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Pet Insurance Basics

Pet insurance terminology can be confusing. So here are some brief explanations of key terms together with more detailed information on the various benefits which may be included with a pet insurance policy.

Waiting Period

The “waiting period” is the term generally used for the time between the start of the policy and when your cover actually starts. This often only applies to vet treatment for illnesses but some policies also have waiting periods for vet fees for accidents, and other benefits.

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Trip Cancellation Cover

This is also known as holiday cancellation cover. Will pay trip cancellation or curtailment costs if you have to cancel as a result of your pet requiring life-saving surgery either whilst you are away and/or shortly before you are due to travel.

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Time Limited Cover

This type of policy covers a condition for up to twelve months from when the condition starts (providing the policy remains in force). Many people buy this type of policy without realising how restrictive it is.

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Travel Cover Explained

Many pet insurance policies include travel cover for when your pet travels overseas. All pet insurance policies stipulate that if you wish to claim you must have complied with all the requirements from the DEFRA Pet Travel Scheme.

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Referral Travel Costs Benefit

 This benefit provides cover for the cost of your travel (usually mileage and accommodation) if your pet is referred to a specialist, vet hospital or referral centre. Travel to a vet surgery which is part of the veterinary practice you normally attend is generally excluded.

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Quarantine Fees

Quarantine fees cover usually pays for the cost of quarantine fees should your pet have to be quarantined either as a result of becoming ill whilst you are abroad or as a result of microchip failure.

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Pre-Existing Condition

The definition of a pre-existing condition can vary between policies but generally it is any injury or illness that you knew about before your insurance policy came into effect.     Petplan's definition of a pre-existing condition is fairly typical.

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Pet Insurance for Pre-Existing Conditions

Has your pet been treated by a vet for anything other than routine vaccinations and/or neutering? Or has your vet ever recorded any adverse details about your pet's health at anytime? In which case you need to be careful when taking out a new pet insurance policy as your pet may have pre-existing co...

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