Twenty-nine percent of Australian households have at least one pet cat, with there being 3.3 million pet cats throughout the entire country. Many of the owners of these cats have already selected the right pet insurance plan for their cat, but there are many more who are still wondering what they should be looking for when looking at pet insurance and what type of coverage they need.
The most important item which a pet owner must consider for their cat is the level of coverage they need. The level of coverage will determine what is covered, what is not, and how high of a premium or fee a pet owner can expect to pay. This is typically broken down into three different categories:
Accident Only Coverage
LEVEL: Very Basic Coverage
Through this type of coverage, a pet insurance company will likely reimburse a pet owner part if not all, of the expenses incurred, should their pet be harmed during an accident. This type of coverage will not cover your pet for any illnesses or for any routine annual check-ups. Coverage at this level is also often limited to a fixed amount of financial coverage per injury.
Accident & Illness Coverage
LEVEL: Basic Coverage
Pet insurance for cats at this level will provide you with reimbursement should your pet suffer an accident or be diagnosed with an illness. Some important items to make note of include:
- If there is a time limit on this type of coverage (typically there will be a time limit of three to twelve months with this type of coverage)
- The maximum payout for each treatment
For example, you may choose coverage which provides you with a maximum payout of $3000 with a time limit of 12 months. If the bill turns out to be more than $3000 or if you continue to pay for treatment after that 12 month period, you will then be responsible for paying all additional fees.
TIP: Many pet insurance providers will provide mid-level coverage which will not impose a time limit on pet owners. Keep in mind, however, that there may still be a set fee limit for a particular duration of time.
LEVEL: Highest Level of Coverage
Being the most comprehensive type of pet insurance, this is also the most expensive for cat owners. The maximum payout amount through this type of coverage will typically be much higher than any other level of coverage. These plans also likely cover a number of other items which other types of coverage will not, including:
- Routine check-ups
- Dental fees
- Burial expenses
This type of insurance is usually renewed annually. This could mean that if there is a change in your pet’s health condition over the course of a year that your pet insurance provider may be able to deny your cat coverage.
Understanding What Is and Is Not Covered
There are some items which are typically not covered by any type of pet insurance. These include pre-existing conditions, vaccinations, spaying and neutering, and any expenses related to pregnancy and birth.