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As I prepare the latest pack of receipts to drop off at the vets!
Luna has been insured from 2008 and up until last July I have paid out about £1100 to insurance companies in premiums. (She had to have International cover for her first 2 years which hiked premiums up slightly too and since first claiming in 2011 her premiums increase +£100 each renewal.)

I've got information on the amount I've claimed back for her hip dysplasia (which is being managed via hydro and supplements in the main) and up to July 2013 the insurance company paid out almost £1500.

I estimate that Luna's claims for the current policy year will be more than the £440 premium.

Her insurance doesn't cover her elbow dysplasia and I couldn't even try to add up what I have paid out in arthroscopies, hydro, supplements, ramp/steps, stress-relieving choc and wine and bubble bath etc etc etc on that front!

Pet Insurance is becoming more and more of an expensive 'luxury' now, but it's something I'll keep hold of whilst the figures are adding up and helping me out.

I'll be having a chat with the vet about whether Tucks has anything on his record that would be classed as pre-existing by an insurer at this point (I don't think so) though because I'm not liking what I am hearing about the JL premium hikes at the moment...
 

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Anything she has ever had since birth will be seen as pre existing. Any tummy upsets. And diarhhea any itch scratch or sneeze mentioned kn your vets history will be subject to scrutiny.

Many things will get "excluded" hip issues, elbow stuff and any linked arthritis for life. Most minor things ear/eye Infections. Tummy bugs and the like might get reviewable exclusions based on date and how lenient the underwriters are.

Just declare everything and let them quote based in the full info.

The vets probably won't be able to correctly advise because of the individual insurance companies policies. Get a print out of history and read it out to the sales guys ask them to run it by the underwriters.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
A printout of his history from vet is what I'll get when we go for his health-check/booster - thanks Maxsdad. Tucker has only ever been for 2 tummy upsets... suspected eating dodgy stuff tummy upsets! <HUGE TOUCH WOOD> he made full recovery from both and doesn't have any ongoing issues, I'd hope that he's clear to switch insurers if renewal costs indicate it could be a good plan!!!

Luna will be insured by JL now for as long as I can afford as ED I can cover myself financially at the moment but HD I couldn't should a Hip replacement ever be needed!
 

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Thats good. Short term isolated tummy issues shouldn't cause problems any exclusion may be short or none at all if a set period has passed since the last one.

Hopefully all turns out ok
 

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Talking of exclusions :?

We have been talking with Pet Plan with a view to moving given JL price rises.

When I told them about Max's ear infections they said there would be a permanent blanket exlcusion on all ear infections, and also on skin allergies as the two often go hand in hand. I accepetd that, understood why.

Seperately they placed a 2 year exclusion on skins disorders, specifically seperate to skin allergies, because Max had had hair loss around one eye July 2012 due to mites. No skin disorders since, so this was due to expire July 2014.

I had our vets send over the full clinical history as we had a lot of little things we'd seen them with as new puppy owners, worried about everything. I didn't want any claim surprises.

All of the one offs made no difference, eg tummy, as it was over a year ago. HOWEVER, our vet had made a note that his repeated ear infections were likely due to an underlying skin allergy. No problem with that as I understand the link. BUT, Pet Plan have now put a blanket ban on all skin disorders forever!

They cannot explain to me why that has changed. Saturday we already had a blanket ban in place for skin allergies, and skin disorders was a seperate area. Today, we have ablanket ban on all skin disorders forever as vet has mentioned skin allergy.

I don't mind exlcusions, I understand why, but I am waiting for a manager to call me back to explain the change as it defies logic.

The lesson? As maxsdad says, you can't predict what the underwriters will do. I am just glad I found out before the 14 day cooling off period expired, as we are likely to have to stomach JL price rises.
 

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Crumbs.... Would the vet be willing to help reassure the insurance underwriters?
 

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Thats likely because the vet has mentioned ongoing issues and an ongoing skin allergy in the notes

The underwriters can only go on the vets history and notes to be fair to you. You can ask for it to be reviewed just to be sure but likely not to change as the vets specifically noted that in the history.

The advice can change as over the phone they can discuss an issue but only when the history is analysed do they see the full notes.

Hopefully you'll get that call soon to clarify
 

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Just spoke to a manager, briefly as about to run to work. They won't budge.

Saturday they gave us a forever ban on all possible skin allergies along with ear disorders.

Today, because the vet has already mentioned skin allergy, we have a blanket ban on all wider skin disorders, irrespective of if allergy related.

Try as I might, I can simply see no logic to that. We already had allergies banned, so how come having an allergy ends up banning everything else??
 

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Its usually because its to much of a risk. Skin allergies can lead to skin disorders and potential costs.

Its a bit like a broken leg can mean exclusions for arthritis on any new policy as its more likely to develop in a limb that has been damaged.

Insurance risk assessment is extremely in depth
 

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We had an issue with insurance. We wanted to increase Willoughby's cover on the suggestion of a trainer when we started agility classes. Not having much idea I cancelled his insurance and tried to arrange cover with Petplan. At the time I didn't think he had any exclusion, so when we were informed non of his joints in his legs would be covered due to us asking the vets opinion on his slow growth and short legs at a routine visit, and them writing about a slight ten to two deviation in his front legs when he sits in his record. He had never had any limps or other symptoms of joint problems so we challenged them and got the exclusion reversed. I'm so pleased they did as a couple of months later he fell down a hillside and hurt his leg. The on off limping went on for a few months and we were referred to a specialist who diagnosed a fracture in his elbow with some arthritic changes. We haven't claimed for much just the costs of X-rays and had no problems. We pay for his hydrotherapy as the vet agrees it would help but is not vital in treating him. We also pay for all his supplements. The insurance is there if he needs further treatment or surgery at a later date. I know the yearly premium will rise as he gets older but will continue to pay for the peace of mind that we can get the best care for him if needed.
 

