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Pet Insurance - The North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA), is committed to educating and promoting to North American pet owners, and the veterinary profession, the values and benefits of pet health insurance. We do not endorse one compa
We are committed to the positive and important animal and pet health community within Care 2. We are a non-profit group, and we do not endorse one pet health insurance company over another, but rather provide communications, education and support for the role of quality pet health insurance and improving pet health.

We know that the uncertainty of the current economy makes pet health insurance critically important for the financial well being of all pet owners. Many pet owners simply do not have the disposable income to cover needed veterinary care. Each day more families, care providers and pets face the potential of economic euthanasia.

We welcome our many friends, and other caring people who wish to join our group. We want to work with others to further enhance the correct contributions that can be made by and for pet health insurance. Of course, this is not only for our pets, but also to create a better financial safety-net for those of us that want (and in-fact demand) the same care for our pets as we want for ourselves!
Join Us! Loran Hickton, Executive Director of NAPHIA and a Proud Member of Care 2!

  Veterinarian Carrie J. Miller Receives NAPHIA Grant  (Denver, CO) November 30, 2009: The North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA) has awarded an educational grant and recognition award to Carrie Miller DVM, DACVIM. The grant is due in part to honor the late “Heimdall”, a much beloved deaf Great Dane. The grant is provided to support further research of mutating bacterial pneumonia and other respiratory illness in large breed dogs.   Heimdall’s story also won the 2009 North American Favorite Pet Story, presented by NAPHIA. Meg and Joel Wittenmyer are members of the Denver area Rocky Mountain Great Dane Rescue Group were also the owners of Heimdall. In November 2008 the Wittenmyer's brought the rescued Heimdall to Dr. Carrie Miller for a persistent cough. What began as an upper respiratory infection progressed to recurring bacterial pneumonia that mutated each time that Dr. Miller tried a new antibiotic. “Dr. Miller took us through a very painful and complicated illness and loss of Heimdall. She was fighting for the health of our dog every step of the way. We care greatly for our veterinarian Dr. Miller, and the entire team at Wheat Ridge Animal Hospital,” stated Joel Wittenmyer. According to Dr. Miller, "Heimdall was a very sick dog with a complicated form of recurring bacterial pneumonia that mutated each time we tried a new or different level of  antibiotic.  Heimdall was a wonderful dog and with pet health insurance we treated a case that normally would not have been pursued. With the further support of this grant, we intend to share factors related to Heimdall and similar cases.”   “NAPHIA is committed to providing education and raising awareness for the value of quality pet health insurance. This is not just a message for pet owners, but also a message to veterinarians. Today, we simply cannot rely just on client’s personal funds, and credit cards to cover a complicated pet health crisis. The value of practical data being shared (in this case) by Dr. Miller is also a means to support overall better pet health.” said, Loran Hickton, Executive Director, NAPHIA. The grant provides a $500 recognition award to Dr. Miller and further financial support for publication of Dr. Miller’s data regarding respiratory illness in large breed dogs.   # # # More about Dr. MillerDr. Miller is Board Certified in Internal Medicine and practices at Wheat Ridge Animal Hospital, Wheat Ridge, CO. She received her DVM from Tufts University in 1999, and then completed a rotating internship in medicine and surgery at Wheat Ridge Animal Hospital in 2000. In July 2003 she became board certified by the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine after finishing her residency at Wheat Ridge Veterinary Specialists. Dr. Miller's special interests include respiratory physiology, endocrinology and immunology. Dr. Miller has presented research on laryngeal paralysis and infectious tracheobronchitis at the ESCVIM in Ireland (2001) and the ACVIM in Charlotte, NC (2003). Her research has been published in the Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine and she has contributed to several veterinary book chapters. Dr. Miller is a member of the American Animal Hospital Association, American Veterinary Medical Association, Colorado Veterinary Medical Association and the Denver Area Veterinary Medical Society.  About Wheat Ridge Veterinary HospitalWheat Ridge Veterinary Hospital provides the highest quality and state-of-the-art medical and surgical care available in a kind and compassionate environment. In addition to the general American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) accreditation held since 1963, we recently became one of the first hospitals in the United States to be accredited through the new AAHA Referral Standards. AAHA referral accreditation validates that a specialty practice is meeting the highest standards in the profession. We are now accredited in Internal Medicine - Small Animal, Emergency & Critical Care, Surgery, Radiology and Feline & Canine Practice. Our board-certified specialists understand how important your pet is to you and value the commitment you make in seeking a higher and more advanced level of care. Be assured that every doctor and team member your pet encounters is dedicated to making their visit both pleasant and successful. To learn more, visit: About Rocky Mountain Great Dane RescueRocky Mountain Great Dane Rescue, Inc. is recognized as a major resource for the welfare of homeless, abandoned and abused companion animals in Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska, Utah and Wyoming. Our goal is to lower euthanasia rates in our region by: 1. Bringing adoptable pets into our program for medical and social rehabilitation and re-homing.  2. Providing resources to pet owners to encourage their responsibility and commitment to their pets and prevent them from contributing to the homeless pet population. We want to continue to be a valuable resource to our community. We believe that one person can make the difference in the life of an animal in need, so as an organization, we have more strength to help more animals. As part of our mission, RMGDRI firmly believes that it is our responsibility to do all that we can for every Dane that comes into our haven, into our care. To learn more visit: About The North American Pet Health Insurance AssociationFounded in 2007, the North American Pet Health Insurance Association is committed to educating and promoting the values and benefits of pet health insurance to North American pet owners, the general public, and the veterinary industry.  To learn more, visit our website at  
National Pet Health Insurance Association Provides Advisory –
The Season of Treats Can be a Painful and Costly Trick!

