Tag Archives: Pet Insurance

National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day

(Photo by Robert Alexander/Getty Images)

Whenever my friend Jane and I walk her chihuahua, Bowser, people stop to admire him. Bowser just has that type of dynamic personality and good looks. They invariably ask how old he is and Jane always proudly declares that he’s a rescue dog, so she’s not exactly sure. We’re not even sure if he’s really a chihuahua, he’s way too mellow. One thing’s for certain, he’s a bundle of joy.

This Friday, April 30, is National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day. The day was created to raise awareness of the millions of animals living in shelters across the country that need loving homes.  Adopting a shelter pet has many benefits, the top one being that you’re saving a life.

Pet adoptions have surged during the pandemic and some shelters are experiencing shortages. A survey from the Insurance Research Council (IRC), found that 21 percent of homeowners reported adopting a dog in 2020.

If you’re thinking about adopting a cat, dog, bird, guinea pig or any other pet, you’re probably factoring the financial costs of taking care of the animal into your budget. Veterinary bills can be a large portion of these expenditures, and pet health insurance can help cover these costs.

Pet health insurance works like human health insurance, in that both include annual premiums, deductibles, co-pays and caps.

The pet insurance market has been growing in the United States, with an expected increase of 7 percent, compounded annually, through 2027, according to Acumen Research and Consulting.

Insurance regulators are taking notice of the burgeoning market, with a model law in development to establish regulatory standards. And in California, in response to the pandemic pet adoption surge, Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara has sponsored a bill to require insurers to fully cover spaying and neutering.

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Is my exotic pet covered by insurance?

Photo by Andre Mouton from Pexels

Did you know that December 14 is international monkey day? This delightful holiday to honor everyone’s favorite simians was invented by two Michigan State art students in 2000.

Suggestions for how to celebrate this holiday include donating to conservation efforts or reading to children about monkeys.

Of course, here at the Triple-I, the holiday naturally got us thinking about people who keep monkeys and other exotic and unusual pets, and the insurance implications.

According to several sources we consulted, keeping monkeys as pets is never a good idea. Keeping a monkey as a pet is cruel to the animal, is illegal in many jurisdictions, and may result in serious and even deadly injuries to humans.

Nevertheless, according to one animal advocacy group, about 15,000 primates are kept as pets in the U.S., and the American Veterinary Medical Association estimates that 1 in 10 American households has an exotic pet (defined as any animal native to a foreign country).

Injuries caused by pets, if they are covered by insurance, would be covered under a comprehensive homeowners insurance policy. However it’s important to read your policy and see exactly what’s covered. If you’re not sure, speak to your insurance agent. You should expect to pay more for coverage and carry higher liability limits if you legally own exotic animals. And homeowners insurance also frequently excludes any physical damage caused by pets.

Exotic animals can require expensive veterinary treatments. While pet health insurance is becoming increasingly available and affordable, many insurers cover a restricted list of species. Pet Assure, a discount program available through some employers, is accepted for many kinds of animals.

Fourth of July Celebrations Spark Pet Injuries

PetsSafeJuly4

While Fourth of July is a time of celebration for Americans, man’s best friend may be at increased risk for injury and illness over the holiday.

Veterinary Pet Insurance Co shares the most common Fourth of July related pet injuries based on its database of more than 525,000 insured pets.

Pets are at risk for a number of firework-related injuries. Common injuries include: burns; strangulation from getting a collar caught on a fence or jumping a fence due to the loud noise of fireworks; and laceration from breaking through a glass window or fence. Average costs for treatment run upward from $355.

Other common holiday-related injuries/illness include heat stroke, drowning after falling in a pool and poisoning from eating chocolate or table scraps and ingesting alcohol.

VPI suggests pet owners plan ahead with the following tips to keep our furry friends safe during the holiday weekend:

  1. Set up a safe zone for your pet and never leave your pet unattended or tied up in the back yard.
  2. Leave out extra water bowls to ensure your pet stays hydrated and be aware of foods that could be toxic to your dog.
  3. Be mindful of your dog around a pool and if they are allowed to swim, make sure they’re a comfortable swimmer and know how to get out of the pool.

The American Kennel Club makes the point that it’s safer to keep your pets at home during Fourth of July celebrations instead of bringing them to your neighbor’s party. Keeping your pet in a safe room where he/she is comfortable can reduce stress from the noise of fireworks.

Have a safe and happy Fourth of July!