The latest figures released by the Association of British Insurers highlighted that the average pet insurance claim last year was over £600. Their figures give the average cost of treating a dog inured in a road traffic accident as £674 and £300 for a cat. Spinal surgery for a dog can cost £2,000 and treating a uterine infection will cost around £900. An overnight stay can typically cost £675 for a dog and £300 for a cat.
For those whose pets are not insured, that’s a lot to find at the drop of a hat, so it’s well worth insuring your pet, but what type of cover should you go for?
Broadly speaking, there are three types of insurance cover.
• Lifetime cover: The most expensive option, but offering the best benefits, covering your pet for its entire lifetime for any illness or injury, up to a maximum amount each year. The insurance company will continue to pay out year after year on long-term treatments without affecting your annual premium, which generally stays the same.
• Maximum benefit policies: Also allow you to claim year after year, but to a pre-set limit of cover for each condition, e.g. if your pet develops diabetes, you can claim back vet fees until that limit has been reached. If your pet then develops another problem you will be covered again until the limit is reached for this new illness, so you have good cover for sequential illnesses, but limited cover for long-care requirements.
• Twelve-month policies: These limit the amount of time you have to claim for any one condition to the twelve month period following initial diagnosis. These policies are the cheapest, but their cover is not helpful if your pet develops an expensive long-standing problem that will incur costs for many years, e.g. arthritis, diabetes, etc.
Pet insurance allows you to budget for vet fees and make the best decisions about your pet’s care without money worries, but they’re not all the same, so choose carefully and wisely. For further advice, call Clockhouse on 01453 752555.