October 30, 2009(Pittsburgh, PA) As pet owners head into the season of special gatherings, celebrations and holiday tidings, the North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA) reminds pet owners to protect their pets from ingesting chocolate and other unintended items, and not provide unsuitable special treats and meals to their pets.
 Pet owners need to provide extra care and attention to their pet during this time of year, according to Dr. Ingmire, of Mokena Animal Clinic, near Chicago. “It is important to plan and consider our pets as we head into the holiday season. Our pets are certainly aware of this special time of the year and want to be a part of all of the celebrations. Without consideration of our pets, trouble and mischief can ensue. Even a well-behaved pet that feels slighted or confined during festivities may get into trouble that normally would not happen during other times of the year.” Dr. Ingmire recommends that all pet owners be mindful of the following:   
·         Do not provide any forms of chocolate
·         Do not provide table scraps or foods not specifically prepared for our pets
·         Secure or remove garbage and food scraps from the kitchen before sitting down to dine
·         Adjust your pets’ feeding time to occur as you are serving dinner for special occasions and add a special pet treat as part of the pet meal
·         Plan and provide short periods of special one-on-one time for walks and just providing focused attention during special occasions
·         Our pets will adjust better to the additional activities taking place in the home, if a little bit of special attention is provided. 

“Providing rich human foods is just a bad idea and it can cause Pancreatitis and general internal illness. Pancreatitis is an inflammation of the pancreas, and it can be life threatening. When a pet is diagnosed as having pancreatitis, he/she becomes more susceptible to developing it again so you want to avoid your pet ever having it. The best way to protect our pets so they can enjoy a healthy and happy life is to avoid feeding human foods. If your pet becomes ill with bloody vomit and diarrhea after consuming turkey or ham or getting into the garbage, take your pet to your veterinarian immediately,” continued Dr. Ingmire. 

Other cautionary “tails” to share during holidays include avoiding poinsettias and tinsel, especially with cats in the house. Dogs can become ill after consuming Christmas tree standing water, though generally not life threatening. On the other hand, there are many positive examples of great things pet owners can do to correctly spoil their pets. Provide a special holiday trip to the groomer or provide a nice shampoo wash and dry at home. Hang a stocking with correct treats and toys. A new toy with a bit of cat nip is okay for our feline friends. Just remember, pets are aware it is a special time of the year and all of the festivities can cause our pets to get into mischief and potential painful trouble. Also check with your veterinarian for the preferred 24 hour emergency pet hospital in your area for care after hours and have the phone number with your other important emergency information. 

