Worst insurance. Try cancelling your service but they will not allow this? Sick of paying extremely ridiculous amounts of money every month. Horrible service when you try contact them. Spoke to a man named 'Josh' who was terrible at his job and very condescending to paying customers. Then have him put me on hold for unacceptable amounts of time when i ask to speak to management, only to have no one 'available'.
Will not recommend this service to anyone. I truly believe they write these reviews themselves as i do not know how people could write that they are anything but terrible.
2015 Big premium rise
I have been with Bow Wow Meow for several years and have never claimed anything but preventative, routine, vet care. For many years, my premium hovered around $540-$550 a year, which for a middle aged dog was competitive. And, I never had any problems making a claim.
However, my premium for 2015 suddenly increased to $884 a year; an increase of some 41%.
When I contacted the company regarding this increase and told them I wasn't happy. They have advised that it was because of the increased cost of vet care and the age of my dog. Granted my dog is a senior citizen, but he is regularly exercise and fed only Hills Science food; in fact my vet has recently remarked how healthy he is.
I then made some suggestion to their brand manager that some sort of loyalty reward system should be in place for minimum claim, long term customers like me; eg a no claim bonus or reduced excess. Their reaction was to virtually laugh at my suggestion and have tried to silence me with a gift voucher. Such behaviour is very unprofessional given I'm a loyal customer of several years standing whom has made minimum claims.
Therefore, my suggestion is to be very wary of this company. I admit that vet costs obviously rise over time; but a 41% increase in my premium is totally unreasonable.
Don't even bother - You will be wasting your time and money
I just cancelled 4 policies with them and they could not care less.
One of my pet had to go through expensive Elbow surgery and they decided they would not accept the claims citing it was a pre-existing condition.
Basically they interpret vets report to their advantage and they do have everything covered in the T&C.
Make sure you read the T&C or just don't bother going with them.
Typical Insurance company
Bow wow meow doesn't even deserve one star!
I have been with Bow Wow Meow for 5 years and insured our 2 dogs with them, that's a grand total of over $8,600 so far. I made a claim about 3 years ago for tick treatment and that had to be the most difficult process I've ever gone through, they kept asking for documents, details etc, even the vet had no clue what the hell they were on about. Fast forward 3 years, one of my dogs sprained her ankle, had to visit the vet and put her on pain relief for a week. I'm not claiming that much, I think I'm capped at about $150 anyway, but again the same circus started, the details of the consultation provided by the vet are apparently not good enough (it's a different vet too by the way as we've moved a couple of years ago) and they won't pay! So today I'm terminating the insurance and I'm making sure that everyone knows what crooks they are. I'm not asking for the moon, I'm paying every month and I expect that when I need it they will pay me what they owe me. Not paying anymore if I can get them to pay my claims! I'll look into making a complaint through the ACCC or something, because that's really dodgy behaviour, and looking online, it looks as if I'm not the only one being taken for a ride. DO NOT give them any money!
Reject claims for rescue dogs with no vet history
Well, what a bloody joke. Rescuing dogs has lots of support in Australia. Sure, you can insure them. BWM is happy to take your premium. But when you go to make a claim and can't produce a vet history BECAUSE YOU RESCUED THE DOG (not from one of those shelters that make money from pictures of extraordinarily badly treated dogs - not the 'normal' dogs that are abandoned). So, claim rejected. Took them to NCAT NSw consumer tribunal and they settled refunding my entire paid premium. If I had gone to hearing at NCAT, we could have got an order banning them from selling policies they refuse to pay claims on. Oh well.
Disappointed that even a Vets opinion can be dismissed by Bow Wow Meow.
Our claim after our Cats surgery that resulted in removal of part of his lung, was rejected.
We sought further advise from our vet who wrote a letter outlining why he knew the surgery was required after accidental inhalation of a grass seed caused part of the lung to die and become septic.
Bow Wow Meow reviewed and still rejected citing the narrow range of accidental circumstances they publish.
Not surprised that they are trying to weasel out of paying, it's what insurance companies do as a default position.
We will escalate this to an external authority and reinsure our five cats elsewhere.
Misleading phone information!
I made two phone calls to make sure Danger was covered. In both phone calls I was told Danger is cover and you will receive 80% less excess. I was never told of the sub limit. Following up on this I asked to listen to the phone conversation. I am still waiting to hear back!!!
