How Much Does Pet Insurance Cost?
Your pet is a part of the family so you want to be able to provide them with the same quality of care you do other family members. But are you financially prepared to care for your fur baby should they become seriously ill or injured? Pet insurance is a great way to control unforeseen vet expenses that can completely wipe out your emergency savings. A variety of plans can help cover costs associated with accidents and disease to wellness exams and even dental care.
But how much does pet insurance cost and is it really worth it? That’s what we’ll explore in this blog post so let’s dive in!
How Much is Pet Insurance?
Looking at a sampling of providers our customers use and rank, a typical pet insurance policy can range between about $10 and $80. This range is dependent on the pet’s species, breed, age, if they have any pre-existing conditions and where you live.
Costs will also depend on the level of coverage you choose. Generally speaking, there are three tiers of insurance coverage:
This coverage will take care of basic costs associated with accidental injuries and illnesses (excluding cancer).
This coverage will give you even more financial protection. Plans help cover the costs of office visits, diagnostic tests, X-rays, lab fees and even prescription medications.
Unlike human insurance plans, pet insurance does not automatically cover preventative care. That’s why many pet parents choose to buy a wellness plan to help cover the cost of things like check-ups and vaccinations.
Of course, like human insurance, cost is also dependent on things like premiums, deductibles, co-pays and caps. When pet parents think about cost, they typically focus on pet insurance premiums. But generally the lower the monthly premium, the higher your deductible will be, but the lower your caps will be. You might think you have an “affordable” plan, but your out-of-pocket costs will be higher should an emergency occur.
When thinking about whether you can afford pet insurance and what plan to purchase, it’s important to do a side-by-side comparison of providers so you fully understand how their deductibles, caps and reimbursement works.
It’s also highly recommended that you involve your veterinarian. He or she can help you understand what kinds of chronic illness your fur baby may be at risk for developing in the future. And depending on your pet’s age and general lifestyle, your vet can also help you determine whether a basic plan makes the most sense or if spending a bit more for a comprehensive plan and wellness package is the better option.
Other Factors That Affect Price
When trying to answer, “How much does pet insurance cost?”, we’ve also got to talk about the age of your pet, the breed and species. Typically, it is going to cost you more to insure an older cat than a new kitten. Dogs will cost more per month to insure than cats, and certain breeds of dog cost more than others.
When looking at one of the top providers ranked by our customers, Lemonade offers the most affordable monthly premiums for both dogs and cats. A sample monthly premium for cat insurance is $11 while a sample monthly premium for a dog is $19.
When it comes to breed, usually the larger the breed, the higher the cost of the plan. Larger breed dogs tend to have more hereditary conditions (hip dysplasia, cruciate ligament injuries) than smaller breeds. So for instance, a Mastiff may cost $70 a month to cover while a Chihuahua may only cost $30. Mixed-breed pets are less prone to genetic conditions and so often cost less to insure than purebred pets.
There are a lot of different things to take into consideration when it comes to the cost of pet insurance coverage and which one is right for your family. At the end of the day, the biggest question to ask yourself is, “How much would I have to pay in vet bills over the course of my fur baby’s life if I choose to pay all of these costs out of pocket?”
It is also worth remembering that pet insurance not only protects your family member and your finances, it also helps you make tough decisions during incredibly emotional times. With pet insurance, you will never find yourself in a situation where you have to say goodbye to a loved one because you can’t afford to pay thousands of dollars to save their life.
Tips for Saving Money on Pet Insurance Costs
Anytime you make a big purchase, you most likely look for ways to save money. Why should pet insurance be any different?
Here are some ways you and your family can save with most pet insurance companies:
Ask About Discounts
Many pet insurance providers will offer discounts for things like signing up multiple pets, military discounts and even bundling your pet insurance with your homeowner’s insurance.
Sign Up Early
This tip can’t be stressed enough. Many people think they should wait until their pet gets older and things start “going wrong” to sign them up. In reality, you should sign your pet up when they are young as younger pets have much lower vet bills and so therefor lower premiums. Getting a plan early will help keep your costs down later.
A good pet insurance company will allow you to customize a plan to fit your specific needs and budget. If a low monthly premium is a must, look for plans that have higher deductibles or lower reimbursement percentages. This means instead of choosing a plan that will reimburse 90% of your vet bill, you can choose one that will reimburse 70% to keep your monthly premium lower.
It’s best to take an honest look at your finances to see what you can realistically and comfortably afford. If you can afford a higher monthly premium that offers a lower deductible, higher reimbursement percentage and no annual cap, you’ll be happier and better covered should your fur baby become sick or injured.
Is Pet Insurance Worth It?
Pet insurance is definitely worth it as it will help you to take the very best care of your loved one while protecting your savings at the same time. And it will give you peace of mind, knowing you will never have to make a horrible decision in the future. That’s priceless.
If you are interested in getting a pet insurance plan for your loved one, you can use our website to begin your research process. Read reviews from our customers for some of the top providers in the market. Search for pet insurance providers by state, and do a side-by-side comparison.