Owners of pets treat them as a part of their family and provide good care for them. Part of this care includes making sure they are healthy, but this cost is gradually increasing. More and more pet owners turn to pet insurance to help cover some of these costs, like expensive veterinary services. It is unavoidable that you will need to visit the vet with your animal companion, and insurance can help.
In the following, a brief overview of what pet insurance is and if you and your pet really need it:
1. What is pet insurance?
Pet insurance is similar to health insurance for humans. We opt for health insurance to cover ourselves against the risk of sudden illness, serious health problems, and related issues. By paying a regular premium, we are covered against various health risks. In case we fall ill, the insurer would reimburse a part of our health care expenses. Insurance for pets works in the same way to take care of the health expenses of pets.
2. Why do you need it?
Pets are considered a part of the family in most homes. Therefore, it is natural to provide for the health expenses of pets in the same way as that of other family members.
Costs of healthcare are increasing everywhere, including for animals. It is estimated that if you need emergency veterinary treatment for your cat or dog, you may have to spend anywhere from $800 to $15,000 on an average.
Regular health checkups are a must. A health checkup can cost you around $50. If you get your pet vaccinated, you may need to spend at least $15 or more per vaccine.
These high costs of veterinary care make it unaffordable for many. It leads to people either not preferring to keep pets or they become unable to provide adequate treatments. In such a situation, pet insurance is considered to be a boon. It can help cover most of the expenses for veterinary care.
3. Background and growth
Pet insurance originated in Sweden, and the first insurance policy for pets was issued in 1890. Initially, pet insurance worked like property insurance, and the focus was more on livestock and horses. Later on, the focus shifted to domestic pets. It was in 1982 that the first pet insurance policy was issued in the country.
It has been estimated that around 68% of American households own a pet. However, hardly 1% of these pets are covered by insurance. But, the pet insurance industry is growing fast at an average annual rate of 14.8%. It is a $1 billion industry in the country.
4. Coverage and costs
Pet insurance can cover injuries caused due to accidents and any illnesses that your pet may face. There are different policies available. Some of them even cover dental expenses, sterilization, and vaccination. The average insurance premium cost is around $518 per annum, which may be considered as high if you only need checkups or vaccinations. You can consider insurance for older pets as they would be more in need of it.
The basics of pet insurance are discussed in this article to help you understand what it is all about. The information in this article aims to help you take a call on whether you need insurance for your pet or not.