Introduction of Sub-Limits to every policy.
I took out a policy on 7 January 2013. From time to time my pet has had a lot of issues including epilepsy, hot spots, insect bite and even a traumatic ligament injury, which at this point in time has caused significant lameness likely needing further treatment. It may even relate to a cruciate ligamament issues as stipulated by my vet. Although these claims were paid out, some claims resulted in refusal to pay and internal disputes which were protracted and eventually paid out. At this point in time, my pet is suffering from ongoing lameness to the very leg that an injury happened to on 3 February 2013. The likely result, a cruciate ligament issue in the future.
In late 2015, I allegedly received an email advising of a change to my policy to incorporate sub-limits; $300.00 total annual limit for consultation costs and $2,600.00 for any cruciate ligament issues.
On 6 January 2016, that change incorporating the sub-limits took place. I was unaware of this due to the automation of policy renewal. I recently made a complaint about the unilateral change of contract. In my complaint, I set out that such a change is subject to s 24 of the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) and s 12BG(1) of the Australian Securities and Investment Commissions Act 2001 (ASIC Act). Basically these provisions set out unfair contract terms, which are unenforceable at a point of law.
Note that under the Product Disclosure Statement as available online, Bow Wow Meow reserve the rights to change the terms and conditions of the policy upon annual renewal to reflect the risk associated with insuring my pet based on factors such as (but not limited to) age, location and medical history. Further, benefits do not accumulate across “Policy Periods” and that the policy benefits will expire at the end of each “Policy Period”.
What do you say? Do you think that the idea of insurance is totally different to what is written in the Product Disclosure Statement? Absolutely and unbelievable in my view! Can you imagine in one policy period you can be paid for a claim relating to an injury and in the next policy period you can be limited to any claims, even if it relates to an injury previously paid out at a higher amount in an earlier policy period? Well that is the risk a lot of people are facing with Bow Wow Meow.
Under s 12CA of the Australian Consumer Law, I also set out that a person must not, in trade or commerce, engage in conduct, in relation to financial services, if the conduct is unconscionable within the meaning of the unwritten law, from time to time, of the States and Territories. I argued that Bow Wow Meow took advantage of my situation with my pet, particularly the pets history. Even if they did not take advantage of my pet's medical history, which I in no way assert is the case, and implemented the sub-limits to everyone, how can they do so when in the prior policy period some people's claims were higher for consultation fees and may have been paid out for an injury that will be ongoing and could relate to cruciate ligaments? There are two extremes, either unfairly reviewing an individuals policy or not reviewing any at all and making an internal decision to change limits.
In my case, I asserted I cannot see any fairness in Bow Wow Meow retaining an unfair and ongoing advantage over me as a consumer. Particularly in relation to cruciate ligaments, ligaments being the subject of which was previously paid out under the policy and has proved to be an ongoing issue for me. Of relevance is that Bow Wow Meows actions really speak of “back-peddling”, even if they didn't mean to do this, to reduce likely future claims resulting from an injury previously covered by my policy. It serves no real reason but to limit otherwise ongoing claims in respect of an injury previously sustained and covered by policy.
At first instance, the complaint was dealt with by a Senior Customer Relations Officer. In our phone conversation, the officer set out in words to the effect that they understand my position and totally agree but there is nothing they can do as policies can't be changed and that the change was applied to every policy. Upon asking for a review, the matter was escalated. When escalated to the Internal Dispute Resolution Committee, the VERY SAME officer provided a written response. A decision that was not independently reviewed internally as it was the same person who dealt with the complaint at first instance! Biased or independently reviewed? I cannot say if this is standard procedure or whether it would result in any difference to the decision.
In the response, I was informed that the insurer would not make any changes to my policy. I was informed "Please also note that the decision to apply the new sub-limits has been made based on the overall performance of the product, not at an individual level and you have not been singled out for these changes".
When phoning Bow Wow Meow under a pseudonym and pretending to take out a new policy, I was informed there are no sub-limits applied to new policies. Apparently this is not the case and I may have been told incorrect information.
