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Posts Tagged ‘pet insurance’

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Click the poster, then click again, to enlarge it.
Infographic by Nationwide Pet Insurance.

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Who's looking out for your pets this Halloween?

Who’s looking out for your pets this Halloween?

Nationwide Reveals Haunting Halloween Pet Dangers

Brea, Calif. (Oct. 20, 2015) – U.S. consumers spend more than $7 billion on Halloween candy, costumes and decorations during the Halloween season, exposing pets to more toxins and hazards than any other time of the year. To help prepare for the imminent dangers that surround our pets during the scare season, Nationwide, the nation’s first and largest provider of pet health insurance, has released its 2015 Top Halloween Pet Dangers and Safety Tips.

Toxic Dangers

Emergency calls to the Pet Poison Helpline increase 12 percent during the week of Halloween, making it the busiest time of the year.  Nationwide recently sorted through its database of more than 550,000 insured pets to determine the most common ingestion related claims in the month of October. Following are the top Halloween related claims and their average cost for treatment:

Claim Cost
Ingestion of Costume Parts $1,740
Raisin Toxicity $527
Chocolate Toxicity $382
Chewing Gum and Candy (Containing Xylitol) Toxicity $354
Upset Stomach/ Diarrhea $272

If a pet consumes a toxic treat or a foreign body, he or she should be taken to a veterinary hospital immediately. In preparation, pet lovers should locate the nearest 24-hour emergency animal hospital prior to the night of Halloween or any other major event.

Running Away

Halloween is the second most common holiday for pets to wander off (behind the Fourth of July) and become separated from their families. With multiple visits from friendly trick-or-treaters and constant commotion outside, Halloween night can be extremely stressful for pets. It’s best to keep pets indoors so they’re not tempted to flee from noise created by guests, sound effects, music and, of course, the doorbell. It’s important to provide pets with a safe and quiet place indoors to help them rest and cope with their holiday anxiety.  Remember to keep collars with ID tags on your pets and have them microchipped just in case they wander away. 

Costume Safety

U.S. pet owners spend more than $370 million on pet costumes annually, and while dressing up pets for Halloween is fun, it can be dangerous if proper precautions aren’t taken. If your pet does don a costume this Halloween, make sure to never leave him or her alone. Be precise with the size of the costume. Poorly fitted costumes can constrict pets and lead to panic or injury. Also take note of costumes with ribbon, strings or dangling objects that can lead to choking or strangulation.  If a pet begins to itch excessively, be sure to remove the costume as allergies from fabric, detergents or fabric softeners can cause a rash. 

“Halloween can be a dangerous time for pets,” said Dr. Carol McConnell, DVM, MBA, Vice President and Chief Veterinary Medical Officer for Nationwide. “With an increase of toxic foods in the home and continual noise from holiday festivities, it’s important for pet owners to take the proper precautions. I encourage all pet lovers to provide their companions with a safety area and make sure that all treats are out of reach.”
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Nationwide plans cover dogs, cats, birds and exotic pets for multiple medical problems and conditions relating to accidents, illnesses and injuries. Medical plans are available in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Pet owners can find Nationwide pet insurance on Facebook or follow on  Twitter. For more information about Nationwide pet insurance, call 800-USA-PETS (800-872-7387) or visit petinsurance.com.

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Nation’s Largest Pet Insurer Announces Wackiest Pet Names

Brea, Calif. (Aug. 12, 2015) The results are in – Baron Von Furrypants nosed out Artoo Dogtoo and Leonardo DiCatprio purred past Fuzz Lightyear to be named the Wackiest Pet Names of 2015. Each year, Nationwide (formerly Veterinary Pet Insurance), the nation’s first and largest provider of pet health insurance, recognizes the most clever, creative and quirky pet names across the nation.

After a thorough selection process, 50 kooky canine and 50 comical cat names were chosen from Nationwide’s database of more than 525,000 insured pets. The top 10 dog and 10 cat monikers were put to a public vote, where Baron Von Furrypants and Leonardo DiCatprio were chosen as the wackiest. Following are the 10 Wackiest Dog and Cat Names of 2015:

Most Unusual Dog Names Most Unusual Cat Names
   
1. Baron Von Furrypants 1. Leonardo DiCatprio
2. Artoo Dogtoo 2. FuzzLightyear
3. Rosie Picklebottom 3. Captain Pancake
4. Parker the Barker 4. Sir Nigel Meowmittens of Oscelot Court
5. Abigail Carmichael Spartacus 5. Ziggy Ollyoxenfree
6. Smiley Cyrus 6. Zelda Nacho
7. Nutmeg Spice O’ Paris 7. Sophistikitty
8. Abraham Lincoln Continental 8. Cornelius McPudness Vandercat
9. Bizkit Au Chocolat 9. Sir Theodorable Purrsalot
10. Scuddles Unterfuss 10. Star Wars Steve
   

“Every year our database expands, and we see more and more creative pet names,” said Curtis Steinhoff, director of pet insurance communications. “Many times the most interesting aspect of a pet’s name is the story behind it, and this competition gives us a chance to share those tales. Whether the moniker is a simple pun or an eccentric mixture of terms, all the names on our Wacky Pet Names list are one of a kind.”

