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Cost of Pet Care Continues to Rise, Pet Parents Using Pet Insurance for Reimbursement

7/24/2014

Veterinary bills are continuing to rise and more pet parents are relying on pet insurance to help cover the cost of caring for their dog or cat.

"Pet insurance is the fastest growing category in the insurance arena," said Katie Grant, CEO of PetFirst, a pet health insurance provider. "Pet owners are seeking ways to protect their pet from accidents and illnesses, while also protecting their wallet from unpredictable expenses associated with vet bills."

Three claims recently submitted to PetFirst range in expense as well as level of care required for recovery, painting a great example of how unpredictable pets - particularly dogs - can be when it comes to their health.

Roxie, a two-year-old mixed breed, found a package of disposable razors. She managed to eat the entire package, handles and razor blades, without hurting her mouth, but the ingestion of the hard plastic and sharp razors called for immediate action by her pet parent and the veterinarian. As a result, Roxie had surgery and spent four days in the animal hospital. During her stay she had several x-rays to ensure no additional damage had been done internally. Once she was ready to leave, Roxie had a veterinary bill totaling more than $4,000. Her pet parent subimtted a claim and was able to be reimbursed for $3,888.40 of the out-of pocket expenses.

Pluto, an 11-year-old Jack Rusell Terrier, underwent a laminectomy for intervertebral disc disease. This procedure removes bone crowding the spinal canal which causes swelling and pain for the pet. This is particularly common in pets with long spines such as dachsunds, Pekignese and Lhasa Apso. The procedure required a four day hospital stay, CT scan, the expertise of a neurosurgeon, and pain management during the immediate recovery. Overall, the veterinary bill was more than $7,163.53; however, with the Lifetime 5,000 policy, Pluto's pet parent was reimbursed the maximum amount of $5,000 for the out-of-pocket expense.

Delilah, a three-year-old mixed breed, found herself in need of immediate medical treatment after being bitten by a snake. The water moccasin bite in June required Delilah to be hospitalized for a few days, given the antivenom along with fluids to keep her hydrated. The final bill for Delilah's treatment was more than $1,500, but her pet parent was well protected with pet insurance from PetFirst and was reimbursed $1,374.93.

Pet parents have several choices in tailoring the pet insurance plan that best fits their pet's needs with PetFirst pet insurance. Choices include selecting the reimbursement percentage, deductible amount and coverage limit, as well as add-ons for routine care, prescription food, and breeders coverage. For more information on pet insurance and PetFirst, visit www.petfirst.com or call 877-894-7387.

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