I sent an email to the officer questioning whether the implementation of the sub-limits were made public, for example, in the Notice of Policy Changes and Amendments. I also asked whether the Product Disclosure Statement details the new sub-limits and asked for links to the website that details the changes. The response as at the time of writing and submitting this review "Please note that the annual sub-limits for consultation fees and cruciate ligament conditions are listed in your Certificate of Insurance" and "the new annual-sub-limits for consultation fees and cruciate ligament conditions were implemented in all Bow Wow Meow policies". Did you implement changes without reviewing the customers who this would dramatically affect? I would like an answer to this question.
Notwithstanding the above, I have previously made a complaint in relation to indexing annual premiums exponentially to retain an unfair advantage under a policy as against the total amount of annual claims. As I set out, at one stage I received a 24% increase in premiums above my prior year's claims. The end result in my situation was that I was going to be required to pay more for my premiums then a dog of the same age, breed etc. The only difference being medical history. A history that I did not know of when taking out insurance when my pet was a puppy, a risk I would have preferred to have avoided, but I have to wear all of this because of the love I have for my pet. Yet you reserve the right to use my pets health from a prior period under a policy against me as per your PDS? How can this be categorised as insurance Bow Wow Meow? You seem to be taking away the idea of insuring me for the risks of illness or injury based on qualified veterinarians assessments of future risk resulting from my prior claims. Whether or not this is the case, I tend to wonder.
At one stage, Bow Wow Meow even tried to argue that they would never take into consideration a pets prior medical history as I said this would be unfair. This was in my conversation relating to indexing premiums above my prior year's claim amount. Fortunately this was resolved "without admission" and I received a refund.
The HARSH REALITY is that you are an individual and this is a large company betting on risks with strategically worded terms and conditions. You have no bargaining power and they have standard form contracts.
At one stage in 2013, I made a complaint and the response "thanks mate its full on- 7 page complaint letter". Really? You then resend an email trying to recall the email that you already sent. What a joke.
IF YOU DECIDE TO GO WITH BOW WOW MEOW, I urge you to be incredibly cautious, ask many questions and document every conversation. Go so far as having everything put in writing.
On another note, yes claims can be fast but yes it can end in dispute and be protracted. My rating is because of my experiences and particularly because of the way the sub-limits were implemented and the way that there PDS is worded.
If I could turn back time, I would not personally go with Bow Wow Meow.
terrible advise and misleading information
Absolutely do not recommend, and as an employee of the veterinary industry will not be promoting them. After being told a claim for surgery would be all fine and to go ahead, our claim was rejected with no further help given, complete and utter waste of time
Policy holder for 12 years - today I cancelled. Not good enough!
I have held my policy since I first got my puppy in 2005. In recent years I've had my policy increase with no claims made over the last 3-4 years. I put in a claim for teeth cleaning, annual vaccinations and routine blood screen this year. My out of pocket was $697 and I was given a rebate of $60. I pay just under $1000 per year for this policy and I cannot fathom how this is actually good value. Considering I've been a loyal customer for all this time with few claims, I found their ability to satisfy my requests as a customer extremely poor. An annual cap of 'routine' care to $50 which includes an expensive procedure such as teeth cleaning is underhanded. I'm better off putting the money I pay them into an interest account and cashing in when required. I urge others considering pet insurance to do the same - absolute joke!
Read the policy fine print
I claimed for a viral infection for my dog. He was not diagnosed as kennel cough but because the medication can be used for kennel cough the claim was rejected. A very disappointing first claim. I can only hope it improves from here.
Direct Debit Dogs
Direct debit values changed month to month with no communication. Permiums taken multiple times and not refunded. A change to advanced payments not communicated and monies not refunded. Hold times of around 1--15 minutes. Documents and payment details not available online. Do not use.
