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Pet Insurance

Falling sick and going to see a doctor is a costly thing, so is the same as our pets falling sick and furthermore these things are out of our control. Pets are like humans, they may fall sick, get injured or meet with an accident. We have medical insurance while there is pet insurance for them.

Do you know that when the pet is stolen or lost, the costs involved in search & retrieval of our pet, having a pet insurance can help with the costs involved? You didn’t know? Neither did I prior to doing research. Like most people, I thought pet insurance would just be like ours, able to claim medical bills whenever I fall sick and is hospitalised and that’s it. 

The insurance is quite limited and is covering dogs or cats only.

AIA Paw SafeCIMB My Paw PalLiberty Insurance PetCareAON Happy Tails
BreedDogsCats & DogsCats & DogsCats & Dogs
Age3 months to 7 years old3 months to 7 years old2 months to 9 years old4 months to 9 years old
Eligibility1. Must be licensed
2. Must not be any of these breeds: mastiff, bull terrier, Staffordshire bull terrier, pit bull terrier, American pit bull terrier, Dogo Argentino, canary dog, American bulldog or dogs crossed with any of these breeds and/or wolves
3. Maximum of 1 policy for each dog you own, up to a maximum of 2 dogs per household
1. Must be licensed with AVS and microchipped
2. Fully vaccinated and neutered/spayed 3. Must not be a working dog (not for the purpose of racing, breeding, law enforcement, guide dog, guarding or for other commercial use) 
1. Microchipped
2. Must be residing with you
3. Must not be a working pet or one used for breeding
1. Microchipped
2. Fully vaccinated
3. Must not be a working pet or one used for breeding
What do they cover?Accidental injury and/or death
Cremation and/or burial fees due to accident
Vet fees due to accidents
Loss of dog due to theft
3rd party liability
Basic Cover
Accidental injury and/or death
Cremation and/or burial fees due to accident
Vet fees due to accidents

Add-ons:
Option A: Lost of dog due to theft (+S$32.10/annual)
Option B: Medical and cremation/burial expenses due to illness (+S$321.00/annual)
Accidental death
Vet costs for accidental injury and/or illnesses
Loss of dog due to theft
3rd party liability
Clinical and surgical
Chemotherapy
Final expenses (euthanasia, cremation, funeral service and handling charges following death of the Pet)
3rd party liability
Annual PriceMicrochipped: SGD$79.49
Non-microchipped: S$84.58
Basic: S$74.90
Option A: S$74.90 + S$32.10 = S$107
Option B: S$74.90 + S$321 = S$395.90
Standard: S$350

Enhanced: S$450

Superior: S$750
**the payout amount will be different for different tier
For dogs:
Fur: S$337.82 (Limit of S$3,500/year)
Furry: S$410.22 (Limit of S$7,500/year)
Furball: S$482.60 (Limit of S$12,500/year)

For cats:
Purrfect: S$299.69 (Limit of S$5,000/year)
Coverage PeriodUntil 8 years oldUntil 13 years oldUntil 13 years oldLifetime

Co-insurance and deductibles

Co-insurance refers to the portion you have to pay when making a claim. For example, if your pet goes for a surgery and the total bill comes up to S$3,000. Your pet insurance plan offers 20% co-insurance on all vet surgeries.

The 20% means you have to cover it by yourself and they will reimburse you the remaining 80%, in this case S$2,400.

Deductible is the amount paid out of pocket by the policyholder before an insurance provider will pay any expenses. For example, third party liability, if your dog has escaped and ran into someone’s house and broke an ancient vase, they are claiming $5,000 from you. 

Your insurer offers a deductible of $1,000 on all third party liability claims, which in this case means that your insurer will pay you $4,000 after the claim instead of the full $5,000.

Co-insurance and deductibles help insurers lessen the financial burden on the individual policyholder and its family and also bring down premiums by making sure that only policyholders who need to make a claim pay their share. Otherwise, the costs will be passed on to everyone, making all policyholders pay higher premiums.

It is important to understand this and remember this as it will affect the cost that you have to bear even with this.  

