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When is it a good idea to get pet insurance?

13 ON YOUR SIDE Money Guide: Pet insurance has been around for decades but has grown in popularity in recent years. Is it worth the cost?

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Pet parents want to keep their fur babies safe and healthy for as long as possible.

That’s where pet insurance comes in. But is pet insurance worth the cost?

First — let’s look at what’s covered under these plans.

Accident-only plans cover injuries sustained from an accident such as bite lacerations or an ingested foreign object. Premiums are usually lower than an accident and illness plan.

Accident and illnesses plans include a wide range of medical issues such as emergency care, digestive problems, cancer, diabetes, lab tests, x-rays, prescription medication, and more.

What’s not covered?

Most companies don’t cover things like grooming or pre-existing conditions, which is basically an injury or illness that your pet had before coverage started.

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How much do plans cost?

Policies vary when it comes to cost and coverage with some starting as low as $20 a month.

Accident and illness benefits can cost up to $600 a year for a dog and about $350 for cats. Accident-only is close to $220 a year for dogs and $134 for cats.

“Most veterinarians are positive about insurance because it allows you to be able to, you know, kind of take the string of financial restraints off of caring for your pet,” James Barr, Chief Medical Officer, Blue Pearl Specialty & Emergency Pet Hospital, said.

Experts we spoke with say clients spend an average of $40-50 a month which may seem like a lot for some, but they say if your pet develops cancer treatment could cost anywhere between $10,000-15,000.

Having pet insurance could help you reclaim some of that money.

Like with most things, whether it makes sense for you depends on your finances and the kind of pet you have.

RELATED: No, there is not a nationwide spike in animals surrendered to shelters in 2021

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