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Pet Insurance in Singapore

Pawrus Singapore - Pet Insurance

What would you do if your dog came down with an illness and became unable to go for his daily walks?

What if your cat accidentally twisted its leg while playing with you?

For most pet owners, having a pet is the same as having a child. We want to provide them with the best care, and keep them safe from sickness and accidents. In the unfortunate instances that your pet falls ill, the veterinary bills can come up to huge amounts ($$), and surgery might further compound those costs. Today, we review three of Singapore’s Pet Insurance policies, PetCare, Happy Tails™ and Paw Safe in a bid to find out the best plan that will ameliorate your potential financial and emotional headaches.

Is my pet eligible for insurance?

To be eligible, dogs and cats must:

• Be aged between 16 weeks and under 9 years;

• Be micro-chipped;

• Be licensed and approved by the Agri-food and Veterinary Authority in Singapore;

• Meet veterinary exam requirements;

• Not be used for breeding;

• Not be a working animal, involved in racing, breeding, law enforcements or for other commercial use

PetCare by Liberty Insurance (Singapore)

A global business unit of Liberty Mutual Insurance Group, Liberty Insurance is one of the largest corporations based in the US. Operating with a global perspective, it has 900 offices across five continents, employing approximately 50,000 employees throughout the world.

With a starting premium from S$321 to S$695, the PetCare insurance covers most common ailments, such as indigestion or vomiting. The following table depicts the maximum liability covered by the policy.

Liberty PetCare Updated scheme as of 24th June 2015 Liberty PetCare Updated scheme as of 24th June 2015

Furthermore, here are a few pluses that makes this policy even better:

• Pet parents can visit any vet in Singapore (i.e. They can use the best vet that they choose, without any concern for cost – limited by the generous policy limits)

• No prior medical examination is required

• There is no co-insurance (amount to be borne by pet owner) for liabilities and accidents

• Premium remains the same regardless of your pet’s age (eligible for dogs below 8 years old, and the policy covers till 10 years old – Excellent for older dogs!)

However, there are some negatives that would be useful to keep in mind before subscribing to such a policy:

• The policy excludes quite a few things to keep the premium low, such as skin, hereditary and congenital conditions. It also doesn’t include some breed specific conditions, such as hip dysplasia and persistent eczema/hot spots.

To be fair, this insurance is great for older dogs, who may be more prone to severe illnesses, such as cancer and diabetes. These illness tend to take a longer time to treat and to recover; with the lingering implication that medical bills might snowball over a longer duration as opposed to common diseases.

Next up, we take a closer look at Singapore’s second pet insurance policy, Happy Tails™ by MSIG Insurance Singapore.

Happy Tails™ by MSIG Insurance (Singapore)

Happy Tails™ insurance is underwritten by MSIG Insurance (Singapore) Pte. Ltd. and distributed by Aon Singapore Pte. Ltd. There are three plans to choose from (Premiums shown are based on these particulars: Male, Golden Retriever, 3 Years Old.)

Pawrus Singapore - Happy Tails Coverage as of 16 June 2015 Happy Tails Coverage as of 16 June 2015

Pawrus Singapore - Happy Tails Coverage as of 16th June 2015 Happy Tails Coverage as of 16th June 2015

Unlike PetCare, Happy Tails™ covers the following specified hereditary and congenital conditions for pets enrolled before the age of six, subject to a 12-month waiting period from the policy’s first commencement date for these conditions:

• Hip and elbow dysplasia

• Luxating Patella

• Glaucoma

• Cherry eye

• Invertebral Disk Disease (IVDD)

• Femoral Head and Neck Excision

As for co-insurance, Happy Tails™ has different percentages for different age groups, while Liberty Insurance’s PetCare has the same percentages for all ages:

Pawrus Singapore - Happy Tails Coverage as of 16th June 2015 Happy Tails Coverage as of 16th June 2015

Policy Faceoff - Happy Tails™ winning against PetCare:

• Higher coverage for surgical and chemotherapy treatments

• Lower co-insurance for younger pups (below four years old)

• Coverage of certain specified hereditary and congenital conditions (excluding pre-existing conditions)

• It has a proper website with good information and online generated quotes

Potential Concerns for Happy Tails™:

• The premium increases as your pet age increases, and in some instances of certain conditions or adverse claims, the premium may be higher to reflect the risk incidence to the overall premium pool (PetCare by Liberty Insurance has fixed premiums regardless of age).

• It is mandatory that the pet undergoes a clinical examination for enrolment within 30 days of the commencement date of the insurance. The report must be produced when you are making a claim for the first time.

