Vets That Wont Take Payment Plans?

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Amanda1801

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I understand what you are saying but I will give my side. My piggies are registered at the RSPCA which is for people of low income. You could say I should not have them as I use the RSPCA but I suffer with mental health problems and they are all I live for. Without them I would have killed myself. I would do anything for them. Yes, I cannot afford private vets but they have everything they need and I spend all my money on them. I know I rely on the RSPCA hospital if anything goes wrong but I could not bare life without my little ones. The fees are reduced but it is not free. I know this post will make me very unpopular but I thought you may be interested in another point of view.
At the RSPCA you usually pay cost price :) - the PDSA is completely free (they just ask for a donation of whatever you can afford, whether it's £1 or £100) and it's abuse of the PDSA that I have a problem with! We regularly see people with pedigree puppies that they have spent upwards of £500 on who then cannot afford £30 for a consultation fee :(
 

Amanda1801

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I agree with you here piggyfan. I utterly adore my boys and like you also suffer from mental illness. My boys have helped me through many, many tough times and though I go to a normal private vet and it costs me a lot I always pay for the treatment. Sadly, I have to take one of my boys today and I am very worried about the fee. I am planning on using my birthday and Christmas money to pay for the visit and treatment because I only earn £17 a week.
I do all I can to make sure my boys are healthy and I have paid a few hundred for Gilbert with one operation which he then needed a second time and sadly, today, possibly a third time. I paid it the last two times but this time I am struggling. Circumstances can change and hit someone very suddenly and because of this I think it would be nice if vets do take payment plans because of course, most honest people would pay back, and if they don't, surely you can use their signature or something to prove they owe you?

I'm sure as yours, my point will be disliked but my vet has told me that I am one of the most caring guinea pig owners they have ever met and I would do anything for them.
Most vets don't advertise the fact that they do payment plans, or everyone would have one! If you're concerned about costs, have a word with your vet - if you've paid for treatment previously, tell them you're worried about the cost of repeat treatment and lack of funds, and is there any allowance for a payment plan - if you've been a good paying client, chances are, they'll arrange something for you. This then gives you the chance to prove you can stick to an agreement, and if it's kept to, they're more than likely certain to offer one again in the future ;)


(PS does anyone know how to multi-quote since the update?!)
 

Amanda1801

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Can anyone give me any advice on the best place to get pet insurance for guinea pigs? I started to look into it when I 1st got my boys but gve up for 2 reasons. Firsty, the only one I could find looked expensive as GPs are classed as exotic pets and secondly, to get quote, I was meant to provide their dates of birth, They' re rescue animals - I don't know when they were born. I asked the insurance company if a vets estimate would be acceptable and the reply I got was that the rescue Centre should be able to provide me with their dates of birth.
I do agree with the comments in previous posts that we are very fortunate to have a NHS but this can make us a bit niave about how much health care really costs.
I would never deny my GP's treatment if they need it BUT my finances are tight and I'd sooner budget by having pet insurance rather than getting a nasty shock!
An approximate guesstimate for their date of birth would be sufficient - this is what mine have. They won't insure a pig over 5 years old (too risky cost wise for them) and similarly, if you tried to claim for a pig that you claimed was 6 months old and it was clearly an elderly pig, they'd be unlikely to pay out! A rough estimate should be fine.
 

Amanda1801

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Exotic Direct are the only insures of guinea pigs (they are part of pet plan) each pig costs about £7.60 per month - each pig will have a £50 excess PER CONDITION, and if you claim the insurer will dock the rest of the years premium and the excess off the amount of the bill - for example if you took out insurance for 1 pig on the 1st January and you had chosen to pay by monthly instalments ( = £90 over 10 months - they don't do instalments over 12 months anymore ) - if your pig fell sick and needed an operation say in March,and the operation cost £200 they would pay out £200 less £50 excess less £63 (7 MONTHS PREMIUM,AS YOU HAVE ALREADY PAID FOR JAN,FEB & MARCH) = £87 - so you or your vet would get a cheque for £87 - this is because you have to pay the first £50 of any claim,and the insurance company need to make sure that after they have paid out your claim you don't then go and cancel the policy after only paying for 3 months cover - your pig will still be covered for the rest of the year,but you will not have to make any further monthly payments because you have paid for the insurance up -front (by way of the insurance company docking it off the pay -out).
It is also worth mentioning that most vets STILL insist on payment up-front,then you claim the money back from the insurer,or they will deal with the insurer direct and you don't have to pay up front if the bill is more than £200 - each practice is different - most vets will also let you start a monthly savings payment plan BEFORE your pet is in need of any treatment ,which is good for some people who might be tempted to dig into any savings they put aside - I have 7 pigs and it now costs me £600 a year to insure them (was £350 last year,but 5 of the 7 had to have various treatments and operations so that's why my premium is so high this year ) - but I still had £2000 worth of vets bills I wouldn't have been able to afford.I don't drink or smoke or go out (makes me sound sad I know),so that still makes my piggies quite a cheap"hobby",compared to smoking / eating out etc.
Is this really what they do? I've never heard of an insurance company doing this, but I pay for my pigs insurance 12 months up front so I've always had the full amount paid minus the £50 excess. I've also had well in excess of my yearly premiums paid out!
 

