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Which insurer for pets?

(26 Posts)
phoenix Fri 06-Apr-18 09:44:02

Good morning, I know that there has been a previous discussion on whether or not pet insurance is worth it, after a recent experience (with a bill of over £800 shock ) we have decided that we will get Minnie insured.

Before I start looking on comparison sites and getting bombarded with calls and emails, I thought I would ask GN members if they had any recommendations.

MawBroon Fri 06-Apr-18 09:47:12

There are cheaper than Petplan, but some will not cover your pet for “pre-existing conditions” so forget Year 2 after a problem.
Others put the premium way up but you are stuck.
I would just say tread very warily. I looked at JL and I think one other (maybe Tesco?) but stuck with Petplan.

Charleygirl Fri 06-Apr-18 09:56:32

I started off with Sainsbury for Tara. She was with another insurer who refused to pay up so I was landed as you will be with "pre existing conditions." Sainsbury was very reasonable the first year but after that it rocketed annually and when it came to asking for £28 a month I decided to look elsewhere. I cannot remember who she is with at present but if you are interested I can look it up for you. I do know it is half of the amount I was paying. I need to keep Tara insured as she is around 13 years of age now.

NanaandGrampy Fri 06-Apr-18 10:15:00

I’ve been with Animal Friends and also M & S and found both good but shifted from one to the other when premiums went up hugely for no reason .

We took Superior cover which resets every year so pre existing conditions are covered ( I also think it’s a full life policy) but I’d need to check that one.

I was impressed when we moved that our monthly premium dropped by 1/3 Rd just because we moved areas.

Scribbles Fri 06-Apr-18 10:29:29

Lucy has always been insured with MoreTh>n . They've recently changed their coverage levels so you get slightly less for your money than before but, for a 14 year old cat, it still seems a reasonable deal.
Our premium was reduced by half when we moved house because average vet costs in the east midlands are lower than in greater London. I've recently had to make my first ever claim against the policy and received the cheque within 6 days which impressed me greatly!

Squiffy Fri 06-Apr-18 10:34:02

We're with M & S and they were brilliant at paying for vet's bills. Our fluffball developed allergies to certain foods (and TREES!!!) and so it will be an ongoing problem, but they even paid for her flea treatment - she needed a turbo treatment to stop her scratching! Naturally, at renewal time, the premium went up, but probably no more than other companies would charge now that it's known she has problems. I think it's about £17 per month, a fortune, but the bill for all the tests she had come to thousands shock

annsixty Fri 06-Apr-18 10:34:42

My D has petplan for her 3cats and her 1year old dog.
The dog has pancreatitis.
One of the cats had a brush with a car last year which was very costly.
She rang me a few days ago to say her premiums had gone up from£50 a month to £100.
She tried other companies but they wouldn't cover the dog for pancreatitis.
I suggested she kept him with Petplan but moved the cats, I hadn't heard back from her about it.
Owning a pet and being responsible is a very costly business.

humptydumpty Fri 06-Apr-18 10:43:08

Realised shortly before my cat died (never claimed before) that my premiums had gone up to nearly £80 a month!!! If you can afford to take a loan or overdraft if necessary, I'm inclined to think putting 'premiums' aside into a savings account is a better idea.

phoenix Fri 06-Apr-18 11:47:55

Many thanks for the responses, much appreciated.

Minnie is 2 around 2 years old, and seems pretty fit, but after the experience with Digby I feel we should get her insured.

humptydumpty Fri 06-Apr-18 12:03:31

The other pitfall I was warned about is, some insurers only pay for treatment to the end of the policy year, not beyond - and it then becomes a prior condition. Be warned!

LadyGracie Fri 06-Apr-18 12:09:50

I’ve just taken out a lifetime policy with Sainsbury’s for my kitten. This was after quite a lot of research after the expense of my uninsured beloved elderly cat dying of kidney failure in December.

charliebrown Fri 06-Apr-18 13:02:58

I would not touch PetPlan with a barge pole. We took over our DD dogs and as she had this insurance we continued as it seemed like tempting fate to cancel it. In the end we were paying £64 a month with an excess of £135. When we sadly had our last dog put to sleep aged 14 we had shelled out £1250 over the last year and got £125 back! Apparently each medical complaint is subject to the excess.

I could go on about various issues with them for each dog. They even tried to charge us two excesses when our second dog was put to sleep and I had to get the Ombudsman to sort this out.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but if we ever get another pet we will decide on an amount and put it in an account.

