Pet Insurance, yea or nay

Pet insurance first crossed my mind after seeing my Bullmastiff run down my steep deck stairs chasing after a deer. She took a hard right, ended up on the ground and was unable to walk. It turned out she had torn her Cruciate Ligament, aka ACL. After a hefty veterinary bill of $2800.00, and in hindsight, I decided maybe I should have gotten insurance before this happened. Not wanting to pay another substantial bill such as this, I immediately purchased an insurance plan for her as well as one for my new puppy. It turns out, the younger the dog, the cheaper the monthly rate. As the dog ages, the monthly fee increases.

My puppy went five years without any need for the insurance but then it happened. He tore his ACL. Now you say, “how can that happen again”? My breed of choice, Bullmastiffs are known for this type of injury. In fact, over a ten year period, I was exposed to five of these surgeries. Four on my Bullmastiff’s and one on my Chihuahua. Yes, that’s correct. Even my little rescue Chihuahua could not escape this fate.

Out of the five Cruciate surgeries I had insurance for three of them. Was it worth it? Absolutely, I think…. The last one in 2015 had a price tag of $3000.00. My cost after the insurance paid was my deductible, $100.00. Sounds great doesn’t it? With my calculations I had paid out $2800.00 in monthly insurance fees over the last 5 years. So did I come out ahead? A little.

You must read the fine print and know what you may be up against with the breed of dog you have. Read the exclusions and pre existing conditions in the contract.
After all, if the insurance company knows certain breeds are prone to a specific illness or injury they don’t want to lose their shirts over it.

I have another dog that is now three years old. I decided not to buy the insurance as he is as mixed a breed as they come. I am hoping that is code for a healthier dog. I am dedicating $40 a month into an account for the day when I may need it. If that day never comes I’ll get a nice vacation with the money.

So let’s get back to the original question of yea or nay. It is a gamble just like everything. If you buy it, you may not ever need it and vice versa. I believe if you can put aside the money each month and not touch it for the yearly visits or the occasional hot spot or ear infection that might just be the better way to go.

Janet Sassin
Owner of Walk This Way Pet Services/Pet Sitter/Dog Walker


  1. Great post. Your post has lots of information about pet insurance. Really pets are our family member so we should have pet insurance.

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