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More Than warns of limits on pet policies

04 March 2006
Around 90 per cent of vets have expressed concern about the number of per insurance policies that only cover illnesses for 12 months, according to More Than.

And with vets' fees growing ever more expensive, consumers should probably be rather worried too.

More Than's research reveals that 20 per cent of all the dogs it covers are now over eight years old, compared with 10 per cent just over a decade ago.

However, as dogs are living longer they also become more vulnerable to developing illnesses that require long-term treatment, which "budget" pet insurance products won't cover.

Moreover, More Than has also found that pet insurers are not necessarily adjusting their maximum age limits in line with the animals' increased life expectancy.

A maximum of eight years old is still not uncommon, while some insurers are capping their policies as young as four or five.

Graham Hollebon, head of product at More Than, said: "It’s crucial for owners to choose a policy that doesn’t limit treatment to just the first twelve months before the pet needs any long-term care."

He added that 95 per cent of 338 vets polled in the survey said insurance was a "responsible thing for pet owners to have so that they are not faced with huge bills".

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