How Does it Work
If just thinking about insurance makes your head ache, adding cat insurance to the mix might seem unnecessarily torturous. The truth is, though, that cat insurance has nothing to do with the mountains of paperwork and painful bureaucracy that can sometimes characterize human health insurance.
To purchase a cat insurance policy for your cat or kitten, all you have to do is go online and browse cat insurance companies. By simply providing a few details about yourself such as your email address and zip code and some basic information about your kitty – such as breed, age, and whether they’ve been neutered – you get a personalized monthly price quote delivered to your inbox almost instantaneously.
As with most types of health insurance you have some control over the variables that influence how much your cat insurance plan will cost. Cat insurers give you a number of options to choose from in terms of your
- Deductible – the initial sum you have to pay before your cat insurance can kick in
- Premium – the monthly or annual amount you pay in addition to the deductible and
- Reimbursement – the percentage amount your cat insurer will pay for each treatment/procedure covered in your policy.
Certain cat insurance companies also make you choose an annual monetary limit for them to cover – if you happen to exceed that limit, you’ll be on your own for vet and hospital payments for the remainder of that year.
Why Do I Need Cat Insurance?
If you are a cat parent, you probably need cat insurance. Cat insurance empowers you to get the treatment you need for your cat, when you need it. As with any insurance, you can have months and even years when you barely have to submit a claim. However, cat insurance means you’re financial prepared for anything your cat has to throw at you: late night visits to the veterinary ER, lengthy hospital stays, chemotherapy.
Though we might not usually think about healthcare in terms of dollar signs, these treatments add up to hundreds and thousands of dollars. By paying a reasonable monthly or annual sum to a cat insurer, you don’t need to think twice about getting your kitty the help she needs.
If you happen to be a cat parent of more than one cat, cat insurance is that much more important. Not only do many cat insurers offer multiple pet discounts, but you can rest assured that all of your cats have access to timely life-saving healthcare.
What Does it Cover?
The coverage you get from your cat insurer depends on the type of plan you decide you need for your cat. Some cat insurers give you the option of insuring only certain conditions, such as cancer or surgeries. Overall, the majority of cat insurance companies let you choose an accident-only plan, an illness-only plan, or a comprehensive plan that includes both.
Since we can’t yet predict whether our cat is going to get sick, get injured, or both, our cat is insured with a comprehensive plan. Here are the basic conditions and treatments a comprehensive cat insurance plan should cover:
- Emergency room visits and hospitalization
- X-rays and ultrasounds
- Blood tests
- Chronic and congenital conditions
- Specialist appointments
Some cat insurers include additional services, such as exam fees and prescription drugs, within their comprehensive plans. Typically, wellness care such as grooming, checkups and flea treatment is available as a separate plan, and dental care, if offered, is generally also only available under a separate policy.
Cats over the age of 14 won’t be eligible for most cat insurance, and premiums can go up as cats age and are more liable to fall ill or get injured. Nevertheless, if your cat is insured before the age of 14 your insurance company will continue to provide health insurance for her for as long as she lives (and as long as you keep paying your premiums).
Is Cat Insurance Worth It?
If you’ve read up until this point, you know that cat insurance is very worth it. The peace of mind you get knowing your cat’s health requirements can be met to the fullest by purchasing a cat insurance policy is matched by the ease with which you can purchase and manage this policy online.
It’s true that coverage details vary from cat insurer to cat insurer. Some cat insurers directly pay the reimbursement to the vet so you don’t have to take large sums out of your checking account, while others offer programs for your cat insurance to be included in the family insurance plans your employer offers. A number of cat insurance companies process claims in 48 hours, some can take approximately 10 business days.
However, in spite of the different features and prices each cat insurer has to offer they all have one thing in common: they enable you to provide the highest level of healthcare to the cat members of your family no matter how sudden the onset of a condition is and the price tag attached for treating it.
Common Health Issues Cat Insurance Should Cover
Like humans, cats are unfortunately susceptible to a great many diseases and can get injured in a variety of ways. Luckily, you don’t need to be a veterinarian to understand whether a cat insurer provides adequate coverage. Here are the top cat health conditions that you want a cat insurer to cover:
- Car accident-related injuries
- Injuries related to a fall
- Common cat viruses such as FeIV and FIV
- Pneumonic infections
- Genetic and chronic conditions
While there are many other health issues that can impact your cat, the above list should give you a good indication of a cat insurer’s breadth of coverage.