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Pet Insurance Cost Overview


Pet Insurance Cost


How Much Does it Cost?


Pet insurance prices range vary depending on your pet's breed, age, where you live and the coverage you select.

To give you an idea of how much it costs we created a chart that includes all 12 American pet insurance companies.

Company Dog Cat
Healthy Paws $25/mo. $15/mo.
Nationwide $26/mo. $14/mo.
Pets Best $19/mo. $11/mo.
Embrace $32/mo. $19/mo.
Trupanion $38/mo. $27/mo.
Petplan $27/mo. $20/mo.
Figo $21/mo. $10/mo.
ASPCA $30/mo. $17/mo.
PetFirst $43/mo. $27/mo.
PetPremium $30/mo. $17/mo.
AKC $28/mo. $23/mo.
24PetWatch $60/mo. $32/mo.

Rates are based on quotes for standard major medical plans, one year-old mixed breed dogs and cats, $500 deductible, 80% reimbursement, minimum $10k annual limit, 43221 zip code



Five Cost Factors


The amount you will pay for your pet insurance policy depends on five rating factors. Your pets breed, age, coverage, zip code and the company you choose.

Below are detailed breakdowns of each pricing factor so you can better understand how companies come up with their rates.


Factor #1 - Your Pet's Breed

 

Bottom line, how much is dog insurance? Well, to give you and idea of how much a plan might cost for you dog we created a sample of dog insurance prices for the top 10 most popular dog breeds in America. This chart shows the average health insurance cost for each breed.

How Much is Pet Insurance for a Dog?

Dog Breeds Avg.
Mixed Breed Dog $39/mo.
Labrador Retriever $45/mo.
Yorkshire Terrier $42/mo.
Golden Retriever $47/mo.
Dachshund $51/mo.
Chihuahua $49/mo.
German Shepherd $50/mo.
Shih Tzu $43/mo.
Boxer $55/mo.
English Bulldog $53/mo.
Average for All Dogs $43/mo.

Note: Prices for major medical dog health insurance.



Pet insurance rates vary widely among different breeds of dogs and cats. The rates are based on the likelihood of health issues for a given breed.

For example, if you have a four year-old German shepherd and live in New York your pet insurance policy will cost about $52 per month.

If you have a three year-old Domestic Shorthair and live in Topeka, Kansas, you will only pay $26 per month.

The reason a German shepherd in NYC is 3.4x more expensive than a Domestic Shorthair in Kansas is because they have completely different risk profiles.

German Shepherds are much more likely to need treatment for accidents and illnesses than a Domestic Shorthair cats.

Dogs are more expensive than cats because the risk of illness and injury is higher for dogs.

And purebred dogs are slightly more expensive to insure than their mixed breed counterparts because purebreds are more susceptible to hereditary conditions.

In fact, hereditary disorders like hip dysplasia, heart disease and cancer are some of the most common and expensive health issues to treat.


How Much is Pet Insurance for a Cat?

And if you're more of a cat person here is a sample of cat insurance costs for the top 10 most popular cat breeds in America. Below is the average cost of insurance for various cat breeds.

Cat Breeds Avg.
Mixed Breed Cat $29/mo.
Domestic Shorthair $30/mo.
American Shorthair $32/mo.
Siamese $34/mo.
Maine Coon $33/mo.
Persian $38/mo.
Ragdoll $32/mo.
Bengal $35/mo.
Russian Blue $37/mo.
Himalayan $33/mo.
Average for All Cats $31/mo.

Note: Prices for a three year old cat.

Want a Change in Direction?

Pet Insurance Worth It? | Veterinary Care & Costs


Factor #2 - Your Pet's Age


Just like humans, older dogs and cats are more expensive to insure because they are more susceptible to illness and injury.

You can get a pet medical insurance policy for a pet of any age, but the longer you wait the more expensive it will be.

This is one of the reasons we strongly encourage pet owners to enroll their pets while they are younger.

As your pet gets older each year the cost of your insurance will go up because the risk of illness and injury is higher for older pets.

Here is a list of some of the most common health issues to give you an idea of how much treatment can cost if your dog or cat gets sick or injured.

