It used to be that only breeders and wealthy people bought pet insurance.  Today, pet insurance in the US is rapidly becoming a mainstream product due to the increasing cost of veterinary care.

Despite this fact, many pet owners still aren’t clear about how pet insurance can work for them.  Here are some answers you might be looking for:

  1. Which animals are eligible for pet insurance?
  2. You can insure almost any type of animal, including exotic species and those that are normally considered to be wild. As you might expect, the more uncommon the pet, the more expensive it is to insure him/her.

  3. Is pet insurance readily available in the marketplace?
  4. As more and more pet owners have discovered the real benefits to having pet insurance, there are now many companies offering a wide variety of policies.  Price battles have begun and deals are out there just waiting to be found. There are even several price comparison websites, just like conventional, human insurance.

  5. How old does my pet need to be?
  6. Much like human health insurance, younger pets are generally easier and less expensive to insure.   As your pet gets older, premium prices increase with age and conditions.

  7. Are there exclusions for any reason?
  8. Again, just like human health insurance, animals with pre-existing problems or species that are particularly accident-prone may be limited in coverage options or find it difficult to get pet insurance at all.

  9. How much does pet insurance cost?
  10. This is the big one and it varies a lot.  Depending on the location, breed, species, age and condition of your pet and the extent of coverage, you can expect to pay anywhere between $5 and $60 per month.

  11. Are people really purchasing pet insurance?
  12. Simply put, yes they are. These days, major pet insurers have issued several million policies each and are finding the competition growing every day.  This is good news for pet owners, who now have more choices and leveraging options.

  13. How does my pet’s insurance pay for veterinary care?
  14. Unlike human health insurance, you pay for your pet’s veterinary treatment first and then seek reimbursement from your insurance provider afterward.   Knowing your available monthly cash flow and exactly what your pet is covered for can help make this process easy.

  15. Do I actually need insurance for my pet?
  16. This is easy to figure out.  Add up the veterinary costs for your pet for the last several years and get an annual average.  Then add what you would pay for an accident or serious illness ($2,000 to $5,000.)  Compare that cost to a range of annual pet insurance premiums.  (Remember that pet insurance costs are spread out in smaller amounts over the year.)  You will likely find at least one policy that makes more financial sense than no policy at all.