Pet insurance is critical for cat parents who love bringing them along on adventures! Granted, most adventures go along flawlessly, especially if your cat is an experienced traveler and trained well.
However, sometimes, our little furry friends are in the wrong place at the wrong time, or they get a little too curious; and, well, we've heard the saying about what curiosity can kill! Never do we want to think about that!
Having an insurance plan for our pets can bring a strong peace of mind that if they eat something wrong or step on something a little too rough on their paws, they can have quality vet care that won't completely break the bank for you and ruin your vacation.
Like any insurance plan, the fine print can be a lot to take in, and it can seem overwhelming figuring out how to choose the right plan for your loveable fur baby amidst the large quantity of cat insurance plans available.
Outdoor Bengal is here to put your mind at ease. We've put together crucial elements of what you need to know regarding insurance for your fur babies, helping you understand what you're getting into with insurance for your pet.
Do You Need Insurance For A Pet?
Is pet insurance required to own a pet? No, it is not.
Is insurance for your pet worth looking into? Absolutely.
Like human health care, costs for accidents or illnesses can skyrocket quickly. Since most breeds of dogs and cats have their common hereditary problems, sometimes you are guaranteed to be paying high vet costs, especially as they age.
As our Bengal Cat 101 post brought out, "Bengals are also prone to specific illnesses like hip dysplasia, Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy, Progressive Retinal Atrophy, Patellar Luxation, Distal Neuropathy, and Flat-Chested Kitten Syndrome, which may also shorten their lifespan."
With this being said, any of these conditions can lead to necessary blood work, diagnostic tests, medicine, surgery, or higher rates of veterinary care and visits, combined costing you a pretty penny.
Factoring this in, an insurance plan for your pet will often be a wiser financial move than waiting and coming up with hundreds to thousands of dollars when problems arise.
What Is The Average Cost Of Pet Insurance Per Month?
Generally speaking, the average cost of pet insurance is $30-$50 per month for cats. Depending on multiple factors, you could pay as low as $15 but as high as $90-$100 monthly. The cost of cat insurance varies depending on the company you go with, the coverage you choose, the age and health of your cat, and the location in which you live.
That being said, your pet's insurance costs can go up each year.
After discussing this with a Pumpkin insurance senior care advocate, we learned that their insurance coverage costs tend to go up 4-25% each year the pet gets older. Other insurance companies can increase by 10-15%, like Nationwide, which has a higher "low" percentage, but a lower "high" percentage annual increase.
Pumpkin explained that rates may or may not increase after 3 years old and up till 16 years of age. They explained, "Rates and age factors are filed and approved by your state's department of insurance." Essentially, this shows that rates are affected by changes in the cost of care where you live. Rates are also affected by advancements in pet care. However, for them, the breed of a cat or dog does not play a factor in the monthly premium price.
Each insurance company generally increases its rates yearly because of rising inflation prices, the pet's age, or conditions. So always be sure to ask about these rising rates before committing to a company, ensuring that future costs will stay within your budget too.
Is It Worth Getting Pet Insurance For A Kitten?
Yes, it is worth getting pet insurance for a kitten. The first reason is that it gives you financial protection in the event of an unforeseen accident or illness. Veterinary bills can be very expensive, and having an insurance policy can help relieve some of the financial burdens.
Another reason to get insurance for your kitten is that it can give you peace of mind. Knowing that you have coverage in place if something happens to your furry friend can help you enjoy quality time with your kitten, knowing that you are prepared for anything.
Just because a kitten is young doesn't mean they are any less accident prone or that they couldn't have some hereditary disease that comes out with birth or very early on in their life. Any long-term ailments that start at birth can be extremely costly, and if that happens, you'll be thankful you have an insurance plan for your kitty.
Additionally, kittens are quite prone to injuries! Their bones are softer in their early months, making them more susceptible to injuries from mishandling or kitty clumsiness. They are also learning everything for the first time, which tends to get them in some complicated predicaments.
Is Spaying Covered By Pet Insurance?
Most pet insurance plans specifically omit coverage for spaying or neutering. This is primarily because these procedures are elective and hinge on the discretion and decision of the pet parent.
Unlike emergency surgeries or essential vaccinations that directly contribute to the immediate health and wellbeing of the pet, spaying and neutering are often viewed by insurance providers as choices rather than necessities.
Hence, when you sift through pet insurance policies, it's common to find this procedure left off the covered list, emphasizing its distinction from crucial or preventative healthcare measures.
Can You Include Spaying and Neutering in Your Plan?
Some insurance plans for pets offer supplementary programs you can pay for that sometimes cover spaying and neutering. This would be an added plan on top of your regular monthly insurance premium.
For example, Embrace offers a Pet Wellness Plan that covers certain items not included in the regular insurance plan. These reimbursable items include wellness exam fees, flea/tick/heartworm prevention, nutritional supplements, etc.
As a comparison, microchipping is covered under Embrace's supplemental Wellness Plan; however, microchipping is covered with no additional cost under the regular Pumpkin Insurance plan.
Every pet plan has pros and cons, and so do supplemental pet plans.
Is It Worth Getting Insurance For An Indoor Cat?
Granted, outdoor cats have more of a chance for accidents involving motor vehicles and other animals than indoor cats. However, indoor cats have plenty of opportunities to get injured as well (i.e., eating certain human foods left out that can make them sick and whatnot).
But, when determining to get insurance for your cat, it depends on your budget and your cat's needs. Some factors to consider are whether your cat is predisposed to certain medical conditions, how often you take her to the vet, and what kind of coverage you're looking for.
For example, if you have a healthy indoor cat up-to-date on her vaccinations, you might not need anything more than basic coverage.
On the other hand, a comprehensive insurance policy might be worth the investment if your cat has a history of medical problems or requires frequent vet visits. Ultimately, it's up to you to decide what level of protection is best for both you and your indoor furry friend.
Is Pet Insurance Worth It For Older Cats?
It's no surprise that pet insurance premiums will be at their highest as a cat age, but the price shouldn't discourage you from investing in insurance for them. Due to their higher chances of getting injured and developing sicknesses and severe health concerns, quality insurance for your older cat can be worth it!
Generally, as cats get older, they experience more serious illnesses, which often cost the most. Surgeries, expensive medications, series of vet visits, and others add up quickly. An insurance plan with high reimbursement rates can relieve you of an increased financial burden when caring for your senior cat.
Pet Insurance Companies
When looking for insurance for your cat or pet, read the fine print closely and understand what is and isn't covered by the policy.
Also, don't be intimidated to ask lots of questions about how claims are processed to know what to expect if something happens to your kitten or cat. Always compare prices between different companies before making a decision.
Most pet insurances have different amounts of deductibles and reimbursement rates.
Pumpkin insurance has 90% reimbursement rates straight across the board with 3 deductible options. Healthy Paws covers up to 90%, but their "plan has no maximum limits on payouts; no per incident, annual or lifetime caps." Embrace insurance offers you the same type of coverage options for your pet up to 15 years old!
When you first heard of insurance for your pet, you might have quickly dismissed it if you have never experienced a vet bill. However, one accident, illness, or condition on your little furry friend can drastically take a chunk out of your pocket.
After examining different insurance plans available for pets, many companies offer a wide variety of coverage to suit your needs and your budgets! From different amounts of reimbursement and deductibles to various coverages, there is bound to be an ideal plan for your kitten, cat, or senior cat!
I wouldn't go without cat insurance for my Mia, and she and I will always vouch that pet insurance is worth it!
Stay Wild, Stay Safe, See You Outdoors!
Albert & Mia