A simples guide

Pedigree cat insurance

A pedigree cat is one whose mother and father were of the same breed, and who can be registered with an organisation that maintains a register of cats of that breed.

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What levels of pedigree cat insurance are available?

Firstly, you need to decide what you want to be covered under your policy. Not surprisingly, the premium will increase the more features you choose to add.

The most basic type of pet insurance is known as ‘accident only’. As the name suggests, it only provides cover for accidents.

If you want cover for anything more than this, you will need to look for a different type of policy. Examples of what might be covered by a more comprehensive policy are listed below.

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What can pedigree cat insurance cover?

Many people think of pet insurance as a way of covering vet’s bills, and according to the ABI, most claims are for the costs of veterinary treatment for accident or illness. However, there are many other things that cat insurance can cover, including:

• Complementary treatments, e.g. physiotherapy and alternative medicine
• Cattery fees if you are unable to look after your cat because you fall ill
• Costs of cancelling your personal holiday because your cat is ill
• Your cat passing away
• Theft of your cat
• Costs of advertising and offering rewards if your cat goes missing
• Costs of emergency treatment if your cat is taken ill abroad

The last four items in this list could be especially attractive to owners of pedigree cats, who might for example be at greater risk of having their pet stolen, might travel within the UK and abroad for cat shows and in general might have a cat that is worth more than your average domestic cat.

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Pedigree cats and illnesses

In general, a pedigree cat is more likely to be ill than other types of cross bred cats. This is partly because some pedigree breeds are susceptible to hereditary illnesses.

Because of this, insuring a pedigree cat is almost certain to cost more than insuring an ordinary moggy. Cats tend to be less expensive to insure than dogs and certain other domestic animals, but average insurance for a cat can still cost on average £146 per year.

Should I take out a lifetime or an annual policy?

Pedigree cats may be affected by hereditary conditions, which could last for many years or even throughout your cat’s lifetime. This means that for pedigree animals, lifetime policies could be an especially attractive option. Here you can continue to receive cover for as long as the condition lasts, although not surprisingly lifetime insurance will be more expensive than shorter term policies. Annual limits will be in place, but they will be reinstated on renewal of the policy.

The alternative is to purchase an annual policy, which will cover claims for a 12 month period. However, if your cat’s health condition lasts for more than 12 months, the ongoing condition may be excluded from the new policy.

Because lifetime insurance may be expensive, you are advised to look at insuring your cat at a young age, as premiums tend to increase with age. You can usually buy a policy for kittens around eight weeks after their birth. The maximum age for obtaining cover varies between insurers.

If you decide lifetime insurance isn’t for you, the next best option may be maximum benefit cover. This type of insurance sets a maximum amount that can be claimed for a particular condition, but the amount is not reset each year, so if you use 50% of the maximum benefit in one year, only 50% of it will be left in future years

What is not covered by cat insurance?

Pre-existing conditions are almost certainly not going to be covered by any insurance provider. These are conditions that you knew your cat had suffered from when you took out the insurance, including conditions for which you might not have sought veterinary treatment.

Unexpected and emergency trips to the vet are likely to be covered under your policy, but routine check-ups and vaccinations may not be covered. Dental treatment might not be covered too, although some insurance providers will cover this for an additional premium.

Why not start a quote now and see how much insurance for your pedigree cat could be? It may save you money and could help to give you peace of mind.

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