What Are the Pros and Cons of Pet Insurance?

There are so many different kinds of insurance – health insurance, auto insurance, homeowner’s insurance are all required, and they’re all important for protecting yourself and your assets. But did you know that you could also get pet insurance to protect your pets?

Pet insurance is on the rise, becoming increasingly popular with pet owners. And it can be a smart addition to your insurance coverage. Pet insurance can cut the costs of your pet’s veterinary care and keep them healthy.

But is pet insurance the right choice for every pet parent? The following are a few of the different pros and cons that come with a pet insurance policy.

Pro: You Get to Choose Your Coverage Level

Just like your other insurance policies, pet insurance allows you to choose what level of coverage you’d like. While pet insurance can offer many benefits, you get to choose which specific benefits you’re most likely to take advantage of.

When considering pet insurance, you can pick from a wide variety of different coverage levels. Do you want to insure your pet in case of an emergency or serious, life-threatening illness? Or do you just want insurance for basic, routine vet visits?

There’s a pet insurance policy for every pet owner’s needs. From basic vet insurance to accidents and injuries to special policies for different breeds and hereditary conditions, you can choose a customized policy just for your cat or dog.

Con: Many Plans Have Reimbursement Policies

While pet insurance aims to reduce your costs every time your pet visits the vet, pet insurance is set up very differently than human health insurance.

When you use your health insurance, you pay a copay and the doctor’s office bills your insurance for any treatments or care needed. If you owe money after the insurance company is billed, you’ll pay that bill after you’re treated. Pet insurance works in the opposite way.

When you take your pet to the vet, you’ll be responsible for paying the bill upfront. You have to pay for the office visit, any medications or vaccinations, and any procedures. Most pet insurance policies operate on a reimbursement setup, which means you’ll have to submit an invoice or claim, then get the money for your pet’s vet bills.

This can be a drawback for pet owners who are on a limited budget. You’ll ultimately be reimbursed by your pet insurance provider, but you will have to wait for that money. And, depending on the details of your specific policy, the amount you’re reimbursed can vary. Typically, as Value Penguin explains, pet insurance providers reimburse you for anywhere from 50 percent of your expenses to 100 percent.

Pro: Premiums Are Affordable

Often, the biggest cost that comes with pet insurance is the monthly premium. Like all other kinds of insurance, you’ll have to pay a monthly premium in order to insure your pet.

However, pet insurance premiums are surprisingly cheap – and they’re very budget-friendly. Consumer Reports notes that pet owners can expect to pay about $22 per month in pet insurance premiums for a dog and $16 per month for a cat. That’s less than the cost of a dinner out, and well worth it if you’re worried about vet costs.

Premium costs can vary depending on your pet’s age, breed, current health, and any preexisting conditions. Make sure to look for a plan that offers the coverage you need at a price that works for your budget.

Con: Many Plans Have Deductibles

Your monthly premium isn’t the only cost you have to pay for pet insurance. In addition to the price you pay every month, you’ll also have an annual deductible.

You’re likely familiar with deductibles on your own health insurance – and pet insurance works similarly. Your insurance provider will set a deductible that must be met before your insurance begins reimbursing you for your expenses.

Depending on your pet insurance policy, your deductible could be anywhere from $0 to $2,500 per year. That means you’ll have to spend your total deductible before you get any money back in your pocket.

Of course, deductibles vary. Make sure to compare the deductibles on different pet insurance plans before deciding on one to maximize your savings.

Pro: You’ll Never Have to Choose Between Your Pet and Your Finances

The biggest benefit of pet insurance is the protection and peace of mind it offers. In life, nothing is certain – and everything can change suddenly. Your pet could be perfectly healthy one day and in need of serious medication attention the next.

Whether your pet has an accident, a sudden injury, or a drastic change in health, pet insurance gives you security. No matter what happens, having pet insurance means you’ll never have to make the tough decision to pay for vet care or not. You’ll never have to worry about going into debt in order to afford the care your pet needs. You can instead rest easy knowing that your pet’s health comes first, and you’ll recoup your costs.

According to NAPHIA, pet owners with pet insurance are more likely to get medical care for their pets. Pet insurance can help you do exactly that: get care for your pet when they need it most. And you won’t have to worry about the potential financial burden at all.

Look into getting pet insurance for your cat or dog today. For an affordable, budget-friendly price, you could reap the benefits. And your pet could be covered for any health event, helping you provide the best care possible.