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Toby is the 1st lab i've insured, in his 1st year he fell ill as you know and scared me half to death for a week but recovered and has been super slim and fit since (ok i partially lied there) The bill for his illness was £160 which i paid £80 excess so the insurance only paid £80 ( i knew the vets at the time so insurance co got off light).

Anyway over last 3+years i've forked out £894 exactly, so the insurance company have made a profit of £814.

The renewal has just come through and it's been increased to £408 for the year.

Now i know labs have issues with hips elbows and things but i've had labs all my life, Paddy my last lab wasn't insured and cost me £500 in the last week of his life, if i'd insured him for 9 years i wouldn't have claimed other than in that last week so would have been well out of pocket, it's been the same with Tyson and Sam, May be i've been lucky.

I do realise in your case Laura with the lovely Luna there have been issues and i also realise the vets are turning into lawyer type people who seem to have lots of £££££ signs in their eyes.

So, what do i do, Young Poppy Poopy Pants will be insured (for 2 years) as i don't want to gamble with her as i don't know if she has any issues, but my gut feeling is that Toby is Duracell dog and if he had any issues i would already be aware of them.

1 day the horrible inevitable will happen, money won't be an issue, i'll remortgage if i have to, Toby and Poppy will never suffer because of money, but what would you do in my situation, i can stick lets say £600 a year away, in 5 years there is £3000. (with a bit of luck) (that's aprox 500 bottles of wine)

I'm waffling now and going off subject.

Any opinions and advise on what i should do, Toby is insured until the end of the month.

Lots of love.

Gary Toby and Poppy (Poopy Pants) xxx
 

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Discussion Starter #13
My first thought is pet insurance helps legally for any 3rd party claims say if dog runs out into road and causes car accident or similar (I believe!) although I seem to remember reading that some house insurance covers this scenario?!?!?
So maybe it's worth lowering the cover and cost just so that this scenario is covered... maybe??

I looked at lowering Luna's cover back when she was 3 so she was covered but for less so the payments were less... so far I could have lowered the cover to say £2000 and still have claimed back what I have. But that £2000 may not be enough to cover a her having a spine injury or huge allergy or 2 hip replacements or cancer that requires really expensive treatment. Like you say I'd find the money but for how long if the expensive problem was found tomorrow and required say ongoing treatment of thousands a year... would I regret not spending a couple of hundred each year?

I haven't actually considered the scenario for Tucker. £750 paid in premiums to cover him until June this year and £0 claimed back. I guess my experience with Luna and the fact I don't know his breeding sways me rather to keeping him insured so long as premiums don't go stupid. If he should need an arthroscopy at any point I'd be the one gaining.

DIFFICULT really!

There are policies that just cover accidents/third party incidents so maybe worth considering those in the decision!?
 

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I wouldnt be without Insurance.

Bailey my lab got to 10 before meningitis cost 4.5k
At 11 cancer cost 6k

Max at 9 months old has ED so far 2.5k

You never know when something will happen. Yes sure you can look at it in terms of "oh im paying 400 a year. I haven't claimed" and feel cheated.

No. Insurance is a service against non predictable issues not a savings plan.

If car insurance wasn't law. Would you put money in the bank and hope nothing happened. I know I wouldn't take the risk.

In the end its all about what ifs but I'd rather be covered than be sat a month down the line with 50 quid in the bank and a 4 grand vet bill
 

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2 immediate replies and lots of food for thought.

i hadn't factored in liability insurance and i probably unwittingly considered the saving plan idea.

Now you have scrambled my brain and I've 1 week to make my mind up.

i'm not a gambling man but whatever i do is a gamble.

G T and Poopy P xx
 

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I speak to so many folk cancelling their insurance. Its no option for some given financial situations but others state they dont think its worth it or will just "save up", I can only quote facts to them under the rules but I wish I could just say how foolish it is considering vet bills nowadays.

sadly I often hear from the unlucky ones who cancelled then something has happened. As it does. Sods law. And they regretted it.

and believe me a few years ago I didn't think pet insurance was worth it...

I've seen too much in the past 2 years to quantify it as 100% essential


Yes I work for pet insurance. But no im not in sales. You'll not hear me recommend my employer above others or tell you its the best for you as we cant do that. We can only state facts not opinions at work.
I deal everyday with pet owners happy and sad. See them through the hardest decisions and the happiest outcomes. I love the job.

My one plea is dont think and gamble that something wont happen or you'll manage if it does. if you can afford insurance for god sake have it.
 

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I think Labradors are getting a bit like boilers, once upon a time they were reliable and didn't break down but nowadays their legs are falling off and probably because of global warming they are breaking down a bit too regularly.

Joking apart i have some thinking to do.


G T and Poopy P xxx
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Oooo and on the topic of boilers... there are a couple belonging to the Luna-Tuck clan needing checking over at some point... a bit of help towards the savings or insurance of PP and TT!! :wink:
 

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The insurance companies know they have us by the short and curlies - once we are with them we are stuck due to the "pre-existing conditions" small print. I think all Lab owners are penalised due to bad breeding by some which has increased the number of claims within the breed. It is a shame you can't get a "no claim discount" or a discount for having a pup from health tested parents.

I couldn't cancel my insurance because I would be devastated if I had to have Coco put to sleep because I couldn't afford treatment for an illness or accident that would cost several thousand pounds. (We're paying £33 per month at the moment).
 
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