Pet insurance for older dogs and cats

October 5th, 2016

pet insurance dog cat

Thanks to the advancements in veterinary care and disease prevention, our pets are living longer than ever before. However, with this extended age comes more extensive age-related conditions and illnesses. Dogs and cats can contract arthritis and diabetes due to old age, as well as hereditary conditions that don’t manifest till later on in the pets life, meaning more and more trips to the vets. With these conditions requiring ongoing medical support and the cost of vet care rising, it is wiser to act on pet insurance for your aging dog before it is too late.

Pet insurance companies normally have two ways of looking at older pets. They will either not insure your pet if they are over a certain age due to the higher risk of their susceptibility to illness, or they will insure them and exclude many previous health problems your pet has had, or problems that are likely going to affect your pet in the future. This is why you shouldn’t wait until your dog is old or aging, as you risk a greater chance of running into a pre-existing condition issue due to a longer vet history. It is for these reasons why it is important to get your pet insured a soon as possible, otherwise you may be looking at an expensive policy, huge exclusions, or your pet may not be able to be covered at all.

pet insurance dog cat

If you’ve had pet insurance for years, you know your pet will be well covered far into their later years. Many pet insurers have covered for life policies that can be hugely beneficial as your dog/cat ages and becomes more prone to sickness and injuries. However, if your pet isn’t insured and they are closing in on their 8th birthday, it may be time to start shopping around for the right policy. The cut off age limit for cats and dogs is normally 8 years of age (5 for selected breeds), with a limited amount of insurers offering policies for dogs over that age limit, although these will cover the bare minimum.

These policies for pets over 8 years of age usually only cover accidents and injuries (and not sickness and illness) as pets in their later years are almost guaranteed to become ill at some stage. With cover for injuries only and a not so energetic and enthusiastic pet as they once were, these policies for pets over their age limit may not be a realistic option.

Because the treatments that older pets require can be ongoing and costly, a growing number of owners without pet insurance are forced to euthanize their beloved pets due to not being able to afford the treatments that could potentially help them live and thrive for many more years to come. So when it comes to pet insurance for your pet, it is better to act quickly and get it now then leave it too late to when you really need it.

Petplan offers an essential plan for both older cats and dogs. To find out more, visit www.petplan.com.au.

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