Condition Cost to Treat
Cancer $5,000 to $20,000
Luxating Patella $1,500 to $3,000
Heart Disease $5,000 to $20,000
Mitral Valve Disease $1,000 to $5,000
Patent Ductus Arteriosus $5,000 to $20,000
Heart Murmur $5,000 to $20,000
Pulmonic Stenosis $15,000 to $20,000
Broken Bones $200 to $5,000
Eye Problems $50 to $3,000
Dental Problems $200 to $2,000
Tracheal Collapse $4,000 to $7,000
Bladder Stones $50 to $500
Curvature of the Spine $6,000 to $15,000

Source: Dog Health Conditions


Consider These Facts

  • A pet needs emergency care every 2.5 seconds
  • Every 6 seconds a pet owner faces a vet bill over $5,000
  • 2 of 3 pets will experience a serious health issue during their lifetime

According to a study by CBS News, the average cost of a pet insurance plan is 58% cheaper than a daily trip to a coffee shop.

Comparing Costs Trip to Coffee Shop Pet Insurance
Cost per day $3.25 $1.37
Cost per month $97.50 $41.00
Cost per year $1,170 $492

And according to Doctors Foster and Smith, pet insurance is actually cheaper than the annual cost of grooming, food and veterinary care.

Bonus Tip: The average price increase for a policy is less 5 to 10% per year.


Factor #3 - Your Coverage


There is a wide range of coverage options from accident only policies to comprehensive plans that include all emergencies. Obviously the more coverage you purchase the more expensive your policy will be. Some pet insurance companies allow you to add routine care coverage for an additional monthly charge.


Types of Coverage to Choose From

There are three different levels of coverage when considering pet health insurance. There's no right answer but the most popular plans are major medical policies that protect you and your pet from big, unexpected vet bills that are the result of accidents and illnesses.

  • Major Medical - These plans account for over 90% of all pet health insurance plans purchased.
  • Accident Only - These plans are less expensive than major medical plans, but only cover claims for accidents.
  • Wellness - Some companies allow you to add wellness coverage to a standard major medical plan.

Deductible and Reimbursement

One of the best things about pet insurance plans is that you can choose a deductible and reimbursement percentage to create a policy that fits your budget.

  • Deductible - If you choose a higher deductible you will pay less for insurance. Deductibles range from $100 to $1,000 (we recommend $200 or $500 to maximize value).
  • Reimbursement - If you choose a lower reimbursement rate you will pay less each month for a policy. Reimbursement rates range from 60 to 100% (we recommend 80% or 90% reimbursement rates to maximize value).
 

Average Prices for all 34 Plans

This table shows the average pet insurance cost for every plan available in the U.S. including monthly premiums and fees associated with enrollment. None of us wants to deal with a sick or injured pet. But unfortunately health issues happen. As you can see in the chart below, the cheapest and most affordable pet insurance plans are accident only plans, which we do not recommend because they are so limited in coverage.

Company: Plan Premium
Fees
Healthy Paws: Standard $39/mo. $25 one-time
Petplan: Standard $31/mo. $25 one-time
Nationwide: Whole Pet with Wellness $61/mo. $2.00/mo.
Nationwide:  Major Medical $28/mo. $2.00/mo.
Nationwide: Wellness Basic $18/mo. $2.00/mo.
Nationwide: Wellness Plus $22/mo. $2.00/mo.
Embrace: Standard $66/mo. 5%/mo.
Embrace: Wellness Rewards $650 $47/mo. 5%/mo.
Embrace: Wellness Rewards $450 $18/mo. 5%/mo.
Embrace: Wellness Rewards $250 $33/mo. 5%/mo.
Pets Best: Elite Option $58/mo. $2.00/mo.
Pets Best: Plus Option $38/mo. $2.00/mo.
Pets Best: Essential Option $31/mo. $2.00/mo.
Pets Best: Accident Only $10/mo. $2.00/mo.
Pets Best: BestWellness $24/mo. $2.00/mo.
Trupanion: Standard $58/mo. $35 one-time
Figo: Ultimate $36/mo. $9 one-time
Figo: Preferred $33/mo. $9 one-time
Figo: Essential $30/mo. $9 one-time
PetFirst: Standard $93/mo. None
PetFirst: Routine Care $400 $26/mo. None
PetFirst: Routine Care $250 $18/mo. None
ASPCA Complete Coverage $60/mo. $1.50/mo.
ASPCA: Advanced Wellness $25/mo. $1.50/mo.
ASPCA: Routine Wellness $10/mo. $1.50/mo.
PetPremium: Level 3 $43/mo. $1.50/mo.
PetPremium: Level 2 $29/mo. $1.50/mo.
PetPremium: Level 1 $14/mo. $1.50/mo.
PetPremium: Advanced Wellness $25/mo. $1.50/mo.
PetPremium: Routine Wellness $10/mo. $1.50/mo.
AKC: Standard $49/mo. $2.00/mo.
AKC: Defender Plus $26/mo. $2.00/mo.
AKC: Defender $16/mo. $2.00/mo.
24PetWatch: Standard $47/mo. $2.50/mo.

