The Average Cost of Pet Insurance: Everything You Need to Know

As a pet owner, you want to ensure that your furry friend stays happy and healthy. One of the ways you can do that is by getting pet insurance. But what is the average cost of pet insurance? In this article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about the average cost of pet insurance, why you need it, and what factors can impact the price of your policy.

What is Pet Insurance?

Pet insurance is a type of policy that covers the cost of veterinary treatment for your pet. This can include everything from routine check-ups to more serious illnesses and emergency care. Just like with human health insurance, pet insurance policies can vary widely in terms of what they cover and how much they cost.

There are typically four types of pet insurance policies:

Type of Policy
Covers only injuries from accidents
Covers illnesses for a set period of time (such as 12 months)
Maximum Benefit
Covers illnesses up to a certain amount (such as $5,000)
Covers illnesses up to a certain amount per year (such as $10,000) for the life of the pet

Why Do You Need Pet Insurance?

Many pet owners underestimate the cost of veterinary care. A routine visit to the vet can cost several hundred dollars, and emergency care can quickly add up to thousands of dollars. Pet insurance can help offset these costs and ensure that your pet gets the care they need without breaking the bank.

Additionally, pet insurance can give you peace of mind. You won’t have to worry about how you’ll afford treatment if your pet gets sick or injured.

What Factors Impact the Cost of Pet Insurance?

The cost of pet insurance can vary widely depending on a number of factors, including:

  • The type of policy you choose
  • The breed of your pet
  • The age of your pet
  • The location where you live

Let’s take a closer look at each of these factors.

Type of Policy

As we mentioned earlier, there are four types of pet insurance policies. The more comprehensive the policy, the higher the premium will be. For example, a lifetime policy will typically be more expensive than an accident-only policy.

Breed of Your Pet

Some breeds are more prone to certain health problems than others. For example, bulldogs are prone to respiratory problems, while golden retrievers are more likely to develop hip dysplasia. Insurers may charge higher premiums for breeds that are more likely to require medical treatment.

Age of Your Pet

Just like with human health insurance, the older your pet gets, the more expensive their insurance policy will be. This is because older pets are more likely to develop health problems and require medical treatment.


The cost of pet insurance can also vary depending on where you live. For example, if you live in a city with high veterinary costs, you can expect to pay more for pet insurance than if you live in a rural area with lower costs.

What is the Average Cost of Pet Insurance?

So, what is the average cost of pet insurance? According to a survey by the North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA), the average monthly premium for accident and illness coverage in 2020 was:

Average Monthly Premium

It’s worth noting that these averages can vary widely depending on the factors we discussed earlier. Additionally, you may be able to find policies that are cheaper or more expensive than these averages.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is pet insurance worth it?

Whether or not pet insurance is worth it depends on your individual situation. If you have a young, healthy pet, you may not need insurance. However, if you have an older pet or a pet that is prone to health problems, insurance can be a lifesaver.

Can I get pet insurance for an older pet?

Yes, many insurers offer policies for older pets. However, the premiums will likely be higher than for a younger pet.

What does pet insurance cover?

Pet insurance can cover a wide range of treatments, including routine check-ups, illnesses, and emergency care. However, the coverage can vary depending on the policy you choose.

How do I choose the right pet insurance policy?

When choosing a pet insurance policy, consider your pet’s age, breed, and health history. Look for policies that cover the treatments your pet is most likely to need, and compare costs and coverage levels between policies.

What if my pet has a pre-existing condition?

Most insurers will not cover pre-existing conditions. However, some policies may cover conditions that have been cured or in remission for a certain amount of time.

How do I make a claim on my pet insurance?

Each insurer will have their own process for making a claim. Typically, you will need to submit a claim form along with any relevant receipts or medical records. Check with your insurer to find out their specific process.


Pet insurance can be a valuable investment for pet owners who want to ensure that their furry friends get the care they need. While the cost of pet insurance can vary widely depending on a number of factors, including the type of policy, breed of pet, age of pet, and location, it’s important to consider the potential cost savings and peace of mind that insurance can provide.

If you’re considering pet insurance, take the time to compare policies and choose the one that best meets your needs and budget.