Healthcare is expensive, everybody knows that!
According to the Association des économistes québécois, in 2013-2014, human healthcare insurance accounted for 43%, or 31 billion dollars, of the Québec Government’s public expenditures, which translated to a yearly average of $3,500 per person.
Fortunately, pet healthcare is generally not as expensive as human healthcare, even though the same materials are usually more costly since veterinary clinics’ purchases are much smaller than those of large hospitals. Furthermore, medical developments are more and more technology-based and, as a result, increasingly costly.
In this context, it is not very surprising that pet owners are occasionally faced with invoices totalling several thousand dollars for emergency care or surgery, and that some must make the heart-rending choice of having their favourite companion euthanized because of a simple lack of money, even if their pet’s illness or problem was not fatal and could be remedied.
Is there a solution?
In Québec, humans are covered by a public healthcare insurance program, which spares us unpleasant financial surprises!
However, there is no universal governmental insurance for pets. Considering this, several private companies have decided to offer pet healthcare insurance. They market a variety of coverages, at a range of premiums, which can help pet owners face situations that are difficult for both them and their pets. The insurance can cover basic healthcare, it can cover care following illnesses and accidents, and some even cover the pet’s death.
It is important, however, to remember that these companies, like all others, are meant to generate profits and not only to pay claims. In this context, pre-existing conditions are therefore never covered, so it can be wise to subscribe early. Nevertheless, if your pet is healthy and is only very rarely ill, you might feel you have paid for nothing. This is the case with all types of insurance: as long as there is no need for it, we may think we’re spending money needlessly, which explains why all types of insurance are not suitable for everyone. However, when we do need to make a claim, we are usually very happy to have insurance coverage, or very troubled if we don’t.
It is up to each person to decide what fits best with their situation. We simply want to make you aware of the options that are available to you. Below is a list of companies which offer insurance plans so you can find out from them about prices and coverage. We receive no compensation from these companies and thus make no recommendations. What we get is the satisfaction of being able to help another animal, which is the fundamental reason why we became veterinarians in the first place.