Insurance covers people financially when unexpected situations arise. In addition, it can cover other recurring costs of life thereby reducing how much is spent. Incidents the affect your home, health, and car are eligible for insurance protection. In fact, nearly everything is insurable.
But what about incidents affecting our pets? Just like people, pets can get sick or injured. Vet, medication, and other costs to ensure your pet’s recovery, can add up quickly. In this guide, we will explore what pet insurance covers and the best providers in Canada to ensure your furry companions remain safe and healthy.
Pet insurance protects you against costs incurred resulting from incidents that affect your pet’s health. Normally, a pet insurance policy will pay you a lump sum to cover the costs of eligible scenarios in exchange for monthly premium payments. Surprisingly, less than 3% of Canadians with pets have pet insurance, although the market is growing. Most providers offer pet insurance with either accident insurance, sickness coverage, wellness add-ons, or a blend of all coverage.
Pet insurance is not required by law, but it definitely helps reduce the cost of caring for an animal. Pets require annual check-ups just like people do. Unfortunately, vet visits are not free like basic healthcare is for people in Canada. What’s worse is if your pet gets sick or injured, you’re stuck with a hefty vet bill. If your pet gets really sick, that vet bill could be thousands of dollars. Many animal owners underestimate the costs of caring for a pet.
Apart from sickness, pet insurance protects you with liability coverage. For example, if your dog bites someone and they sue you for damages, pet insurance can assist you with medical and legal costs. In addition, some policies will also cover the cost of annual check-ups thereby reducing how much you spend.
Pet insurance typically covers the following:
- Unexpected Injuries: This includes injuries sustained from eating foreign objects, being hit by a car, being attacked by another animal, and more.
- Surgery: Pets undergo a variety of surgeries, including cataract surgery, skin mass removal, amputation, orthopedic surgery, and more.
- Medication: Like humans, animals take medication for many reasons. Pets could experience allergies, indigestion, parasites, chronic pain, and even depression, all of which warrant the use of medication.
- Unexpected Illness: This includes diseases like cancer, glaucoma, ear infections, or arthritis.
- Pet Liability: If your pet injures someone and they sue for damages, pet insurance can cover medical, legal and other related costs.
- Other: Pet insurance often covers the costs of x-rays, emergency care fees and miscellaneous tests.
Pet insurance policies don’t usually cover neutering, dental, vaccinations, routine check-ups, or medical costs associated with pre-existing conditions. However, some policies offer wellness options that cover a percentage of some of the above incidents.
Pet insurance is a growing industry in Canada. More Canadians are realizing that their pets require medical care just like we do and that it comes with a price. Here are some of the best Canadian pet insurance providers:
Founded 15 years ago, Petplan Canada offers cat and dog owners insurance across Canada. They’re especially adaptable, offering coverage for the following:
- Up to 90% coverage for unexpected vet bills
- Comprehensive dental
- Breed-specific conditions
- Exam visits
Price: $35 per month for dogs, $25 per month for cats
Operating since 2000, Trupanion Canada offers customizable insurance policies for pets. Some benefits to purchasing a policy from them include:
- 90% coverage
- No-limit payouts
- Direct deposit payment
- 24/7 customer support
Price: For pricing information, get a quote on Trupanion’s website
Operating from Manitoba, Petsecure is one of Canada’s oldest pet insurance providers with 30 years of experience. Petsecure offers:
- 80% coverage
- Payout limits from $1,000 to $5,000 for accidents and sickness, with one policy option offering unlimited payouts
- Dental coverage
- Limited wellness coverage, except for one policy plan
Price: For pricing information, get a quote on Petsecure Canada’s website.
Top rated on Pet Insurance Review, Pets Plus Us has been operating since 2013. They offer:
- 90% coverage
- Payout limits between $7,500 and $15,000
- BlueRibbon Benefits, which are free with coverage, and offer counselling services, animal magazine subscriptions and more.
Price: For pricing information, get a quote on Pet Plus Us’s website.
Despite not having the same market saturation as home or life insurance, there are still a lot of pet insurance providers out there with varying policies. It’s important that you consider all of them before making a decision, and shop around. Here are some things to look out for when choosing pet insurance:
- Reputation of the Provider: Make sure you read reviews and testimonials for pet insurance providers from other pet owners.
- Any Conditions or Exclusions that Affect Coverage: Always read the fine print! For example, you might want a pet insurance policy with liability coverage. However, some providers might disqualify you if your pet has a history of violence. Additionally, some policies might not cover neutering or spaying your pet.
- Availability of Dental Coverage: Not all providers cover dental for pets, so make sure to ask up front if dental coverage is important to you.
- Breed-Specific Conditions: If you have a particular breed of dog or cat that is prone to certain medical conditions, you might consider a provider that offers a specialized policy. For example, bull terriers are prone to deafness, so a provider with a breed-specific plan option could help you if the condition appears when the dog is older. Remember to purchase pet insurance when your pets are young and healthy. If you buy pet insurance too late, you could be limited with your pet’s pre-existing condition.
Pet insurance can eliminate the risk related to unexpected costs for our pets. Many people choose not to get pet insurance as they’re comfortable with paying out of pocket. This is absolutely something to consider, but keep your pet’s health and safety in mind when making a decision instead of solely thinking about money.