Technology to Build Bridges between Insurers and their Furry Clients

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By Alex Zakrivaševič, News analyst
Published on Jul 28, 2022

Insurance
5 min read

Going out for a stroll have you ever noticed how many people you see walking their dogs? Or visiting friends have you noticed how many of them have cats? This is a simple real-life example, but let’s refer to the statistics of the US and UK. As Lemonade states, 70% of American households own pets. It’s 90+ million homes! And according to Petkeen, 59% of British families have pets, predominantly dogs. And keep in mind that some pet-lovers do not dwell on one pet, but start several. However, that being the case that national health pet services don't exist, and all the expenses related to health services lie on the owners’ shoulders.

Demands create supply, and more and more pet owners insure their four-legged friends and use insurance for both emergency and non-emergency treatments.

The Independent points out that “the number of people purchasing pet insurance packages has increased by 4.5% to 3.7 million, and the number of claims that British insurers proceeded in 2021 has increased to 1.03 million”, and this number will most likely grow in 2022.

What insurers can offer to the furry & feathered?

When starting a pet, we can’t foresee if its health is excellent in the future and no force majeures would happen. If your dog goes lame and needs a bionic paw, there’s a high chance Prof. Noel Fitzpatrick fixes it, but can you pay for it? Treatment of diseases and injuries may hurt the wallet seriously, some manipulations can easily run into four or even five numbers in the bill. Expensiveness for pet medical services stimulates owners to acquire pet health insurance actively. In the background of thousands USD of one-off payment, regular monthly 50 USD seems to be the lesser of two evils.


In turn, high demand for insurance services makes providers look for technological solutions that would automate business processes and simplify the steps of insurance operations: from tailed-client onboarding to claim management. And of course make the experience of pet owners more engaging.

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Professor Noel Fitzpatrick, is a world-class orthopaedic-neuro veterinary surgeon. Source: Fitzpatrick Referrals

Versatile pet insurance application

If you have a pet just remember how many times you’ve forgotten about another upcoming vaccination of your four-legged friend? Or how pissed off you were because you couldn’t find the pet’s insurance policies or critical veterinary documents? With a versatile application all these concerns will become a relic of the past. Utilizing a specific pet insurance application, pet owners will have easy access to their pet’s documentation, insurance policies, coverage information, claims history etc. stored in one place. The application can also send prompt reminders about the upcoming visits to veterinarians, notify about claim statuses and more. 

In addition to holistic customer experience, through application adoption insurance companies alleviate their agents’ workload. When clients know exactly where they can find necessary and detailed insurance-related information, they do not attack customer service call centers asking the same questions. Hereby, you kill two birds with one stone: provide more engaging and high-quality customer service and optimize the workload of your employees.

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Source: gminsights.com

Smart pet identification

To unlock your smartphone or sign in in an application we use biometric login (our fingerprints or facial recognition) because it is easy-breezy, yet secure. There are no people with similar fingerprints, and the existence of a doppelganger is 1 to 135. The same thing with dog and cat snouts there are no dogs and cats with similar nose prints.

Having considered this fact, Alipay put the idea of using AI and machine learning in pet insurance forward. The technology integration with insurance providers’ applications allows owners of furry friends to use the snout recognition feature to manage the digital insurance profile. They can easily log in, upload pet photos, store insurance information and track claim history in the app, with no need to keep the necessary documents in hard copy. 

AI-based pet identification also allows moving away from traditional microchipping as a pet identity digitizing. Many pet-lovers are unwilling to subject their dogs and cats to this manipulation because they consider it dangerous and don’t want their furry family member to experience another stress of visiting a vet.

Digital veterinary clinics

Veterinary telemedicine is another way to strengthen the relationship between an insurance company and a customer. Customers are free to choose any convenient time for appointments using online scheduling software and save time on commuting to veterinarians. All they need is an electronic device with a camera and stable Internet connection. Of course, a vet needs to examine a pet offline to make a diagnosis correctly, but a preliminary online appointment can help to quickly understand if there is a need in consultation of a narrow specialist and thus save precious time in case of a serious disease.

Insurance companies also benefit from veterinary telemedicine. Preliminary online consultations help to more promptly refer to the right specialist, which means fewer visits to vets and fewer insurance claims.

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Smart health trackers

Introduction of health trackers in the pet insurance market revolutionized the relationship between the insurance company and the customer. With IoT-powered pet wearables, owners can more closely track the health condition of the pet. Necessary indicators are transferred to the mobile device, the owner evaluates them and in case of some abnormalities takes timely measures. It makes perfect sense, because it is much cheaper to cure the disease at an earlier stage. 

Integrated with the insurance application, the tracker transfers the information about the activities to the insurance provider. The tracker identifies all the activities, such as waking, running, playing and sleeping. The application analyses the gained data, correlating it with the age and weight of the pet. Depending on the results, the insurance provider draws a conclusion considering the pet’s health condition, and creates the individual insurance plan for the client. As a result, the customer gains access to various discounts, collectible points and lower premiums offered by the insurance provider.

Final thoughts

Technology has made the pet insurance market more flexible and responsive to customers’ ever-changing demands. The amount of people starting a pet is constantly growing, especially during the pandemic period. The increasing number of pets means the increasing demand for the related services, from grooming and training to veterinary services and, of course, insurance. 

Adopting the wonders of technological progress, pet insurance providers build up stronger relationships with their clientele and optimize their business processes. Monitoring the latest tech trends, exploring customer behavior help insurance companies to be on the same page with their clients, which is if not a USP, but for sure a more and more important differentiator in the insurance business.

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