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Many pet owners consider their dogs to be beloved family members. So when the difficult subject of end-of-life planning comes up, some people wonder – can you put life insurance on a dog? Getting life insurance for your furry friend may seem unusual, but it’s actually more common than you might think. Here’s a comprehensive look at the ins and outs of getting life insurance for your dog.
What is Pet Insurance?
Before diving into pet life insurance specifically, it helps to understand regular pet insurance. Pet insurance works similarly to health insurance for humans. As a pet owner, you pay monthly premiums. In exchange, the policy helps cover veterinary costs if your dog or other pet gets sick or injured.
Pet insurance plans typically cover:
- Visits to the veterinarian
- Prescription medications
- Surgeries and hospital stays
- Diagnostic testing
- Other medical treatments
One thing pet insurance usually does not cover is pre-existing conditions. There is also normally a waiting period before coverage kicks in after initially signing up. Many can you put life insurance on a dog policies have an annual limit on the total amount of coverage provided.
Keep reading: How Much is Dog Walking Insurance?
What is Pet Life Insurance?
Now that we’ve reviewed regular pet health insurance, what exactly can you put life insurance on a dog? Pet life insurance is separate from health insurance – it specifically covers the financial loss when a pet like a dog passes away.
Life insurance for pets generally provides a lump sum payout to the owner. This money can help cover costs like:
- Burial fees or pet cremation services
- Loss of income for valuable working dogs
- The purchase price of getting a new dog or other pet
- Travel expenses to get a replacement pet
- Other end-of-life expenses
Some pet life insurance plans also include a small amount of coverage for final vet visits for euthanasia or hospice care. However, these costs are typically limited compared to the death benefit.
Do You Really Need Life Insurance for Your Dog?
Now you may be wondering – do you actually need dedicated life insurance for your dog? The answer depends on your specific situation as a pet owner.
Can you put life insurance on a dog can make good financial sense if:
Your dog is a show dog, breeding dog, or working dog that brings in income. The payout can help replace that lost income.
You would face relatively large expenses to cremate or bury your dog.
You spent a lot of money to purchase your dog initially from a breeder.
Your dog receives specialized training, medical treatment, or care.
Your dog is still young and healthy. Premiums will be lower at a young age.
However, purchasing pet life insurance may be less cost-effective if:
Your dog is a mixed breed that you adopted from a shelter for little or no cost. The eventual payout likely won’t match the original price.
You already have an emergency fund that could cover unexpected pet burial costs.
Your dog is older or has pre-existing conditions that make premiums much higher.
Your dog has little monetary value beyond sentimental attachment.
Take time to realistically assess your financial situation before deciding can you put life insurance on a dog makes sense. Compare potential payouts to the monthly premium costs.
What Companies Offer Pet Life Insurance?
If you decide life insurance for your dog could be beneficial, what companies offer this type of coverage? There are several pet insurers that provide dedicated life insurance policies for dogs and other pets.
Some of the top providers of dog life insurance include:
Pets Best – Offers coverage up to $50,000 with customizable payout amounts. Plans start at around $9 per month.
ASPCA Pet Insurance – Provides pet life insurance add-on coverage with main policies. Payouts range from $5,000 up to $20,000.
Embrace – Policies can cover dogs, cats, exotic pets, and even some birds. Get between $10,000 and $100,000 in death benefit coverage.
Hartville – Budget-friendly options for dog and cat owners start at $7 monthly premiums. Max payout is $20,000.
Figo Pet Insurance – Policy add-ons can cover euthanasia, cremation, caskets, and more. Payouts up to $15,000.
Petplan – Offers customizable coverage ranging from $5,000 up to $50,000 based on your pet’s assessed value.
Be sure to compare premium costs, coverage details, exclusions, customer reviews, and more across providers before choosing can you put life insurance on a dog policy.
How Much Does Life Insurance Cost for Dogs?
A major consideration for pet owners is the cost. So can you put life insurance on a dog typically cost? Monthly premiums can vary based on factors like:
Your dog’s current age
Total amount of coverage
Chosen deductible amount
Any additional benefits
In general, expect to budget $10 to $30 per month for pet life insurance. Premiums start out very low for puppies and young dogs. They then increase as dogs age and decline in health.
Here are some examples of average monthly costs for sample coverage amounts at different ages:
|Average Monthly Premium
When evaluating plans, be sure to look at bundling discounts for insuring multiple pets at once. This can help you save money on premiums.
How Does Dog Life Insurance Work?
How does the claims process work if you have life insurance for your dog? Filing a life insurance claim for your pet works very similarly to life insurance for humans:
- Research different providers and select a policy for your dog with your desired amount of coverage.
- Pay the monthly premiums on time to keep your pet’s policy active.
- If your insured dog unfortunately passes away, file a claim with the insurer along with documentation from your veterinarian.
- The insurer will verify the claim meets eligibility criteria before issuing the lump sum payout within 2-4 weeks.
Be sure to follow all requirements laid out in the policy documents, like notifying your insurer if you change vets. Carefully read the fine print so you know how to properly file a claim for can you put life insurance on a dog in the event of their death.
Keep reading: Can I Use My Insurance For My Dog?
The Bottom Line on Life Insurance for Dogs
While not mandatory, can you put life insurance on a dog can provide valuable financial protection and peace of mind in the sad event of your pet’s death. For show dogs, working dogs, or other valuable canines, it can make good financial sense. Before purchasing a policy, carefully consider your potential end-of-life costs for your dog compared to the monthly premiums.
Be sure to shop around and read the coverage details closely to find the best life insurance option for your pet. With some informed analysis, you can decide if this type of specialty insurance is right for your dog.
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