Experts In The Industry Urge Owners To Really Look At Policy Fine Print

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — If your pet is injured its trip to the vet could end up costing you some serious money. But now some companies are offering pet insurance as an employee benefit.

Home Depot, T-Mobile, and Chipotle are all offering this rare benefit to workers who would otherwise be faced with staggering veterinary bills.

“My dog was bitten, on the neck, and had to go to the emergency room, and it saved us probably $800 out of pocket,” Alexis Loehlein said.

Loehlein’s Golden Retriever is covered by her company’s pet insurance plan. Teacher Chris Reed told CBS 2’s Derricke Dennis that his dog is not.

“I very much wish I had it. I mean it’s expensive to pay for it yourself,” he said.

Experts told CBS 2 that the trend is on the rise.

“Definitely, exponentially in the last year, the amount of people that have insurance has probably doubled,” Dr. Julia Jones said Thursday.

Jones is a veterinarian at the West Village Veterinary Hospital. She said that dental work on a dog can cost as much as $1,000.

Experts said pet insurance can also help get an owner to take their pet to the vet faster.

“Sometimes because of financial constraints, if they don’t have insurance, they will wait on those things,” Dr. Jones said.

While pet insurance sounds like a good idea, insurance experts cautioned that customers should look at the fine print in their policies.

“If your pet has a pre-existing medical condition, they’re not gonna cover you for that,” explained Loretta Worters.

Worters represents the Insurance Information Institute and said that payout limits, bans on certain breeds and cancer treatments could catch some pet owners by surprise.

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