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Pet Insurance 101

What does deductible mean in pet insurance?

Here's how your deductible impacts how you pay your vet bills.

You know that signing up for Fetch by The Dodo pet insurance is a significant step in bettering your pet’s future health. But it’s OK if you’re not yet familiar with all the ins and outs of the pet insurance industry. You’re doing your homework, and that’s a great start.

An insurance term you might hear often is “deductible.” But what does it actually mean? Here’s everything you need to know about deductibles so you can start getting your vet expenses covered.

What is a deductible in pet insurance?

An annual deductible is the money you pay toward your unexpected vet bills before your pet insurance plan starts to pay. It’s a one-time, annual deductible, meaning you’ll only have to worry about covering your set amount once every policy period.

When signing up for Fetch cat or dog insurance online, we’ll show you three recommended deductibles specific to your pet — they can range between $250 to $2,500. If you want more options, give our pet advisors a call (866.984.0104), and they’ll present you with other quotes or review your policy documents. 

Choosing the lower deductible option is the quickest way to start having your pet’s vet expenses paid. However, selecting a lower deductible means there’ll likely be a higher premium, which is the amount you pay for your pet’s coverage (and you can choose if you want to pay monthly, quarterly or annually). 

Alternatively, if you choose a higher deductible, it might take longer to reach that deductible and, therefore, will reduce your premium.

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How does pet insurance work?

Once you meet your deductible, Fetch pet insurance pays you back for up to 90% of your cat or dog’s vet bills. Here’s some of what we cover:

  • Prescription medications and supplements
  • Emergency vet visits
  • Virtual, in-home and office visits
  • Hospital stays
  • Physical therapy
  • Allergies
  • Surgery
  • X-rays and CT scans
  • Ultrasounds
  • Blood tests
  • Breed-specific issues, including hip dysplasia
  • Specialists
  • Sick-visit exam fees
  • Laboratory tests
  • Vomiting and diarrhea
  • Hereditary and congenital issues
  • Swallowed objects and toxins
  • Every tooth covered (and gum disease)
  • Diabetes and insulin
  • Cancer treatment
  • Veterinary acupuncture and chiropractic care
  • Treatment to help aggression and separation anxiety

Getting paid back is straightforward with Fetch pet insurance, too. Once you sign up for pet insurance, there’s a brief waiting period before any health-related issue is covered. The waiting period is 15 days for injuries and illnesses and all specialty coverages.

There’s also a 6-month exclusionary period before injuries of the hips and knees can be covered. However, you can waive the 6-month exclusionary period for knee conditions and disorders by having your pet examined by a vet in the first 30 days of your policy to determine and document that they don’t have any pre-existing conditions relevant (or related) to the knees.

After the waiting period, you're free to begin submitting claims. Here's how it works:

Step one: Visit any licensed vet in the U.S. or Canada.

Step two: Submit a claim on our app or website by taking a photo of your vet documents. We’ll handle it from there.

Step three: Get paid back for your covered claims! You can receive up to 90% of your vet expenses back and get paid back quicker if you’re using direct deposit.

At Fetch, we want to set you and your pet up for success so you can focus on the things that really matter (like head scratches, games of feather wands and lots of cuddles). So not only are you now an insurance-jargon wizard, but you’re also well-versed in how to get paid back quickly.

The Dig, Fetch by The Dodo’s expert-backed editorial, answers all of the questions you forget to ask your vet or are too embarrassed to ask at the dog park. We help make sure you and your best friend have more good days, but we’re there on bad days, too. Fetch provides the most comprehensive pet insurance and is the only provider recommended by the #1 animal brand in the world, The Dodo.

Photo by Skyler Gerald on Unsplash

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