In 2018, pet expenditures in the U.S. alone reached a staggering $72.56 billion. That’s an increase of $3.05 billion from the year before!
Furthermore, the report showed that $16.01 billion of that were for pet supplies and OTC medicines. Another $18.11 billion was for veterinary care. Meaning, American pet owners spent $34.12 billion on pet healthcare alone!
With that kind of money on the line, it’s no wonder many are wondering, “Is pet health insurance worth it?”
Well, for the owners of, more than 2 million pets in North America, it appears so.
That’s right. That’s how many pets in the U.S. and Canada are now insured. Fur parents, as they now call themselves, have spent a whopping $1 billion on these insurance plans.
What exactly makes a pet plan a good investment though? Is it something that all pet owners should consider?
This post will take a closer look at what the pros have to say, so be sure to keep reading!
A Quick Look on What Pet Health Insurance Is
To better answer your question, “do I need pet insurance?”, let’s take a look at what pet insurance is in the first place.
A pet plan relieves a part of the costs you’ll shell out to keep your furry friend in the best of health. Depending on the plan you get, you can have Floofy or Snoopy covered for accidents and injuries. The more robust plans can also cover genetic conditions, and yes, pre-existing conditions.
Of course, the more health conditions the plan covers, the higher your costs will be.
The Costs of Getting Your Pet Insured
So, what does pet insurance cost anyway?
For as low as $16 a month, you can already have your catto insured. For dogs, monthly premiums can start for as low as $22.
Now, compare that to the average cost of $20 for a single restaurant-delivered meal. If you can spend that much for one meal, then you can afford a pet plan.
It’s also best to consider pet insurance if your furry pal has a pre-existing condition. For instance, according to this site, diabetes in cats come with an average treatment cost of $889.
Of course, you’ll pay more for a pet plan that covers pre-existing conditions. But it’s during these times that having insurance may be the most helpful.
The American Veterinary Medical Association’s Take on Pet Insurance
The experts at the AVMA point out how pet insurance can help offset the high costs of pet healthcare. It does so by helping cover some of the high costs of diagnosis and treatment of pet illnesses and injuries. Moreover, it can cover the cost of managing a beloved pet’s overall health.
And veterinary medicine, like human medicine, is no doubt becoming more expensive. That’s because animal doctors now use more innovative, effective, and safer veterinary technology. Even though vet med is so similar to human medicine, vets still charge less than human doctors.
For starters, the diagnostic technology vets now use are far more advanced. Modern digital X-rays, in-house lab testing, and ultrasounds produce quicker results. This faster turnaround then allows vets to determine health issues quicker than ever.
More importantly, such equipment enables veterinarians to provide a more accurate diagnosis. Animal doctors can do all these while ensuring that the animals are comfortable. Or at least, that your pets feel the least pain possible.
Speaking of which, today’s veterinary anesthesia and surgical procedures have also become safer. Surgical procedures, like spaying, neutering, and biopsies have also become less painful. The same goes for pain management and post-surgery treatment.
Together, these technological advancements improve the patient outlook. They put patients at a lower risk during treatment and also lengthen the lives of animals.
That said, what is the AVMA’s answer to the question, is pet insurance worth it?
Well, the pros do say that “pet insurance isn’t for everyone.” Meaning, it’s beneficial for some pets, while pets in great health may not need it that much. It depends on your pet’s current health, your pet’s health risks, and how you want to avert those risks.
What Vets Themselves Have to Say
A study revealed that many veterinarians “wish” that all pet owners who go to them have pet insurance. This way, their furry friends can always get the healthcare services they require. At the same time, pet owners don’t have to spend time debating whether they can afford it or not.
At the first symptom of a disease, pet owners can immediately bring their insured pet to the vet. This is especially true for signs of life-threatening conditions, like parvovirus in dogs. This contagious infection has a 90% mortality rate if not treated right away.
So, Is Pet Health Insurance Worth It? Here’s How to Decide
Pet insurance can be a good investment if you want help with sudden, expensive vet bills. It’s worth considering if you’re always worried about your catto’s or doggo’s health. After all, there’s no way to predict if they’ll get into an accident or if they’ll be suddenly down with a disease.
Besides, cats don’t really have nine lives, but indoor felines can now live up to the ripe old age of 16 years old. This longer life span is also thanks to innovations in veterinary medicine.
If your pet is in great condition though, you may be okay paying for vet check-ups in cash once or twice a year. In this case, you may consider putting away money for an emergency pet fund instead.
If you still can’t decide, talk to your vet about your pet’s potential long-term health costs. Ask about the health risks associated with your pet’s breed and how much they usually cost to treat. This will give you a better idea of whether pet insurance will pay off.
The Bottom Line: Pet Health Insurance is for Your Peace of Mind
There you have it, the ultimate guide on answering your question, “is pet health insurance worth it?” Again, it can prove valuable in case of emergencies and accidents. If you’re a worrywart, a pet plan may be a good investment.
Just make sure to compare all your options with the help of your vet if you decide to get it. This way, you can avoid paying for insurance that your pet is least likely to use.
Ready for more life and family pro tips like this? Then feel free to check out the rests of the posts under my site’s Family section!