Nicki is a True American

by Marinka on March 24, 2011

I feel very healthy. Just a little sleepy. I'm sure it's nothing.

This is Nicki.
Nicki is our beloved cat. Don’t be alarmed, she’s fine.

But this week, Husbandrinka and I went out to dinner with some friends and these friends told us that they have pet insurance for their dog. At first I got really excited because I thought they meant life insurance for their dog, and, well, not to be morbid, but one of their years is like seven of ours, so kaCHING, but unfortunately, after I mentally adopted and life insured half of New York City’s shelter pet population, they explained that they meant pet health insurance.

Huh.

Apparently, it’s easy to get, and all it requires is money. Like $46 a month, which seems like a great investment, except if you’re stuck with a healthy pet, in which case it’s like throwing cash out the window. I shared this economic analysis tidbit at dinner and everyone sort of looked at me unlovingly and said that they didn’t think that I knew how insurance worked.

So we’re thinking about it. I mean Nicki was supersick a few years ago and it broke my heart to have to hide the credit card bill from that event from Husbandrinka. That kind of deception can be really tough on a marriage, especially when there are many other credit card charges that I’m trying to mask.

And while we’re thinking about it, our Nicki is uninsured. Like an animal.

And she doesn’t even have a pre-existing condition.

Unless you count cuteness, that is.

I take comfort in that some people don’t have to worry about these things.

One year ago ...

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{ 27 comments… read them below or add one }

Mwa (Lost in Translation) March 24, 2011 at 6:06 am

$46 dollars a month? Like – WHAT??? How many coctails is that? Priorities, people!

Reply

OHmommy
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 9:08 am

Yesterday our family dog got an email pitch from a PR company to become a brand ambassador for a pet food company that promised a healthier lifestyle. Only in America. Let me know if Nicki is ready to become a brand ambassador. I can forward you the email.

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deborah l quinn
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 9:30 am

$46 bucks a month is indeed a lot of cocktails. On the other hand, it won’t buy even one decent shoe, so what the hell. Of course, being one of those people who insures a pet makes you…one of those people, the type who stage a New Orleans jazz funeral because Pookiepoo trotted off the mortal coil. On the other hand, that sort of funeral would be fabulous blog fodder. Then again if you read schmutzie’s post about her cat’s projectile vomiting from the top of the bathroom medicine chest, you might decide an early death is preferable. And generally speaking I guess it’s frowned upon to turn one’s pet into mittens?
God, the choices. I need more coffee.

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ziggyzabel March 24, 2011 at 9:43 am

If you do decide to get pet health insurance, be prepared to never ever get a payout. Seriously, these companies are one step above a scam – they can (and will) deny any claim you make for any reason, and may or may not tell you what the reason is, and may or may not answer the phone when you call to inquire the reason.

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Lynn MacDonald (All Fooked Up)
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 10:03 am

After my not even one year old cat ate string for the 2nd time and cost us $2000 for the 2nd time, someone suggested insurance. I thought about it and then didn’t. If i buy insurance, she’ll live forever and who wants that?

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Rebecca March 24, 2011 at 10:12 am

First of all I am glad you survived your stomach Ache, I was worried.
I have two dogs, they do not have insurance (I lie to them and tell them that they do, it works like a placebo effect. Try it on Nicki).
I love them but I am not paying $100/month.

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Kikirz March 24, 2011 at 10:50 am

Our six n0w-indoor cats and abandoned mama pit bull have all been pretty much walk-ups. We have been glad that no one walked up to our house this winter! But unless they offer a Group policy, we are sadly priced out of pet insurance.

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b a seagull
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 10:56 am

Nicki’s expression – Whassup?

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annie March 24, 2011 at 11:30 am

ditto what b a seagul said. is your cat stoned? did you skip insurance so you could afford medical cat marijuana?

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Ann's Rants
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 1:33 pm

I guess I’m a Christian Scientist when it comes to The Fur Bastard. He hasn’t been to a vet in years, and he loves a good hairball-healing circle.