For photos and background stories of the winners and the top 10 nominees, along with the full list of the 50 wackiest dog and cat names, visit www.wackypetnames.com.

 

About Nationwide pet insurance

With more than 525,000 insured pets, pet insurance from Nationwide, formerly known as Veterinary Pet Insurance (VPI), is the first and largest pet health insurance provider in the United States. Since 1982, Nationwide has helped provide pet owners with peace of mind and is committed to being the trusted choice of America’s pet lovers.

Nationwide plans cover dogs, cats, birds and exotic pets for multiple medical problems and conditions relating to accidents, illnesses and injuries. Wellness coverage for routine care is available for an additional premium. Medical plans are available in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Additionally, one in three Fortune 500 companies offers pet insurance from Nationwide as an employee benefit.

Insurance plans are offered and administered by Veterinary Pet Insurance Company in California and DVM Insurance Agency in all other states. Underwritten by Veterinary Pet Insurance Company (CA), Brea, CA, an A.M. Best A rated company (2013); National Casualty Company (all other states), Madison, WI, an A.M. Best A+ rated company (2014). Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle, and Nationwide Is On Your Side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. ©2015 Nationwide. Pet owners can find Nationwide pet insurance on Facebook or follow on  Twitter. For more information about Nationwide pet insurance, call 800-USA-PETS (800-872-7387) or visitpetinsurance.com.

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For Tips 6-10, click here.

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5. Provide your pet with fresh water at all times, cleaning the bowl daily.

4. Feed a pet food that is appropriate for your pet’s age, nutritional requirements, activity level, and special health needs.

3. Choose a pet wisely based on your schedule, budget, and living environment. Consider the pet’s physical and behavioral needs.

2. Establish a preventative health care program with your veterinarian, including regular checkups, dental care, vaccinations, parasite control, and reproductive options.

1. Discuss the responsibility of pet ownership with your veterinarian before you obtain a pet or as soon as possible after bringing a pet home.

Bonus Tip 1: Ask your veterinarian to microchip your pet as a way of providing proof of ownership and permanent pet ID.

Bonus Tip 2: Enroll your pet with a pet insurance company, like Pet’s Best, as soon as possible, to keep premiums low and to avoid pre-existing conditions denials.

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Tips borrowed from Purina’s The Pet Owner’s Checklist.

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Nation’s Largest Pet Insurer Offers Pet Friendly Guidance for Summer Trips

Brea, Calif. (May 18,  2015) – Each year millions of pets accompany their families on vacation, and with summer approaching, Veterinary Pet Insurance Co. (VPI), the nation’s first and largest provider of pet health insurance, reminds pet lovers that the key to a safe vacation for our furry family members is preparation. To spread awareness about the potential dangers pets face during a trip, VPI sorted through its database of more than 525,000 insured pets to determine the most common travel-related pet injuries. Below are the results:  

Injury/Illness Travel Related Incident Average Cost for Treatment
Vomiting or Diarrhea Motion Sickness $226
Heat Stroke Pet Left in Car $575
Bruising or Contusion Sudden Car Stop $226
Sprain Jumping out of Car $185
Nasal Cavity Foreign Object Inhaling Debris while Head Out of Window $406
Laceration Hit with Debris while Head Out of Window $329

  VPI encourages people to plan ahead with these travel tips to ensure that their furry friends are safe during summer excursions:

  1. If traveling by car, secure your pet with a safety harness or well ventilated carrier to restrain them in case of a sudden stop or accident. 
  2. Never allow your pet hang out the window. Opening the window just a few inches will allow your pet to safely enjoy the breeze without the risk of inhaling debris or being struck by any objects. This will also prevent any temptation your pet may have of jumping out of the car.
  3. Feed your pet a smaller meal before your trip to prevent an upset stomach. Also remember to carry plenty of water to prevent dehydration.
  4. Bring your pets’ toys to accompany them during travel. The familiar smells can help comfort your pet and keep them occupied during the trip.
  5. Never leave your pet in a car unattended. Even with the windows cracked, temperatures in a car can increase drastically.
  6. Make sure your pet is wearing identification at all times in case she becomes separated or lost. Verify that your pet’s ID tag is up-to-date, durable, and includes your mobile phone number.
  7. Pack a recent photo of your pet along with current vaccination records. If your pet becomes lost, having a current photograph will make the search easier.
  8. Book a pet-friendly hotel. With more than 25,000 hotels in the U.S. allowing pets, there are plenty of properties from which to choose. Don’t assume all pets will be allowed, though: Some hotels place limits on the size of the dogs they allow. Call to check that your dog will be welcomed.
  9. Look up details about a veterinary hospital near your destination (phone number, hours, driving distance).  If your pet has a medical emergency you’ll be prepared and know where to go.

