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Welcoming home a new puppy can be a ton of fun. Introducing your dog to friends and family, spoiling them with treats and toys, and sharing in all their “firsts” makes for an experience that’s rewarding to dogs and humans alike. Don’t forget, however, that caring for a puppy isn’t all fun and games — far from it. Puppies require consistent care and attention to ensure they grow up happy and healthy, and their boundless enthusiasm can make them susceptible to common accidents and injuries. Fortunately, pet insurance can help both first-time and veteran puppy owners better manage expenses while caring for their pets.

Why You Need Pet Insurance

  • Accidents happen. As many as one in three pets require emergency veterinary care each year, according to the American Pet Products Association, and medical mishaps can occur at any time.
  • Pet care is pricey. Every six seconds, a pet owner receives a veterinary bill totaling $1,000 or greater, according to PetInsuranceQuotes.com. What’s more, less than 40% of dog and cat lovers can afford to cover these bills on their own, according to Bankrate.
  • Your puppy won’t be young forever. It may sound unusual to purchase an insurance policy for a young, healthy puppy, but it’s important to think ahead when considering pet insurance. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, almost 50% of dogs who live to 10 or more years of age will develop cancer during their lives, and millions develop costly debilitating conditions like arthritis and diabetes as they age. Pet insurance coverage can help you save money while preserving your pet’s standard of living well into their senior years.

Many pet insurers make filing claims as easy and convenient as possible, much like the process humans undergo for medical insurance claims. Typically, all you need to do is visit your usual vet, receive an itemized invoice, and file a claim to get reimbursed for most eligible expenses.

Why Buy Pet Insurance Now?

Pet insurance premiums vary based on a number of factors, including age and health. While you may have a healthy puppy now, they will likely encounter health issues throughout their life. There are several reasons why it’s best to be prepared with a policy for your puppy, even if it seems like you may not need one yet.

  • You’ll pay less to cover a healthy, young puppy than you would for an older dog. Also, most pet insurance providers don’t offer reimbursement for preexisting conditions.
  • Some plans provide coverage for early expenses like core vaccinations, wellness exams, and preventive services in addition to both routine and emergency expenses throughout your puppy’s life.
  • Puppies get into trouble as they explore their new surroundings and experience new things. Whether it’s a broken bone, foreign body ingestion, or a sprained ligament, pet insurance can provide peace of mind and financial support during stressful puppy health emergencies.

Which Insurance Is Right for My Puppy?

There are plenty of pet insurance providers and policies out there, and it can be difficult to determine which fits your needs. Knowing what coverage is included in your policy, and how much of a premium you’re willing or able to pay, are important factors when deciding.

  • Monthly premiums from pet insurers often cover standard accidents and illnesses and can range from as low as $10 to over $100. Some insurers also offer quarterly or annual payment options. Add-ons may be available to cover everything from routine care to hereditary and congenital conditions.
  • Add-ons and customizations to coverage can make a world of difference in starting your puppy off on the right paw. Some puppy-owning policyholders choose to do this to save on basic procedures like vaccinations, pest prevention, spaying/neutering, or microchipping.
  • Price is just one piece of the puzzle. Don’t default to the policy with the cheapest premium at the expense of good coverage. Work within your budget, but base your decision primarily on the needs of your dog and yourself.
  • Avoid surprise costs by always combing through policies carefully for coverages, limitations, and exclusions to avoid any unexpected charges.

At the end of the day, purchasing toys and treats for your puppy may be more fun, but purchasing the proper insurance can be a gamechanger over the course of your dog’s life. Therefore, it’s important to do your research and consider all possible factors to help determine the best possible pet insurance for your puppy and yourself.

Even young, healthy puppies can get sick or hurt, and pet insurance may be able to help manage the stress and expense of treating them. Basic Accident and Illness coverage offered by AKC Pet Insurance may provide reimbursement for treatment related to a range of common accidents, illnesses, and injuries. Additional policy add-ons even offer reimbursement for treating chronic conditions.

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