Note: Premium for three year old, mixed breed dog, $200 deductible, 90% remibursement with maximum coverage and limits.


Factor #4 - Where You Live


Color map of each state in America

Here are some sample pet insurance prices across the country for dogs and cats.

Location Dogs
Cats
Alabama $35/mo. $27/mo.
Alaska $43/mo. $33/mo.
Arizona $37/mo. $28/mo.
Arkansas $34/mo. $27/mo.
California $46/mo. $38/mo.
Colorado $41/mo. $36/mo.
Connecticut $42/mo. $34/mo.
D.C. $43/mo. $35/mo.
Delaware $42/mo. $35/mo.
Florida $38/mo. $36/mo.
Georgia $39/mo. $34/mo.
Hawaii $44/mo. $34/mo.
Idaho $37/mo. $27/mo.
Illinois $42/mo. $36/mo.
Indiana $35/mo. $28/mo.
Iowa $35/mo. $29/mo.
Kansas $33/mo. $26/mo.
Kentucky $36/mo. $27/mo.
Louisiana $37/mo. $29/mo.
Maine $40/mo. $34/mo.
Maryland $41/mo. $36/mo.
Massachusetts $44/mo. $38/mo.
Michigan $42/mo. $36/mo.
Minnesota $39/mo. $33/mo.
Mississippi $34/mo. $27/mo.
Missouri $38/mo. $32/mo.
Montana $35/mo. $28/mo.
Nebraska $34/mo. $27/mo.
Nevada $37/mo. $31/mo.
New Hampshire $40/mo. $32/mo.
New Jersey $42/mo. $32/mo.
New Mexico $34/mo. $28/mo.
New York $48/mo. $38/mo.
North Carolina $39/mo. $32/mo.
North Dakota $36/mo. $31/mo.
Ohio $39/mo. $32/mo.
Oklahoma $36/mo. $31/mo.
Oregon $39/mo. $32/mo.
Pennsylvania $42/mo. $34/mo.
Rhode Island $45/mo. $35/mo.
South Carolina $35/mo. $29/mo.
South Dakota $38/mo. $33/mo.
Tennessee $37/mo. $30/mo.
Texas $42/mo. $34/mo.
Utah $35/mo. $29/mo.
Vermont $40/mo. $33/mo.
Virginia $39/mo. $32/mo.
Washington $41/mo. $33/mo.
West Virginia $34/mo. $28/mo.
Wisconsin $38/mo. $32/mo.
Wyoming $36/mo. $28/mo.

Note: The rates in this chart are based on major medical care for a three year old, mixed breed dog in that state.

Over the years we've generated over 1 million pet insurance quotes across the country so we have more data than anyone about pet insurance costs.

We researched and crunched the numbers to get average costs by state. Where you live is the first factor that determines the cost of pet insurance.

The reason costs vary by state is because prices vary depending on the cost of care where you live.

For example, veterinary surgery in New York City costs twice as much as veterinary surgery in Topeka, Kansas and because pet insurance companies pay claims based on a percentage of your actual vet bills companies charge more for policies in expensive zip codes like New York than they charge in places like Kansas.


Factor #5 - Company


Every company is similar in the type of coverage they offer (all offer major medical, some offer wellness care).

However, each company provides different prices based on where you live, your pet's age and the coverage you choose.

That is why it's so important to compare plans and prices so you can find the best value possible.

Here is a list of all 12 American pet insurance companies.

 

Healthy Paws Pet Insurance

Healthy Paws

 

Petplan Pet Insurance

 

 Pets Best Insurance

 
 

ASPCA Pet Insurance

ASPCA

 

Trupanion Pet Insurance

Trupanion

 

Embrace Pet Insurance

Embrace

 

PetFirst Pet Insurance

PetFirst

 

Veterinary Pet Insurance

 

Nationwide

 

PetPremium Pet Insurance

PetPremium

 

AKC Pet Insurance

AKC

 

24PetWatch Pet Insurance

24PetWatch

 

Figo Pet Insurance

 

Figo

Not all pet insurance companies are created equal. As you shop around you'll notice that some companies have broad coverage, high customer satisfaction and fair pricing.

Other companies have hidden exclusions, limits on claims payouts and horrible customer ratings.

When you compare pet insurance companies, plans and costs keep in mind that the cheapest plan is not always the best option for your pet. Here is a list of all 12 companies currently offering plan in the U.S.

