Pet Insurance: From benefits to types; all you need to know

Pet insurance safeguards animals' health and well-being, covering costly medical expenses and unforeseen mishaps. Benefits include financial safety, exclusive benefits, and global coverage. Types include dog and cat insurance, with plans offered by various companies in India.

CA Rohit J. Gyanchandani
First Published25 Jun 2024, 09:14 AM IST
Pet insurance ensures pets receive necessary medical care by covering expenses for surgeries, hospitalization, and outpatient treatments.
Pet insurance ensures pets receive necessary medical care by covering expenses for surgeries, hospitalization, and outpatient treatments. (Image by Zigmars Berzins from Pixabay)

There is a famous saying, "A pet is a man's best friend." This is absolutely true, isn't it?

Pets love us unconditionally with all their heart and soul. All they want is our love and care. So, when it comes to their health and wellness, why not take some extra steps? The best option is getting pet insurance.

Pet insurance is a special type of insurance for various animals that safeguards their overall health and well-being. Just as we buy health insurance for ourselves and our loved ones, pet insurance has become a great way to ensure our pets receive the medical and financial help they may need.

With annual routine expenses for animals rising, being a pet parent can be costly. Vaccinations, tick treatments, grooming, and other care can cost anywhere from 10,000 to 54,000 annually. Among these, vet fees and medical or surgical costs are often the highest if your pet requires such care. With a pet insurance policy, your pets can receive the best medical and legal assistance in case of unexpected situations.

Also Read | Should you buy pet insurance?

Benefits of pet insurance

1. Financial safety - Pet insurance acts as a safety net to cover costly expenses that may arise when your pet falls ill or requires urgent medical treatment.

2. Protection from unforeseen mishaps - Your furry friend may meet with an accident unexpectedly. A pet health insurance policy can cover such unforeseen circumstances, saving you from significant financial burdens.

3. Exclusive benefits - Many pet insurance companies offer exclusive benefits, such as coverage for damages your pet may cause to third parties or their property. Additionally, these policies can be helpful if your pet gets lost or stolen.

4. Regular health check-ups - Certain plans provide free annual health check-ups, helping you maintain your pet’s health without worrying about the cost of regular medical visits.

5. Special and modern treatments - Pet insurance can cover special and modern treatments, which can otherwise be very expensive.

6. Global coverage - Some plans offer global coverage, which is useful when travelling abroad with your pet. They cover any mishaps that might occur during your trip.

Also Read | Digit Insurance partners with Vetina to offer a comprehensive pet insurance plan. Details here

Types of pet insurance

While insurance companies in India have long offered cattle and livestock insurance, private-sector insurers now provide comprehensive pet insurance covering not only death but also expenses like worldwide transit, third-party liabilities, theft or loss of pets, entry fees for dog shows, and more. Here are the main types of pet insurance plans available:

  1. Dog insurance: The most common pet insurance in India. With an estimated 28-29 million pets in India, dogs constitute a significant portion. Since the COVID-19 outbreak, this number has risen as many people have turned to dogs for companionship. Most pet insurance plans are designed for dog owners, offering protection against various risks and ensuring the safety and health of their beloved pets.
  2. Cat insurance: Cats are cherished pets, and many insurance providers now offer plans specifically for cat owners. Cat insurance protects your feline friend from the risks of her adventurous nature and ensures her overall well-being. These plans provide coverage for accidents, illnesses, and other health-related expenses.

Pet insurance providers in India

The following companies provide various insurance policies for pets in India:

  • Bajaj Allianz Pet Dog Insurance Policy
  • Future Generali India Dog Health Insurance
  • The New India Assurance Dog Insurance Policy
  • The Oriental Insurance Dog Insurance
  • Digit Pet Insurance Policy (covers both dogs and cat, but planning to launch soon)

Pet insurance inclusions

The range of benefits varies with the insurer as well as the cost of the premium. Here are some common coverages provided under pet insurance:

1. Surgery expenses cover - Covers the cost of surgeries needed due to accidents or illnesses.

2. Death due to accident/diseases - Provides financial compensation in case your pet dies due to an accident or illness.

3. Hospitalisation cover - Covers the cost of hospitalisation for your pet in case of severe illness or injury.

4. OPD cover - Covers outpatient department expenses, including routine check-ups and minor treatments.

5. Lost or stolen pets - Provides financial compensation if your pet is lost or stolen.

Pet insurance exclusions

In some cases, the insurer does not cover medical expenses. These exclusions typically include:

1. Non-essential surgeries - Surgeries that are not necessitated by illness or accident.

2. Congenital defects - Surgeries to cure deformities or congenital defects.

3. Pregnancy-related surgeries - Surgeries performed due to pregnancy or whelping.

4. Grooming-related surgeries - Any surgery related to grooming.

5. Cosmetic or elective surgeries - Surgeries not related to an injury, including cosmetic procedures.

6. Non-accidental dental surgeries - Dental surgeries not caused by an accident or injury.

Also Read | InsuranceDekho partners Future Generali to offer pet insurance

Eligibility for pet insurance

Eligibility criteria for pet insurance depend on the insurer. Typically, you can buy pet insurance for pets aged between 2 months to 10 years. For dogs, insurance can be purchased for indigenous, cross-bred, and exotic breeds. Note that the premium of the insurance plan will vary based on the age, breed, and size of the dog.

In conclusion, just like you, your furry friend needs health coverage too. With pet insurance for dogs and cats, you can cover most medical expenses that may arise, helping your finances stay intact from unforeseen costs.

If you have a pet or plan to get one, don't miss out on affordable pet insurance. Compare pet insurance prices, applicable conditions, inclusions, and exclusions of various plans, and choose the one that suits you best.

Rohit Gyanchandani is Managing Director at Nandi Nivesh Private Limited

 

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First Published:25 Jun 2024, 09:14 AM IST
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