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  • A Change in the Plans

We have recently spent a large amount of time with our friends that have kids. Toddlers, 6 month olds, 3 year olds…. the one thing that seems to be consistent among all of them is that their life and their schedule is determined by their children. You can plan on getting 6 hours of sleep but no matter how hard you try to plan, if your baby wakes you up at 3am, you’re not getting your 6 hours. Plans have to be flexible. Michael and I are not ready for that big life change quite yet. However, every now and then, we get a teeny tiny taste of what parenting may be like one day.

Now I’m not saying that my dog is the same as your child… I know that you can’t compare the two… however, waking up at 3am to find your puppy in pain with an oozing infection does interrupt your sleeping plans.

Last night Michael woke up at 3am to reserve his iPhone…. he’s slightly obsessed. When he got up, we saw that Bokeh boy had licked his front right paw so much that his leg was soaking wet and so was the comforter. He had been acting like his paw was bothering him for a day or two but nothing seemed to be serious. However, after taking a better look at 3am, we realized he has a pretty nasty infection. So Michael and I sat with him on the bathroom floor with hydrogen peroxide, gauze and painters tape and we played doctor. We got up at 7am to make an appointment with the vet and then spent an hour sitting with him at the doctor’s office. $200+ later, we have antibiotics, pain medicine and a professionally bandaged paw. Whew. So, the reason for this post isn’t just to express how our day has not gone to plan, it’s also to ask about something we have been considering for a while… PET INSURANCE.

My friend Anna and I were just discussing this and after this morning, I’m thinking it may be necessary!! Anyone out there have pet insurance?! Is it worth it? Did you just get it for injuries or annual checkups or both?! Would love to know your thoughts!! Thanks in advance!! We’re off to shoot a wedding on this beautiful Friday!!!

xoxo, Katelyn
22 Comments Personal
  1. Stacee Lianna reply

    It’s kind of funny that you would post this today, yesterday was my little baby’s last day on earth after spending the last 4 nights in the hospital with a blood infection. We had to pay the vet bill up front but our pet insurance will reimburse us for the cost, and without knowing that up front it would have been nearly impossible to pay the fees because I just don’t have the money. Having that security was great. When I left yesterday, 4 nights in the hospital, 3 blood transfusion, countless antibiotics through an IV and no puppy coming home our total was over $7,000. Yes to pet insurance. I used VPI http://www.petinsurance.com/

  2. Gwen Fisher reply

    I have two children and a pet, any yes, our lives are crazy some days, too!
    We do not have pet insurance for our dog. She did have to have major surgery on her leg a few years a go after she pulled her achilles tendon. It ended up costing us around $2000. But it was ok, because we were prepared.
    What we do, is have an emergency fund. This fund if for everything and anything that comes along unexpected. Then we also set aside money each week into a ‘pet fund’ for things like food and regular vet visits.
    in the end, we always have enough to cover what our dog needs and are prepared for an emergency if it should happen.
    I hope bokeh feels better soon!!!

  3. Lauren reply

    Oh This just breaks my heart! He may not be a human child, but I am a firm believer that he is your child none the less! I’ve got a fur baby too and I couldn’t imagine! :( I do know friends and family who have pet insurance and use it for their annual check ups, med refills, or in case anything bad happens! I don’t have it, but I’m sure it would be a great investment! Our last vet bill just for his annual CHECK UP, flea and tick meds, and heartworm meds was $200+! EEK! I feel your pain!

  4. Lauren reply

    After looking into several levels of policies & doing a little math, we realized that paying for a policy that covered annual checkups, vaccinations, etc. wasn’t going to save us very much money on those items. Plus, we had already factored those costs into our budget & knew when to expect them throughout the year. We ended up going for a middle-of-the-road policy that covers most injuries and illnesses… the costs you don’t get to plan on!!! we’ve only made one claim so far & are still a bit shy of our deductible, but we’ve been very happy with VPI so far & have found their company is very easy to work with. I have several coworkers that have had policies with them for a few years, & they’ve all been very pleased as well. It can take a week or two for them to look into claims & send reimbursements, but in the long run, i think that the peace of mind they offer is well worth that waiting time!!! Get well soon Bokeh!!!

  5. Lindsay Brandquist reply

    Petsmart has a monthy payment for a plan and it covers a good bit of costs. His check ups never cost me anything. If there is something that was wrong with him, it would be a fraction of the cost. I think they do a good job as well! I’ve never had any major issues!

  6. Laura Matthews reply

    Poor Bokeh! After NOT having pet insurance for both of my now senior citizen dogs, I will be investing in it with our future furbabies. both of our pups have had multiple surgeries (for minor things) and now that they are older, they are both on multiple medications. Hope your baby heals up quickly!

  7. Amanda reply

    I was talked into it when I first got my pup Zoey and it gave me discounts on her heartworm & Flea/Tick medicines but thats all it really did so after a year I chose not to renew. However, when she gets older and I foresee problems coming down the road, I definitely will get it for help/security should something happen to her like Stacee Lianna’s pup (so sorry Stacee!)

  8. Haley reply

    Get insurance! It is better safe than sorry. My furbaby developed cancer and I have been paying out of pocket for her chemotherapy. It would have been worth the investment to have insurance! Most will also cover routine care once a year.

  9. Jenni Beadle reply

    We have a 1.5 year old welsh terrier and have pet insurance through Trupanion. I researched many, many companies and this made the most sense for us.We set our own deductible (note: their’s is per incident, not per year) and that determines our monthly payment. Winnie ended up in the ER a few weeks ago and we only paid $500 and 10% copay vs. $2000. Our deductible is $500 and our monthly payment is $35. Do your research – they all vary by breed, region of the US, age, etc. We got it because we watched friends surrender their dog when they couldn’t afford surgery on a torn ACL – it was the saddest thing ever. We definitely think it’s worth it!

