Pets are always kept as family members and pet owners put in a lot of efforts to ensure wellbeing of their pets. Like us, pets also take fall sick or meet with unfortunate accidents. In such cases consulting a vet and taking proper medical care could become expensive. The tendency of falling sick increases with age of the pet and so are the medical costs. Pet insurance brings in peace of mind to the pet owners by providing financial security so that he does not have to think twice before availing best medical care for his pet.
To some pet owners, pet insurance may look expensive but it is based upon the sensible financial decision made by the policy holder. Pet insurance reduces the burden of coming up with urgent vet expenses and costs if pet falls sick or stumbles upon an accident.
There are several types of pet insurance plans and their costs differ based on pet type, breed, location, age, and comprehensiveness of cover, to name a few factors. There are two major aspects varying the pet insurance costs
Basic Elements of a Pet Insurance Policy
On an average, pet owners can consider taking an insurance plan considering how much will be anticipated medical costs. There is further addition to this amount as average cost for a particular pet. Routine care can be discounted with co-pay and deductible. Most of the companies offer reimbursement plan where pet owners need to make the payment directly to the vet followed by the submission of a claim form to the insurance company. Claim should be submitted within one month after making the payment to the vet. Generally, all the payment modules follow a set format where premium amounts range between $15-$50. Co-pays are dependent upon the servicing cost averaging between 20% and 50%. Deductibles vary between $50 and $100 with sometimes, special high surges of $200. Sometimes, there are caps on servicing as well as routine care costs.
How do Pet Insurance Costs Vary?
There are variations in the pet insurance costs depending upon various parameters. These parameters are pet’s specie, age, breed and current health status. For example, monthly premium rate for dogs lies between $20 and $30 whereas for cats, it lies between $15 and $20. There can be further addition in the insurance costs depending upon the coverage aspects too. There are many insurance companies providing different insurance plans for pets. There can be changes in the coverage depending upon the monthly rate and deductible amount. Monthly premium and deductible are inversely proportional to each-other. There are greater benefits with higher monthly rates. Here is detailed information about various plans offered by different companies depending upon the type of coverage, specie and breed.
Plan Costs of Popular Pet Insurance Companies
Costs of plans launched by some popular pet insurance companies.
American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA)
ASPCA offers four types of pet insurance plans namely Accident Coverage, Illness Coverage, Wellness Coverage and Wellness plus Coverage.
- Accident Coverage Plan : In accident coverage plan, pet owners can avail maximum benefits of $2,500 per incident and $8,000 per year. These benefits can be attained at monthly premiums of $9.5 for dogs and $7.5 for cats respectively.
- Illness Coverage : In illness coverage plan, pet owners can avail maximum per incident and per year benefits of $1,500 and $8,000 respectively. These benefits can be availed at a monthly premium of $17.5 for dogs and $12.5 for cats.
- Wellness coverage : Wellness coverage can be attained at varying premium amounts as $33.5 for dogs and $25.5 for cats. There is maximum benefit of $3,500 per incident and $11,000 per year.
- Wellness plus Coverage : This coverage plan offers maximum benefits to the pet owners but there are increased premium rates. Premiums for dogs and cats are $59 and $51 respectively. With $100 deductible, pet owners can get up to 80% reimbursement on vet costs along with 10% multi-pet discount for all the four ASPCA pet insurance plans.
PetPlan USA offers three types of plans namely Bronze Plan, Silver Plan and Gold Plan.
- Bronze Plan : In this plan, pet owners have two options with varying premium amounts. By paying monthly premium of $15.85, pet owners can have maximum benefit of $8,000 at fixed deductible of $200. There is 80% reimbursement against the vet fees. Another option can be represented by the premium amount of $33.18 where pet owners have similar maximum benefits but deductible is reduced to $50. Moreover, there is 100% reimbursement against all the vet fees.
- Silver Plan : There are two monthly premiums under this plan with varying deductible and rate of reimbursement. For monthly premium amount of $17.5, pet owners can have maximum benefit of $12,000 with $200 deductible and 80% reimbursement of the total vet fees. Another option of pet insurance can be availed by paying monthly premium of $36.92 and reduced $50 deductible. There is 100% reimbursement against the vet fees with similar maximum benefits up to $12,000.
- Gold Plan :Like other two plans, there are two options in Gold Plan. In first option, pet owners need to pay $19.32 as monthly premium and $200 deductible for maximum benefits up to $20,000. There is 80% reimbursement against the vet fees. In the other option, pet owners need to pay monthly premium of $40.97 and $50 deductible for 100% reimbursement as well as maximum benefits up to $20,000. There are additional benefits in both the options and these benefits include:
- Boarding fee up to $50
- Lost pet recovery cost up to $1000
- Lost pet advertisement reimbursement up to $500
- Vacation cancellation recovery up to $500
Embrace Pet Insurance
Pet owners can avail 75%-80% reimbursement by paying monthly premium of $25.86 and varying deductible of $100, $200 or $500 depending upon the plan. There is maximum benefit of $10,000 along with dental illness additional coverage and continuing care coverage.
Pets Best Insurance
At monthly premium of $37.22 and $75 deductible, pet owners can have maximum benefit of $7,000 along with 80% reimbursement. There is additional benefit as best wellness option at monthly premium of $17.
Veterinary Pet Insurance
VPI’s Superior Plan is quite popular with maximum benefits up to $14, 000 and additional benefits in terms of coverage against anesthesia, diagnosis and chemotherapy. For this, pet owners need to maintain monthly premium of $27 along with $50 deductible. Pet owners can get 90% reimbursement over the vet fees.
Pet owners can assess the variations in insurance costs depending upon the reference of basic parameters. All the pet insurance plans are different in terms of coverage and costs.
Most insurance firms keep tweaking their plans and premiums and thus as a pet owner you should verify the actual cost at the company's website before making the final decision. (these costs are subject to change).
The cost of pet insurance depends upon lot of factors. While it may seem a bit expensive at start, but it ensures your pet gets best medical care without creating a hole in your pocket. It is highly recommended irrespective of your pet type (cat, dog, fish, pig, horse, rabbit, etc.) you take pet insurance because of the advantages it offers.