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Bloody pet insurance

(62 Posts)
MawBroon Sun 23-Apr-17 17:50:11

I have been paying over £60 per month for Grace's insurance this last year and I wish I had not bothered
Her premium over the 9 years we have had her has gone up from £300 per annum to £772
I don't dare do the maths.
My recent claim for Metacam plus a home visit came to £400+
How much have the skinflints paid out?
I know one has to be prepared for the huge expense of surgery, investigations etc etc, but someone, somewhere is making a lot of money out of our love for our animals. 😡😡

whitewave Sun 23-Apr-17 17:54:58

I think they all do maw

We are with John Lewis £54 pm. With £100 excess.

Duncan had an infected paw last week. £96 odd then we took him back this week for last check £35shock

The insurance companies, the vets - well everyone are taking us all to the cleaners!!

ninathenana Sun 23-Apr-17 18:02:12

Put the same amount each month under the mattress in an account

whitewave Sun 23-Apr-17 18:06:51

Yes nina that's what I should have done but Dunc is 8 next birthday and I assume the risk of needing to spend a lot has risen (hope not) so I don't think that now I would save enough in time sad

whitewave Sun 23-Apr-17 18:09:04

Someone without a care in the world!!

Katek Sun 23-Apr-17 18:11:37

I've never had pet insurance and have just paid as needed from savings. Think it's a big rip off. Our vet also offers a prepayment plan where you pay in a set amount each month and any treatment is deducted from your balance. It's a very good idea.

merlotgran Sun 23-Apr-17 18:41:42

It does sound like a good idea, Katek but aren't you just subsidising their cash flow if you don't need any treatment?

Katek Sun 23-Apr-17 18:56:08

Most likely, but at least cash is there to offset costs when needed. I'd rather do that (which I don't at the moment) than pay out inflated insurance costs.

Gemmag Sun 23-Apr-17 19:41:10

My dog is 11 and I recently changed from DL to Petplan when they increased the monthly cost from £42 to £58 which I thought was too much when the only treatment he has had is a scale and polish last year which was done at a special price of £125. Petplan are charging me £35 for this year (I expect them to really hike it up to £45 or more next year!) but that excludes any mouth problems he might have because I had to declare this information when asked the question, has your dog seen a vet for anything in the last year?. I worry that he might need surgery at some point and vets fees for surgery are just hugh. We lost our other lovely dog😢in 2015 as he had to be put to sleep a few days after major surgery for a gallbladder problem. The cost of surgery and vets fees came to over £5.000.
If I was getting a dog now knowing what I do I would not bother with ins, but just pay up if and when I needed to but because of my dogs age I will continue to pay.

Purpledaffodil Sun 23-Apr-17 20:06:52

I insured our cat with JL, £12 a month when she was 3 and it didn't go up too much. Have never insured a cat before, but was very glad I had when she became ill. She was a feral cat, an Arabian Mau, my son rescued in Dubai and then couldn't take to the next country he worked in, so she was flown home to us. DH was devoted to her and she to him, £800 in tests and treatment later, she died of liver cancer aged only 7 last year. I was so glad I had insured her as it meant she could have all necessary treatment and JL paid up quickly and without quibble.

NfkDumpling Sun 23-Apr-17 21:59:14

When our last dog reached ten his insurance cost went through the ceiling, so I managed to change it to third party only in case he caused an accident, and 'self insured' ie put the old rate of insurance money in a pot. I decided then, that if we had another dog (haven't yet) I'd do this from the outset.

However, my DD2 insures her dog through Protect My Bubble. They've paid out without quibble for several operations now. Up to a set amount within a rolling twelve months. It seems to work well.

Iam64 Sun 23-Apr-17 22:27:00

Ours are with Petplan, forty a month for both. One has had treatment for three injuries caused by hunting at speed through shrubs, surgery each time. There were two years between each incident. One had skin problems. I pay a £75 excess but the insurance has paid each time. One dog is nine years old the other five. I've often considered saving the money in a dog account but when a friend's dog needed treatment after scavenging the bill was £700 and I'm told a broken leg can be £2000 so I've kept paying. Who knows what's best?

merlotgran Sun 23-Apr-17 22:44:28

We're with SAGA. Just under £40 for two terriers. We've claimed three times for Millie - Anal gland surgery, pyometra and a dental infection. So far, Peggy's vet treatment has been within the excess of £125.

I do think vets are a bit gung ho when they know pets are insured.

Menopaws Mon 24-Apr-17 06:28:52

Stopped paying as so much and reckoned to save it and pay out as necessary and take a chance. I know a risk but worked so far as only payout with last dog cost what the insurance over the years would have cost anyway.

Anya Mon 24-Apr-17 06:38:09

Never pay pet insurance, instead pay £10 a month per dog into an account. There was over £3000 in that account when I had to fork out £800 for a big op last year.

Just looked at my last bill two weeks ago which included a blood test (£68) The Metacam was £28. That seems a lot for a home visit Mawbroom hmm Having said that I rang in the morning, had an appointment before lunch, and the results of the blood test were back by teatime. Beats the NHS any day!

mumofmadboys Mon 24-Apr-17 07:40:14

We have a dog and a cat_ aged 17 and 14. Never paid pet insurance. Same with previous dog and cat. Minimal vet bills so far. No doubt we have been lucky so far.

