Friday, March 6, 2009

How much is too much?

I love my Bonnie girl. 

She’s been a big part of my world for the last 7+ years (she was born on 11 Sept 2001, true!) and I hate that winter is coming and she’s going to get stiff and have sore hips again. I have started her on green lipped mussel extract a few weeks ago and I hope it help014s her this year.

Anyhow…that’s not actually the topic for today's post.

This evening after work, I was having a conversation with the IT guy and he was telling me that his beloved German shepherd got slammed by a car a couple of days ago.

She’s been at the vets since then where they’ve operated and inserted pins into her leg and removed a battered internal organ (he did tell me which organ but can’t recall).

The dog is going to live which IT guy is extremely happy about. So far he’s NZ$5,100 (US$2,700) out of pocket.

This got me thinking – how much would I spend if Bonnie got hurt? More to the point probably is how much could I spend if Bonnie got hurt?

I don’t have savings worth talking about and003 the way things are right now, I be very wary about borrowing money to pay a vets bill. The equity I have in my house has been dribbling away over the last 6 months as the housing market has righted itself (as was inevitable) and it’s made life just that bit more precarious.

Just thinking about it made me anxious and I made a decision driving home that I would immediately hit the internet and find out about pet insurance.

The first ad I saw was for a company named PetProtect. With them I can get an ‘accident only’ plan with a maximum $4000 accident cover (with a $150 excess) for $189 a year.

Pet-n-Sur was the next site I looked at where a ‘surgery only basic’ plan comprising surgery re illness and/or accident to $1500 max in each category, for $156 a year or I could double that cover (surgery only extended plan) for $235 a year.

I think I only need the surgery cover anyway as most other stuff is almost affordable. I think I’ll ring on Monday morning (it’s nearly 10pm on Friday night here now) and make some enquiries.

I have decided that I won’t risk being without this insurance for another week. 


  1. I feel the same way about my 'other' kids. Even my bird, he's a Ring-Neck parrot, born with deformed feet and wings. Him I spoil rotten.

  2. A number of insurance companies have add ons with their home insurance - worth a look.

    2 days after i got my jack russell (since gone with the ex) he got parvovirus. The pet place paid for the vet as he was still under warranty (?) but we decided we would pay anything to make him well, if they stopped paying for it. Even after 2 days we loved him enough to do anything

  3. I'll check that out thanks uamada.

    My 'pre-Bonnie' dog Ralph, a huge long haired shepherd, survived a very bad bout of parvo as a puppy. He cost me a lot of vet money over the years but I had less responsibility then and I spent my money however I wanted. He lived to 13.

    Not so easy now unfortunately though I love Bonnie as much as I ever loved Ralph.

    I'll just get the insurance and then the 'what if's' are covered and I won't have to worry.

  4. Carlos used to work in the veterinary field, and he really thinks the insurance is a good idea.
    Hospital bills for pets can get quite high, and I don't think any true pet lover would put a dollar amount on a pet's life.
    I wouldn't.

  5. We need to think about this.

  6. I agree, take as many 'what ifs' out of your life as is practicable. You'll feel and sleep better.

  7. The insurance here in Alberta would run me $45 a month (I looked into it) and I can't afford it. As much as I love Lola, the family must come first and a pet bill of $2500 would almost make us homeless. Thankfully, she's a house dog.

  8. Thank you all for your input.

    Bob, if Bonnie got seriously hurt tomorrow (i.e before I get this insurance), I would have to put a price on how much I could pay to try and keep her alive. Sad but true. Not because I don't love her but because I need to make sure that Rory and I have a roof over our head and as Kate says, thousands of dollars on a vet would seriously compromise that right now. There are a few things I could sell, and I would, before metaphorically pulling the plug but there'd come a point when I would have to say stop. It makes me choke up to say it but it's true.

    Hence the insurance. Thank god I had this conversation with the IT guy and he woke me up before the unthinkable happened.


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