What Are Pre-existing Conditions?

Pet owners often wait until their dog or cat has been stricken with an illness or injury, resulting in a hefty veterinary bill, before they seek out a pet insurance policy. They are consequently denied coverage on the basis of the illness or injury being considered a pre-existing condition.

What Are Pre-existing Conditions

Pre-Existing Condition Defined

Each provider may define a pre-existing condition differently. The most common definition includes an illness or accident that shows symptoms, which may or may not have been diagnosed or treated, prior to the effective date of a pet insurance policy or during a waiting period. Please check with each provider for their specific definition.

Recurring Issues

Once injuries occur before a policy takes effect, the same injury on the other side of the body may not be covered as this is called a bilateral condition. If your dog tears a cruciate ligament in his right knee before you purchase a policy, and then subsequently tears the cruciate ligament in the left knee after enrollment and coverage begins, the injury may not be covered.

Also,  incurable conditions that occur before the effective date will not be covered as this is an example of a pre-existing condition. If your cat was treated for Feline Immunodeficiency Virus before you purchased the policy, any subsequent Feline Immunodeficiency Virus treatments are not covered, find here a list of common exclusions on most pet insurance policies. Depending on the provider, some conditions may be eligible for coverage if cured and treatment free.   Check with each provider.

Coverage for Ongoing Conditions

Enroll your dog or cat into a pet health insurance plan with coverage for ongoing conditions at an early age, when his or her medical history is a clean slate, to avoid these scenarios.

This is precisely why it is ideal to purchase a pet health insurance plan with coverage for ongoing conditions for your furry companion from the beginning, while he or she is young and thriving, before such limitations creep up. By purchasing a pet insurance policy for your dog or cat early, you will be empowered to help provide the best medical options for your pet’s lifetime with you.

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*Pet owners in New York get a pro-rated refund.