Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Coffee and Provocation

How do You Spell Coccidiosis?
The Wall Street Journal reports that some feline owners are fearful of professionally processed cat foods made by big companies that actually have quality control personnel and bank accounts large enough to go after. Their solution is to buy fresh rabbit carcasses that have been ground up whole -- guts, brain, bone, fur and all. Good idea? Maybe not. Here's a tip: look up a few diseases like Cryptosporidium cuniculus, Giardia duodenalis, Toxoplasma gondii, Sarcocystis cuniculi and see if they have a relationship to rabbits and cats. Remember: there's a reason we cook food in restaurants, and why wild animals that eat raw meat are generally dead at age two or three. Eating raw animals (even domestic animals) is not a good idea. Fire was invented for a reason.

Attack of the Killer Water Weed:
The New York Times reports that Caddo Lake in Texas is being eaten alive by Salvina Molesta, a type of South American water weed "with an ability to double in size every two to four days and cover 40 square miles within three months, suffocating all life beneath." No problem there!

Pet Insurance:
With insurance, the big print always seems to provide coverage, but the little print always seems to limit that coverage or void it altogether. Now consider pet insurance. When a pet insurance company denies your claim or pays out only fragmentary coverage, your only option is to hire a $10,000 lawyer in order to litigate a $2,000 claim. Not likely. So what do you do? You pay the vet, walk away bruised, and the Pet Insurance company pockets your premums and laughs all the way to the bank. Don't believe that's what happens most of the time? Then read what people with pet insurance have to say. Has anyone ever had a good experience with pet insurance? If so, tell us in the comments section (and sign it!).

Giant Alien Crabs:
Check out this picture and story over at Tom James Virginia Outdoors. Yow! Just what the Cheseapeake Bay needs -- more alien invaders.

Advice from a Mad Man:
Over at the Black Bear Blog, Tom Remington has sage advice from a mad man in Oklahoma who wrestles live coyotes: “If a coyote bites down" on you this gentleman says, “Don’t panic.” If you jerk your hand back, the coyote’s teeth will rip flesh off the bone. The thing to do is to calmly dig your fingernail into the soft roof of the coyote’s mouth. “When it lets go, grab it by the throat and yank it up. “When you get all four legs off the ground, the fight is over. You’ve won.”

Louisiana Hawking Blog Kicks Up Again:
Good news on the blog-o-sphere: Matt M. is cranking up his hawking blog again. Excellent!

Best Environmental News of the Month:
Sen. Ted Stevens's home has been raided by FBI and IRS agents looking into corruption. Corruption? No! Just because he has pimped out America's wild lands to the oil and gas lobbies, for more than 30 years? Why would you think there might be corruption there? Anyone who thinks getting a warrant for the most powerful U.S. Senator on Capitol Hill (who is also a Republican) does not know how it goes in this town. And yes, he could be as innocent as O.J.



gabboon said...

Pet Insurance:

No experience with it. I have not yet seen a policy worth the premiums. I saw one where the premiums were more than the benefit limit, not considering your deductible. (I think AKC pimped that one for a while)

xlpmwhy - it is begining to question me!!!!

clandauer said...

I'm very interested in pet insurance as well. I have heard (and how unreliable is that!) that it's worth it in the first year to defer the costs of all those shots, and I can see that being true, especially with all the padding on the vet bills. My pooches get a "wellness" exam for $25 each trip.

And the other major concern to me is the high cost of CL surgery, given that CL tears are the most common injury of active dogs. And my two border collies are active dogs. Agility, Frisbee, Herding, Flyball...

From what I understand, Pet Insurance is reimbursement only, so you still have to front the cash in the event of any issue. That removes a lot of the incentive for me as the point of insurance is so you can make the best possible decision at the time it has to be made. The possible future reimbursement of money is really no different than "I'll put it on a credit card and pay it down, hopefully."

Matt Mullenix said...

Thanks for the nice mention Patrick!

PBurns said...

The pet insurance trade has given a shout out to folks to see if they can put up a positive (signed) comment about pet insurance up on this blog. See >> http://embracepetinsurance.typepad.com/blog/2007/08/terrier-man-get.html

Hopefully someone, somewhere who is an actual customer will have something good to say. Let's see how that goes. I am hopeful. I would like to know that there are at least a few payouts that exceed premiums somewhere.

For anyone that wants to see how the HUMAN health insurance business works, see this clip of Linda Peeno, a medical director for a health insurance company >> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DoqpPwvUoP0

As she notes, she was told she was not denying health care, she was denying payment. Uh ... right. And what, exactly, were folks paying those health insurance premiums for?

Meanwhile, anyone who wants to extend a $1,000-and-over catastophic pet insurance coverage to a working terrierman with three dogs (no pre-exisind conditions at all), please let me know what those premiums will cost. And as for the policy, three crack liability and health lawyers will be reading that closely. If it passes muster, and makes economic sense, I may be your next customer!