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As the pandemic continues to change the lives of people, many have sought comfort in their furry friends. It’s not uncommon for pets to be treated as members of the family whether it comes to choosing healthy foods, outfits, and even the best toys.
But what happens if your pet suddenly gets sick or gets involved in an accident? Are you financially prepared to take on this expense? This is exactly why you need pet insurance.
Find out what pet insurance is, how it works, and what options you have below.
What is Pet Insurance?
Pet insurance is a policy that allows pet owners to decrease the costs of veterinary bills caused by illnesses and accidents. With pet insurance, you can significantly lessen your out-of-pocket costs since it works in the same way as health insurance for humans in covering all or part of health bills.
What does Pet Insurance Cover?
Pet insurance covers unexpected expenses related to illnesses and accidents that involve your pet. Some providers even cover vaccines and other health requirements for your pet.
Here are the different expenses usually covered by pet insurance:
- Injuries and emergencies due to accidents
- Minor and major illnesses
- Congenital and hereditary conditions
- Behavioral issues
- Chronic conditions
- Prescription medication
- Prescription supplements and food
- Microchip implementation
- Alternative therapies
Here are the things it does not cover:
- Pre-existing conditions
- Cosmetic procedures
- Preventive care
- Breeding costs
- Vaccinations (may be optional for some pet wellness plans)
Best Pet Insurance Providers in the Philippines
Any pet owner who has sent their best buddy to a veterinarian knows how fast bills can pile up. Pet insurance is still at its early stages in the country so the options are still quite limited. However, it is expected to increase in the coming years.
Here are the different options when it comes to pet insurance providers in the Philippines.
Malayan Pet Care Insurance
Malayan Insurance Co., Inc, is one of the most popular non-life insurance providers in the country. Founded in 1930, Malayan insurance allows its clients to enjoy peace of mind through quality protection, service excellence, and immediate processing and settlement of claims.
Pet Care Insurance
This product is exclusive to dogs between six months to eight years old, and has been vaccinated as prescribed by the Philippine Animal Hospital Association or PAHA. This 3-in-1 insurance covers medical reimbursement, liability insurance, and personal accident.
- Medical reimbursement
- Cruciate ligament injuries
- Burial assistance due to euthanasia
- Laboratory tests
- X-ray, ultrasound, mri, ct scan
- Hospitalization and medication (prescribed by a veterinarian)
- Extraction of permanent broken teeth due to accident
- Cost of professional fees
- Liability insurance
- Up to Php300,000 incurred for legal liabilities to third parties due to actions of the insured pet
- 24/7 personal accident
- Optional, covers up to Php50,000 in event of disablement, dismemberment, and loss of life due to unforeseen or violent event during the policy period
- Php2,800 annual premium for Plan A
- Php4,200 annual premium for Plan B
- Php5,400 annual premium for Plan C
Cebuana Lhuillier Pet Insurance Prime
This pet insurance is designed for the dogs of Cebuana Lhuillier clients. It covers medical reimbursement, owner’s liability, and personal accident insurance for the pet owner.
Dogs aged 6 months to 8 years old can avail this insurance. However, some options are only limited to pedigreed dogs, and increased coverage for non-pedigreed dogs needs to be reviewed upon renewal by Malayan’s underwriting team. Non-pedigreed dogs may also be subject to an additional premium.
- Medical reimbursement
- Laboratory Tests
- X-rays, ultrasound, MRI, and CAT Scan
- Medication that is prescribed by a veterinarian
- Extractions of permanent broken teeth due to accidents
- Euthanasia when advised by a veterinarian to alleviate suffering
- Costs of veterinarian professional fees or charges which are directly and solely concerning Medication and Treatment as defined and as covered under this policy.
- Owner’s liability provided the following conditions:
- The Insured must not admit responsibility, agree to pay any claim, or negotiate with any other person following an incident without the consent and approval from the Insurer.
- The Insured must immediately send the Company any writ, summon or legal document the Insured received and the Insured must never send any replies to them without the Company’s consent.
