The costs associated with pet insurance are the same costs associated with your own health insurance. That said, insuring your pet's health is much cheaper than insuring your own. You have to deal with monthly premiums, co-pays and deductibles no matter what. However, in the event of a pet's medical emergency, the right policy can save you thousands.
On average, pet insurance policies cost anywhere from $9 to $40 a month. Cats are a little more expensive to insure than birds and other exotic pets, while dogs are more expensive to insure than cats. It makes sense. The bigger the animal, the more it costs to insure. Fortunately, bargain hunters have plenty of providers to choose from, including PurinaCare and Petfirst Healthcare. In addition, the American Kennel Club (AKC) and the ASPCA both carry their own pet insurance plans.
According to Veterinary Pet Insurance (VPI), the world's largest provider of pet insurance, your per incident deductible is going to be around $50 and your co-pay will be 10 percent. From there, your costs depend on your insurance plan. Under VPI's standard plan, the annual premium for a dog is $134 and $94 for an adult cat. Under VPI's Superior Plan, premiums jump to $239 and $164, respectively. Mature dogs and cats will cost a bit more because they are more inclined to have medical conditions caused by old age. The standard plan offers a per-accident cap of $2,500 while the Superior Plan adds $2,000 to that total [source: Weston].
In the event of an unexpected emergency, pet insurance can be a lifesaver. Preparing for a medical emergency in advance may save you from having to euthanize your pet for financial reasons.
Read the next page to learn how to choose between pet insurance options.