Pets Provide Better Human Health and Wellness and Reduce Healthcare Costs
As the North American Pet Health Insurance Association celebrates National Pet Health Insurance Month, the association shares the positive impact of pets on human healthcare.

(Pittsburgh, PA) September 16, 2009: The North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA) has raised awareness of the value of pets, and pet health insurance, by designating September as National Pet Health Insurance Month.

Pet health insurance provides a financial safety net for pet owners, and often gives them the ability to provide a higher level of care to their ill or injured pets. Every day, pet health insurance spares pet owners the excruciating decision to limit veterinary care for beloved pets, or even to euthanize them, due to economic limitations.

As pet owners consider health insurance for their pets, they might think of it in the context of their own health. Research shows that humans with a puppy, kitten, dog, or cat in their home enjoy a measurable improvement in health, and in fact spend less on their own healthcare.

Documented studies on human health confirms that pet ownership provides the following benefits:
• Reduced risk of cardiovascular disease
• Higher survival rates from heart attacks
• Significantly lower use of general practitioner services
• Reduced risk of asthma and allergic rhinitis in children exposed to pet allergens during the first year of their life
• Better physical and psychological well-being for seniors

Dr. Wayne Ingmire to receive 2009 “North American Favorite Veterinarian” Award
Though it is likely that the association will hear some barking from the good folks that nominated many of the other deserving veterinarians, Dr. Wayne Ingmire is the 2009 North American Favorite Veterinarian!

(Chicago, IL) October 23, 2009: The North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA) announced today that Dr. Wayne Ingmire of Chicago has been selected among client nominations as the winner of the 2009 North American Favorite Veterinarian. As the North American Pet Health Insurance Association celebrated North American Pet Health Insurance Month in September, the association encouraged pet owners across North America to nominate their Favorite Veterinarian and provide a short story as an example. According to the association, Paws Down, Dr. Wayne Ingmire’s nomination made him the Purrrfect Winner!

Dr. Wayne Ingmire practices at the Mokena Animal Clinic near Chicago. He was nominated by Charlene Tabler, a client since 1982. According to Ms. Tabler, “Our family feels that “Doc” is the most caring and focused care providers we have ever met. And that includes our children’s pediatrician and we certainly love our pediatrician! Doc has been with us through the lives of our pets during the good times and times of illness and loss. From getting down on the floor and saying hello to our pets, to holding our hand as we discussed cancer treatments for one of our dogs, Doc is a most loving and caring health provider. There have been several times throughout the years that Doc would call in the early evening to check on our pets and make sure everything was going well. He does so much more for us than treating our pets, Doc treats our entire family.”

Heimdall, the Gentle Giant Wins 2009 North American Pet Health Insurance Favorite Pet Story Award
Heimdall’s story provides a most heartwarming and compelling example of the love of a special pet, and the value of being able to provide excellent care

(Denver, CO) October 22, 2009: The North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA) announced today that Heimdall, a much beloved deaf Great Dane is the winner of the 2009 North American Favorite Pet Story.

Meg Wittenmyer is a member of the Houston and Denver Great Dane Rescue Groups. Just a few years back Meg was only going to keep Heimdall for a few days until a good home could be located. You may have an idea of what occurred. It happens to all of us who love and care for pets. The dog was very special and not just because of his hearing disability. Meg and her husband quickly found a kind and gentle giant with a soul that could be seen through his eyes and he immediately melted the hearts of what became his new family.

Heimdall gently approached his new owners and softly laid his head on their shoulder and he pretty much got whatever he wanted. Yes, they spoiled him quite a bit, but he returned that favor a hundredfold with all the love and devotion his 145 lb. body could give.

