When you insure your pet, you want to make sure you understand all the details about an insurance plan. That way you can cover it for the possible treatments it may need and ensure that you can cover the excesses for the cover. One of the best ways to maintain a lower premium and provide optimum protection is to select a higher excess, thereby lowering the premium whilst receiving full cover.
Covering Your Pet for Specific Conditions
For example, you can choose between an excess of $0, $100, or $200 per year for each condition under an insurance plan that provides cover for accidents and illnesses. Most insurance plans cover 80% of the bill that the veterinarian charges. Therefore, it is important to obtain cover, especially if you know you pet is prone to conditions that are related to the skin (allergies), eyes, gastrointestinal system, and infectious disease. Many pets, when they are older or are of a certain breed, can suffer from cruciate ligament injury – not a small cost if you have to handle the expense yourself. An annual benefit for this type of injury can provide financial protection for as much as $2,500, sometimes more.
A cranial cruciate ligament, also referred to as a CrCL in a dog, can be compared to an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in an adult. This band of fibrous tissue affixes the femur or thigh bone to the bone in the shin, also known as the tibia. The CrCL helps serves to bar the stifle (knee) joint from rotating or over-extending.
How a CrCL Injury Develops
However, unlike adults, cruciate ligament disease in dogs happens gradually. Whilst a trauma injury from sports can affect the ACL, the CrCL degenerates over time. Therefore, the treatment options for dogs are different than for humans. In most dogs, the CrCL ruptures after the fibres in the ligaments have weakened. Therefore, make sure your pet insurance provides adequate protection along these lines.
Genetic factors are important in the development of CrCL. Dogs that are predisposed to the condition include Labradors, Boxers, Rottweilers, Newfoundlands, and West Highland White Terriers. Other factors that cause ruptures of the CrCL joints include hormonal imbalances, inflammatory conditions, such as arthritis, and obesity.
Limping is one of the more common signs of an injury to the CrCL. In severe cases, some dogs cannot even rise from a prone position and may be mistakenly diagnosed as having a problem with the spine. If your pet already has a CrCL injury at the time you apply for insurance, you usually will have to wait six months before you can sign up for cover. Therefore, if you currently have a pet breed that is prone to the condition or you have just adopted a dog, it is imperative that you sign up for insurance cover. If you have more than one pet, then pet insurers often offer discounts for each additional pet that is insured. Usually, the discounts provided go up to 15%. Take advantage of the insurance, whether you have one small pet or several dogs and cats in your household.