UK Pet Insurance

Health topics and issues with Chow Chows.

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Lady Phoenix
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UK Pet Insurance

Postby Lady Phoenix » Tue Jun 24, 2014 2:02 pm

Apologies of this is in the wrong forum, please move if it is

I do apologise but I suppose this is aimed mostly at UK dog owners

Dos eveyone have insurance? Would you recommend it?

Here is my thinking.

Chow Chow prixes vary a lot, I appreciate, but our is going to cost £950

Petplan want £93.79 a month for their cover 4 life plan. In addition, this premium is likely to go up as the dog gets older.

The dog is going to be inside most of the time, and when walked will probably be on the lead. This will of course minimise accidents, for example, getting run over by the car. It wont reduce the chances to zero, but it will be minimal.

Forget jabs, and worming etc as they are what I consider ongoing costs that you would pay for anyway.

This means that the most likely claim we would make on the insurance would be a new ongoing condition, therefore, IMO, the cover for life policy is the only way to go.

So, in a year we would have paid more insurance than it would have cost us to buy the dog.

Now, a quick web search tells me that 1 in 3 dog owners will make a claim costing on average £300 per claim.

So, the law of average says that we will pay out £100 a year on vet bills on average.

Im now inclined to consider instead of paying for insurance to instead set up a new bak account and saving £93 a month and using that to cover vet bills.

Can someone read over my theory and check that it makes sense?

I have no objection to paying for insurance but I object to feeling ripped off.

Rory's Dad
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Re: UK Pet Insurance

Postby Rory's Dad » Tue Jun 24, 2014 6:15 pm

I am in the US, but the concept of insurance is the same regardless of where you are.

Insurance is designed to cover the unexpected, and is the cost (premium) is based on the insurance companies anticipated claims across a large sample of similiar risks. For example, auto insurance can be based on where you live...rural location with low accident rates/smaller volumes of traffic will be cheaper than urban areas with high traffic volume or higher crime rates. Coastal properties will be more expensive to insure for flood events than inland locations. Many insurers charge higher rates for homeowner liability coverage when you own a dog breed prown to statistical biting.

So now onto the health insurance issue for your pet. Rates are based on prospective injuries or genetic dispositions. Chows, in particular, are known to have issues with hip displaysia, knee problems, and entropion just to name a few. Resolving these issues is an expensive venture. I own two Chows and both injured their knee ligaments as pups. They resolved quite nicely on their own, but the initial costs on my male was through the roof...$200 US dollars for an Xray, $300 for an MRI, $350 for an Ultrasound, $200 for an Orthopedic Consult, $3,000 estimate for corrective surgery to the ACL. You get the point. I opted for alternative methods and he healed quite nicely without the surgery, but still it was $850 US Dollars just to find out what was wrong...btw, he jumped off the couch onto the wood floor and his leg just slid out. I had a similar event with our female.

My female may still need the entropion surgery. I think not, but it still might be necessary. Probably looking at about $1500 if needed (Chows should not be sedated under general anethesesia and require special handling). Naturally, this is known by the insurance company and adds to the costs of the policy.

All of that being said, i do not have a health insurance policy on either of my dogs. But the statistics that you are using are too general to make a decision. Chows have some very specific instances that require review. And many of the insurance plans available have very specific exclusions. They may not, for example, cover bloat. That is a condition more common in chested breeds where the extra rib cage space allows the stomach to twist/turn and in most cases is fatal if not diagnosed and treated immediately. They may also not cover some genetic defects.

Lady Phoenix
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Re: UK Pet Insurance

Postby Lady Phoenix » Wed Jun 25, 2014 12:23 am

Rory's Dad wrote:So now onto the health insurance issue for your pet. Rates are based on prospective injuries or genetic dispositions. Chows, in particular, are known to have issues with hip displaysia, knee problems, and entropion just to name a few. Resolving these issues is an expensive venture. I own two Chows and both injured their knee ligaments as pups. They resolved quite nicely on their own, but the initial costs on my male was through the roof...$200 US dollars for an Xray, $300 for an MRI, $350 for an Ultrasound, $200 for an Orthopedic Consult, $3,000 estimate for corrective surgery to the ACL. You get the point. I opted for alternative methods and he healed quite nicely without the surgery, but still it was $850 US Dollars just to find out what was wrong...btw, he jumped off the couch onto the wood floor and his leg just slid out. I had a similar event with our female.

My female may still need the entropion surgery. I think not, but it still might be necessary. Probably looking at about $1500 if needed (Chows should not be sedated under general anethesesia and require special handling). Naturally, this is known by the insurance company and adds to the costs of the policy.

All of that being said, i do not have a health insurance policy on either of my dogs. But the statistics that you are using are too general to make a decision. Chows have some very specific instances that require review. And many of the insurance plans available have very specific exclusions. They may not, for example, cover bloat. That is a condition more common in chested breeds where the extra rib cage space allows the stomach to twist/turn and in most cases is fatal if not diagnosed and treated immediately. They may also not cover some genetic defects.


Very useful, thank you.

However, Ill admit that I still dont see the cost benefi fo insurance. I have no idea what these will cost in the UK, or what it would cost to insure a dog in Dollars, so for easy maths Im going to convert to GBP on a 1:1 basis

So, your first dog cost £850 to find out what is wrong. Second dof could cost £1,500 if needed, so thats a total cost of £2,300
£93 a month insurance per dog, lets me generous and give a whopping 20% discount for second dog, so thats £167pm Insurance

Thats a whopping £2,004

Id be interested to know a few people, how old their dogs are and what "extra" vet treatments they have had. By extra I mean exclude normal jabs, worming, de-fleaing etc etc as you have to buy that wether you need it or not.

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lrfishwick
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Re: UK Pet Insurance

Postby lrfishwick » Fri Aug 08, 2014 1:17 am

Hi there, I too live in the uk and did take out insurance for Toby. It is with helpucover.co.uk and costs me £10 per month (all of life cover). Toby is now 12 months old and thankfully very healthy - I on the otherhand have just had major surgery and spent 4 days in hospital. The insurance covered the cost of Toby going into kennels, plus whilst I am off work, which could be 6 months, all the monthly premiums are refunded. We also have a westie, she had insurance until she was 7 years old, and during that time she needed two major ops - one for a dislocated hip and another for a hernia. I guess my thinking at the moment is: whilst the cost is not excessive the piece of mind provided is useful. I will obviously review this if prices increase. Hope this helps.


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