Learn More: Best Pet Insurance

 

 

Available Discounts


Patriotic French Bulldog

Every pet insurance company offers discounts that you can take advantage of. One of the most popular is multi-pet discounts for pet owners with two or more pets. You can also find discounts for military personnel, veterinary professionals and micro-chipped pets.

Some companies also offer employer discounts and membership discounts through AAA and AARP to name a few. The good news is that when you use our quote system you automatically receive the maximum discounts allowed by each company.


Sample Pet Insurance Claim


So how does this all work?

Here is a sample pet insurance claim so you can understand how claims are paid and see the real benefit of having pet insurance coverage.

Let's take Rex. Rex is a three year-old mixed breed dog living in Columbus, Ohio. Rex is healthy and his parents, Nick and Melissa, want to make sure they're covered in case he gets sick or injured.

They purchased a standard major medical plan to insure Rex in case of unexpected health issues. Like most pet owners, Nick and Melissa are on a budget, so they select a $500 deductible and 80% reimbursement rate. This lowered their costs even further.

Here is a simple example of how pet insurance claims work. Pet insurance companies pay claims based on your actual, total veterinary bills.

Health Issue Cancer
Cost of Treatment $12,000
Reimbursement 90%
Reimbursed $10,800 ($12,000 x 90%)
Deductible Less: $200
Total Claim Paid $10,600

Source: Cancer in Dogs

The good news is that Nick and Melissa are actually paying less than the national average for their plan for Rex. And the best news is that Rex will be covered and get the treatment he needs if he ever needs expensive veterinary treatment.


"Money can buy you a fine dog, but only love can make his tail wag."

- Kinky Friedman


Real Life Stories


Buster & Anna

Pictured: Anna pays $42/mo. for Buster's plan


"They're rated the best and I can tell you they are the best!"

"The trip to the ER and IV's cost about $400 and the plan reimbursed us about $150. Then in May 2015 Buster's active lifestyle caught up to him and he tore a ligament in his front left leg. I couldn't pinpoint when the injury occurred but it became clear after a couple days of limping and whining that something was wrong..." Read More

- Anna & Buster, Insured by Healthy Paws


"Get Petplan as Soon as You Get Your Dog"

"We eventually purchased a policy from Petplan but not after Charley had about $1,500 in veterinary bills after swallowing the corner of a pillow when he was a puppy. Lucky for us there was no long-term damage so when we enrolled Charley with Petplan he did not have any pre-existing conditions..." Read More

- Claire & Charlie, Insured by Petplan


"Friendly on the Phone"

"I dread calling some companies but not Pets Best. Anytime I have a coverage question the staff there is very helpful and happy. They actually seem happy to be answering my questions and helping. It's such a refreshing experience..." Read More

- June & Sparky, Insured by Pets Best


More Stories: Pet Insurance Reviews


Comparison Shop and Save


It's important to mention the one thing you can do to save money on pet insurance... shop around. Our quote generator will help you shop around quickly without the hassle of calling individual pet insurers and repeating the same information.

Each company is unique in the way they calculate rates based on breed, age and location. That is why we always encourage pet owners to use our quote system to compare plans and prices from all the top companies.

Compare pet insurance plans


Other Frequently Asked Questions


How Much Do Dogs Cost?

Depending on the breed and source it can range from free to $10,000+. If you rescue a dog then the only cost you have is the cost of shots and a minimal fee. If you want a purebred puppy then you can expect to pay a breeder somewhere between $500 to $5,000. And if you want a rare, well-trained hunting or therapy dog then you can expect to pay $10,000 to $25,000.


How Much Does a Dog Cost Per Year?

The cost of dog ownership depends on your dog's age, breed and where you live.Here is a sense of what you can expect to pay each year based on the size of your dog.

  • Small dog breeds - $2,674
  • Medium dog breeds - $2,889
  • Large dog breeds - $3,239
  • Giant dog breeds - $3,536
  • Average first year cost across all sizes - $3,085

How Much Do Cats Cost?

Owning a cat is much less costly than owning a dog. According to the Humane Society of Huron Valley did a study that concluded the average cost of owning a cat. Here is the breakdown:

  • Total Annual Cost for Indoor Cat - $620
  • Total Annual Cost for Outdoor Cat - $863

Can I Get Dog LIfe Insurance?

Petplan Pet Insurance is the only company that offer dog life insurance plans.


Where Can I Get Rates?

Learn more about each of the five cost factors and let us help you find the right plan that fit's your budget! Comare Pet Insurance Quotes

 

Edited by: Nick Braun


 
 
 

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