The Pet Insurance Guide for 2021

Looking for pet insurance? The average pet insurance premium in the US is between $11 to $49 per month, depending on whether you have a cat or dog, and whether you need accident only or accident and illness coverage.1 Pet insurance is a financial tool to help cover the vet's bills in case your pet gets sick or injured.

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There are dozens of insurance companies that provide pet insurance and tens of options in the pet policy you can customize. Why do you need pet insurance? What is the cost of pet insurance? What are covered and not covered by pet insurance? We want to answer all the questions for you in this article.

Why do you need Pet Insurance?

Pet insurance can help you improve animal welfare because there might be large bills when taking care of your pets. In our blog, we summarized 12 reasons you need pet insurance. Your pets get sick too, and may have accidents. The bills for your pets can sometimes be unexpectedly high. The pet insurance is primarily to cover those expenses.

Lovely dog and cat

In addition, some great insurance coverage will also pay if your pet dies, lost, or stolen. You can even find coverage that covers the expenses if your pet injures someone else. Therefore, having a good pet insurance plan can help you find the best care possible when unexpected things happen.

💡Takeaway: Basic pet insurance covers your pets when they get sick or injured. Better (more expensive) policies can cover when your pet dies, lost or stolen.

What does pet insurance cover?

Many insurance companies provide pet insurance. The pet insurance coverage usually covers the costs related to medical advice, diagnosis, care, or treatment. Below is a list of common coverage. Because pet insurance coverage varies from company to company, you should always refer to your own policy to see your actual coverage.

  • Accidents
    It covers the injuries and emergencies related to accidents.
  • Illnesses
    It reimburse you for the costs of major or minor illnesses. However, pre-existing conditions are normally excluded.
  • Prescriptions
    When your pet gets sick, you may need prescription medications. If you opt-in the prescriptions coverage, your cost can be covered. Prescription coverage usually comes with limits.
  • Hereditary conditions
    This is usually an add-on as well. It covers the costs of inherited conditions and birth defects.
💡Watch out the add-ons
Because pet insurance is not as old as traditional insurance such as auto insurance. Coverage packages vary from companies to companies. Always pay more attention when you compare the packages.

What are the steps for purchasing a pet insurance policy?

So you’ve decided that pet insurance is a good investment and want to protect your pets. (Smart decision!) Now what?

  • Find out the pre-conditions of your pet
    The insurance companies will not likely to pay for treatment for conditions that already received medical treatments.
  • Understand the plan coverage and policies
    No two pets are alike. It's better to find a customized plan that fits your budget well. However, because pet insurance varies from companies to companies, it is a good idea to understand the key phrases and terms in your policy. Usually, insurance companies provide a basic coverage that only covers accident/illnesses and a few premium packages that have more add-ons.
  • Choose your deductible wisely.
    In the event that you need to make a claim, this is the amount that you will be required to pay out of pocket if your claim is approved. Higher deductibles mean lower premiums. However, be certain that you have chosen a deductible that best fits your particular financial situation. While a lower premium seems nice, that higher deductible can be a strain in the event of a loss.
💡Note: Read your policy carefully about the co-pay, limits, scope, exclusions, and waiting period.

How much is pet insurance?

The national average for pet insurance is from $11 to $49 per month. The premium is determined by factors such as your type of pet, the pet's health condition, and your coverage, etc., The below table shows the cost of pet insurance in 20201.

Accident & Illness Accident Only
DOG$594.15/year$218.13/year
CAT$341.81/year$133.61/year

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What are not covered by pet insurance?

Pet insurance does not cover all the risks. When you purchase your policy, it is always important to read your policy to understand the exclusions. Here is a list of common things you need to pay attention to.

  • Pre-existing conditions
  • Waiting or affiliation period
  • Treatment of a hereditary disorder
  • Costs for congenital anomaly or disorder

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References

Disclaimer
Our articles are intended for informational purposes and should not be considered legal or financial advice. Our articles are not written or reviewed by insurance agents. Consult your policies with your agent or a professional for details regarding terms, conditions, coverage, exclusions, products, services, and programs.

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