Pet owners, if you're considering getting health insurance for your four-legged friend, it's important to investigate before you buy.
The Troubleshooters have been taking a closer look at a popular pet insurance company.
Today, Maui is a happy, healthy 2-year-old rescue dog. But that wasn't the case this past December.
"She just was like doing handstands and she wouldn't use her back legs at all and it scared me," said owner Katharine Rub from Ambler, Montgomery County.
Maui had ruptured ligaments in both knees and needed surgery. The estimated cost was about $10,000.
"I really thought, I was like, 'This is going to be fine because we have this pet insurance now,'" recalled Rub.
She had pet insurance through Trupanion.
"The deductibles are pretty reasonable, and while their policies are more expensive than most companies, they just got very high ratings with a 90% coverage of all your claims," she said.
Those are the same reasons Thomas Kelly from Wilmington, Delaware, and his wife signed up with Trupanion for 5-year-old Murphy.
"They would reimburse you for 90% of medical expenses," he said.
A year after they got him, Murphy developed violent seizures and was admitted to the ICU. After numerous tests and scans, Kelly and his wife made the heart-wrenching decision to put Murphy down.
Then came another punch in the gut when Kelly submitted his more than $7,800 bill to Trupanion.
"Once the first claim was denied, I protested that denial, to which my claim was denied again," he said.
Rub had a similar experience with her claim for Maui.
"They pretty quickly came back with a denial," she said.
Trupanion told Rub and Kelly their claims were denied because these were pre-existing conditions, which are not covered.
Both dispute their pets had pre-existing conditions and went in circles with Trupanion for months.
"I said, 'I'll call 6abc,'" Rub said.
She got to the Troubleshooters through our Call for Action (CFA) volunteers.
Once Action News was involved, Rub got a different answer from Trupanion.
"They're going to pay for the surgery. It was really literally unbelievable," she said
Kelly also contacted the Troubleshooters through CFA and again, with our help and the advocacy of Murphy's vet, he too received his reimbursement.
"Call for Action is in your corner when you feel like you're all alone," he said.
Trupanion tells us, "We pay more than 150,000 veterinary invoices for our members every month ... In order to ensure that we pay the right claims, further clarification is occasionally helpful. To date, Trupanion has paid out more than 2 billion dollars to our members and their veterinarians."
Action News is happy to report Maui had her surgery and is well on her way to a full recovery.
Click here to learn more about pet insurance as well as local veterinarians.
Trupanion's Full Statement:
"Trupanion exists to help loving, responsible pet owners budget and care for their pets. We pay more than 150,000 veterinary invoices for our members every month, often directly to the veterinary hospital in real-time, 24/7/365. In order to ensure that we pay the right claims, further clarification is occasionally helpful. On those occasions, we consult with our members' veterinary team to obtain any additional information (such as information from previous hospitals) that may not have initially been included to ensure that our decision is appropriate and fair. To date, Trupanion has paid out more than $2 billion to our members and their veterinarians."