NonnaW Fri 06-Apr-18 19:03:37

Both our dogs are with Petplan. Never had to claim with first dog but second had problems with her knees (luxating patella) and they paid out for X-rays and also hydrotherapy for her. We do occasionally think about just putting an amount into a separate account if needed but while we can manage the payments we will probably continue as it gives us peace of mind.

Willow500 Fri 06-Apr-18 19:53:02

Mine are with Tesco - they have been very good paying out almost £3,000 recently for my girl's thyroid treatment which (due to her temperament) meant blood tests under sedation at the vets. At the moment I'm paying £28 a month for two cats - I'm pretty sure that's going to go up when it's renewed although the lady at the clinic said her experience was they were very good.

phoenix Sat 07-Apr-18 00:22:20

Thanks again, all.

I will confess that although having a separate account and putting money into that is probably the best idea, I would probably be tempted to dip into it for other things blush

I will probably look on various individual websites (based on the advice here) rather than go to a comparison site.

Charleygirl I know you are pretty switched on with these matters, so if you can let me know which one your currently have Tara with, I would appreciate it.

Iam64 Sat 07-Apr-18 08:30:48

Our dogs are insured by PetPlan. It's expensive but so reliable. One of them had a number of expensive treatments after "hunting" episodes. Never quibbled, paid up. We haven't claimed for 3 years but it's good to know they're covered. A neighbour's dog suffered a broken leg recently, £3000 vet bill.

Sparklefizz Sat 07-Apr-18 08:52:40

phoenix I have never seen the logic in putting money into a separate account. Vet's bills can be huge. How much money would someone squirrel away? My cat was only 18 months old when he was hit by a car. His medical treatment cost £3,000. I would never have saved up that amount in so short a time. He was insured with John Lewis and they were brilliant. No quibbling. I kept them updated and they settled direct with the vet.

I have seen vets very upset with other pet-owners whose pets were not insured and the owner couldn't afford the treatment. It must be heartbreaking for the vet when they know the pet could be saved.

For me insurance gives peace of mind because my pet is a member of the family. I wouldn't leave my house uninsured, so definitely not my pet.

Blue45Sapphire Mon 09-Apr-18 15:31:02

I have Petplan for my two pedigree Birmans, £30 a month for the pair. Touch wood will not have to use it for a few years!

Bluegal Mon 09-Apr-18 17:53:54

I agree, look at the small print. Some cheaper insurance options will only provide a set amount for one condition and after that you have to pay for treatment yourself anyway.

I gave up paying insurance after six years as it rose horrendously but its very much a lottery. My cat is now 10 and should he fall ill now with say cancer or diabetes I would probably not pay for operations etc. Does that sound hard hearted? probably and I do love him to bits I just don't think I would prolong his life at all costs. But...I digress, just read the policy to know exactly what you are getting.

annsixty Mon 09-Apr-18 18:02:52

My D ,referred to above,has just rung to say her oldest cat approx 5 years oldhas been kept in by the vet with a possible brain problem, could be a toxin, could be a tumour.
She is staying with petplan, this is going to be expensive.

merlotgran Mon 09-Apr-18 18:16:33

We also had a bad experience with PetPlan so our JRs are both insured with Saga. They were brilliant a few years ago when both of them needed expensive treatment.

I would advise not to switch insurers once you have signed up with one because that's how we came unstuck. Our ridgeback was insured with Tesco but when we got Millie the JR she was already with PetPlan who then offered us two dog 'deal.'

When the ridgeback needed treatment they found every loophole they could so as not to pay out. We should have stayed with Tesco.

gummybears Fri 13-Apr-18 13:43:29

We had Kennel Club and they paid up in full for a very expensive accident in my boy's puppyhood, as well as a very close brush with the furry reaper thanks to a contaminated vaccination...

Sadly as he is now considered a somewhat elderly puppy, the premiums were godawful and we have redirected them into the emergencies fund instead.

They were very good and comprehensive insurers though. Not cheap but I have no complaints.

MawBroon Fri 13-Apr-18 13:45:41

Oh Annsixty I do hope things are mot as bad as they sound. 🐱☹️

annsixty Fri 13-Apr-18 14:14:11

Thanks Maw puss is now home, the vet thinks she was poisoned, my D's prompt action saved her.
She was at the vets for 72hours, cost- £1650, very gratefully for insurance cover.

Charleygirl Fri 13-Apr-18 16:28:58

phoenix I have put it in a very safe place never to be found again but I will keep looking.