You finally found your companion, some cute little kitten or a mature cat that has stolen your heart. You’re completing your adoption paperwork and a screen appears right before you get to the payment screen…Would you like to enroll in pet insurance? What do you do? I mean health insurance for people is pretty standard, but what about our pets?
To answer this question you probably need to consider a few variables:
The age of your kitty
Insurance prices are less for kittens and premiums increase each year as the kitten gets older. Kittens tend to have less medical issues but on the other hand are more prone to accidents. Like one of our kittens that swallowed a hair tie in the first month after adoption and ended up at the emergency room with a bowel blockage or another kitten that slid off a 2nd story balcony and broke its leg. Older cats tend to have more medical issues than kittens, but also be aware that pre-existing conditions aren’t covered, so if you’re going the insurance route you might not want to wait too long.
What do you know about your kitty’s health
When adopting a kitten from a rescue it’s not common to know very much about their genealogy or health. The majority of the time we have no idea who the father is and in a lot of cases we don’t even know who the mother is, like when we take in what are commonly refer to bottle babies. A bottle baby means there is no nursing mother and a person is going to assume those duties. But even if we know who the mom is we are typically lacking a medical record because most stray cats or cats that are being let out to roam aren’t being vetted. As a result of all these factors, for a rescue, the answer to this question is that typically not very much is known. Because of this unknown medical history one could make a case that insurance is beneficial for the majority of rescue cats and kittens.
How financially stable are you
This boils down to…can your finances withstand a large vet bill and if so how large? Last year one of my cats had a urinary blockage even though he was on daily medication and prescription food to prevent this! It happened on a Friday and quickly moved into the weekend where he required round-the-clock care. His cost of care quickly rose into the thousands. And there is nothing sadder than reading a FB post by a pet parent that is struggling with the decision of can they afford the needed care to help their pet. This makes a great case for accident/catastrophic pet insurance. It’s a little less expensive than the full coverage that includes routine medical exams and provides a safety net for a true emergency.
While I’m going to wrap this up, I will revisit this topic later and talk about the types of coverage, wait periods, different coverage levels and how the payments and reimbursements are typically handled. In the meantime, know that all RescueMe adopters get a pet insurance offer that’s available during the checkout process that starts the very next day with no wait period. This isn’t through RescueMe and we get nothing for offering it, but our software system has thought of everything and adds this conveniently into the checkout process. We encourage all adopters to check it out and do what makes sense for them.