“Traveling with our pets can be fun, but it’s important to take the correct steps to ensure they are safe and comfortable,” said Carol McConnell, DVM, MBA, vice president and chief veterinary medical officer for VPI. “I recommend scheduling a pre-trip appointment with your veterinarian to confirm that your pet is in good health, and that your pet’s vaccinations are current. If your itinerary includes air travel, ask your veterinarian for a formal pet health certificate, which is required by most commercial airlines. Always consider your pet’s personality and determine if she or he can handle traveling, or if a change in surroundings may be too far outside the comfort zone for your pet.”

About Veterinary Pet Insurance

With more than 525,000 pets insured nationwide, Veterinary Pet Insurance Co./DVM Insurance Agency (VPI), a Nationwide company, is the first and largest pet health insurance provider in the United States. Since 1982, VPI has helped provide pet owners with peace of mind and is committed to being the trusted choice of America’s pet lovers.

VPI plans cover dogs, cats, birds and exotic pets for multiple medical problems and conditions relating to accidents, illnesses and injuries. Wellness coverage for routine care is available for an additional premium. Medical plans are available in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Additionally, one in three Fortune 500 companies offers VPI Pet Insurance as an employee benefit.

Insurance plans are offered and administered by Veterinary Pet Insurance Company in California and DVM Insurance Agency in all other states. Underwritten by Veterinary Pet Insurance Company (CA), Brea, CA, an A.M. Best A rated company (2013); National Casualty Company (all other states), Madison, WI, an A.M. Best A+ rated company (2014). Veterinary Pet Insurance, VPI and the cat/dog logo are service marks of Veterinary Pet Insurance Company. Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle, and Nationwide Is On Your Side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. ©2015 Veterinary Pet Insurance Company and Nationwide. Pet owners can find VPI Pet Insurance on Facebook or follow @VPI on Twitter. For more information about VPI Pet Insurance, call 800-USA-PETS (800-872-7387) or visit petinsurance.com.

 

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Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve been talking about what you should do in the event of a pet poisoning emergency. (Click the links to refresh your memory.)

Today, we’ll hit upon a topic that likely has many people confused: if a pet ingests a toxic substance, should the pet be made to vomit in order to rid its body of the toxin?

Here is what the experts at Pet Poison Helpline and Veterinary Pet Insurance want you to know:

  • If your pet is already showing signs of poisoning, it’s too late to induce vomiting.
  • If your pet has certain medical problems (like laryngeal paralysis or brachycephalic syndrome), inducing vomiting is not recommended and can make your pet’s condition worse.
  • Certain toxins (such as corrosive cleaners and hydrocarbons such as gasoline, paint thinners and kerosene) should NOT be brought back up. Inducing vomiting after the ingestion of these products may ultimately cause more harm than good.

The smartest thing you can do in the event of a suspected poisoning is to call the Pet Poison Helpline (855-764-7661) for advice and then take your pet to the nearest pet emergency hospital.

Est. 1973Coming Thursday:  If your pet throws up this chemical, it can be deadly to people.

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Veterinary Pet Insurance and Pet Poison Helpline have teamed up to bring you resources and information to help you in a pet poisoning emergency.

Know what to do! If you suspect your pet has ingested a harmful substance, contact a local pet emergency hospital, such as Blue Pearl at 757-499-5463, or call Pet Poison Helpline at 1-855-289-0358 any time, day or night. The Pet Poison Helpline will bill your credit card a one-time, per-incident fee of $39.

Gather the right information! Have this information ready when calling:

  • What your pet ingested and when
  • How much of the substance your pet ingested (how many pills, what milligram strength; how many ounces of chocolate, etc)
  • Pet’s current weight
  • Pet’s medical history, any medications or supplements

Get the app! Purchase a Pet Poison Helpline app at the iTunes App Store for only $1.99, for your iPhone, and get access to information that can help save your pet’s life.

Emergency assistance at your fingertips!

Emergency assistance at your fingertips!

Get the app from the iTunes store.

Get the app from the iTunes store.

 

Coming Thursday: Pack a First Aid Kit for pet poisoning emergencies. We’ll tell you how.

On Facebook: Watch for the Pet Poison Helpline Top Ten lists this week and next.

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