Collar Safety Awareness Week Kick-Off

Collar Safety Awareness WeekWe were all shocked and dismayed when one of our policyholders called to tell us the awful story of her dog’s accidental death. It seems her two small dogs had been alone in the home mid-day and in the course of playing or cuddles their collars became snared together. Of course, the dogs couldn’t unhook themselves, and the situation only caused them to become frantic, until ultimately, one was strangled to death. When the pet parent returned home, the deceased dog was still hooked to his companion.

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We're Taking a Bite Out of October!

It seems all we talk about is our food these days, and it’s not always about cupcakes and the perfect gourmet dinner. Talk of GMOs, gluten-free, paleo, and so on is pervasive in many elements of our culture. (I’d wager your Pinterest feed has at least one of the aforementioned phrases in it as we speak.) And the talk extends to our pets too. The increasing awareness about the need to make better nutritional choices for our pets is a good thing, though filtering through the fads to find a quality diet can be a daunting task.

That’s why we’re dedicating October to talk of pet nutrition. Sure, we’ll have some tricks and treats, but we want to help you get informed about the latest recommendations and information when it comes to feeding your pet. Besides, it’s easier to feed them well and make sure they skip the junk than it is to skip the junk yourself, am I right?

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MyEmbrace - Our New Customer Portal

A huge part of our jobs in the Customer Care department is helping people with policy management. And, while we still love talking with real people about really cute pets, we realize that sometimes it’s more convenient to handle things like billing changes and checking on your policy online. Which is why, after a great deal of planning and programming, we’re very pleased to announce...(drum roll.....) the MyEmbrace Portal! (TA-DA!)

Yes, it’s a handy-dandy tool that allows you to do just about anything you can think of related to your policy, anytime, anywhere. The first features are available now and offer you the opportunity to:

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Podcast: Making Vet Visits Fear-Free

Dr. Marty BeckerThis month’s podcast features an extra special guest. As we’re discussing “taking your pet to the vet,” who better to chat with than the creator of the groundbreaking fear-free movement, Dr. Marty Becker. Dr. Becker joins Dr. Patrick Mahaney and Laura Bennett to discuss not only the importance of seeking veterinary attention, but also the health and wellness benefits of reducing stress in pet patients. The doctors explain how some of their techniques and tricks help pets be more at ease and create a safer experience for all involved. You’ll want to listen in to learn more about what you as the pet parent can do to make veterinary care a more enjoyable experience. There’s even suggests on how to make your home a more zen-like space for your pet. They’ll discuss the benefits of some old-school practices such as house calls, and some new fear-free care techniques, making this a conversation you (and your anxious pet) won’t want to miss.

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The stable, yet rising, costs of veterinary care

The word “insurance” has become a lightning rod for all of us, the daily news fills the airwaves with talk about the runaway costs of healthcare. There is so much involved with medical billing and insurance on the human side. The McKinsey Global Institute estimated that human medical practices spend up to 27% of their revenue on the administrative costs in handling billing. Most of today’s human health insurance is managed care where the insurance companies have contracts with doctors and medical facilities and have negotiated to provide care for members at reduced costs. These providers become the plan's network and you need to go to these doctors to get the most out of the plan. How much the insurance company will pay depends on the network. Indemnity insurance, which is what pet insurance is, allows you to direct your own health care and go to the doctor or hospital of your choice. The veterinarian takes care of your pet, then you pay the veterinarian with the insurance company reimbursing you a portion of your total charges. Just to set the record straight…veterinarians do not get “kickbacks” from the insurance companies. Pet insurance just allows pet owners to pay for their pet’s care. The beauty of the indemnity model is that the veterinarian fills out only a short description of services and faxes it to the insurance company. That is it. Veterinarians do not need to pay people just to handle the insurance billing. Our practices simply could not afford to.

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