At some point, every pet owner asks themselves: “is pet insurance worth it?” Pet health insurance can help pay for enormous vet bills due to illnesses or accidents. Some pet insurance plans also cover routine wellness checkups. But the cost of pet insurance premiums and deductibles can quickly mount.
The question if pet health insurance is worth it is even trickier if you’re in school. Paying insurance premiums for your furry friend may seem like an extra expense you could do without. After all, you’ve got tuition and fees to pay for, as well as day-to-day living costs and other essentials.
So, paying between $30 and $50 a month for decent pet health coverage may seem expensive. That is, of course, until you get an unexpected veterinary bill for hundreds of dollars to fix Fido’s broken leg.
Pet owners who are at college have many reasons to consider pet health insurance. Pet insurance can help budget your finances and save you money in the long run. Even if you’re strapped for cash, getting insurance to cover pet health expenses can be a wise move.
This article looks at the pros and cons of taking out a pet health insurance plan if you’re at school.
How Much is Pet Health Insurance?
The cost of pet health insurance depends on a few variables. Insurers take into account the type of animal, its age, breed, and where you live. Also, the amount you are willing to pay in deductibles can affect the cost of monthly premiums.
The average monthly premium for dog accident coverage is $16.17, and for cats, it’s $10.51. According to the North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA), the premiums increase to $48.17 for dogs and $29.16 for cats to cover accidents and illness. Wellness coverage that includes vaccinations and booster shots is even more expensive.
Please click here to find some of the best pet health insurance plans available in your area. You will learn about affordable plans to protect your pet’s health if they get ill or are in an accident.
Before getting health insurance for your furry friend, it’s good to remember that insurance plans rarely cover pre-existing conditions.
Is Pet Health Insurance Worth It?
The most significant benefit of taking out pet health insurance is peace of mind. You can’t predict if your four-legged friend will get sick or will need surgery. And you don’t want to be in a situation where you must decide between your pet’s health or your bank account.
Let’s look at the pros and cons of pet insurance.
The pros of pet health insurance
- Curb the cost of veterinary bills — Insuring your pet’s health means that it’s easier to afford treatment and surgery. Depending on the procedure, pet insurance could save you thousands of dollars. Most premiums reimburse up to 90 percent of the medical care cost.
- Control your budget — With a monthly premium, you can protect your limited budget while you’re paying for school. You know exactly what your outgoings are and don’t have to worry about massive, unexpected vet bills. Some basic pet insurance premiums can be as low as $10 a month.
- Customize your coverage — You can make pet insurance more affordable by customizing your plan. If you’re on a tight budget, you could pay a higher deductible to reduce your monthly premium.
- Choose your veterinary clinic — Unlike human health insurance, you don’t have to choose from in-network vets. You can visit any clinic for treatment, pay the bills, and then claim the costs from your insurance provider.
- Protect your pet’s wellbeing — Because pet insurance allows you to afford most treatments, you care for your pet’s overall wellbeing. If anything major health treatment is necessary, you are safe knowing that you can afford your pet’s health care.
The cons of pet health insurance
- It doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions — It’s impossible to get coverage to pay for treatment if your furry companion has a pre-existing condition. So, while you can still insure your pet, you won’t get reimbursement for treatment related to the disease. This is one reason why it makes sense to insure your pet’s health while they’re still young.
- It doesn’t cover all related medical costs — With accident and illness pet health cover, you still need to pay regular veterinary bills. These costs can include checkups, dental work, vaccines, and routine blood work.
- Pay costs upfront — With pet insurance, you have to pay the veterinary bills first, then send them to your provider for reimbursement. So, you still need to have the money to pay for treatment. Some pet parents also find that their insurance provider didn’t pay out as much as they expected.
As with all insurance, it’s wise to shop around to find coverage that fits your needs and budget. Also, keeping your pet healthy, going for regular checkups, and preventative care can significantly reduce veterinary bills.
When Pet Insurance is Worth It
The best way to decide if pet health insurance is worth the cost is to think about how you would pay an unexpected bill. Of course, you may go for a few years and not make any claim on your insurance. However, that is true of all types of insurance. But what if the worst happens?
Here are a few scenarios to see if insurance for your furry friend’s health is necessary.
Depending on your pet, routine veterinary care — checkups, vaccinations, parasite control — can cost between $100 and $400 per year. The average Wellness policy costs around $300 annually. So, if you’re on a tight budget, taking out pet insurance for wellness generally isn’t worth it.
However, it’s the risk of illness or accident that can make pet insurance worth the cost. For example, treatment for conditions such as digestive issues, diabetes, cancer, infections, and broken bones can cost between $2,000 and $15,000.
The average annual premium for accident and illness for dogs is around $550 and for cats $350. You can also cut the cost of premiums by around half by opting for accident-only coverage.
What happens if your dog or cat suddenly become poorly? The checkup reveals that your pet has ingested something poisonous and requires treatment. Or your four-legged friend breaks a bone and requires surgery? In those cases, the cost of pet health insurance suddenly becomes worth it. You can quickly agree to the treatment plan, knowing that you can afford it because you have pet insurance