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I know this is nothing to do with Irish Setters but it is a bit of an eye opener.

Last week my sisters young cat was found in the hedge, no were near a road but totally paralysed.

The local vets have all banded together to form one huge practice with a brand new animal hospital and this is were the cat was taken.

All fine and dandy but almost the first question was, is you animal insured? YES.

Now started a series of blood tests and an MRI scan was requested..  The out come is that the poor cat has degeneration of the discs in her back, something that is sometimes seen in much older cats.  At present she is doing very well but will never be the kitten cat she was.

The eye opener was the £1000.00 bill for the MRI, this does not include any other treatment. As my wife works in the X-ray department of the local hospital, we know that a private MRI scan works out at around £350.00 to £500.00.

Now I am not knocking vets, if anything the insurance companies should look at their own house. I suppose what I really want to say is; when you take on a new puppy or any animal please please make sure they are insured as the consequences are not worth thinking about.


If this is in the wrong place, I’m sorry and if the web master wants to remove it, please do. I just needed somewhere to moan for a second. Phil


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I shifted immediately after discovering it was indeed dealt by E&L.. And I chosen helpucover after lot of nice feedback from this website. At the time of my shifting Oberon was ~3-4 months old. To my fault, meanwhile the puppy was already seen by a vet because once he was vomiting, and I failed to declare this when I opened helpucover (I was superficial.. I though you only need to declare the pre-existing conditions, not something really minor...)


Unfortunately a couple of months later Oberon was sick with a bad stomac bug that has taken lot of exams and different antibiotics to be cleared, plus one night hospitalization with a dip following a bad de-hydratation due to severe diarrhea.. 1000£.. I made my claim, but helpucover requested (of course) the vet history to the clinic,  discovered that the puppy had vomited before we opened the insurance and refused the claim (plus, excluded from our policy all gastro-related disorder for two years)..


I am not sure if they had paid in case I disclosed the info at the opening of the policy.. maybe or maybe not..in any case, my suggestion is : if /when you shift, please declare EVERYTHING, even the smallest/minor things!!! I still think helpucover may be a good choice, Howard is happy with that, so we'll stick and wait next time :)


we also had a surgery for a delayed umbilical closure and an hernia removal, but, again, we knew the belly was "open:)" since the very first vet visit of the puppy, so when we shifted to helpucover this was a real pre-existing condition and they didnt covered this.. (but this is more reasonable, of course:) #

yes, helpucover  is around 20-30£ (cant remember the price exactly..)


I think NFU doesnt cover london..

The yearly premium with NFU is £105 for each of our ISs with a £50 excess and cover up to £4,000 per annum per 'boy' - worth every £ and the claim is settled with the Vet.  

Hi everyone - I actually work in a vets and deal with the pet insurance side of things!  I would recommend to everyone (unless you have money set aside) to take out lifelong pet insurance from day one of owning a new dog.  I have all my three insured with Petplan and it is expensive but they pay my bills within a week and are easy to deal with.  Remember that if you change your pet insurance at any time or you take out new pet insurance then you will not be covered for anything (how ever vague the connection) that your pet has suffered from before.  


All pet insurances are different - there are three main types, time limited policies, maximum benefits policies and lifelong policies and generally if the policy is cheaper than any others that is for a good reason!!  Never just assume the insurance will pay, we will always advise people to ask for Pre-Authorisation in writing before any proceedure is performed.


E&L and petinsurance.co.uk are the same company and should ideally be avoided.  I do not know any vet that will deal with them directly.  


I have been very lucky and I have never worked in a vets that has performed extra tests etc. just because the animal is insured.


Jo,you are probably right about the extra tests (as you are about everything in your post!)and I think I got the wrong impression from my vet's.I think they offer tests ,such as a complete blood profile before an operation,to insured people more readily because they know that they can afford to pay the bill whereas ,without insurance,you might balk at it.I will apologise here to my vet for thinking otherwise!


Hi, from my crash course in this I believe that vets ask not to do extras just to provide what they can and where there is no insurance or little left they will provide what they can  .... In a claim of nearly 10.5k, we only have had one item rejected by Petplan and I think its inclusion was a mistake ..... After the meningitis diagnosis Murphy required a chest harness and not a collar, the cost of the harness £16 has been rejected but no issues with this .....

Petplan is expensive and Murphy got ill through a unlikely source, it is believed he inhaled a foreign body into his lung which caused a problem then sent his immune system into chaos resulting in the meningitis, followed by the lung abscess ..... But whilst expensive they also have a good reputation for not quibbling ......

I hope when he is fitter to add to our Irish family and when you have 3 or 4 dogs I reckon that putting the cash away would suffice ...... As the chances of encountering a bill like this with such a previously fit healthy young Irish must be slim....... But if you do insure then Life cover is best and please do research the Life cover ........ paying the vet directly helps ever so much! :-)

I'll definitely read the policy carefully and look for life cover.  I wonder if it is not as common in the US to insure pets, it seems like all the replies are from the the UK, given the costs were in pounds!


Any US folks with Pet Insurance to recommend?

This might help you Leslie:


Thanks Howard! I'll check that out.

I guess all the Americans are very shy, not surprising since it is one of our national characteristics. We're just a country of quiet people ;-)


I want to get insurance for our new boy, Mac. I checked a few companies on the comparison websites, as well as on company sites. The best (best cover at lowest cost) quote for life cover so far is from Argos, but I don't know what their customer service is like. Does anyone use them?
All I would advise is to consider a company that might do a discount for both your boys. Other things to consider are direct vet payments and even some for life plans have exclusions you might not expect. I am with Pet Plan but I have heard good reports about Marks & Spencers.




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