Pet insurance, Should you or Shouldn’t you?

Image

The majority of our clients who have pet insurance are happy that they have it.  Depending on the type of policy as well as which company/pet insurance you choose, pet insurance can be worthwhile.  Like any type of insurance it is in place to make sure that when an emergency or something unforeseen occurs it will help cover the costs.  When an unexpected illness, accidents or emergency occurs you may be faced with hard choices due to financial considerations.  Insurance helps eliminate some of those choices.

“While you can’t predict when accidents or illnesses will happen, a pet health insurance plan will help you deal with unexpected veterinary costs, and you’ll know you’re providing the best possible protection for your pet.”  Not only will you be protecting your pet but potentially protecting yourself from making heart wrenching decisions based on finances

But like health insurance for humans, pet insurance can be complicated.  Depending on the policy that you choose, some policies will not cover older pets or genetic conditions that certain breeds are known to have, such as hip dysplasia in retrievers.  It is very important to check as well as compare various products that different companies offer to find one that will meet your needs.

Some people may be more comfortable putting aside money every month for their pet in a “Pet savings account” to cover the unexpected.  By putting money aside to pay for future work you may be covered for the unexpected veterinary care.  However you must be diligent about putting the money aside.  But what happens if the “future” turns out to be in a couple of months from when you initially started your savings plan?  That would not be so good.  For example, your puppy is playing with a red rubber ball, accidentally chews it up and swallows it.   Not good.  Or… your cat somehow swallows a needle, Yikes.  Sounds unlikely, true, but it happens more than you would think.  All are unexpected accidents.

The Steinway Court Vet recommends a few different companies based on how pleased our clients are regarding ease of reimbursement and of course the amount of that reimbursement.

Nationwide Pet insurance

Embrace Pet Insurance

http://trupanion.com/pet-insurance

http://www.petsbest.com/

http://www.akcpethealthcare.com/

http://www.gopetplan.com/

There are many others.  Please get free price quotes from these and any other company.  Compare apples to apples when you receive your free quotes.

Advertisements

Have we seen your cat lately?

Tabby kittenCats are masters at hiding illness.  If you see any subtle signs of sickness in your cat, it is time for a visit. i.e., inappropriate elimination, changes in food/water consumption, weight gain/loss, changes in grooming habits or vocalization as well as bad breath.  Please do not wait, come on in!

Cats need regular veterinary care, including wellness exams at least once a year. Cats age faster than you do, so an annual exam for them is similar to you visiting your doctor or dentist every four to five years. Prevention is always safer and less expensive than treatment, and why your cat needs to be seen at least once a year by your veterinarian.

The American Association of Feline Practitioners and America Animal Hospital Association recommends a minimum of one annual wellness exam for cats, with more frequent exams for senior and geriatric patients, or those cats with medical or behavioral conditions.

During the health risk assessment, Dr. Glasser will conduct a thorough exam of your cat. Here’s what to expect during the health risk assessment exam:

  • A review of your cat’s previous health records
  • Discuss medications your cat is currently taking, including flea prevention products
  • Note weight and age changes since the last exam
  • Ask about any lifestyle changes in your cat
  • Perform a physical exam including: teeth, mouth, eyes, ears, skin, coat, and paws
  • Ask about any unusual behavior in your cat, such as drinking more water, eating less or more, sleeping less or more,
    or a change in activity level
  • Treat any current condition, such as ear infection or ear mites
  • Recommend dental cleaning, if needed
  • Look for early disease signs and if suspected, recommend further tests
  • Recommend appropriate vaccinations your cat needs to prevent disease

Let us help you keep your cat healthy and live a long, happy life!

Kidney Disease

Have you noticed your cat drinking more than usual?

Chronic kidney disease in cats is the most common disease process of middle age and elderly cats.  Did you know that kidney disease can be genetic?  This disease runs in certain lines or families of cats and as such has a strong genetic predisposition.   Although there is no cure per se , if diagnosed early, we can help slow the progression of the disease .  Cats compensate for this disease very well. They will typically not show significant signs of illness in the early stages.   Wondering how you can tell if your kitty has the beginning of kidney disease?   You are the one that can help make a difference.   Some of the signs to look for are:

  • Increase in water consumption
  • Increase in urination
  • Decrease in appetite
  • Lethargy
  • vomiting

Early detection is the best defense.  As your pets owner it is critical role determining if your pets behavior has changed.  The daily interaction that you have allows you to notice the subtle sign before they turn into a larger problem.  If you notice any of the above it is a good idea to have your pet screened  by the veterinarian.   We recommended: a complete blood count (CBC), a serum biochemical profile, and a urinalysis.

Unfortunately, once we see a rise in waste products in the blood there is an indication that the filtering mechanism of the kidney has been damaged.   In the urinalysis we test for pH, specific gravity, the presence of blood, protein, glucose, bilirubin, and ketones, and microscopically look for cells, bacteria, crystals, and casts.  These give us an understanding what is happening within the body.

There are multiple treatment options that we can use to delay the further damage to the kidneys.  The mainstay for therapy has been renal (kidney) diets. These diets are modified protein diets. If you pet has excessive protein consumption that can increase  nitrogenous waste in the body, which in turn, increases the burden on the kidney to remove it.

The best plan of action would be to be alert in changes that your pet may be exhibiting.  This will allow us to help you give you more quality time with your loved one.