How Does Dog Insurance Work?

January 6, 2022by DOGuide23

If you’re asking, “How does dog insurance work?”, you’re at the right place. We help pet owners navigate the complexities of dog insurance. That means we can help you with all of your dog insurance questions, so you can make the best decision for you and your pup.

How Dog Insurance Works

When your dog is enrolled in a pet insurance policy, you receive accident and illness coverage. Accident and illness coverage pays for veterinarian care resulting from an emergency accident or diagnosis of an acute or chronic illness that isn’t pre-existing.

Just like human health insurance, there is a deductible that must be met before the pet health insurance company will pay for exam fees and other veterinary care. The deductible depends on what you chose at the time of selecting the pet insurance policy (just like human health insurance).

For instance, if your pup suffers from an accident and requires treatment that costs $1,000 and your deducticle is $500, you will pay $500 and the pet insurance company pays $500.

Deductibles are yearly, so you will have to pay your annual deductible before the pet insurance coverage takes over the costs of treatment.

how dog insurance works

How to Submit a Claim a Dog Insurance Provider

When an accident or illness occurs, the most important thing is to seek veterinary care. Once your pup is stable according to the vet, you can call your dog insurance company to submit a claim. Some insurance provides accept claims online, which can make the process easier when sending images of the vet bills.

Usually, pet owners have to pay the vet bills and then receive reimbursement for them once the claim processes. The time it takes for the claim to process depends on the insurance provider and how fast they can receive confirmation of the diagnosis and care delivered.

Pet parents who may have difficulty paying for the vet bill may be able to work out a payment plan with the veterinarian office. This is especially true if the vet understands pet insurance will be used to cover the treatment costs.

How Much Dog Insurance Costs

Illness and accident coverage from a pet insurance provider varies in costs (monthly premium and annual deductible) depending on several factors such as:

  • Breed (due to breed specific conditions, such as hip dysplasia)
  • Age
  • Pet Health Insurance Company
  • Annual Deductible
  • Monthly Premium Amount

Pet owners will need to provide information from a licensed vet that states breed, age, and any pre-existing conditions.

No pet health insurance companies will pay for treatment for pre-existing conditions. Although, the stipulations that constitute what is considered a pre-existing condition varies among pet insurance providers.

Older pets are accepted, even though their pet insurance plan may be more expensive since the insurance company knows that conditions like hip dysplasia may not be too far into the future.

Discounts are possible on some pet insurance plans, especially for pet parents with multiple pets enrolled in a pet health insurance policy.

It’s also possible to save on pet insurance costs by choosing accident-only plans. Accident-only plans are best for younger pups who may not be susceptible to as many illnesses as older pets.

dog insurance how it works

What You Should Know Before Signing Up with a Pet Insurer

Pet insurers have a waiting period after enrolling a pet into a policy. Some people will sign up for a policy with a pet insurance provider when they realize there is a problem (usually an illness). This is not how pet insurance works. Pet insurance works to protect dog owners from having to suffer the financial repercussions of unexpected vet bills from emergency care.

It’s also important to know that pet insurance providers do not reimburse vet bill from routine or preventative care. Some pet insurers offer wellness coverage or routine care coverage as an added option as part of their policy (like with an Embrace Pet Insurance Policy), but it doesn’t work like dog insurance. Wellness plans help pet parents budget for routine care or provide discounts on it. Be sure to ask the dog insurance provider you’re considering if they offer wellness coverage or a wellness plan to see if you can take advantage of it.

Start the Process of Choosing Dog Insurance

Now you know how dog insurance works, so you can take the first step towards choosing the right one for you and your pup. Consider reading How to Choose Dog Insurance or get started with a free quote from the dog insurance providers below.

Embrace Pet Insurance

PetFirst Insurance

Learn More from D.O.G.

Pet Insurance Which Covers Vaccinations

Is Dog Teeth Cleaning Covered by Insurance?

