All You Need To Know About Cat Insurance
As a nation of animal lovers, there are few animals we love more than our cats. Whether it’s an elegant Bengal or a humble moggie, they’re close to our hearts. What’s more, they’re most definitely a part of the family. That’s why when they’re sick, or need emergency treatment at the vet, it can be a very upsetting time. It’s also potentially an expensive time if you don’t have pet insurance in place.
Why do I need cat insurance?
If your cat becomes ill or is involved in an accident it could help you get the best possible care for them. There’s no legal obligation to have cat insurance, but it can help towards paying for expensive vet treatments.
How much does cat insurance cost?
The average yearly cost of insuring a cat is £48.84**. However, as with most types of insurance policy, the more cover you want in your policy, the more it’s likely to cost. That means that an accident only policy is likely to be the cheapest and lifetime cover the most expensive.
What are the different types of cat insurance?
There are four main types of insurance for cats:
Offers cover for your vet bills if your cat is unlucky enough to have an accident, but not if they’re ill or they develop any medical conditions in the future. We found that 50% of our customers could cover their cat for £2.94 a month.***
Covers any new illnesses or conditions that your cat develops in a 12-month period; there’s usually a cost limit too. It means you can only make a claim for a particular illness or condition once, and only up to a certain value. If the condition returns after the 12-month period, you won’t be covered for any medication or treatment for it.
Covers illnesses and accidents up to a maximum amount per condition, but there’s no time limit on how long you can claim for. This type of policy can be useful if your cat has a chronic or persistent illness. There is, however, a financial limit and once you’ve reached that you won’t be able to make any further claims.
Covers your cat for accidents, illnesses or conditions throughout its lifetime, subject to limits as advised in the policy. Be aware, though, that you’ll need to have continuous cover to ensure your cat is insured.
What should I consider when choosing cat insurance?
You’ll need to consider whether you cat has any pre-existing conditions and the excess you’ll have to pay should you make a claim. And always check exactly what’s included in a policy – some may offer optional extras.
Pre-existing conditions - Unfortunately, if your cat already has a pre-existing medical condition, this condition and the treatment of it won’t be covered by your insurance policy.
The excess - An excess is the amount of money you have to pay before you can claim on your insurance. Always check how much this is before you take out an insurance policy. Some insurance providers might ask for a percentage-based excess as well as the usual one-off payment – this can become very costly if you have to claim for expensive treatment by a vet.
Check what’s covered - In addition to the obvious vet bills, some policies include optional extras, such as:
Cover if your cat is stolen or goes missing – this could be a one-off payment if your cat isn’t found, or it could cover any costs involved in advertising or a reward to help find your cat.
Death by illness or injury – some insurance providers may also cover the cost of putting your cat to sleep and some will even cover bereavement counselling.
Can I get pet insurance for an older cat?
Yes, you can find an insurance policy for an older cat, but the premium is likely to be more expensive as older cats tend to need more medical care. There could also be more conditions or restrictions attached to the policy. And be aware that insurance providers won’t cover any pre-existing conditions your cat has when you take out the policy.
How do I compare insurance for my cat?
Use our comparison service to find cat insurance that’s right for you. Just tell us a few details about your moggy and we’ll show you different quotes and cover types so you can compare prices and policy details to find insurance that’s purrrrfect for you and your cat.
**Average price (across all levels of cover), based on comparethemarket.com data from April 2016 to March 2017. You may find a cheaper or more expensive quote based on your personal circumstances.
*** 50% of people could achieve a quote of £2.94 for their accident only cat insurance based on comparethemarket.com data in May 2017.