Pet Life Insurance Is a Thing. Do You Need It?

These days, it seems you can insure almost anything. We all know home owners insurance and auto insurance, but now there’s also wedding insurance and pet insurance and even pet life insurance. Yes, you heard that right. You can take out a policy against the life of your fur baby and collect money when it dies.

But if you think you’ll just insure them for millions and enjoy a nice retirement after they’re gone, you’ll have to keep dreaming. That’s not how these policies work. Here’s what you need to know and how to decide if one of these is right for you.

What is pet life insurance?

Pet life insurance is exactly what you think: life insurance for your dog, cat or other animal. As with life insurance for humans, the policy pays a death benefit to the policyholder when the animal dies. There are two main types of policies: full mortality and limited mortality. The comprehensive mortality policy covers the death of the pet, regardless of the reason. Limited mortality policies will only pay the death benefit if the animal dies for a covered reason, such as severe weather.

Some policies also cover pet theft. Therefore, if the animal is stolen and the owner is not able to recover it, the insurer will also give the agreed death benefit.

But you can’t just take out one of these policies for any ordinary pet. Typically, insurers only sell these policies for pets that earn income or are valuable in some way. For example, it might be possible to take out a life insurance policy for a police dog because it provides a valuable service and will be expensive to replace. Similarly, you can take out a policy on a prize-winning racehorse because it makes its owners money, which they will lose if the horse dies.

How much does pet life insurance cost?

Like all insurance, pet life insurance costs vary based on many factors. The age, breed and species of the animal are obviously important. Older pets are generally more expensive to insure than younger pets, and those with major health problems may not be eligible for a policy at all. The type of risks that the plan protects also have a great effect on the cost.

These policies have the usual deductibles and premiums to worry about. Going with a higher deductible can make monthly premiums cheaper. But it leads to bigger out-of-pocket costs in case of a claim.

Ultimately, the only way to find out how much a pet life insurance policy costs is to compare quotes from several providers to see what they can offer. But in general, these policies are quite expensive. Some can cost up to $900 a year.

Where can you get a pet life insurance policy?

Major life and pet insurers do not offer pet life insurance. Those interested in this coverage should seek out specialist insurers. Some companies that offer these policies include:

  • The Hartford
  • Ark Group International
  • Amwins
  • Sanger Insurance

You can find others by searching for “animal mortality insurance” online. Searching for “pet life insurance” may lead to pet health insurance policies instead.

It is not for everyone

Most pet owners don’t have much to gain from purchasing a pet life insurance policy—assuming they can get one. Those hoping for some assistance with veterinary bills for injuries and illnesses should invest in a pet health insurance policy in contrast. These are more easily available and are more affordable also, especially for those who opt for an accident plan only. It’s fairly easy to compare quotes online, and most companies allow pet owners to purchase a policy within minutes.

9 thoughts on “Pet Life Insurance Is a Thing. Do You Need It?”

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