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Having a new puppy in the house is exciting – and distracting. But along with teething troubles, toilet training and establishing house rules, it’s also a time to consider buying puppy insurance. Although you might be tempted to wait until your puppy gets older before you insure them, there are compelling reasons to do it while your dog is still young. Keeping a dog is expensive. The PDSA estimates the cost of owning one at between £6,500-£17, 000 over the whole of the pet’s lifetime. But if you don’t have pet insurance those costs could get an awful lot higher: vet bills are rising at a rate of 12% a year and the average pet insurance claim has topped £750. So if your puppy gets sick and you don’t have insurance, you could end up seriously out of pocket – canine problems like bloat, for example, could set you back as much as £480. Then there’s the issue of pre-existing health conditions. Many pet insurance policies exclude these from cover. Choosing a longer-term type of pet insurance for your puppy while they’re young can help you avoid this exclusion. Plus, pet insurance prices tend to increase as your dog gets older and there’s a greater risk of a claim.
Although pet insurance for your puppy isn’t a legal requirement, it can help cover costs if they get sick or are injured in an accident. It can also help with costs if they injure a person or another dog, or damage something. Find out more about third party dog insurance Pet insurance needn’t be hugely expensive. 50% of people could achieve a quote of £4.90 per month for their dog insurance based on Compare the Market data in November 2018 (an average of all cover types).
You should be able to get puppy insurance when your dog is between six and eight weeks old.
Here are the main conditions to look out for in your new best friend.
You should register your puppy with your vet within the first few weeks and arrange a health check appointment. On your first visit your vet will probably ask you about your puppy’s history – where you bought him or her and if you have any details about their parents. Your vet will then give your puppy a thorough physical examination, including:
Your puppy will need to have their first vaccinations when they’re around eight weeks old. It’s also a legal requirement to have your puppy microchipped by the time they’re eight weeks old. If you don’t do this, as well as risking a fine, you may invalidate your pet insurance.
There are four main varieties of puppy insurance: Lifetime pet insurance – This isn’t the cheapest option, but it is the most comprehensive. The Money Advice Service says that the easiest way to get pet insurance is to buy a lifetime policy when your pet is young. Your pet can be covered for their lifetime, provided you renew your premium every year. It can include all new and recurring conditions up to a certain cost limit. Maximum benefit pet insurance – your puppy will be insured up to a certain cost limit, as long as your premium is renewed. Time limited pet insurance – this usually runs for 12 months and there’s usually a cost limit. Accident only pet insurance – this is the cheapest option, but it only covers treatment related to your pet having an accident, not illness.
Your puppy insurance will cover vet bills, but you need to check exactly which ones. Routine treatments, like vaccinations, won’t be covered and you might find that some conditions are excluded – particularly important if your pup is a pedigree and prone to certain hereditary conditions. Your policy may also include:
To find puppy insurance that suits the needs of your young dog, simply use our price comparison service All you need to do is tell us a few details about your puppy and we’ll show you a range of quotes, allowing you to compare prices and policy details to find the right puppy insurance for you. Get a quote in minutes.