  10. Helen reply

    We have The Well Pet Group in our town and it’s wonderful. Instead of paying for pet insurance, you pay for your yearly membership to the clinic and any routine visits and special treatments are covered. They are available 24 hours a day, too. I am sure that there is something comparable available in the Richmond area. It might be worth looking into! http://www.thewellpetgroup.com/

  11. Katana Collins reply

    Poor Bokeh! I hope he’s feeling better!

    After not having pet insurance for years with our dog, he was diagnosed with lymphoma. Our hearts were utterly broken. My husband and I always said we likely wouldn’t take extreme measures in a situation like that….but the bottom line was when we were faced with the decision? We chose to go forward with the chemo. Nearly 8k dollars later, we had a whole extra year with our fur baby. If we had had pet insurance? It would have been $200 (plus the monthly cost). In the end, it’s pretty inexpensive (roughly $20 a month for us in NYC). and now we have it for all of our animals.

    The way I see it, at $240 per year for 10 years or so, you’re looking at an additional cost of $2400 for your dog’s lifetime. And that monthly rate doesn’t go up once it’s locked in…so long as you stay on the insurance. And when your dog gets to be 10 or 11 or 12, and the health bills start piling on, that’s where you really see the return on it. In the early, young years, it will probably feel pretty silly. We’re super lucky that we have the extra money to spend.

    Sending warm healing thoughts to Bokeh and hoping you get a good night’s sleep tonight! =)

  12. Kelly reply

    Hey Katelyn! I have thought about this alot and pet insurance is a huge help! Its about $25-$35 a month depending on your plan but if something ever happens its a huge money saver! Our pup Toby had a lump on his chest that felt weird, so we had him checked out and the cost to test if it was cancer was $275 and Praise the Lord it came back with reports saying it was benign but insurance will cover most of the cost! Just a small example, but I definitely think its worth it :)

  13. Sarah reply

    We got a chocolate lab two months ago & we got pet insurance. Thank gosh we did because Tinsley has been sick with a parasite – twice! We got coverage for everything, which can be pricey, but since he’s only 4 months old, we feel it’s necessary for now. I’d have to recommend getting it for bokeh! :)

  14. Emily reply

    So funny that you posted this today! I just got home from the vet with our fur baby. He had vomited 5 times in a little over 12 hours. I paid over $200 for them to tell me his test results were all good and to feed him chicken and rice for a few days! I’ll definitely be reading the answers to this post, as I think we may need to invest in pet insurance, too!

  15. Kristen reply

    Hi Katelyn..my husband & I have pet insurance for our Weim. we invested in it after we only had her for 2 weeks. She is now 5. I highly recommend it. We use this insurance for both annual visits, flea & tick treatment as well as emergency care (she’s had a lot of these visits). We have the highest package that they offer and it’s $52 per month. To me that’s not that bad for the amount of times we’ve had to take her to the vet. We use VPI. It’s petinsurance.com. Every time we take her to the vet, they fill out a claim form and then I fax it to them the next day and if they reimburse us, I have my $$ within a couple weeks. I hope this helps.

  16. Laura reply

    Ugh. We don’t currently have pet insurance for George, but I had it for my horse. then I let it lapse. Then she developed a chronic condition that meant we spent about $1,000/month on her the last year of her life. Pet insurance is a good thing. :-(

  17. Lisa reply

    In my experience, it isn’t worth it. Our kitty had an infection and we had to have her spayed. Our vet told us point blank that the pet insurance would barely cover either of this procedures. When my sister in law’s cat had to have stomach surgery it was in the thousands and insurance covered like nothing she told me. If you want it, Do your research, extensively.

  18. Julie Wilmes reply

    Yes yes yes! We got it for Nova’s first year (mainly to cover shots and her spaying) but it was so amazing when she had to have surgeries on her hips and when she got zinc poisoning after eating a penny. We saved so much money and now have it for all three dogs. It’s the best!

  19. Caitlin reply

    Pet insurance was a must when we got our puppy! We went with Pets best insurance. Their customer service reps answered all my questions and made me comfortable with the policy we got. We used it once for a $200 vet bill. We have 90% reimbursement and we were issued a check a week after submitting our claim. Super easy! Good luck with your little guy!

  20. tangie reply

    I have the pet insurance with Pet Smart and I love it! It really helped me with my last baby that had heart failure and it sure is helpful with my new baby when he was neutered. Shots and many other things are covered…I say yes, yes, yes – get pet insurance!!!

  21. Evonne & Darren reply

    We have looked into pet insurance (we are about to have 3 cats by tomorrow), but a lot of the more serious procedures are NOT covered, so if you are looking into it, make sure you read the fine lines of what’s covered and what’s not.

  22. Anna reply

    We thought about getting pet insurance for our cat, Stealth because he was the one who tended to get sick/injured. When we first got him he had a seizure which cost us about $1200 to have him checked out by the Vet ER. The thing about pet insurance is that they don’t cover pre-existing conditions. Stealth also had pollyps in his ear (which we didn’t know about until he shook his head and splattered blood all over me). Point being that we considered it but because of these two “pre-existing” conditions we chose not to get it. We save about $20 per paycheck for our pet’s health and that is how we cover their bills :) This way we earn interest when the $$$ is in our savings and use what we need.

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