How they compare when an unexpected accident calls for life-saving care.
What do all our canine and feline family members have in common? They both require a trip to the vet — and not just one. In fact, 1 in 3 pets will need emergency care this year alone. And with the average cost of unexpected vet visits costing $1,500 (and thousands more if surgery is involved), it’s time to ask yourself: Could you comfortably cover a four-figure vet bill today?
If you’re relying on savings to pay for your pet’s medical bills, a major veterinary expense might be difficult to afford – and could result in a heart-breaking decision.
But here’s the good news: You don’t have to choose between your budget and the care your pet deserves. With pet insurance, you can provide the comprehensive medical treatment your fur family needs without the uncertainty and stress of relying on savings.
So how does pet insurance stack up to a savings account in real life? Here’s how an all-too-common trip to the vet plays out for the same owners when they’re protected by insurance, and when they’re relying on savings.
One pup, one surprise vet visit, two different outcomes …
Newlyweds Rebecca and Tim just purchased their first home. As dog lovers, the couple is excited to complete their move by adopting a puppy from their local shelter. After a week of searching, Rebecca and Tim welcome Spot, a four-month-old lab mix, to their home.
Several months later, Tim and Rebecca notice a water stain on their living room ceiling. After investigating the problem, Tim discovers wide-spread water damage that requires a major renovation of their downstairs — right away.
To pay for their surprise construction, Tim and Rebecca use the savings they set aside for a rainy day. One evening, after their contractor has left for the day, Rebecca notices that Spot isn’t eating or drinking and is showing visible signs of discomfort.
Frantic, Rebecca and Tim take Spot to their local vet. After an examination and x-ray, the vet determines that Spot has ingested a rag left by the contractors and has a blocked intestine. To clear the blockage, Spot needs emergency surgery that will total ~$4,500 (exam, x-ray, surgery, and Rx pain reliever).
Here’s where things get different:
Rebecca and Tim enrolled Spot in pet insurance at the shelter while finalizing their adoption. Thanks to their coverage, their bill for everything totals only $650.
Relieved, the two agree to emergency surgery without a second thought. Within hours, Spot has the blockage cleared and is resting comfortably at home. Over the next several days, Tim and Rebecca help Spot recover with the prescription meds administered by the vet.
A month later, Tim and Rebecca celebrate the completion of their renovations by baking Spot her favorite home-made treats in the new oven they bought with extra money from their savings!
Tim and Rebecca didn’t enroll Spot in pet insurance, opting instead to cover any medical costs with their savings. After a frantic debate, the two decide to cover the entire cost of Spot’s surgery and follow-up care with the remainder of their renovation budget.
After Spot’s surgery, the family heads home to a new challenge: completing their half-finished renovations. With depleted savings, Tim and Rebecca are forced to pause construction while they re-build their budget.
While the couple are happy to have a healthy and recovering pup, they’re not as excited about living in a “construction zone” for the next several months.
Taking the Fear Out of Vet Bills
While Spot received the lifesaving care she needed in both scenarios, that isn’t always the case. Often times, pet parents relying on a savings account are forced to make heart-breaking decisions regarding their pet over something treatable, simply because they couldn’t make ends meet.
With pet insurance, you don’t have to choose between money or your four-legged family member. For the cost of a few gourmet cups of coffee a month, you can access life-long protection against the unexpected. That means you can focus on what matters most: loving your pet.
Wilson has written for brands in the tech, e-commerce, construction, health, and finance industries. In his free time, he enjoys cooking for friends and family, spoiling his dog-daughter (Penny), painting, and playing music with friends. And speaking of food, his favorite meal is his mom’s pot roast and mashed potatoes!