- Personal Accident Insurance for the Pet Owner
- Accidental food poisoning (presence of deleterious matter on food and drinks and not as a result of spoilage/expiration)
- Accidental gas poisoning
- Acts of nature
- Amateur and social sports
- Animal bites including mosquito bites (except viral infections/disease following animal/mosquito bites)
- Commercial flying as a paying passenger
- Motorcycling cover including pillion riding excluding whilst engaged in any form of racing, riding exhibition, motocross racing, etc.
- Pyogenic infections acquired through an accidental cut or wound
- Riot, strikes and civil commotion (not as an active participant)
- 24/7 worldwide coverage; on and off the job.
- Death benefit covers accidental death only
Other Pet Insurance Products Approved by IC
According to the Insurance Commission, now is the best time for pets to get insured. The first pet insurance policy of its kind was approved in 2018, and it was made available in 2019.1 Aside from Malayan Insurance Co., Inc., the regulatory agency has approved four other pet insurers which include:
- Standard Insurance Co., Inc.
- Pioneer Insurance and Surety Corp.
- PGA Sompo Insurance Corp.
- Mercantile Insurance Co., Inc.
However, these pet insurers have not publicized their pet insurance policies on their websites yet. We will update this guide, as soon as more details from these other insurance companies become available.
Benefits of Pet Insurance for Filipino Pet Owners
No one can anticipate what will happen to your pet in the future. This includes when or how your four-legged buddy will get sick, and how much you need to pay for treatment. Because of this, choosing the right pet insurance is very beneficial.
If you’re still unsure whether you should commit to pet insurance, we’ve rounded up some of its benefits below.
It will help you save money
This is the most obvious benefit of investing in pet insurance. When your pet gets sick, their insurance can help you save money. Depending on what policy you went with and the deductible you have to meet, the plan will shoulder a certain percentage of your bill.
It enables you to take care of your pet’s health more
When your pet has health insurance, you can focus more on their health and wellbeing instead of worrying about veterinary and prescription bills. With the right insurance, you can also afford to send your dog to have any major or minor surgery without worrying about spending thousands of pesos.
Additionally, you will also be able to pay for various treatment plans, which is vital when it comes to life-saving surgeries. If you don’t have pet insurance, you may end up in debt.
You will have more veterinary options
Unlike health insurance where you need to see a specific doctor for certain conditions, pet insurance allows you to choose which veterinarian you want to treat your furry buddy. This can be extremely beneficial if you want to get the best services.
It’s easy to get and it’s cheap
Whether you have an old or young pet, you can easily get insurance for them at an affordable rate. Therefore, you can enjoy peace of mind that your pet’s health will always be in top condition.
It protects your savings
You’ve spent months or years building up your savings, but that money can be depleted due to expensive veterinary costs. Thankfully, this can be prevented if you have pet insurance. You can even forego having a savings account designated for your pet.
Questions to Ask Before Getting Pet Insurance in the Philippines
Choosing a pet insurance is no easy feat, and this is a process you should not rush.
Just like health insurance policies for humans, you need to talk to providers and ask them about integral elements of a pet insurance policy. Here are some questions to guide you:
- Are spaying and neutering covered by the insurance plan?
- Are check-ups, vaccinations, and deworming reimbursable?
- Are parvo, leptospirosis, distemper, and other infectious diseases covered? This is vital if your pet is always in contact with other animals.
- Is there a limit to the number of confinement days and laboratory requests per sickness/accident? This is vital to ask especially if your pet constantly has health issues
- Are congenital diseases still covered if you did not know about them during the purchase of the insurance plan?
- Will treatments that are not related to accidents be covered by the insurance plan?
- Will the plan cover pregnancy expenses including whelping?
- Are dental procedures included in the plan? A lot of dogs deal with inflamed gums and dental problems that need surgery
- Are wound treatments included in the plan?
- Will dermatitis, hot spots, and other skin diseases be covered by the plan?