Does My Pet Really Need Pet Insurance?

If you're anything like us, you consider your pet a member of the family. They're fiercely loyal and give you 100% unconditional love...are you prepared to give the same treatment back to them? We don't like to think about our beloved fur-kids getting sick or injured, but part of caring for them is making adequate provisions for medical emergencies. 

There's an ongoing debate amongst pet owners regarding the best solution when it comes to being able to afford adequate vet care for pets. Some swear by pet insurance whereas others insist a savings account is the better option. The better choice? There isn't a real right or wrong, it depends on a number of factors including budget, number of pets and how diligent you are with saving. 

To help you make the best choice for your purse and pets, we've listed the pros and cons of both.

How A Savings Account For Pets Works

This approach requires the pet parent to put a designated amount of cash into a savings account every month to keep a little nest egg in case pets every need expensive medical care. 

Let's say you have 2 dogs and can only afford to put R350 a month into a savings account. You open the account with R500 and make monthly deposits of R350. After 1 year with 2% annual interest your savings account will have a value of R4 710. After 5 years, it will give or take be worth R22 000 - sadly that's less than the overall treatment limit most pet insurance plans allow for per year (generally R35 000).

On the flip side, accident cover starts from as little as R69* and comprehensive cover starts at around R198* per month, with discounts being applied for multiple pets on the policy. You could have no issues for extended periods and then much like with human kids, suddenly one year they swallow a stone, have a plant-induced vomiting episode and get stung by a bee all within a few months of one another...that can wipe out your savings in one go before you even get it going! If you've got an accident-prone animal such as a horse, pet insurance is a non-negotiable. Horse sickness or a bout of lameness could skyrocket your bill to over R40 000 in one go. 

Pet insurance is a reliable way to ensure there are always funds available to cover urgent medical care for your fur-kids, especially for emergency situations. Not only will it give you total peace of mind, it will ensure your little ones enjoy long, healthy lives. 

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