover the same things and for the same prices. Some offer a little more, some offer a little less. Carefully go over what the policy does and doesn’t cover, and find out how much of a deductible you’ll have to pay. Doing your homework and research now could save you thousands of dollars down the road.

Amy Tokic
Amy Tokic

Amy Tokic, Editor of PetGuide.com, 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).

More by Amy Tokic