AIA Paw Safe (Dogs only):

Accidental DeathS$1,000 or purchase price (whichever is lower)
Vet fees due to accident
*deductible of S$150
Up to S$1,000
Cremation or Burial Expenses due to Death by AccidentUp to S$250
Loss of Dog Due to Theft
*deductible of S$250
S$1,000 or purchase price (whichever is lower)
Third Party Liability
*deductible of S$1,000
Up to S$1 million dollars

CIMB My Paw Pal (Cats & Dogs):

Basic ($74.90)
Accidental DeathS$1,500
Medical Expenses Due To An Accident
*minimum claims of S$100
Up to S$3,000/year
Cremation Or Burial Expenses Due To An AccidentUp to S$300
Third Party Liability Up to  S$250,000
Option A (+S$32.10)
Loss of Dog Due To TheftUp to S$1,500
Option B (+S$321)
Medical and Cremation/ Burial Expenses Due To IllnessUp to S$3,000/year
(inclusive of basic plan)

Liberty Insurance PetCare (Cats & Dogs):

Standard (S$350)Enhanced (S$450)Superior (S$750)
Accidental DeathS$1,000S$2,000S$3,000
Accidental Injury
*deductible of S$50
S$500S$750S$3,000
Loss of Dog Due To Theft
*not applicable for cats
S$300S$500S$1,250
Vet fees for non-surgical treatment
*co-insurance of 50%
S$500S$750S$3,000
Vet fees for surgical treatment
*co-insurance of 30%
S$1,500S$2,000S$10,000
Third Party Liability
*deductible of S$500
S$100,000S$250,000S$500,000

AON Happy Tails (Cats & Dogs):

Fur (S$337.82)Furry (S$410.22)Furball (S$482.60)Purrfect (S$299.69)
Maximum annual coverageS$3,500S$7,500S$12,500S$5,000
Clinical and surgical benefit
Limit for room and board expenses
Limit for post-surgical treatment benefit
S$2,500
S$250
S$150
S$6,000
S$600
S$300
S$10,000
S$1,000
S$500
S$3,800
S$380
S$200
ChemotherapyS$1,000S$1,500S$2,500S$1,200
Final expensesNAS$250S$250S$250
Third party liabilityS$100,000S$250,000S$500,000S$250,000
Co-insurance (Cats and Dogs)
Before Age 420%
Before Age 730%
Before Age 940%
Deductible
Cats & Dogs; Any age$250

With all the pet insurances and what you can claim from them covered, let’s talk about deciding which policy is best for your pet.

Some factors you have to think about:

  1. Age: it is better to get your pet insured the earlier the better as the pet insurance won’t allow you to purchase a policy for your pet if there’s pre-existing health conditions.
  2. Pet Breed: It is good to look into whether your pet breed is known to develop any health issues at their later stage of health, if yes, it’s best to get one that covers the health issue.
  3. Medical History: If your pet is prone to falling sick, you should look for one that has higher medical bills coverage
  4. Accidents: If your pet is accident-prone or like to escape from the house, it is best to look for one that covers this and third party liability
  5. Cost: This is an important factor as you have to calculate if the policy is something that you can afford and at the same time keep some money aside for emergency.
  6. Lifetime: It would be great if all the policies are covering pets their lifetime as who would know what’s going to happen towards the last stage of their life. If you would like to have lifetime coverage for your pet, you can look into getting AON Happy Tails

This is considered an important decision so you should take some time to think about the policies before making decisions.

Take care paw parents and pets!

Stay safe everyone!

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Cooking For Your Dog

We all enjoy a good meal, it could be something as simple as sushi or a 9 course meal at a Michelin star restaurant. We always strive to put the best nutrients in our own body. The same thing should be said about our fur babies, we should ensure that they are nourished with the right kinds of nutrients and vitamins to allow them to live a longer and more substantial life. As vets advised, we should not share our meals with our dogs. The things we eat can be eaten by them as well however because of the seasonings we put into our meal, it makes the meal too rich or fatty for their systems.

If you are thinking of changing your dog’s meals to home-cooked food instead of plain old kibbles with toppers or mixer on a daily basis, you should always consult your vet as some dogs cannot handle high amounts of protein and there might be things that your dog are allergic to.

Why?

The different variety you can cook for your dog is endless! By cooking at home, it offers what commercially bought food cannot and that is an assortment of different flavours and textures and those variety of vitamins and nutrients that you can only get from fresh ingredients and not from a bag of dog food.

Proteins

Best choice for proteins would be lean meat of either beef, turkey, chicken, pork or fish (fully cooked with bones removed).

