My name is Oscar. While Adrea is out of the office speaking at an insurance convention, I am going to use this blog to speak about a topic that is very important to me – Pet Insurance.
I recently had to go to the doctor for my annual checkup. I needed to get my vaccinations, clean my teeth, and maintain my good health. I realized when my Pet Parents paid the bill that they didn’t have pet insurance. My veterinary routine care coverage could have been reimbursed. There are more than 10 insurance carriers selling pet insurance. They include: Hartville, Embrace, Pet Plan USA, VPI, AKC, Pets Best, 24 Pet Watch, Purina Care, Healthy Paws, Petfirst, Healthcare, and Trupanion.
VPI, which is owned by Nationwide, has insured more than one million of my friends since 1982. My friends are mostly dogs but they insure cats too. Some carriers even insure fish, reptiles, and birds. These animals are not my friends.
VPI has a major medical plan which provides reimbursement for Veterinary expenses based on a defined benefit schedule. They even reimburse my Pet Parents if I get cancer, have an accident, or need surgery. While I am a pure breed, they insure all types of mixed- breed dogs too. Pet Parents can choose flexible pricing and customize the plan to fit their needs and budget.
Some Pet Parents can afford to spend more money than others. The maximum annual benefit is $14,000. That’s a lot of money that can be used to buy me more toys and bones. The best part is that all of this renews annually so I am protected every year. There are certain conditions that are not covered but I could not tell you what they are since I can’t read the fine print and they don’t make dog glasses. I can be protected for about a dollar a day. I live in New York, and the rates are based on my age (which I won’t reveal on the Internet), size, geography, plan type and my species. In my case, I am a very smart dog.
I love to go for car rides, especially in the summer when I can run on the beach. I can’t use a seat belt. I worry that my Pet Father is a bad driver and could have an accident. Pet insurance is so important that even Met Life, Farmers and Progressive have a travel accident rider to cover me if I am hurt due to a human’s bad driving skills.
Did you know that pet insurance generated $400 million in premium in 2010 and is expected to grow to $600 million by 2013? More than 65% of households have a pet. There are 77.5 million dogs like me that need Pet Parents to protect, pamper and love us. We want to live longer too, and have insurance and treatment options like our owners. I don’t have a long term care policy like my parents and I am dependent on them to be my caregivers as I get older. I know that Pet Parents treat us like one of the family and will do anything to make us well if we get sick.
After all, aren’t I Man’s Best Friend?