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Jessica
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 2:16 pm

I have heard of pet insurance but personall I think it is a waste of money. I just let the animals suffer (totally just kidding).

But seriously, if you add up the $46 a month you pay for 10 or so years that you have your pet you end up paying more in the long run than if you had just paid the vet bills yourself.

Reply

Cool Dad
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 2:16 pm

$46/month? Hmm… Do pets and babies have similar ailments? Because their toys are kind of similar. And how is your vet’s bedside manner? Just wondering…

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FriedaBeMe March 24, 2011 at 2:21 pm

I’ve had VPI pet insurance for my mini dachshund since ’05. He’ll be 11 in June and luckily has only had dental issues and one impacted anal sac episode. The premium’s ~$650/year and I’ve never had a single claim problem with VPI. I got the insurance for him because (a) dachshunds are prone to joint/spine disorders/injuries and (b) he didn’t (and still doesn’t) have a preexisting condition. At the time I first got his policy, my beloved 11-year-old female dachshund had a heart murmur. There was nothing I could do for her other than give her meds. She passed away in her sleep that fall. I want my wiener boy to live a healthy, long life and find comfort knowing that I have some protection should anything happen.

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Stasha
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 2:36 pm

My dog is massive and as a true Brit he had insurance back in his homeland. That covered 100% of everything. We mostly had it in case he runs into a porsche and we have to sell the house and the kid to settle damages. I reckon your liability is low. And insurance here is high. We now live in a small town USA with no posh cars. My dog is not insured anymore. As a true immigrant.

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tracy
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 3:10 pm

I wish I was a cat. The cheap insurance, the flexibility, the naps.

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Wendi
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 3:45 pm

So I guess that means it’s illegal for Nicki to drive?

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Slow Panic
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 4:15 pm

I have three dogs and a cat. I should probably get them insurance. Because when they get sick it sets my retirement back a year or two at a time.

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Kristine
Twitter:
March 24, 2011 at 4:23 pm

My friend has this for her dog, and she says that there’s still a ridiculous deductible. In other words, pretend your cat is a car and just trade it in if it gets too fucked up.

You’re welcome.

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Karen March 24, 2011 at 5:16 pm

So Nicki is an American eh? Can you produce her birth certificate? Hmmm?

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From Belgium March 25, 2011 at 5:09 am

I doubt that I could get our black bundle of terror insured if I wanted to.

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Loukia March 25, 2011 at 8:43 am

This is why I don’t have pets!

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the mama bird diaries
Twitter:
March 25, 2011 at 10:01 am

$46 will buy you a cute top at Bloomingdales.

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Jen March 25, 2011 at 10:07 am

Here in Sweden, everyone has health insurance for their pets (who are all purebred, ha). When we moved here and I called one of the big companies to arrange the insurance, the follow-up question, I swear to God, was about life insurance. I laughed — clearly not the response the agent was expecting. I got the standard people life insurance line about paying for the end-of-life expenses, the funeral, counseling, etc.

So, yes, in Sweden, you can insure your pets for millions of kronor in order to give them the funeral of their dreams. Or maybe they were just joking with the American – they love to bait us about health insurance here, in the land where I had a baby for free.

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dusty earth mother March 25, 2011 at 2:08 pm

My dogs have pet insurance. Yes. I’m confessing. Hang head. Strike myself with a box of Milk-Bonz, repeatedly.

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GrandeMocha
Twitter:
March 25, 2011 at 6:26 pm

I got an incredible deal on two adorable kittens from the shelter, $120. They were fixed already. We took them to the vet to get them chipped. They got a fungus, either from the shelter or the vet. $1000 for 6 times to the vet and medicine. I wonder if the insurance would have covered that.

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Stephanie Smirnov
Twitter:
March 25, 2011 at 8:13 pm

Question for FriedaBeMe: “impacted anal sac episode”?

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Kasia March 30, 2011 at 10:41 am

I did tons of research for my dog, and we chose Embrace pet insurance. It has a $500 deductible and have already spent $700 in vet bills this year alone–so its already covering for us…9 months left too.

Reply

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