We should always avoid fatty cuts such as bacon. By eating foods with lesser fats, we prevent the growing possibility of a heart attack. Fatty deposits from such foods are known to collect on the coronary arteries of our dogs. The coronary artery provides the oxygenated blood required for the function of the heart muscles and if they were to be clogged with fatty deposits, we risk the chance of a heart attack or heart failure. Avoid giving meat like ham as they are usually high in sodium and fat which will cause your dog to get thirsty after eating and high in cholesterol in long term run.

The best types of fish for dogs to eat are salmon, whitefish and cod. Tuna is fine but at a tiny amount as it can cause mercury poisoning to them.

Vegetables

Many might not know this but simple vegetables are a staple in your pet’s diet. Vegetables can be served raw. These include grated or finely chopped carrots, cucumber, zucchini, lettuce, bell peppers, individual corns and celery. For cooked vegetables, one may consider steaming, green beans, broccoli, asparagus and cauliflowers.

Carbohydrates

Carbohydrates like rice, potato, millet, these grains must be ground up or cooked just enough to allow for the animal’s intestine to absorb it easily. This also helps improve the taste of the raw ingredients. You should give less amount of carbohydrates but more of proteins and vegetables.

Treats

Dogs, like us, enjoy a good treat once in a while. Peanut butter is a good snack for our pets as they give them a nice treat once in a while (moderately) and is proven to boost their morale. Bite-sized bits of whole wheat bread assists with their health. Fruits like strawberries, apples, pineapple, banana and raspberries, drizzle them some honey or yoghurt and they will love it!

A popular treat would be giving a dog a bone. However, many are unaware of the negative impacts of feeding your dog a raw bone. Firstly they can splinter into sharp pieces easily and may harm the digestive tract of your pet. Secondly, raw meat on bones can have disease causing germs which our naked eye may not be able to see.

Avoid

Raw dough can cause an upset stomach in our pets. Chocolates and alcohol (grapes too) are also severely harmful to our pets as they do not have the digestive juices available to breakdown the toxins found in both. Avocados, almonds, coffee, macadamia nuts, raisins, garlic, onions and mushrooms are some of the other things to avoid.

Important

We should always try to serve meat cooked, without any seasoning such as salt and oils. Avoiding undercooked and raw meat is paramount as they may contain bacteria naked to the eye which may lead to detrimental unforeseen bacteria growth which may harm your pet.

Vets don’t recommend a home-cook diet for dogs under one year old because if not given the ample amounts of calcium and phosphorus, a young pup could develop significant bone abnormalities. You can find recipes online that fits to your dog’s diet but it is best to run the recipe through a vet before feeding your dog the home-cooked food.

Our dogs cannot switch from store-bought food to home-cooked food overnight, it is better to transition slowly over a period of one week by mixing bit more with the old as the day goes. It is also important to remember to create a balance meal every time, do ask your vet to recommend some supplement product if the meal is not balanced.

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Why is it safe to consume food past its “Best by” date?

Many consumers use the terms ‘best by date’ and ‘expiry date’ interchangeably. This has led to unnecessary food wastage globally. As similar as the terms may seem, there is a significant difference. 

Firstly, the ‘best by date’, which often appears on food items which have a longer shelf life, such as canned food, biscuit, & frozen food, is an indicator of the food quality. Once the date is passed, the food may not be in its most pristine condition as its freshness, taste, aroma or nutrients may have been lost, but it is still edible. 

Next, the expiration date states the last date when a product is safe to be consumed. If a food product has passed its expiry date, it should be discarded and not be consumed. It can be dangerous to consume food products that have passed its expiry date as the date is determined by a multitude of factors, such as the types of ingredients used, the manufacturing process and the storing method of the food products.

How you should best store your food products to maintain its freshness even after its ‘best by date’:

  • Open the food packaging only when you are consuming the food immediately. If you were to open and close the packaging, remove the portion of food you wish to consume, and then close the packaging tightly.
  • Store your food products in a cool, dry place and avoid placing them in hot/humid conditions, as they may shorten product life.

Thus, to avoid unnecessary food wastage, it is advisable for you to firstly store the food products in appropriate conditions as stated, and next use your senses (sight, smell and taste) to judge if the food product is still edible. The product should be discarded if the taste has been compromised or the consistency has changed. Finally, good planning will greatly reduce unnecessary food wastage. Familiarise yourself with the ‘best by date’ and ‘expiry date’ to judge if food products are still consumable.