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Trupanion Reveals the ABCs of Pet Insurance

SEATTLE, Aug. 7, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- The human-animal bond between pet owners and their pets is stronger than ever, as evidenced by 91% of pet owners who consider their pet a part of their family and a total spend of $58 billion a year on pets. While a portion of that spend is on medical advancements in veterinary care that are helping pets live longer, healthier lives, these increases in veterinary costs often present pet owners with a dilemma that weighs the cost versus the best care for the pet. Trupanion, a company that provides medical insurance to cats and dogs, today released the ABCs of Pet Insurance, a simple tool to help pet owners navigate pet medical insurance.

ABC's of Pet Insurance by Trupanion (Trupanion.com)

"As advanced veterinary care becomes more available and costs increase, medical insurance for pets is rising in popularity and becoming an essential part of responsible pet ownership," said Kerri Marshall, DVM, Chief Veterinary Officer at Trupanion. "However, with so many different types of insurance, companies, policy options and add-ons, choosing the best policy can seem overwhelming."

Medical insurance for cats and dogs should not be mistaken with liability or property insurance. The concept of it is fairly straightforward—pay a monthly premium in order to be covered for unexpected veterinary expenses— but every provider is different and offers varying coverage, plans, pricing options and limitations.

This simple guide outlines key factors that should go into deciding if it is the right fit for you.

  • Age – Many times, the age of your pet will influence the cost to insure them. Some companies increase the price of the premium as pets' age, while some price based on the age at the time of enrollment. Insuring your pet as a puppy or kitten does have benefits—it is often less expensive and more likely that a pre-existing condition will not already exist. But if your pet is middle-aged or older don't think that they can't be insured as the coverage will help with treatment costs needed as your pet ages.
  • Breed – Certain breeds are predisposed to conditions, such as luxating patellae in Yorkshire Terriers, chronic lower airway disease in Siamese cats and cancer in Golden Retrievers. The right medical coverage will protect your animal even if they are prone to hereditary or congenital conditions.
  • Coverage – Each company will offer varying degrees of coverage, and some have coverage schedules and limits. Look for a provider that covers the largest portion of your veterinary bill, coverage for congenital and hereditary conditions, and has no limits to the amount they will pay out.
  • Deductible – Choose a deductible that fits your budget and how they are applied. Deductibles can help you control your premiums while making sure you see coverage before you hit your budget limit. Some deductibles must be met yearly, and some only apply once per condition. Some companies offer adjustable deductibles that allow you to adjust the premium cost that best fits your budget.
  • pre-Existing conditions – No pet medical insurance company currently covers pre-existing conditions, but each company identifies pre-existing conditions differently. Make sure you understand how each company defines a pre-existing condition and how they may decide if it relates to a future claim. Even if your pet has a pre-existing condition, like allergies or chronic ear infections, they are still a good candidate for insurance if they develop an unrelated condition down the road.
  • Flexibility – Look for a policy that does not lock you into a long-term contract and gives you the freedom to adjust your deductible or premium payments to fit your changing financial needs. You also want a policy that gives you the freedom to go to any veterinarian or specialist you choose.

Still not sure if pet medical insurance is right for you? Ask your veterinarian who can help provide insight. They have extensive knowledge of your pet's breed risks and health history. To learn more about choosing the right coverage plan and for more information about Trupanion, visit Trupanion.com. You can also ask your veterinarian for a Trupanion 30-day certificate to try Trupanion at no cost or obligation.

About Trupanion

Trupanion is an industry leader in medical insurance for pets, offering cat and dog medical insurance in the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico with the mission to help pets receive the best veterinary care possible. Trupanion offers a simple, fair and comprehensive pet medical insurance policy that pays 90% of veterinary costs for covered illness and injury claims that could include diagnostic tests, surgeries, medications, hospital stays, and alternative therapies for the treatment of injuries or illnesses. Trupanion's policy includes coverage of chronic, hereditary and congenital conditions with no payout limits per incident, per year, or over the lifetime of the pet. Some terms and conditions apply, please see our policy for details at Trupanion.com.

In the United States, Trupanion is underwritten by the American Pet Insurance Company, which has earned a Financial Stability Rating® of A--Exceptional from Demotech, Inc. In Canada, Trupanion is underwritten by Omega General Insurance Company. Trupanion is a founding member of the North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA), demonstrating a commitment to high standards and transparency in all actions and products. Trupanion's shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol TRUP.

Media Contact:  Britta Gidican, [email protected], 206-607-1930

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