Insurers step up coverage for dogs in distress as owners return to duty
Insurers have stepped up their coverage to help dogs in distress as some owners return to work, according to the analysis.
Many people have adopted new pets during coronavirus shutdowns – but now some owners have returned to their workplaces after spending more time at home.
Pet owners may not realize that their insurance policy might include coverage for veterinary treatments for their distressed animals, financial information firm Defaqto said.
Behavioral coverage is designed to pay for therapy to treat emotional distress.
Defaqto has found that more insurers are now offering behavioral coverage as part of their pet insurance products, compared to the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
So it’s no surprise that some dogs get anxious when left alone for the first time.
Almost half (44%) of dog insurance policies now include full behavior coverage, up from 30% in February 2020.
Insurers are also offering more generous coverage limits compared to pre-pandemic periods.
Among products offering full coverage to pay for behavior therapy, the average amount of coverage is now £ 2,984 compared to £ 2,205 before the pandemic and one in four (25%) policies offer coverage over £ 5,000 for behavioral treatment.
Defaqto warned that insurers would exclude coverage for claims where the behavioral illness could have been prevented with proper training and socialization.
Brian Brown, consumer finance expert at Defaqto, said: “Dogs have provided much-needed companionship to their owners throughout the pandemic and for those who started their lives on lockdown, they have never known to others.
“So it’s no surprise that some dogs get anxious when left alone for the first time and display destructive behavior. The good news is that this is treatable and insurers have stepped up their coverage for it.
“Many insurers have free vet helplines where you can get advice over the phone, even if you don’t have to make a complaint. If you find that you don’t have insurance coverage, talk to animal charities for advice.