Dog Insurance That Covers Hip Dysplasia

Is Embrace Pet Insurance Good

Is Petplan Insurance Any Good?

cta dog ownership guide


  • Adventure Awaits Us at Home

    January 6, 2022 at 9:47 pm

    Thanks for the information. We have considered pet insurance over the years but have never purchased it. We never thought it would be worth it. Like most pet owners, we spend quite a sum on our pets. I will definitely look further into this.


  • Maureen

    January 10, 2022 at 5:06 pm

    What great information! We do not own any pets but it’s always good to know what to do and consider. It is important that our furry friends are also covered and taken cared of.

    Maureen |


  • Millie

    January 10, 2022 at 5:22 pm

    In my opinion, pet insurance is a must-have for pet owners. We were so lucky a few years ago when our dog was injured while we were away and she was with a dog sitter. We saved hundreds of dollars! The peace of mind you get with insurance is invaluable!


  • Lucy Ivan

    January 10, 2022 at 7:08 pm

    Oh a very helpful post! I am planning to buy a puppy soon but I have never thought about a dog insurance. This looks like a very important point to be considered. Thanks for the information


  • Kristy Bullard

    January 10, 2022 at 8:38 pm

    I have been wondering about this. We have 4 dogs – 2 Australian Shepherds, 1 Corgi, and 1 Great Pyrenees. And, the vet bills can really hurt our budget!


  • Fransic verso

    January 11, 2022 at 6:46 am

    This is right on time. I’m getting a dog for the first time and this will help a lot. Thank you for sharing!


  • Nyxie

    January 11, 2022 at 8:29 am

    This is a very useful comprehensive guide. Great for those just starting out with their first animal.


  • Talya Stone

    January 11, 2022 at 10:02 am

    This is a really useful guide! As a dog owner I wouldn’t be without dog insurance. So important to do your research and comparisons.


  • Marysa

    January 11, 2022 at 10:11 am

    I really think dog insurance is worth it. My friend’s dog tore his ACL twice, and it cost a small fortune, and now they have dog insurance as a result. Dogs can be so expensive!


  • Jennifer Prince

    January 11, 2022 at 1:09 pm

    Oh wow! I didn’t know that you could insure your pets. I need to look into this!


  • Heather Castillo

    January 11, 2022 at 4:44 pm

    We had dog insurance when we first rescued our pup. Unfortunately, we found that there are a lot of loop holes that that particular insurance used to not pay for anything.


  • Alita Pacio

    January 11, 2022 at 7:10 pm

    This is something new to me. I own three dogs but never thought of insurance.


  • Beth Pierce

    January 11, 2022 at 7:12 pm

    As a pet owner, its great to know how dog insurance works. I need to submit a claim.


  • briannemanz

    January 11, 2022 at 7:12 pm

    I knew you could insure pets but I just did not know how. Thanks for the detailed guide.


  • Claudia

    January 11, 2022 at 7:13 pm

    I was on the fence about whether to insure my dog or not but you just convinced me to. I think its worth it now


  • Emman Damian

    January 12, 2022 at 5:50 am

    Wow! This is the first time I heard about dog insurance. This is so new to me so I learned a lot! Thanks for this post!


  • Thena

    January 12, 2022 at 11:02 am

    I used to work for a company with pet insurance. I always wondered if it was worth it.


    • DOGuide

      January 13, 2022 at 4:53 pm

      That’s awesome Thena! We would love to learn more about your experience. Contact me if you don’t mind so we can chat.


  • Neely

    January 12, 2022 at 8:22 pm

    Had no idea about this!


    • DOGuide

      January 13, 2022 at 4:50 pm

      Great! I hope it helps you or someone you know…


  • Ntensibe Edgar

    January 13, 2022 at 2:13 am

    Hhhhmmm….I didn’t know anything about dog or pet insurance, for that matter. I got some clues from here. Thanks for sharing about it all.


    • DOGuide

      January 13, 2022 at 4:49 pm

      Yes, of course. The more you know, the more you can do to protect your pup AND your pocket. 😉


  • Subarna

    January 13, 2022 at 10:52 pm

    Helpful information. Though we don’t own any pet but my daughter wants to get a. Puppy. So I guess this will be a great help at that time.


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