Money. It can be such an ugly word, especially when it's the single thing standing between your practice and the pet that
so desperately needs your care. You've seen it many times—the pet that could have been saved, if only there were a little
more money. It's enough to break your heart.
You can't save every pet, but you can help by preparing pet owners for their pets' care. First, start with the quick quiz
at left. Then consider this advice to learn about how to make payment options work for your practice:
1. Kick your passive marketing habit
Many practices passively market pet insurance by placing insurance brochures in the reception area and in new puppy and kitten
packets. But is it any surprise that pet owners aren't signing up in droves if this is the extent of the team's involvement?
Team members must believe in pet insurance—they must have seen it help—to convince pet owners that it's worthwhile.
So take a moment and ask yourself this: What do you think about insurance? Do you know enough about it to make an informed
decision or to recommend it to clients? Be honest. A good way to decide whether pet insurance is something you believe in
is to investigate it more thoroughly. Consider what you'd want in a pet insurance policy. Think about the financial concerns
pet owners most often express. Then examine the policies and see if any fit these criteria.
If you and the rest of your team decide pet insurance is a good option for pet owners, our sources say it's important to select
just a few that you recommend—for several reasons. First, imagine you're the client. When you open that puppy or kitten kit
and that batch of pet insurance brochures falls out, how do you feel? Overwhelmed? Irritated? Would you wish someone with
more animal health experience would help you make sense of your options?
Jessica Goodman Lee, CVPM, a practice development consultant with Brakke Consulting, says pet owners with pet insurance will
generally spend twice as much with a practice over the course of a pet's life. A common mistake, Lee says, is to provide brochures
for all of the companies. Not only is it confusing for clients, but you're failing to guide them in making an important healthcare
choice for their pets. Instead, she advises choosing a couple of pet insurance companies your whole team believes in to recommend