Have you just adopted an older cat? If you’re used to getting pet insurance for a younger cat, you might notice straight away that it costs more to insure an older cat. However, there are certain types of insurance that are better for older cats, such as lifetime policies.
It is important for pet owners to understand how insurance works for older cats. Once a cat is older than seven, insurance providers start to limit what they offer. There can also be conditions or restrictions attached to the premiums, such as the policy not covering pre-existing conditions.
Some types of insurance are better for older cats. Read on to find out what they are and how you can find the best cat insurance for your senior cat.
Why is insurance for older cats more expensive?
As cats grow old, they are more at risk of developing health or dental issues. Whether this is due to old age or an illness, a cat will need to visit the vet more often, which can become expensive over time.
An insurance provider will have to pay more claims for an older cat, which is why the premiums are more expensive. However, there are plenty of healthy, older cats who might not need to go to the vet very often. The premium is based on the average older cat, which means owners have to pay more on their monthly payments.
Even though the insurance will be more expensive, it doesn’t have to be difficult to get an insurance policy for your cat.
The best type of insurance for older cats
Many pet insurance providers will offer different levels of coverage to suit their customers’ needs. However, not every type of insurance is suitable for an older cat. For example, the accident only policy isn’t recommended for an older cat, as it doesn’t cover illnesses.
Read on to find out the three types of cat insurance that we think are the best for an older cat.
Lifetime pet insurance
This is the most expensive of the policies available. It will allow you to make claims on illnesses and accidents for the rest of your cat’s life, as long as you continue to pay the premium. Of course, this premium will be more expensive for an older cat since they are at a higher risk of developing an illness.
Each year there is a certain amount allowed for you to make a claim for your cat. When the year is up, the amount resets and your cat is still covered for any conditions that need treatment. In our opinion, this is the best type of insurance for an older cat.
Maximum benefit pet insurance
A maximum benefit pet insurance allows you to claim for an injury or illness up to a set amount, like $1500. This is suitable for short term conditions, but it isn’t great for long term ones which often develop in older cats.
The benefit of this insurance type is that you can continue to claim on the same condition until the limit is used up or until it is reset the next year. For example, if a cat needs ongoing medication, this would be easily covered. It is often seen as a mid-range option for pet insurance.
Time-limited pet insurance
A time-limited insurance policy isn’t necessarily a good option for older cats who might develop long term health conditions. The coverage usually lasts for 12 months and will cover an illness or accident within this timeframe.
However, if an older cat develops an illness that lasts longer than 12 months, it will be classed as a pre-existing condition. This means that it won’t be covered by insurance anymore and you will have to cover all the costs of the treatment yourself.
Things to look out for when buying insurance
When you are getting ready to buy pet insurance, it is important that you consider a few things. This will help you make an informed decision on which insurance policy is best for your older cat.
Most insurance providers won’t cover pre-existing conditions. An older cat is more likely to already have a condition that might need treatment. However, some won’t class an illness as pre-existing if the cat hasn’t shown symptoms in the last 2 years. Be sure to read the fine print and find out what the provider classes as “pre-existing.”
The deductible, or excess, is the amount that you will have to pay before being able to make a claim. It varies with different providers and different insurance types. Make sure you choose one with a deductible that you can afford at a moment’s notice if your cat gets sick.
Different policies and providers will cover different things. Some will pay out money if the pet dies or is lost. Some can even help to pay the cost of putting your animal to sleep as a last resort. However, not all providers offer the same.
Find out what matters to you and make sure it is covered by the insurance policy.
Frequently asked questions about insurance for older cats
Is pet insurance worth it for an older cat?
While it is more difficult to get insurance for an older cat, it is worth it. Older cats are more likely to become ill and have problems as they age, which can cost a lot of money to treat. Insurance helps to cover the costs and provide financial help to owners.
Most owners never know when their pet might get sick or have an accident. Insurance offers peace of mind to owners so their cat can get the treatments they need right away.
How much does cat insurance usually cost?
The average cost for pet insurance for cats in the US is $30 a month, which would cover accidents and illnesses. An older cat or rarer breed will cost more to insure than the average mixed breed cat. You can even get insurance for a cat for as little as $10 a month, depending on their age and health history.
The best insurance will last a lifetime
A lifetime insurance policy is the best option for an older cat. While the monthly premiums and deductible fees might be more expensive, the insurance will cover your cat for the rest of its life.