Veggies Galore

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Is this really what they do? I've never heard of an insurance company doing this, but I pay for my pigs insurance 12 months up front so I've always had the full amount paid minus the £50 excess. I've also had well in excess of my yearly premiums paid out!

Can you point me in the direction of any insurance companies? We've heard of exotics direct and I'm happy to contct them but would like to shop around if possible.
 

Amanda1801

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Can you point me in the direction of any insurance companies? We've heard of exotics direct and I'm happy to contct them but would like to shop around if possible.
Exotic direct are the only one as far as I'm aware. I have no complaints what so ever regarding the service I've had from them. They have always paid out quickly and without question
 

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Dear Tan - thank you for the reply. I sounds very complex to me! Are you saying that, if a GP requires vetinary treatment for 2 unrelated illnesses within the lifetime of the policy, they will be covered by the policy but there will be a 50 pound excess each time? What if they only need something such as a course of antibiotics or steriods?
Insurance is usually only used in big claims, such as operations or xrays, things that can sometimes come to well over £300 if not more, it’s the same with dogs, most people who take their dogs to the vet just pay for a simple course of antibiotics out of their own pocket, it’s more if their dog turns out to need an operation, for example if the dog is hit by a car, say it has an xray, an op, and then maybe some follow up appointments and medication then the whole cost of anything caused by that dog being hit by a car would be calculated and sent of to the insurance company. Most of the time something like anti-biotics and an appointment would only come to about £30 anyways, and most vets would do a free follow up appointment after that.

Its kind of like in your house, if you have insurance and your toaster breaks you wouldn’t claim it you’d just go out and buy it, if you had a leak that dripped down and caused all your kitchen appliances to explode or something then, presuming you have contents covered, you would claim for the leek and the replacement of the toaster.

I hope that makes sense :)
 

Amanda1801

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Insurance is usually only used in big claims, such as operations or xrays, things that can sometimes come to well over £300 if not more, it’s the same with dogs, most people who take their dogs to the vet just pay for a simple course of antibiotics out of their own pocket, it’s more if their dog turns out to need an operation, for example if the dog is hit by a car, say it has an xray, an op, and then maybe some follow up appointments and medication then the whole cost of anything caused by that dog being hit by a car would be calculated and sent of to the insurance company. Most of the time something like anti-biotics and an appointment would only come to about £30 anyways, and most vets would do a free follow up appointment after that.

Its kind of like in your house, if you have insurance and your toaster breaks you wouldn’t claim it you’d just go out and buy it, if you had a leak that dripped down and caused all your kitchen appliances to explode or something then, presuming you have contents covered, you would claim for the leek and the replacement of the toaster.

I hope that makes sense :)
You can basically claim for anything over your excess. It may not be worth claiming a few quid but in theory you could. Most minor things wouldn't go over your excess usually, my dogs excess is £120 and the closest I've had to that was £118 as there was a £90 emergency consultation fee!
 