Working with Great Dane rescue and having them for years taught Heimdall’s new parents the importance of maintaining pet insurance coverage. With big dogs there are sometimes risks for big bills, which is why the rescue strongly recommends pet insurance to all our adoptive families. Little did they know how true that would be when they took Heimdall into their regular vet for a persistent cough. In November 2008, what began as an upper respiratory infection progressed to recurring pneumonia to bacteria, that mutated each time the veterinarian tried a new antibiotic.

Like many pet owners with pet health insurance, these folks had been paying premiums for a long time without actually making a claim. However, within the space of six months, all their expenses and efforts were repaid in ways they had not imagined.

The primary veterinarian and the pet owners searched out a fine respiratory specialist, Their optimism turned into months of trying one antibiotic after another, included countless lung x-rays and three bronchoscopes. At one point, the pet owner was paying over $300 a day for the special antibiotics, as Heimdall was fighting both staph and e-coli bacteria which had settled in his lungs. It was at this point that the pet owner realized the value of not only having pet insurance, but the added drug and dental benefit they decided to purchase as part of their coverage.

Between November 2008 and May 2009 their pet insurance company had paid their policies maximum annual benefit of $10,000. The pet owner said that “not only did they pay the bills we submitted in a timely manner, but we knew that the staff of the pet health insurance company cared as much about what happened with Heimdall as we did.”

Very sadly, Heimdall passed away last month, as the pet owner shared this story and she sincerely wanted everyone to know that if your pet is important to you, then pet insurance should be just as important. “We would have done anything to get Heimdall the treatment he needed and having insurance meant not having to take out a second mortgage or even selling our house, but more importantly, gave us many extra months with our beautiful baby boy, which really is priceless. It’s just that simple.”

National Health Insurance Association Confirms Reports – Coverage Going to the Dogs!
The North American Pet Health Insurance Association does not dictate the care provided by veterinarians, but shares alarming lack of care being received by cats.

(Pittsburgh, PA) October 15, 2009: The North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA) reports that health insurance is going to the dogs, and that cats are only receiving about half of the care provided to their canine relatives. Pet owners in households with at least one dog and one cat were more attached to their dogs than their cats by a 3-to-1 margin (57 percent to 19 percent, respectively), according to a special report by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAVMA). This could account for the statistic included in the JAVMA report that 33 percent of these pet owners believe it’s more important to take a dog versus a cat to the doctor for a wellness exam.

While NAPHIA is reporting robust double digit growth in pet health insurance sector, the association is alarmed that cats represent only 10% of the insured pets in North America. The association is committed to working with all pet health related associations, care providers, and members of the media to better communicate the critical needs of our cats. The association gathered for their quarterly Board Meeting on October 7, 2009, and mapped a strategy to provide more support for feline health and wellness.

According to Board Member, Laura Bennett, who is also President & Chief Embracer of Embrace Pet Health Insurance, “As the North American Pet Health Insurance Association does not dictate the care provided by veterinarians, we still share concern for the alarming lack of care being received by our cats. We know that the cats who are currently insured are certainly realizing better health and wellness. Pet health insurance provides the means to increase cat owner compliance with the recommendations of the veterinarian, including; healthy pet and wellness exams”.

Visit for complete details.

Loran Hickton
Executive Director
North American Pet Health Insurance Association

Telephone: 412-319-7730
Fax: 412-319-7731
Cellular Phone: 412-908-9766

The North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA) is a non-profit group that was founded in 2007 by six of the twelve major pet health insurance providers in the United States and Canada.

To Contact NAPHIA: Loran Hickton, Executive Director - or visit the website:



Research by the American Veterinary Medical Association shows that pets are truly members of the North American American family. About 60% of U.S. and Canada households have at least one dog, cat, bird, or other companion animal. Many have more than one. There are more than 74 million pet dogs in North America and nearly 85 million pet cats. Projected 2009 pet expenditures for North America are over $45 billion, of which $25 billion will be spent on veterinary medicine.


For additional information contact the North American Pet Health Insurance Association, call 1-412-319-7730 or visit

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