When it comes to our health and wellbeing, pets are our greatest allies.
With just a purr or a tail wag, they comfort us and make us feel needed. Research has shown that just petting a companion animal increases the levels of feel-good hormones and relieves stress – so it’s no wonder pets have found a way into our hearts and homes.
We return the favor by scrutinizing pet food labels to ensure they get a healthy and balanced diet, provide them with toys to make sure they are mentally stimulated, and treat them to plenty of cuddles and tasty snacks.
That’s why it’s surprising that only 4% of American dog owners and 1% of cat owners purchase pet insurance plans and coverage.
But, if disaster strikes in the form of a medical emergency, just how prepared are you? The truth of the matter is that nobody is financially prepared for a $7,000 emergency vet bill.
The Average Cost of Pet Care
The average cost of routine care for a dog is between $200 and $400 per year, and the average cost for a cat is around $90 to $200 per year.
But routine care is not why most people choose to purchase pet insurance. The cost of accidents and illnesses is another story.
If your dog or cat is involved in an accident, emergency room care can cost $1,000 and up. A torn ACL can set you back $3,000 to repair. If your pet develops a dread disease like cancer, it could cost upward of $5,000, and hip dysplasia in dogs can run between $3,000 and $7,000 per hip.
Why Pet Insurance is Worth It
If your pet is ill, but it may cost thousands of dollars to treat her, you may be faced with every pet owner’s nightmare: you may have to put her down to end her suffering because you can’t afford the treatment. Unfortunately, this scenario is so common that it has a name – economic euthanasia.
On the other hand, the average accident and illness pet insurance policy costs around $600 per year, and accident-only coverage only costs around $200 per year. Considering the average cost of pet care if something goes wrong, it’s easy to see why pet insurance is worth it – especially if a high bill would mean facing economic euthanasia.
The Bottom Line
If you can’t afford comprehensive pet insurance, consider purchasing an accident-only policy.
Even if your dog never gets hit by a car, swallows a foreign object, or gets attacked by another dog, most pet owners will tell you that the low cost of an accident-only pet insurance policy is worth it just because it offers them priceless peace of mind.
You’ll never have to worry about having to make the hardest decision a pet parent can make just because you can’t afford the vet bills, and you can rest easy knowing that if something goes wrong, you’ll be able to get the lifesaving care your loyal companion needs.
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