Sloppy customer service & impossible to make a simple claim
I purchased pet insurance for my 9 month old Staffy who I purchased off a registered breeder. I thought I would be doing the right thing from the start purchasing $0 excess and mid cover insurance, with routine care early in case anything goes wrong. Two months later I had to take her to the vet, as she had a yeast infection in the ear. This was only a minor problem and less than $300 bill. I put in a claim along with the vet history that I had as I only owned the dog for two months. Five days go by and I wonder what is happening, I check the online portal and see that there is a letter there stating that my claim is being held up due to the fact that I didn't put the prior vet history (before I actually owned her). I tried to obtain this information from the prior vet but due to privacy and confidentiality, they cannot release this information to me. I phoned Bow wow, got through to the offshore call centre, was told this shouldn't be an issue and that to just to provide the proof of ownership from the July date and this would be fine, so I sent that in. Two more days go by, I hear nothing. Had to phone again, this time get the offshore call centre again. Advises that they are accessing it. Later that day I check the portal, same thing again posted letter that claim being held up due to no vet history before I owned her, plus now a new requirement, they want a receipt of purchase. So I send an email stating that I cannot provide this information due to privacy reasons and that can someone please request this information on my behalf. Days go by I contact the prior vet, they state no one has contacted them! So frustrating that I have to chase this up and that I cannot even get this information and I am stuck in an impossible loop. I decide that due to all of this sloppiness I am just going to cancel my insurance and save the money instead. I ring to cancel and was put on hold for 20 mins, til I finally got through to the Sydney based call centre (seems only ever for cancellation only!) and spoke to "[name removed]" who advises that he has cancelled my policy. Due to this sloppiness of customer service, I have also faxed my cancellation and also emailed. Phone, email, fax. I really hope they do not give me any dramas and that they have actually cancelled my policy and that I am not charged any further debits from this scam insurance company. Time will tell.....
Accident insurance doesn't cover accidents.
Bow wow meow accident coverage not worth the paper it's written on. I signed both my dogs up for accident only coverage several years ago. Lodged a claim this year after my dog ingested a poisonous berry and died of toxicity poisoning. Apparently toxicity from a berry is an 'illness' not an accident whereas toxicity from a snake bite is an accident. If a human were to ingest a poisonous berry, I'm pretty sure they would be presenting to the accident & Emergency department not their local GP for an 'illness'. Just as the home insurance industry received an overhaul in 2010 due to their inaccurate wording of 'flood' in their policies the same needs to occur in the pet insurance industry with the fraudulent wording of their policies.
They will take your money but wont pay
I signed up with these guys roughly about 2 years ago and purely due to their positive reviews on here.
Since then in total, I have made 3 claims. The first two were rejected each time and it was only after I lodged a complaint and wrote a review here that they contacted me and paid them. In that time they also raised the premium on me because I had made a claim!
When I made the 3rd and final claim earlier this year they asked me to provide a full vet history which I did. However they didnt believe my history and started calling vet hospitals in close proximity of where I live to ask them if I have ever taken my dog to them before but have not reported it. Clearly all the hospitals said that they have no record of ever having my dog there. Despite this FBI style investigation they still rejected my claim because they had found a piece of evidence of a pre-existing condition. When I asked them to share this evidence with me, they said it violates the Australian law to send it to me. It didn't violate the Australian law when their agents called the vet hospitals in my close proximity to ask about me but if I ask to receive a piece of evidence which they have used to reject my claim they can deny it based on violating the Australian law.
Their online claim process is funny and useless to say the least and their call centre isn't much of a help.
I have now happily canceled my account with them and will not touch them with a 60 meter long pole.
Peter and Marcia
Whatever policy one has with Bow Wow Meow, they will say your claim is not covered
We covered our 4 cats with Bow Wow Meow when we moved to a country area here in Bullsbrook, where one of our cats was hit by a car and needed major surgery and hip replacement. They did not give us any rebate for that. Our Burmese cat Zara Brown died on August 11th, 800 dollars worth of claims from Midland hospital, and they continued to send letter after letter (they aren´t short of stationary) saying we had not provided enough veterinary history. Our local vet then engaged one of them on the telephone and finally got through the date of the email with all the information of the claim. Then we received the most recent letter saying that we had cancelled the policy (which our records show we just paid for all 4 cats, even though one of them was no longer alive). I just spoke to their call center and they again said that Zara Brown´s death was not an accident so all the services provided for her were not covered. We have just cancelled our insurance with this company and I am beginning to wonder if it is a real insurance company at all...or whether they have endless form letters like Readers Digest that they simply send everyone with various reasons why they will not settle your particular claim. It might be a scam insurance company. Peter and Marcia Hewitt of Bullsbrook Western Australia ASIC should have a good look at this company.
