People don’t like risks. This is the main reason why people invest in all sorts of insurance types to make sure that they are covered in the eventuality of an unfortunate event. Most individuals choose to invest their money in medical coverage for themselves. This became the norm in the past few years. People also choose to insure the health of their loved ones through complex health insurance policies. But what happens when pets need to be insured? Are there any options to keep them protected? Unlike people, pets don’t have the capability to reason and judge the decisions they make. Simply eating something toxic can be fatal if a vet doesn’t intervene on time. This is where pet insurance makes its presence felt.

A pet’s emergency treatment can cost up to £2,000, and most owners don’t possess the financial resources to cover such amount out of nowhere. Pet insurance can cover most of these costs, depending on what insurer one selects. This article will cover the details that could help anyone choose the appropriate insurance policy for their beloved companions. Here’s what you should know:

How many people invest in pet insurance?

The first question that may pop in people’s heads is how many people actually invest in pet insurance? The pet insurance market is bigger than people believe. Pet insurance comes in a variety of forms: lifetime, non-lifetime, accident-only and more. In the UK, more than 45% of households own a pet, and at least half said that they would invest or that they already invested in pet insurance. Several studies have shown that no less than 4 million individuals in the UK have an active pet insurance policy. The average cost of an insurance premium can be determined by taking into account the type of pet insured (breed, age, condition etc.).

girl sitting with dog on mountain

The amount that people pay for insurance claims each and every day in the UK reaches 2 million GBP. Another reason behind people investing in pet insurance would be that more and more companies started to emerge on the pet insurance market, thus increasing consumer interest and becoming notable. The numbers are expected to grow during the next couple of years. Pet insurance is now included on the list of preferred optional employee benefits in many parts of the world. This might also contribute to the increasing number of persons who choose pet insurance.

Some details about plans

Just like health insurance, pet insurance policies come in all sorts of types. The owner is the one who selects the payments and premiums that he would like to pay for his pet. What is different from regular health insurance companies is that the policies usually don’t cover the bills directly. Instead, the owner has to pay for the bills himself and then wait for a reimbursement.

Some pet insurance companies changed this tradition and they have contracts with certain vets, so they can pay the bills on the day of the event. This is why it is highly important to compare various pet insurance plans and choose the one that offers the best services. Of course, the cost of coverage can be less affordable in some cases.

If the insured pet is purebred or older, the insurance plan will cost more. In such situations, opting for emergency-only insurance plans might be the best option. It all depends on the insurance company and the coverage options they make available. It is paramount to understand how the reimbursements are calculated. Some companies prefer calculating the reimbursement based on the average costs of vet services in the respective area.

Other companies will pay a flat percentage of the costs, discussed when the pet insurance plan is selected for the first time. Certain insurers give pet owners the chance to pick the exact amount of money that they want to be covered for one year. There are several insurers that have no annual limit at all. All owners should pay careful attention to the conditions stated in the initial insurance contract. Insurers usually set limitations for breed-specific conditions that cost too much to insure.

What does pet insurance cover?

Depending on what pet insurance plan is selected, the covered costs may differ from one situation to another. Most pet insurers cover costs related to unfortunate accidents and illnesses. In some cases, wellness costs are covered as well (annual exams, treatments, vaccinations). Again, the policy costs will go up depending on how many costs are covered. Not all insurers accept all types of pets. Some are dedicated to dogs or cats only, while others have a wider range of insurance plans for different animals.

beautiful cat sitting in the lawn

If the premium is lower and the pet is not likely to develop illnesses in the future, an emergency-only insurance plan is definitely worth it.  If the premium is higher, but the pet suffers from an advanced illness that would cost a fortune to treat without insurance, a lifetime plan would be recommended.

For instance, if a pet requires treatments worth £3000 annually and the insurer reimburses most of the amount, opting for insurance will lead to saving a considerable amount of money in the long run. The situation differs from one pet insurer to another, and thorough market research must be done beforehand.

Does my pet need insurance in the first place?

The average pet insurance claim has an annual cost of £400-£700. The costs are balanced based on the options selected and the condition of the pet. Insurance is particularly needed for pedigree dogs and cats that are highly susceptible to illnesses, diseases, hereditary conditions and so on. Moreover, such pets are at a higher risk of being stolen. Because of the breed’s vulnerability to disease, insurance plans are the better option.

For pets that are not susceptible to developing health issues and that live in good conditions, insurance might be less paramount. Even though emergency situations cannot be foreseen, and insurance plans are the only method to get reimbursement and avoid spending a small fortune on medical care costs. The decision is up to the pet’s owner.