Here’s what’s up with pet insurance

In 2018 it is estimated that $72.13 billion was spent on pets in the United States and of that, $18.26 billion was spent on veterinary care, according to the American Pet Products Association.

With all of that money going toward keeping pets healthy, not including food, supplies and other things needed to keep an animal happy, there is a way to help pay for things.

Pet insurance is available through a network of 12 providers in the United States, said Nick Braun, founder of

Back in 2011 Braun created his website as a way for people to find and compare pet insurance rates.

Now, is partnered with nine of the 12 pet insurance companies in the United States, giving its users the ability to get a good idea of what quality pet insurers are out there, Braun said.

“We wanted to encapsulate the best care providers out there,” he said.

The service, which is free to its users, has landing pages for all 50 states, outlining basic medical expenses that animals can cost their owners over their lifetime.

What is in pet insurance

Braun has fielded questions from his website’s users over the years on anything from what is pet insurance to what they should be looking for in a plan.

The biggest question he gets has to do with a simple scenario that many pet owners face, “My pet is limping, can I get insurance to cover their vet bills?”

The short answer is no, Braun said, noting pet insurance does not cover pre-existing conditions such as an injury or illness.

The best thing for pet owners to do is to get insurance before an injury takes place because that’s where the insurance can help, Braun said.

Pet insurance covers unexpected expenses such as surgeries and hospitalizations for accidents or illnesses.

A few insurers will also offer wellness plans that will cover routine wellness visits and vaccinations.

The catch with pet insurance, though, is that it works on a reimbursal model only, Braun said.

While customers can use any vet with any pet insurance, the owner will have to pay everything up front and then submit a claim to their pet insurer to get reimbursed, he said.

That’s how pet insurance differs from human insurance, since there are no specific price caps on services the vet provides — it would be almost impossible to set hard and fast rules and limits on a pet insurance, Braun said.

If pet owners are interested in learning more about what kinds of pet insurance are out there, they can visit to learn more.

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