• If your pet is not spayed or neutered, there is no coverage for illness related to prostate problems, hormonal skin conditions, perianal hernias, testicular tumours, perianal tumours, mammary tumours, uterine and ovarian conditions.

• Your pet has to be aged between 16 weeks and below 9 years old at the commencement of this insurance.

• Your pet must be micro-chipped, and licensed and approved by the Agri-food and Veterinary Authority in Singapore.

• Your pet cannot be a working pet. E.g. not for the purpose of racing, breeding, law enforcement, guarding or for other commercial use.

• Your pet must have completed all required vaccinations.

Paw Safe by AIA (Singapore)

At only S$6.62 a month, AIA’s Paw Safe is the longest running Dog Insurance Plan in Singapore. Aimed at pet owners who are looking for a cheap policy, yet covering most no-frills concerns shared by dog owners, Paw Safe is a real contender in providing a cheap and economy insurance policy.

Covering mostly accidental charges, such as death, veterinary fees, cremation or burial expenses, theft and third part liability, this policy is targeted towards the pet owner that is looking for a safety net that pays for most of the “what-ifs” that might occur when owning a dog.

Pawrus Singapore - Happy Tails Coverage as of 16th June 2015 Happy Tails Coverage as of 16th June 2015

Generally, the plan covers dogs from the age of 3 months to 7 years old, and provides extended coverage up till a maximum of 8 years old. This insurance policy requires your dog to be microchipped and registered with you as the owner with the AVA. Your dog is also required to be vaccinated according to AVA’s requirements.

Also, this policy excludes most medical conditions (unlike Happy Tails™), and most diseases which are commonly the reason for dog owners to visit veterinarians. We recommend this policy to dog owners who are looking for a cheap and reliable policy that is backed by one of Asia’s largest insurance providers, AIA for pure accident coverage. The drawbacks of this policy is that it is very much lacking in day to day veterinary visits which forms up the bulk of the expenses of owning an aged pet. For a more complete policy, we recommend owners to refer back to Happy Tails™ above for better coverage.

Pawrus Singapore - Happy Tails Coverage as of 16th June 2015 Happy Tails Coverage as of 16th June 2015

Conclusion

Owning a pet in Singapore is a heavy investment, both emotionally and physically. In the years to come, getting the appropriate type of insurance for your pet would be one of the best decisions that you have made. Besides saving on hefty veterinary bills in your pet’s golden and older years, it is also a tried and tested safety net that protects against any unforeseen circumstances that might occur in the future. What are you hesitating for? Get informed and get protected with your pet today!

Disclaimer: Information is updated as at 24th June 2015. This article is not a sponsored post and Pawrus Singapore is not affiliated to any of the Pet Insurance providers mentioned above. Readers are advised to practise one's discretion to determine the suitability of each Insurance Plans for your pets. 

For more information about the Insurance plans, please contact the respective providers below:

Finexis Advisory (As of 12th January, 2018): Our Preferred Financial Consultant, Zef Liew, AWPCM is poised to provide you better pet insurance coverage, at a lower cost. Contact him at zef.liew@finexis.com.sg or at +65 9741 7551.

PetCare Liberty Insurance: 1800-5423 789

Happy Tails by MSIG: http://aonhappytails.com/ or happytails.sg@aon.com

Paw Safe by AIA: 1800 248 8000

Resources:

http://www.expatliving.sg/Living_In_Singapore/settling_in/Pet-insurance-in-Singapore-Happy-Tails-is-launching-on-December-18-2014-65591.ece

http://vanillapup.com/2014/03/23/singapore-first-pet-dog-medical-insurance-policy/

http://vanillapup.com/2015/01/08/health-singapore-pet-insurance-policies-comparison-happy-tails-liberty-petcare/

http://aonhappytails.com/SG/Home

http://www.aia.com.sg/en/index.html

Reader Miss Hoe Wan Sin for the Updated Liberty Table (24th June 2015) :)

BBA, CPDT-KA, KPA CTP, AVA-Accredited, Former Military Working Dog Trainer author email author website
A Certified Professional Dog Trainer and an AVA-Accredited Dog Trainer, Kevin is one of the two co-founders of Pawrus Singapore. One day, he aspires to become one of the best dog trainers in the world. A Former Dog Trainer in the Military Working Dog Unit (MWDU), Kevin used to train working dogs for guarding, arms and narcotics detection operations. He is a Graduate of the Dog Trainer Professional Course at Karen Pyror Academy under Terry Ryan, World Famous Animal Trainer. He's a Certified Professional Dog Trainer - Knowledge Assessed (CPDT-KA) and a Karen Pryor Academy Certified Training Partner. (KPA CTP) On his days off, he can be spotted pursuing his second hobby - photographing all kinds of animals around Sunny Singapore!
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