December’s Pet of the Month is Maple, a four year old, female rottweiler. Maple injured her cruciate ligament in her knee and needed surgery. Maple’s owner explains in his own words their experience with Riverside Small Animal Hospital and as first time pet insurance holders.
4 years ago when we first brought Maple into Riverside Small Animal Hospital for her first check up she was given a clean bill of health. It was at this time we were given a free 30 day trial of Trupanion pet insurance. When that 30 days was coming to an end my wife and I were left with the question “to continue with the insurance or not?”. Having had dogs growing up, I was hesitant to purchase insurance because I felt that if something were to happen, we would cross that bridge when it came. My wife on the other hand, felt very strongly about purchasing it for the peace of mind that if something were to happen we would be financially prepared to make those difficult decisions. I must admit that I was extremely skeptical about spending money on pet insurance. The concept of pet insurance was rather new to me and I was certain that if we needed to use it, the process of making a claim and collecting the funds would be so difficult that I would be better off just paying out of pocket.
In October, we brought our 4 year old Rottweiler Maple in for lameness in her hind leg. After an initial examination it was determined that Maple had torn her cruciate ligament and was going to require surgery to repair this injury. Dr. Buist, Maple’s orthopedic surgeon, provided us with two options to correct the lameness in her leg. He was very thorough and explained every aspect of the injury and surgical options. He provided me with all the time in the world to ask questions about the procedures, I could tell that he was knowledgeable and that made me feel very comfortable. As a result of having pet insurance with Trupanion, we were able to provide Maple with a procedure (TPLO) that would offer her with the best results and ultimately return Maple to the quality of life that she had been accustom to prior to her injury. Dr. Buist and veterinary technologist then prepared a finical estimate of the surgical costs and had it submitted to Trupanion for approval. Within hours Trupanion had responded with the approval to carry forward with the surgery.
On October 31, my family and I returned to Riverside Small Animal Hospital where we met with Dr. Bhandal for the first time. Dr. Bhandal along with Dr. Buist would be the surgeons repairing Maple’s leg on that day. It is my understanding that Dr. Bhandal is one of the best when it comes to this particular surgery. Much like Dr. Buist during Maple’s examination, Dr. Bhandal was very diligent when explaining what was going to occur that morning. He too allowed me to ask as many questions as I needed to make me feel comfortable. I felt very confident knowing that these two surgeons would be looking after our four legged family member. Once our consultation was over, I paid our Trupanion deductible and was told I would hear back from Dr. Bhandal once the procedure was over. A couple hours later I received that call confirming everything was a success. I picked up Maple the next day and was told how to administer Maple’s drugs and perform range of motion exercises. It was absolutely amazing to see that even after the surgery that she had just had done, Maple was still able to apply a little amount weight on her leg. Over the next couple weeks, we returned to Riverside Small Animal Hospital several times for Maple’s laser therapy sessions. Every visit we were greeted with a smile and the friendliest staff imaginable. Sometimes I felt that the staff were just as happy to see Maple as she was of them. I can honestly say that I received the absolute best customer service from Riverside Small Animal Hospital that one could imagine. From the minute you walk in the door you are dealing with professionals that know exactly what they are doing. More importantly, you can tell they love what they are doing.
In the month that has past since Maple’s surgery, Riverside Small Animal Hospital has handled all the claims and payments with Trupanion. We have only ever been responsible for our deductible. In fact, we actually received a check for the examination which occurred before the pre-approval. My skepticism 4 years ago has since been eliminated and I can sit here today and say that it is a decision that I will never have to make again. Trupanion has completely changed the way I look at pet insurance. From the timely approvals to the compassion they show you over the phone to the ease of payment, I will certainly be continuing to use them in the future , as well as, telling my story to other pet owners I meet.
My family and I would really like to thank all the staff at Riverside Small Animal Hospital for everything they have done for Maple. We came to you 4 years ago on a recommendation and I can assure you that we will be recommending you to others as well. A special thank you to the ladies at the front desk, the Techs that gave Maple her laser treatments and assisted in the surgery and of course Dr. Buist and Dr. Bhandal.