Savvy gals know when an investment is well worth it (think fringed boots) and when it’s best to pass. But there are other investments that may be well-worth the money – or not – depending on a variety of circumstances.

Pet insurance is one of those investments. Unlike human health insurance, you don’t have to hunt around for a vet that accepts a certain plan. You pay the vet as you normally would, and then get reimbursed by the insurance company.

If your pet stays 100-percent healthy, happy and accident-free, you may be able to get away without pet insurance. But pet health insurance could also come to the rescue if your pet ever needs an expensive medical procedure, requires costly ongoing care for a chronic condition, or falls prey to unexpected injuries.

When Pet Insurance Can Definitely be Worth It

Check out several factors to weigh when deciding if pet insurance is a good investment for you and your pet.

You lead an active, outdoor lifestyle. The odds of your pet getting hit by a car, bitten by a snake, attacked by a coyote or otherwise becoming injured in situations beyond your control definitely increase if he’s always outside and active. Keeping a pet cloistered in the house may reduce the odds, but it can also reduce that thing called joy.

You have a breed prone to certain conditions. You’re unlikely to run across a bulldog owner who hasn’t had at least one trip to the vet for skin conditions, eye, heart or respiratory issues. German shepherds, Great Danes and other breeds (including bulldogs) are also prone to the costly condition of hip dysplasia.

Breeds that suffer from chronic conditions can end up with repeated trips to the vet, with treatment adding up quite quickly. Research your breed to find out if high vet bills are likely down the line. If so, you may end up saving in the future by enrolling in pet insurance now.

You find a policy that offers an awesome value. Pet insurance is never worth it if you end up with a crummy policy. Read the fine print carefully, especially the exceptions, to ensure the policy covers items you want it to cover. Look for generous limits, extensive coverage and policies that can remain in force over the lifetime of your pet.  

You can’t put a price on peace of mind, and that’s one of the main benefits pet insurance offers. You may not ever need it, but if you do, you’ll be overjoyed you have it. Weigh the odds, research the options, and then make the choice that works best for you.