For those of us with pets or those considering getting a pet in the future, the worry on everyone’s mind if how to keep said pet happy, healthy and nurtured. Pet insurance can alleviate many worries when it comes to health issues and affording to take care of them. Pet insurance is relatively simple: you pay a fee every month (according to the type of animal and other characteristics, such as age or breed) to continue to be an insurance policyholder, and when the time comes that pet medical bills accrue the policyholder only pays their agreed-upon deductible, while the insurance company covers the rest. However, a major difference between pet insurance and other types of insurance is that the policyholder must pay the bill upfront first, then submit a claim in which their insurance will reimburse them the appropriate amount.

It is important, if you have the opportunity, to search for and acquire pet insurance while the animal is younger. This is because just like human insurance companies, pet insurance companies restrict coverage for older pets and can, at their own discretion, not cover pre-existing conditions or conditions such as cancer, UTIs, patella luxation, etc. The chance that your pet may be excluded from some coverage also depends on the breed of the animal, particular in dogs (for example, German Shepherds and other large breed dogs are prone to hip dysplasia later in life). For more exotic animals like birds and reptiles, it is usually customary that the owner calls in to the insurance company to discuss what kind of coverage is possible and if there are any specific health issues, often at a lower price averaging around $10-$15 a month. At Nationwide, there are three levels of health insurance for dogs: one covering general accidents and illnesses, one covering that and some pre-existing conditions, and the most expensive and expansive one covering potential diseases such as cancer, with the ability to use any emergency or regular vet, including specialists.