Hi all :) I apologize because I know there have been posts like this before here, but I’d love to pick the collective hive mind brain about pet insurance.
I’ve never had it before - we looked at it once when my dog was little and diagnosed with luxating patella and we knew she’d likely need surgery at some point, but we couldn’t find insurance that would preemptively cover that and outside of that, the insurance didn’t seem to be worth it monthly for what it would cover. It was also something we could plan for: we were told when she was a puppy that she’d likely need it in a few years, so it made more sense at the time to just start a small savings account deeded to it and put a little money in each month rather than insurance.
However, my pup is older now and earlier this summer had a really terrible acute slipped disc in her neck that required her staying in the hospital overnight with morphine, etc and then tons of meds and pain management and follow ups for several weeks.
We got really lucky - crate rest and pain management helped clear it up on it’s own and no surgery was required, although the vet was pretty positive that this was likely degenerative disc disease and something we’d have to work to keep from coming back (I’ve been re-training her to not jump, for instance). But... she started having an issue again this weekend, thankfully not in the neck which is the absolute most painful place for a dog, but this time in her back right leg. So now it looks like she might have disc issues in two places. And disc issues are something that can get slowly worse over time (like this leg) or they can be dramatic and acute (absolutely fine and then paralysis within hours).
Long story short, I’m wanting to start preparing myself now for surgery, planned or spontaneous, and the costs involved. Surgery has a huge success rate of recovery, and she’s only 7 (her breed lives 15-20 years) so I’d like to make sure it’s an option for her if we get there. Even if she doesn’t require surgery, the first issue + this one are draining me financially a bit (did you know that enough morphine to treat a 5 lb dog costs $30 dollars a shot? I feel like I can get that cheaper on the street) so even if we magically avoid surgery, I’d like to have more visits or meds covered since it seems like they are going to happen.
Does anyone have any good insurance they recommend, specifically for things like this, that will cover pre-existing conditions, both for ongoing care and meds and potentially a major expensive event? I am also asking my vet for recommendations on who they work with, but as always I love to pick yalls brains. I don’t even know if pet insurance works similarly to humans or what the deal is... and let’s face it, I barely understand human insurance.
(will also take all disc disease success stories please!)