Cats may have the legendary 'nine lives', but they still suffer from illness, accidents and disease, just like dogs. When your pet falls ill, it can be a financial blow as well as an emotional one. The average cost of treatment for a cat involved in a road traffic accident is over £400, while for a dog it can be well over £700. For animals suffering from longer term illnesses like diabetes and heart conditions, the fees can run into thousands of pounds. It is at this point that many pet owners wish that they had taken out pet insurance much earlier!
Even a small accident such as a catfight or a sprain can cost, as animals are particularly vulnerable to infection. For as little as £5 a month for cats and around £8 a month for dogs, the cost of vets bills and treatments far outweighs the small amount that a pet insurance policy will cost. But as well as injuries and illness, your pet insurance policy could also cover you for other unforeseen problems as well. Some policies for dogs have additional cover for third party liability. This would insure you against a claim made by another person for any damage your dog might do to their property.
Types of pet insurance.
There are two main types of pet insurance. The first is an annual policy, which usually pay for up to 12 months following a diagnosis of an individual condition. So if your pet is diagnosed with diabetes, for example, an annual policy could help towards costs associated with the treatment of this condition for the first 12 months. However, ongoing treatment may be excluded, so you will need to read the details of your policy carefully before taking it out. The other form of policy is a lifelong or single pot policy. These policies do not have the time limit of an annual policy and allow treatment costs to be claimed cumulatively. They are often subject to a single fixed excess at the start of the treatment, but the policy benefit is high enough to be claimed for the remainder of the pet's life.
You can also find pet insurance policies that include holiday cover. If you and your pet are travelling abroad, a good pet insurance policy may include a Pet Travel Scheme, which will cover the costs of vet's fees abroad, quarantine kennelling and financial help if you lose your Pet Health Certificate while you're away. It can also include cover if you have to cancel or cut short your holiday because your pet goes missing or needs emergency veterinary treatment. Other additions include money towards advertising and a reward if your pet goes missing and cover for boarding and kennel fees if you have to go into hospital for a specified length of time.
All of these can add up to a considerable cost, so if you care about your pets (and your finances), a simple pet insurance plan is the best way to cover every eventuality. Our pets are important to us, loving us unconditionally and becoming important members of the family, so it makes sense to care for them in the same way as you would with any other relative. With the cost of vet's fees constantly rising, taking out pet insurance makes good financial sense, as well as taking care of your beloved cat or dog.