This Is One of the Biggest Money Mistakes I Ever Made

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  • I've made several money mistakes over the years.
  • I didn't buy pet insurance coverage for my dog when she was a puppy and I've been paying for it ever since.

Don't repeat my mistake.

Money mistakes are a part of life and I've made a few errors in my life, including opening up too many credit cards in college. Most of the mistakes I've made have been easy to overcome, but there's one error that has haunted me for years and that has cost me tens of thousands of dollars. 

This money mistake continues to cost me to this day

The single biggest money mistake that I ever made was not purchasing pet insurance when my dog was young and healthy. 

My dog joined my family close to 16 years ago when I was pretty young myself. I didn't really know the details about what pet insurance did and I didn't really think about how much it would cost me to care for my animal companion over the course of my lifetime. And, at the time, most of the care my pet needed (such as routine puppy vaccinations and a spay surgery) were considered wellness care and wouldn't have been covered by the policies I looked at. So I didn't see the point in shelling out money for insurance premiums.

Unfortunately, this decision has cost me a lot of money in the many years that I've had my dog. That's because I've had to pay for all of the care that Molly needs myself. And since I want to ensure she gets the very best care, I've paid a fortune for everything and anything that she's needed over the course of her life.

Molly is a wonderful and healthy dog, but she developed a number of minor issues over time including a propensity for air infections that require a vet visit and some prescription treatment. 

When she was 12, she also developed mitral valve disease, leading to a surgery that cost an "arm and a leg." While the surgery was performed in the United Kingdom and wouldn't have been covered by a U.S. vet insurance company since I had to take her overseas, the cardiologists visits she required both before and after the surgery would have been paid for. That alone would have saved me over $1,500 per year. 

Buy pet insurance before your dog develops pre-existing conditions

My mistake has cost me a lot of money, but fortunately I've been able to tap into my emergency savings and I've been able to start a pet care savings fund so Molly has received all of the medical services necessary. If I wasn't in a financial position to do that, things could have been a lot worse.

This is a money mistake I will never make again, now that I see just how big the fallout can be. I know now to buy pet insurance when a dog is young and healthy and before any pre-existing medical conditions develop. Buying insurance on a younger dog is very affordable and it ensures that coverage can remain in place even once old age and serious ailments set in. 

By shopping around, premiums can be very affordable and the peace of mind and financial savings that can come from getting a good policy in place can be invaluable. 

Our Research Expert

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