Pet Wellness Guides > Cat Cataract Surgery Cost for 2024 - Pet Insurance Review

Cat Cataract Surgery Cost for 2024

Posted: 02/20/2024 | BY: Jenna Bruce | Categories: Cat , Health problems , Top Tips

Cat eyes are some of the most beautiful, wondrous things to gaze upon. Not only are cat eyes uniquely pretty, but they also happen to be powerful, allowing cats to see very well in the dark. But, like human eyes, cat eyes can also develop cataracts, which can impede vision and, in some cases, cause total blindness. When this happens, surgery is the only treatment option. And that’s why many pet parents wonder about cat cataract surgery cost.

In this blog post, we’ll get up close to cat eyes to discover how they work, signs a cataract has developed, and the cost of surgery.

cat cataract surgery cost

What are Cat Cataracts?

Inside the cat eye is a small, translucent structure that adjusts its shape in order to focus incoming light onto the retina. The retina is a light-sensitive tissue that lines the interior surface of the cat’s eyeball. As light impulses are received by the retina via the lens, those impulses are instantly transmitted to the brain as visual information via the optic nerve that is attached to the back of the eyeball.

Sight then really begins with that lens letting in the light. A cataract is a condition where the lens becomes cloudy and sometimes totally opaque, so that light is not allowed to fully pass, or pass at all, through to the retina. This results in some or total vision loss to the cat.

Sven Volkens, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Why Do Cat Cataracts Develop?

Some cats develop cataracts as a result of their inability to properly metabolize proteins and other chemicals in the body. In some instances, cataracts are a byproduct of conditions such as hypertension or diabetes.

Some cats develop cataracts as a result of a traumatic eye injury, exposure to certain drugs or toxic substances, or even electric shock. Most commonly, though, cataracts are simply a natural consequence of aging. 

Signs of Cat Cataracts

The most obvious signs of cataracts will be behavioral. Since the cat’s vision will be slightly or majorly impaired, you’ll most likely notice them becoming less agile and playful. You may even see them bump into furniture, avoid jumping up on things or walking up or down stairs, and even having trouble finding the food bowl and litter box. 

It’s important to mention that cats are stoic, meaning they usually don’t show any signs of pain or health trouble, so some behavioral signs may just be too subtle for you to notice. So it’s important to really check your cat’s eyes as he or she ages. Look for any cloudiness that may be developing. If you see anything at all that seems out of the ordinary, make an appointment with your vet. 

How are Cat Cataracts Treated?

Like many health conditions, the sooner cataracts are detected and treated, the better the outcomes. Early treatment usually includes medications that can prevent or greatly delay cataract-related blindness. 

Oftentimes treating the underlying health condition, such as diabetes or high blood pressure, will slow the progression of cataract development.

In severe cases or those where the condition has been allowed to progress and the cataract is completely clouding the lens, surgery is usually recommended. During this procedure, the surgeon will make small incisions and use a special high-frequency instrument to disintegrate and remove an affected lens. Afterward, an artificial lens is inserted. The entire procedure takes about an hour and has a very high success rate.

How Much is Cataract Surgery for Cats?

Cat cataract surgery cost will depend entirely on the severity of the condition and whether it is affecting one or both eyes, as well as the overall health of the cat. According to CareCredit, cat parents can expect to pay between $2,700 and $4,000. This cost includes the initial exam, surgery, anesthesia, operating room use, hospitalization and medications. 

Does Pet Insurance Cover Cataract Surgery?

The answer to that question is yes, pet insurance can reimburse you for a portion of the bill. Depending on the policy that you choose, you could be reimbursed for up to 100% of the bill.

The caveat is, no insurance provider will cover pre-existing conditions. Which is why it is so important to sign your cat up when they are still young and healthy. This is particularly important for any breed that may be genetically predisposed to developing cataracts later in life. 

Final Thoughts

Cat cataracts can develop for a variety of reasons. While treatments can vary, surgery is usually required for more severe cases where vision has been mostly or completely compromised. Cat cataract surgery cost is generally between $2500 and $4000. It may be covered by a pet insurance policy, provided the cataracts are not considered pre-existing conditions.

If you’re interested in pet insurance for your cat, here are the top pet insurance providers – in order – based on over 150,000 authentic reviews from pet parents just like you:

 

Top Pet Insurance Providers of 2024

RatingProviderTotal Review
4.9Embrace10,254
4.9Healthy Paws7,453
4.9Fetch171
4.9Lemonade766
4.8Trupanion55,007
4.8Nationwide21,391
4.7ASPCA5,687
4.7Hartville164
4.7MetLife398
4.7PetPartners98
4.7Spot159
4.5Pets Best7,180
4.4AKC889
4.4Figo586
4.3Pet Assure12
4.3Pumpkin54
3.4ManyPets10

 

References:

  1. https://www.vet.cornell.edu/departments-centers-and-institutes/cornell-feline-health-center/health-information/feline-health-topics/feline-cataracts
  2. https://www.carecredit.com/well-u/pet-care/cat-and-dog-cataract-surgery-cost-and-financing/

 

Disclaimer

The information contained on this blog is intended for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. It is not a substitute for professional veterinary care. Always consult with your veterinarian before making any changes to your pet's health care or treatment plan.

The authors of this blog are not veterinarians and do not claim to be experts in pet health. The information provided here is based on our own experiences and research, as well as information from reputable sources. However, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or completeness of this information.

We encourage you to do your own research and consult with your veterinarian before making any decisions about your pet's health.

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