Modern veterinary medicine is rapidly evolving and owners are expecting much higher standards of care for their pets than would have been possible only 5-10 years ago. Unfortunately, medical care is expensive, especially when there is no government subsidy comparable to the PBS or Medicare scheme that is associated with our own medical costs. In a nutshell- veterinary bills are bound to be expensive!
As hard as we try to keep medical costs to an affordable level, with severe injury and illness this can be difficult to achieve while still providing an exceptional standard of medical care. Unexpected pet medical events can leave pet owners in a difficult situation when they cannot provide their much-loved pet the health care it needs for financial reasons. As vets, this often means that we have to work together with the pet owner to find a second or third or fourth best option for their pet, which is a frustrating process for all involved!
To avoid this stressful dilemma, we strongly recommend pet insurance for your dog or cat. A comprehensive policy will generally cover up to 80% of your veterinary costs when unexpected accidents or illness may arise. As a very general guide, Accident and Illness Health Insurance for your dog will cost between $300-450 per year depending on your dogs’ age, breed, and any excess you choose. Cat Insurance tends to be a little cheaper - around $250 per year. This is a sound investment if you consider a common scenario that we see all too often; Imagine your new puppy escapes your back yard, runs onto the road, and is hit by a car. Typical costs include an emergency consultation, intensive care, radiographs, an ultrasound to look for internal bleeding, management of any wounds, hospitalisation, pain medication, and surgery to fix any broken bones. In a very short period of time, your puppy may accumulate a bill in the thousands of dollars (for the example, let’s say the costs come to $4000). In the human world, Medicare would cover the cost of this treatment! Without this help, how would you financially cope in this situation?
With comprehensive pet insurance, you will generally only need to cover 20% of the bill plus your chosen excess (~$800-900 in total). The insurance company will reimburse you 80% or $3200. This reduces the stress on the family, in an already very stressful situation!