Mark Harrop Business Development Manager

Sep 09

Unluckiest pet names study highlights opportunity for pet industry

Exactly how lucky is the pet named Lucky? Well now we know, sort of. Aquarium Software, believe that a bizarre study, which found that Megan is the unluckiest name for a dog has shined the light on an opportunity for the pet insurance industry to tighten up the way it works. The Saga Insurance survey used information from vets, consumers and insurers to unearth the results, however Mark Colonnese, Sales and Marketing Director, believes that it’s time the industry used this kind of information as a way to better educate owners, vets, and ultimately lower pet insurance premiums for most customers.

“The study will raise a few eyebrows that Megan is the ‘unluckiest’ dog name. However there may now be a lot of dogs called Megan perhaps unnecessarily being kept on a tighter leash following the findings. I don’t think this survey will affect their insurance premiums in the short-term, but there’s a serious side to such data harvesting,” said Colonnese. “Putting the joking aside, these surveys show that some form of comprehensive pet records already exist, but it’s up to insurers to communicate what data they are gathering, and why, and gather more intelligent data that will help drive premiums down for the average cat and dog owner. That in turn will make pet insurance a more palatable proposition for consumers, as it is undoubtedly viewed by some at the moment as overpriced,” he says.

The study found that dogs called Megan were three times as likely to end up on the vet’s table compared to the ‘average’ dog. Felix was the riskiest name for a cat, with poor Felix twice as likely to have received treatment, when compared with the average feline. Aquarium Software have long believed that a central pet and vet database, not dissimilar from the information used in this survey, would make the whole industry both more efficient and more affordable, whilst at the same time allowing greater ability to track fraudsters who play a significant part in pushing up prices. One potential pitfall in effecting the database of all pet databases is finding a solution which can gather, integrate and update so much information from so many disparate sources; but Aquarium believes it has the answer.

“This is exactly the kind of data challenge Aquarium was created for,” said Colonnese. “We’ve been providing technology integration solutions for the car and home market for years, but now we’re turning our attention to improving the efficiency of the pet market,” he explained.

“Car insurance claims technology allows claims to be processed using vehicle registration, tax and driving licence information as well as information from other insurers; the home insurance market is similar. Our vision is one of bringing a similar philosophy to the pet market, using the records each individual vet and insurer, storing them on a centralised, all-encompassing database, which is then updated with every visit to the vet and with every claim made. This way, every time an insurance company processes a claim or a policy application, cloud software solutions access all the relevant information in seconds, allowing applications and claims to be validated and processed quicker, and allowing for more accurate, fairly priced premiums.”