Should All Pet Owners Consider Pet Insurance?


A dog recovering at the vet.

Elizabeth Rivera, Staff Writer

Pet insurance has it’s pros and cons and that will help us decide if it’s worth considering pet insurance. Pet owners know that a pet is part of the family and that many would do anything for them. But when a pet has health problems, the owner will have big bills to pay for the vet. The costs of these bills aren’t cheap and can get really expensive–depending on the pet’s health problems. Vets are only able to  do their job of helping save many pet lives–once the payment of examination, tests, and treatment bills are paid. No matter how much the pet is in pain and sick, the vet can’t do anything if the owner can’t pay up front.

Bobbi Dempsey, freelance writer and author, had to experience putting a family pet to rest, due to not having enough funds. She wrote in a article in The Guardian called “The worst part of being poor: watching your dog die when you can’t afford to help.” She discussed how her sister’s dog named Oreo started out with a minor health problem. She was taken to the vet, but her health didn’t improve. As time passed, her health worsened, so they took her to the vet again only to realize that it was going to be expensive. Bobbi’s sister, Marylin had economic problems at home since she had to leave her job due to her health problems and her husband worked in a furniture store. Bobbi stated “We called local vets, hunting for one that could see her right away.

That’s when we discovered a cruel fact of life for pet owners of modest means. If you can’t hand over a bunch of cash immediately, you often have no way to get your pet the medical care they need. Even in the worst emergencies. Like most animal lovers, I think you can’t put price tags on the lives of our beloved four-legged friends. Unfortunately, that’s exactly what being a poor pet owner forces you to do.” In the end, their dog died since it was too late to save her.

I recently witnessed a family have a similar experience to Dempsey when I went to the vet for my dog’s check up. I was in the waiting room with my dog when I saw an elderly couple in the counter desk talking with the office assistance. I remember the elderly women was still strong in health and her husband was using a walker. The office assistance was explaining their dog’s health problems and that they have to run more tests and more treatments were needed. The elderly women asked the office assistance how much the cost would be if they were to do everything they can and when the assistant said over a thousand dollars, the elderly women looked at her husband. It broke my heart seeing their expressions as they looked at each other and knew their decision. She told the office assistance that the dog would have to be put to sleep.

Pet insurance may not cover all the costs, but it will certainly help with something. It also depends on the insurance but there are always options that they can give you. There is also the possibility of struggles with restrictions for breeds and the ages for pets. So when looking for pet insurance, there has to be research done before purchasing a plan. Pet insurance contains basic plans that cost $10 a month, medium level care for $34 a month, and the highest level plan for $100 each month. There are also insurances that offer plans for a dollar each day with reimbursement options.

Only 2% of the population in the United States carry pet insurance. If that percent were to increase, that would secure many pets’ lives. Unfortunately, people don’t consider pet insurance as valuable as a person’s health care. Especially since it involves more payments–but what if this is really a good solution to consider? If more pet owners were to get pet insurance, then it would decrease the chances of a pet dying unnecessarily. 

A pet receiving treatment