Pet insurance vs. pet wellness plans

Pet insurance and wellness plans can both make looking after your pet’s health more affordable.

However, both offer very different benefits when it comes to veterinary care, so it’s important to be aware of what your pet is covered for and what is not covered by each type of plan, so you aren’t left out of pocket when you pay a visit to your veterinarian or facing very difficult decisions based on the cost of care.

Wellness plans and pet insurance policies both offer valuable benefits, but they are very different. Some pet owners opt for one or the other, while others subscribe to both type of plan to ensure their pet has complete protection. Ensuring you’re up to speed with exactly how wellness plans and pet insurance policies can benefit you and your pet will help make your decision on what to buy much easier.

 

What do pet insurance and wellness plans typically cover? 

The types of veterinary care covered by pet insurance and wellness plans will vary depending on your provider and level of cover. However, the treatments, procedures and conditions that are typically covered by pet insurance policies and wellness plans are the following:

Wellness plans typical coverage

  • Microchipping 

  • Parasite prevention 

  • Vaccinations 

  • Spaying/Neutering 

  • Dental care 

  • Deworming 

  • Wellness exams 

  • Routine screenings 

  • Behavior training 

  • Grooming 

Pet insurance typical coverage

  • Accidents 

  • Illnesses 

  • Emergency care 

  • Hereditary and congenital conditions 

  • Orthopedic conditions 

  • Prescription medications 

 

The benefits of pet wellness plans 

Wellness plans can help you spread the cost of your pet’s routine veterinary care and, unlike pet insurance, you’ll only pay for the treatments and services you use. Plans cover routine care such as  microchipping, vaccinations and dental care, and help you spread the cost of improving and maintaining the standard of your pet’s overall health throughout their lifetime.  

By paying a small monthly amount you can spread the cost of routine care and keep on top of your pet’s health. This means you can adopt a more proactive approach to veterinary care, and wellness plans can help you spot the early signs of any conditions or diseases before they escalate into a more serious, and potentially very expensive, health problem. However, they are not pet insurance and will not cover treatment for illnesses or emergency treatment needed after accidents. For those situations you may need pet insurance cover.   

 

The benefits of pet insurance  

While we all want to do what’s best for our pet to ensure they’re in the best possible health, there is always a risk of them becoming injured in an accident, eating something they shouldn’t or requiring ongoing treatment for a serious condition such as cancer or diabetes. Emergency treatment or treating an illness can quickly become very expensive and pet insurance means you will have financial help meeting the bills for conditions and accidents that are covered by your pet insurance policy. 

If your pet does require emergency veterinary care, the last thing you want to worry about is whether you can afford the vet bills. With pet insurance, you can rest assured than any hefty veterinary bills will be taken care of and you won’t be left out of pocket. 

No-one wants to have to make the heart-breaking decision on what treatment to buy for your pet based on the cost and what you can afford, rather than what is best for your faithful friend. Pet insurance gives you peace of mind that you will be able to afford the best possible care for your best friend if the worse should happen.

 

How do I know which cover is right for me and my pet? 

Whether you opt for a wellness plan or a pet insurance policy, or both, is entirely down to you. Some pet owners prefer to spread the cost of their everyday veterinary care through a wellness plan and put money aside to pay for a more serious health problem if and when it happens, while others enjoy the peace of mind that comes with knowing their pet’s emergency treatment is covered under a pet insurance policy. 

Many pet owners make the mistake of believing their wellness plan will cover their pet’s veterinary care after an accident, or will help them spread the cost of treatment for an ongoing health condition. As a result, they are left facing a difficult decision based on affordability, not the best interests of their pet. When you make choices about how best to cover the cost of your pet’s veterinary care, always ensure you’re aware of exactly what’s covered, and what is not covered, so you can rest assured your pet’s health is taken care of, no matter what happens.