We hate to think about anything happening to our much-loved canine companions such as accidents, illness or our dog getting lost. Life happens however, and the unexpected can occur at any time - and when it does, it counts to have all protections in place to help cover the costs, give your dog the best care and make the situation as stress-free as possible.
What exactly does pet insurance do, however? What does it include, and do we even need it at all?
Read on for our guide to pet insurance for dogs and how having the right policy can give you, as a dog owner, peace and reassurance.
Insuring your pet simply means you pay a regular premium to a pet insurance provider so that if unexpected costs arise related to your dog, you’ll receive compensation.
Having pet insurance for your dog means you’ll be helped to cover costs, for instance, if your dog dies, gets ill or injured and needs veterinary treatment. Depending on the terms of the cover, you could also receive financial help if your dog needs to stay in a kennel, have important surgery, or gets sick or hurt when overseas.
There are various types of pet insurance for dogs available, so you can choose the one most suited to your dog’s needs and/or your financial situation.
The most common type of pet insurance will cover costs for the span of your dog’s lifetime, and is the most comprehensive form of pet insurance. You’ll usually pay yearly for each year of your pet’s life, and it may get more expensive as they get older.
Sometimes called annual cover, you will pay out yearly on a rolling basis. Choosing this type usually costs less and you can shop around each year for the best deal - however the cover is generally less comprehensive and might not include the protection you need.
This is the most basic type of dog insurance, and only covers if your pet has an
accident (for instance, if they’re hit by a car) but doesn’t cover treatment for illnesses or health issues.
Pet insurance for dogs covers all kinds of scenarios, and though you hopefully won’t need to use it for long stretches of time, it is useful to have the security for when things can and do happen. As well as paying for veterinary treatment, most insurance policies cover the following:
If your dog sadly passes away prematurely, perhaps by accident or an unexpected illness, you can get back the cost of what you paid for your dog.
If your dog gets lost or goes missing for a certain period of time, some pet insurers contribute costs towards missing pet posters or reward money. For some policies, this extends to the theft of your dog.
Some pet insurance companies cover the costs of treatment should your dog get ill or harmed when on holiday or travelling overseas.
If you need to leave your dog in a kennel for a period of time, perhaps because you’re going into hospital, some insurers will help you pay for this.
It’s usually covered by insurance if your dog has come to the end of their life and a vet deems it kinder to put the dog to sleep than have them endure continual pain. Cremation or burial costs may not be covered, however.
There are also scenarios that a typical dog insurance policy does not usually cover, such as the following:
Treatments such as acupuncture, hydrotherapy, osteopathy (recommended by a vet) are usually not provided as standard.
Other scenarios that usually aren’t covered by standard dog insurance policies include:
When you’re choosing a pet insurance provider, read the full terms of the cover to check what’s included from top to bottom - this way you’ll find a policy of the most value to you and your pooch.
Keeping a pet can be costly, and insurance certainly adds to that bill - but the benefits of owning a lovable dog companion are endless, and (we think you’ll agree) far outweigh the expense. To make your decision easier, some providers offer extra perks alongside standard cover.
With Waggel’s standard pet insurance policy, for instance, you’ll also receive added features such as free discounts and offers, a 24/7 video vet service, online behaviour consultations, the ability to make fully digital claims, and donations to a charity of your choosing.
We know nothing can prevent the emotional distress of something happening to your dog - but it’s reassuring to know that if something unexpected happens, they will have access to the right health care and protection - and you will at least receive compensation to make the process easier.
Let’s answer some further commonly asked questions about getting pet insurance cover for your dog…
Most dog owners see their pooch as a much-loved and valued member of their family, so though there’s a cost to getting your pet insured, we think it’s very much worth it for the peace of mind in keeping your dog safe and healthy.
It could be even more worth it if you have an old dog, a dog with a specific health condition, a pedigree dog that may be of high value (therefore more likely to be stolen), or if your dog’s breed is predisposed to health issues.
If you aren’t sure you can afford a big yearly pay-out, there are other ways of paying, such as monthly or quarterly, which might make it more economical for you.
No one is required to get pet insurance, and it’s not illegal if you don’t get it. As experts and enthusiasts in the health and wellbeing of dogs, we are big advocates of getting the right pet insurance. If you take the risk of paying out for your dog if and when they need it, it could end up costing you much more in the long run. If you can’t pay for vet treatment when the time comes, this could put your dog at significant risk.
Older dogs can be insured just like younger dogs can - but it can often cost a bit more, as they’re more likely to need ongoing veterinary care.
Our friends at Waggel offer award-winning pet insurance cover fuelled by a love of pets, tech and doing things differently. Check out their dog insurance policies for peace of mind in keeping your dog safe, happy and healthy.