MawBroon Mon 24-Apr-17 07:46:21

The home visit element was £80 anya on TOP of the consultation (!) I thought that was worth it to save Grace distress (and frankly I thought it might be the final visit) and the Metacam was over a 9 month period plus another 2/3 months supply.
I think our vets ARE pricey but have always had impeccable and friendly care so didn't want to compromise on that. But yes, even £50 a month and one would have a handy cushion providing urgent treatment wasn't needed in the first year.
Will think carefully if and when I have another dog in the future but the meantime Grace's welfare is what matters, still fuming of course!!

Iam64 Mon 24-Apr-17 07:58:47

Anya is doing what I considered, i.e. the pet savings account and it's something I'll consider with the next (if there are any) dogs. The hunting accidents paid for about 5 years insurance though so and as that dog is now 9 it seems worth continuing to shell out every month.
I suspect city/town vets have higher charges than country vets. That's been my experience, and that of friends. Country vets do big animals as well, whereas city vets have a captive audience of doting and probably less knowledgable pet owners. No offence!

ggmarion Mon 24-Apr-17 09:58:47

I agree that country vets seem to charge less. In fact, I wasn't charged at all for a vet to call 'on her way past' to quickly check my old pony. It seems they have to verify the existence before prescribing Danalon which he has. When my poor old Westie was pts 3 weeks ago the home visit part of the bill was £37.30. That was for a vet and a nurse to come out. In the past (another vet in a different part of the country) seemed to put up their bill if they knew the animal was insured.
Maw Broon, thinking about you and Gracie and willing her on to get better.

Sparklefizz Mon 24-Apr-17 10:39:50

John Lewis Pet Ins are brilliant. My little cat was hit by a car 18 months ago aged only 1, and was in the vet hospital for 8 days having operations and treatment while they tried to save him.

Eventually he caught an infection and sadly had to be put to sleep, but his treatment came to £3,000 which was my insured max, and JL paid up immediately without a quibble. As he was only a year old, there is no way I could have put £3,000 "under the mattress" as someone suggested, and I would never have been able to afford so much treatment for him.

As it happened, he still died but at least I knew that I had done the very best to save his life. He was - and still is - much-loved. JL are excellent.

MawBroon, sending healing thoughts to you and Gracie.

Sparklefizz Mon 24-Apr-17 10:44:31

PS. My previous cat became diabetic. Nowadays a diabetic pet is not put to sleep but can be injected twice a day with insulin. If you don't have insurance, you would have to be prepared to pay out a lot of money for the diabetes to be stabilised (£800 for my cat), then regular check-ups, plus £30 per month for needles and insulin .... all out of the insurance.

It's a gamble, like any insurance. You may pay out for years and your house doesn't burn down ... it's the same with pets. A neighbour's cat has thyroid problems and needs thyroxine every day - when you have these sort of ongoing illnesses, the vet bills certainly mount up without insurance. If you are happy to have your pet put to sleep when the unexpected happens, well that is your choice.

Yorkshiregel Mon 24-Apr-17 11:01:24

We had a cat once. We were given a bill of £90 for just removing an abscess from its cheek. It died of kidney failure in the end but you have to be aware that you just do not have to pay for food, you have vet bills too.

Why do we pay for a dog licence and not a cat licence?

Yorkshiregel Mon 24-Apr-17 11:03:23

NEVER give an animal as a present. Maybe the recipient will not thank you because of these vets' bills.

Yorkshiregel Mon 24-Apr-17 11:07:04

Reading all these posts I wonder what it costs for a farmer to have his animals ie herds of cows and flocks of sheep, vaccinated/injected/treated. No wonder a lot of them are going out of business. Would it be cheaper to grow crops?

Stella14 Mon 24-Apr-17 11:22:15

I have always had dogs and cats and I have never had Pet Insurance. I have considered it in the past, but having repeatedly done the maths, I know I'm much better off without it and would be throwing several thousands of pounds away over the lifetime of a pet if I had it. The only people I have ever known that paid £5000, £6000, for surgery have been insured. So many vets throw everything at an insured animal. They seem to have a scan when and xray would do the job, often have more than one scan (each one requiring a general anaesthetic which adds to the cost and is bad for the animal if not necessarily). Whatever else they do adds up to these huge bills. Whenever it's become apparent that more than routine treatment was required, I have always been asked "is she/he insured"? I say "no" and we move on to discuss the best treatment for the problem. One of my dogs had bloat and gastric torsion (twisted gut), a veterinary emergency. To add to the worry and the cost, it was out of hours. I contacted them and rushed her to the vet at midnight. The vet didn't expect her to survive. She had emergency surgery and was nursed at the vet's on various drips (fluids and intravenous analgesics and antibiotics) for two days after the surgery. Then had the usual follow-up appointment. Thankfully, she did really well. Total cost £1400! Subsequently, she tore her cruciate knee ligament and had surgery for that. Cost £450. Other than these events, all other stuff cost under the cost of an average excess, so there would have been no payout. I currently have a dog who suffers with allergies. He takes daily medication for life. He is reviewed by the vet every 6 months as is required by law (no doubt it would be every 3 months as recommended by the BVA if he was insured). The cost of this ongoing situation is a fraction of the monthly premiums of an insurance policy and that isn't taking account of the excess! IMO Vets do more (not great for the animal) and charge more for insured animals. This of course contributes to what insurance companies charge and their huge profits makes up the rest. Most of my animals have needed very little veterinary care until old age. My understanding is that insurance premiums go through the roof in an older animal!