TAN

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Is this really what they do? I've never heard of an insurance company doing this, but I pay for my pigs insurance 12 months up front so I've always had the full amount paid minus the £50 excess. I've also had well in excess of my yearly premiums paid out!
Yes,if you pay by monthly direct debit they knock off the rest of your years premium - they say its the only way they can guarantee to get some of their money back,as if you only insured your pig for 1 month and paid £7.50 then cancelled the premium they would be out of pocket by £80 - they do this without fail on each pig & as I had 2 spays and 2 lump removals last year,as well a lot of ultrasounds and x -rays and a good few chiropractor treatments for my crumbling spine pig and kidney stone pig,I was still left trying to find the shortfall in the bills,as in each case I had to cough up an extra £50 or so I didn't have, and it didn't really help that the direct debit only went down £7.50 a month each time - but I still wouldn't have been able to come up with the £2000 if I hadn't insured them.
It might be worth mentioning that Exotic Direct no longer insure for spaying / oviohysterectomy in any way shape or form - even if it has been done at the vets behest for health reasons - had a huge ding dong with them as Noodles was spayed in August as she had polycystic ovaries and they paid out no problem- when Poppet had the same condition and was spayed they refused to pay out saying payout for 1st pig that was spayed was made in error by an inexperienced assessor and that upon renewing my policy I was sent a policy booklet that had amendments in & a sentence had been removed from the exclusions section regarding spaying - needless to say there was nothing in my paperwork and no insert alerting me to the change in the policy booklet (they sent me a photocopy of the exclusions page of their up to date booklet and the bit had been removed about paying out for spays for medical reasons) so I threatened to take them to the ombudsman - got a letter back from the chairman of Exotic himself saying that in this instance would grant a "one off" ex-gratia payment in full and final settlement.
 

Veggies Galore

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I'm going to have to think about this very seriously.
Would I be unfair in thinking that regular trips to the vet & scans +/- x-rays would be very stresssful for a GP? Up until now, I have felt that, if one of my piggies got to this level of need, it would be fairer to have them put to sleep. I would be grateful for your thoughts on this.
 
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Vet trips can be stressful but sometimes they are needed. There is no way you should have an animal put to sleep unless there is no hope. One of my piggies had a procedure on her bladder to remove crystals. She is now five so it saved her life. Another recently had an xray. They can cope with these things.
 

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Vet trips can be stressful but sometimes they are needed. There is no way you should have an animal put to sleep unless there is no hope. One of my piggies had a procedure on her bladder to remove crystals. She is now five so it saved her life. Another recently had an xray. They can cope with these things.
I need to know these things . I never want to be in a position where one of my GPs is suffering and want to do what is best for them.
 

Amanda1801

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I'm going to have to think about this very seriously.
Would I be unfair in thinking that regular trips to the vet & scans +/- x-rays would be very stresssful for a GP? Up until now, I have felt that, if one of my piggies got to this level of need, it would be fairer to have them put to sleep. I would be grateful for your thoughts on this.
In my opinion, it depends entirely on the pig (or whatever animal it may be for that matter).

Maggie, my huge vet bill pig, has had 5 general anaesthetics and 4 operations in the space of 12 months, two of which were major. She's been absolutely fine every time, she's not seemed unwell at any point during her illnesses (you wouldn't have known she was unwell if you didn't know her!) so for me, it's not bothering her, she has very quick, good recoveries every time, so I currently don't have a problem. She's having another anaesthetic and a CT scan soon for her ongoing constant bloating. She's a very bold, brave pig, and everyone always comments on how well she tolerates being at the vets (they even board there while I'm away!).

Another of my pigs, Cameo, had an horrific anaesthetic recovery, but with 2 weeks of intensive care, she pulled through. In about september, she had an unidentifiable prolapse and the only option was exploratory surgery. I consented, as it was the only option other than euthanasia, but on the grounds that if she had a poor recovery, she'd be euthanased. As it happens, this time, her recovery was textbook and she's back to her normal grumpy self.

I had a similar scenario with my chameleon - the treatment for his illness involved daily handling, which was far too stressful for him, so I opted for euthanasia.
 

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I need to know these things . I never want to be in a position where one of my GPs is suffering and want to do what is best for them.
Your vet will always lay out the options for you and give you a the risks and benefits of each, but as mentioned only you know your pigs and what you feel is fair or not and no one can judge whatever decision you make as your their owner. Don't worry yourself about it now though, only in extreme cases would you need to make such a decision, just enjoy having your piggies and as long as you continue to get to know them and what's normal and what's not you should be able to treat any illness before it becomes too serious.
 

TAN

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Dear Tan - thank you for the reply. I sounds very complex to me! Are you saying that, if a GP requires vetinary treatment for 2 unrelated illnesses within the lifetime of the policy, they will be covered by the policy but there will be a 50 pound excess each time? What if they only need something such as a course of antibiotics or steriods?
yes,each time you make a claim you will have to pay the first £50 - so if they only needed a vet examination and some anti biotics it would not be worth claiming - as its £17 plus VAT for an examination with my vet and about £6 for a course of septrin,so you wont get any money from them.
 
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