If you’ve ever owned a cat, you most likely know that they have some pretty intense medical conditions that they’re susceptible to. For instance, it’s common to know someone who has to give their cat insulin. Diabetes is increasing in cats at an alarming rate due to more overweight cats, according to VCA Animal Hospitals. And that’s just for starters. These treatments can get expensive, so below we’ll look at common health problems in cats, where to find pet insurance for cats, and what to look for in a policy.
- Common Health Problems in Cats
- The Best Pet Insurance for Cats
- How Much Does Pet Insurance for Cats Cost?
- What to Consider in Pet Insurance for Cats
Common Health Problems in Cats:
Cats are adorable, playful and fluffy. But they can also have a variety of health problems they are prone to. According to the ASPCA (https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/cat-care/common-cat-diseases), common health problems in cats include:
- Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (a virus the weakens the cat’s immune system, leaving them susceptible to other infections)
- Feline Leukemia Virus (also attacks a cat’s immune system)
- High-rise Syndrome (the actual clinical name for when a cat falls out of a window and gets injured – not all cats land on their feet)
- Upper Respiratory Infection
These are just some of the more common conditions, and treatments will vary in prices based on on-going care and severity of the illness.
Fees for exams and treatments are also hard to predict because they can change based on the clinic and location where you live. However, as an example, Jacksonville Veterinary Services has a $30 physical exam fee for all office visits. From there, you can purchase different packages, like the diagnostic package for $265 that covers the physical exam, radiographs, bloodwork, fecal test and urinalysis for your cat.
>>MORE: What do Pet Insurance Cover?
The Best Pet Insurance for Cats
The good news is that all the major pet insurance companies cover some form of pet insurance for cats. Below is an outline of the types of cat insurance you can find from the major U.S. pet insurance companies. We also took quotes from each company for a 4-year-old American Shorthair cat living in New Jersey.
Nationwide: Nationwide offers comprehensive cat insurance covering illnesses, injuries and even wellness care on some of the plans. Major medical with wellness is $39.48 per month and whole pet with wellness is $97.18 per month. Read our review of Nationwide.
Trupanion: Trupanion offers cat and kitten insurance that pays 90 percent of eligible healthcare costs and has no payout limits. At the $200 deductible level, it’s $59.09 per month. Read our review of Trupanion.
Petplan: Petplan covers accidents, injuries and illnesses. The one main insurance policy does not have wellness or preventative care options, however. At the $250 deductible level, it’s $41.86 per month. Read our review of Petplan.
ASPCA: ASPCA also covers accidents and illnesses. It has the added benefits of covering dental disease, behavior issues and hereditary conditions, as well. For a $250 deductible, it’s $27.14 per month. Read our review of ASPCA.
American Modern Insurance Group: This company has pet insurance for cats under its main plan. There are even dental and wellness add-on coverage options. The company’s website states you can expect to pay about $15 per month for cats.
Embrace Pet Insurance: Embrace covers accidents and illnesses. It also has a wellness rewards optional add-on that reimburses you for routine care. For a $200 deductible, it’s $31.93 per month. Read our review of Embrace Pet Insurance.
Healthy Paws Pet Insurance: This company covers cats under its main plan. A few of the conditions it covers are illnesses, accidents, cancer, and even alternative treatments. With a $250 deductible, it’s $20.71 per month. Read our review of Healthy Paws Pet Insurance.
Figo Pet Insurance: Figo also covers cats. This company is known for its highly customizable three-tier plans. With a $250 deductible, the “most popular” mid-range preferred plan is $24.51 per month.
PetFirst Healthcare: PetFirst prides itself on covering cats across all stages of life. It covers accidents, illnesses and even exam fees. The mid-range plan with a $250 deductible is $19.87 per month.
Pet Partners Insurance: An interesting fact about this company is that it is partnered with the Cat Fanciers’ Association, meaning any cat registered with the association gets a 10 percent discount on full-term policies. With a $250 deductible, the plan is $25.58 per month.
VPI Pet Insurance: Since VPI was rolled under the Nationwide brand, you can expect the same comprehensive pet insurance for cats and pricing as from Nationwide. Read of our review of VPI Pet Insurance.
Among the companies we covered above, we vote Figo Pet Insurance and Healthy Paws Pet Insurance to be the best pet insurance companies for cats thanks to their strong overall ratings and their very reasonable prices.
>>MORE: Is Pet Insurance Worth It?
How Much Does Pet Insurance for Cats Cost?
On average, cat parents should expect to pay $20-$40 a month for their cat’s health insurance. At this price, they expect to have good coverage, good annual limits, reasonable deductibles, and reimbursement percentages.
Although American Modern Insurance Group claims on its website that the price is as low as $15 a month, we suspect that that price might not be for comprehensive coverage. We couldn’t get a quote from this company, so we don’t know for sure.
In the high end, cat parents can expect as much as $90 a month to have the most comprehensive coverage, unlimited annual benefits, low deductible, and low reimbursement percentage. Nationwide and Trupanion offer these comprehensive plans.
What to Consider in Pet Insurance for Cats:
It can seem overwhelming when looking at just how many companies offer pet insurance for cats. However, there are several benefits and coverage options to think about. Once you narrow down what options are right for you, it will be easier to make a choice on which plan covers your needs best.
Annual limit: Most quote systems on the pet insurance websites allow you to customize this option. Annual benefit, or annual limit, states how much you can receive in payments per year. However, some go down to around a $3,000 annual benefit on the low end (which may not cover care) or run all the way up to an unlimited annual benefit. Common mid-range annual benefit amounts are anywhere in the $10,000 to $30,000 range.
Deductible: This amount designates how much you must pay before you can receive benefits. For instance, the most common deductible is around $250, though it’s common to see them range from $100 to $750.
Reimbursement percentages: These dictate how much the insurance policy pays for vet expenses. You can usually select 70, 80 or 90 percent.
Whether the plan covers dental: Many plans exclude dental, whether accident, illness or wellness care like cleaning. If dental coverage is a concern for you, look into plans that cover dental right in the core policy or offer an add-on option. Often, dental cleanings will be covered under wellness care add-ons.
Wellness and routine coverage: Many core plans don’t cover wellness and preventative care like routine annual exams. However, it’s common to see wellness coverage add-ons that you can purchase on top of the main plan.
Waiting periods: All pet insurance plans have waiting periods, and pet insurance for cats is no exception. A 14-day waiting period is common, though they vary between conditions. For instance, accidents might have a 48-hour waiting period and orthopedic conditions can have a six-month period
How comprehensive the coverage is: The options we listed above are very comprehensive. However, some plans out there only cover accidents and not illnesses, for instance. It’s important to review policies to make sure you are getting the coverage you want. Many sites have a “sample policy” document you can review before you sign up.
- Cats can come with a host of health problems, from cancer to immune system viruses they can catch. Prices for exams, diagnosis and treatment can pile up. As such, it’s important to consider pet insurance for cats.
- All the major pet insurance companies in the U.S. offer an option to buy pet insurance for your cat.
- It’s important to consider what you want out of a policy. The most easily customizable options on many plans are the annual limit, deductible and reimbursement. You may also want to check and see if dental and wellness are covered, as well as looking at how comprehensive the coverage is overall. Waiting periods can also be an important factor.