Insurance and Pre-Existing Conditions

Posted by Angela Klein on 6/17/2008 in Articles from Veterinary Newsletter

A paw’s on reference to understanding our policy

At Pets Best Insurance we strive to fully educate Veterinary Associate Providers on our policies. Part of this commitment involves explaining what Pets Best considers as pre-existing. One of the questions we hear most often is: What about pre-existing conditions?

A pre-existing condition is one that was present prior to the original policy effective date or within the waiting period, whether diagnosed or not.

Unfortunately, many pet owners wait until an illness or accident occurs to purchase their policies, which means that those injuries and illnesses cannot be covered. This is why we encourage purchasing insurance as soon as possible, ideally when pets are puppies and kittens.

The following are a few examples to show how our policies work:

If pet has an accident, such as a broken leg, prior to the effective policy start date, that particular broken leg would not be covered. If the pet breaks any leg again three months later it will be considered a separate incident and will be covered at 80% of the bill, after the deductible has been met.

Potentially fatal or debilitating chronic conditions restrict a pet’s eligibility to enroll in a full medical plan. For example, if an uninsured six-year-old boxer develops lymphoma or diabetes before enrolling in a plan, those conditions would not be covered and that pet would not be eligible for full illness coverage. However, we would be able to provide accident-only coverage as this plan is available to any pet, regardless of past medical history.

We understand that there may be negative connotations towards the term “pre-existing condition.” Let us reassure you that no matter the pre-existing illness we are always happy to offer our full accident coverage.

If you have additional questions or need further explanation on this or other items, please feel free to contact our Veterinary Services Department at 877-738-7237 x4 or email us at We appreciate your continued support and thank you for choosing Pets Best!


  • Virginia

    Would an ear infection in my cat be considered a pre existing condition? This is the first time in her 10 years that she has had one. She’s being treated now so I’m not looking for coverage for her medication or vet visit. But what about sometime in the future??

    • hrush

      Hi Virginia,

      Thank you for your post. Any condition your pet has prior to being enrolled in a pet insurance plan would be considered a preexisting condition– meaning that if you signed your cat up for a pet insurance policy right now, we would not be able to reimburse you for any claims related to this specific ear infection.

      However, with Pets Best Insurance, once the condition has been completely cured, it would no longer be considered preexisting. So if you decided to sign up for a pet insurance policy, any future events would be covered. To see what’s not covered, please visit

  • Bitna

    We just picked up our dog from an emergency clinic to treat a respiratory problem (shortness of breath). He is stable now, but the cause of it is unknown, despite the multiple test having performed on him. Would this be considered as a pre-exiting condition?

  • Jessica

    I have a 9 month old dachshund that was diagnosed with hydrocephalus at 6 months old. It is unknown whether it is congenital or if it was caused by an infection. I know that I may not be able to get coverage for her illness, but could I still get accidental coverage for other things? I have another dachshund that swallowed a needle and the vet bill was high, luckily I have insurance and will hopefully receive some sort of reimbursement. If it happened to my 9 month old, I don’t have insurance at this point. What are my options? Thanks!

  • Lynn


    We are adopting a puppy with an amputated leg; how would I report this under the medical conditions section of the pet profile? There is no condition that includes amputated leg. Also, how would this be viewed in terms of preexisting conditions? He is healthy otherwise, but his leg was removed before we adopted him due to an accident that left the leg irreparable. Thank you!

  • Lisa

    It is hardly good public relations that so many of these aforementioned questions are going unanswered by Pet’s Best folks. If you can’t follow up on these emails, what must your claim service be like?!?!

    • Hi Lisa,
      Our blog comments are monitored by the marketing team, not Customer Care. So With specific medical questions relating to a policy (or potential policy)–like many of the ones on this blog–we have our Customer Care team respond directly to the person via email. Our Customer Care is awesome and they are here to help! They can be reached Mon-Fri 7am-7pm (MT) and Saturday 10am-2pm (MT) at 1-877-738-7237,, or via Live Chat on our website ( Have a great day!


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