Would never recommend them to anyone
After having been insured for 6 years and only claiming for the yearly Vaccinations we were quite annoyed when making a claim for Arthritis medication only to be told that it was a pre existing condition and not covered.
This makes a mockery out of Waiting periods
Thank you for taking our money but Never again
We have Cancelled our Policy
Anyone thinking of Pet insurance read the Ultra fine Print
wise and savvy
find a way to not pay every single time i claimed
Had this insurance. .got a clearance on cruciate ligaments from vet. Dog has one slight flop in left patella. Insurance said they wont honour ligament clearance. My dog was cleared from her vet with no other ongoing or preexisting conditions. My dog got 3 UTI found out it was from groomer not changing bath water enough.
BOW WOW MEWOW said we wont pay for any further treatment for UTI as they are ongoing.
Well excuse me isn't that what insurance is for
if you have an ongoing problem.????????
my dog never got another UTI after leaving that groomer . All pet insurances have their underwriting by HOLLAND except Petplan who is underwritten by Alianz. DO NOT THINK CHANGING COMPANIES WILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE. My partner is a lawyer and read all the PDS and they all are written in a way to the benfit of the company . To not pay more then to pay. Dropped bow wow mewow and put money in savings . Pet insurance is very questionable and nothing but a headache.
Very large price increase once your dog reaches a certain age!
I have had a policy with Bow Wow Meow since 2010 and have found them to be pretty prompt with payments they decide are eligible.
We have just had our policy renewal letter and the monthly payments have jumped another $25 after a $15 increase last year bringing our total monthly payment to $85.
So when they say they offer insurance for the duration of your pets life it comes at a pretty high price.
Being a 12 year old dog ( A fairly healthy one that we hardly ever claim for) she is not going to be accepted by any other insurance company. I feel that Bow Wow have completely taken advantage of this point and increased our payments hugely knowing that we have no other options.
As a Vet Nurse I know how important Pet Insurance is and promote it all the time. I will now feel like a fraud promoting a service that many people will not be able to afford.
Thanks Bow Wow for rewarding a loyal customer who has recommended you to lots of people.
Cruciate Ligament waiting Period part 2
so I've done some further digging and got a response:
Thank you for your replies and our delay in responding.
In answer to your question in relation to my role, BowWowMeow Pet Insurance and RSPCA Pet Insurance are underwritten and administered by PetSure Australia.
Cruciate Ligament Waiting Period Waiver Form’s are processed by a customer service agents. During one of the reviews of this form it was not picked up by our agent that your vet had written notes in relations to Dogs previous condition. This is how the processing error occurred. Feedback and coaching has been provided to the agent and again we apologise for any confusion this may have caused.
When this was raised as a concern by yourself we followed our process of having the form reviewed by one of our Claims team and the result of which you were emailed. Thank you for pointing out the error in the letter, we have updated this to refer to Dog as a female dog and provided you the new version.
Your dispute has been forwarded to our Internal Dispute Resolution Committee who will provide a resolution in writing within 15 days. If you would like to provide any further information that you feel should be taken into account please forward this and I will forward this information on.
Here is my problem with this response:
1) as per my original phone conversation the operator ensured me that a qualified Vet reviewed the forms - this now appears untrue?
2) I submitted my forms 6 weeks ago. As per the T&C's on the form the results of the cruciate ligament examination from my vet need to be received no later than 14 days after the dog is examined. Otherwise it needs to be examined again at my own cost. If this is the case how can Bow Wow Meow review a form that's 6 weeks old? By their own policy I would have to resubmit the form to them again which I have not done. So as far as i am concerned the waiting period has still been waived.
3) Petsure offer administer a number of so called pet insurance policies including RSPCA, Bow Wow Meow, Vets Own, Woolworths,
Petmed, HCF, Medicare - basically all but about 1 Australian based pet insurer.
The problem is each any every single one has the same terms and conditions. That's is their policy's are exactly the same for what they do and do not cover.
However each of the premiums is different. For example bow wow meow have some of the highest premiums because of the reviews on this site. Basically Petsure have a monopoly and simply get the best reviews for bow wow and subsequently raise the premiums for this particular policy when each and every other insurance is exactly the same. Seems like an unfair monopoly to me. Might be time for a current affair to do some investigating!
- ‹ Prev
- Next ›