Insuring Your Show Dog
Many years ago when you bought a puppy all you expected was to pay all its living expenses until the day it died. Not so today, with puppies costing on average £800-£1,000 they are a very valuable commodity not only as part of the family but as the basis of your hopes and dreams of a successful show career.
When to Start Insuring a PuppyPerhaps the most important time to have insurance is when you first collect your puppy from your breeder. Any good breeder will ensure that the puppy starts its new life with samples of everything from food and bedding to insurance and all other important documents in which to start its new life.
A puppy, however well bred, can have some health problems whether it is from a change of food and home life to an unknown condition rearing its head weeks into its new life. Rather than have to pay exorbitant fees to a vet, the insurance can take the strain. It is also worth considering that there is a high rate of dog theft these days and your new puppy could attract the attention from undesirable sources, insurance also covers rewards fees and replacement value if you should lose your dog.
Usually puppy cover from the breeder will be for the first six weeks giving the new owner time to investigate whether they wish to continue the insurance, sign up with another insurer or take the responsibility of all expenses on by themselves.Your breeder would have passed on your details to the company insuring your puppy and they will be in touch during the first weeks puppy goes home, in the hope you will purchase a policy with them.
What Does it Cover?Health: Insurance does not just cover health issues - even then it will not cover all costs. There is always an excess to the policy that can be from around £25 to as much as £100 upwards. Many insurers also will not cover existing illness and injury. Vaccinations and breeding related problems are never covered by pet insurance.
Kennelling: In the case that the owner is admitted to hospital many policies now cover boarding of the insured dog.
Reward: If a pet has strayed or is stolen many policies have a clause that covers a reward. Although this incentive is now a reason that pet crime is at its height!
Overseas Travel: Most policies now include this clause but ensure yours does have it if you intend to take your dog overseas to exhibit.
Third Party Cover: This is essential, imagine if your dog causes an accident or damages property.
Holiday Cancellation: If your holiday needs to be cancelled its comforting to know that you are also covered for that fortnight boarding kennel cost.
Shop Around For a Pet PolicyThese days you can shop around for a pet policy very much as you would car or household insurance. The Kennel Club have policies for show and pet dogs as does many of the other canine companies advertising in canine publications. However you may find equally good cover being offered by your local supermarket. Your own insurer may be able to offer a discount if you purchase dog insurance through them when updating other family insurance.
Do Your HomeworkBy doing your homework while still thinking about purchasing a puppy you can ensure that you have the right sort of insurance cover.
There is one other point worth considering, if you have other pets and only want insurance for health matters. Calculate what your monthly payments would be if you were to purchase an insurance policy. Open a savings account just for your pets and make a monthly transfer to this account. You will then have the money needed if you should ever have a problem. The owners of more than two pets quite often use this system, as the monthly outlay of money can be too expensive. The downside to this is that you must remember to put aside the monthly amount and that you may need a large sum of money before you have saved it in your bank account!