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The Pros and Cons of Pet Insurance

  • Emily Doran
  • 13th of March 2015

Five years ago when I first purchased Pet Insurance for my two fur babies (no, I didn’t have any real children then), I was laughed at and ridiculed by friends and work mates for doing so. Now, Pet Insurance is much more common and well known with a number of main stream providers such as Southern Cross, The Warehouse and Pet-n-Sur offering pet insurance products. As with any insurance product there are pros and cons. Here is my list of the pros and cons of pet insurance:


- You have the peace of mind knowing that you can afford to get your furry friend looked after if anything illness or accident happens to them.
- Because you have insurance you are more likely to take your pet to the vets in the early stages of any illness or malady (rather than waiting to see if it will fix itself), which means things may be caught and treated earlier and your pet may suffer less.


  • Some insurance companies will only insure your pet if they are under 6 years old
  • It’s not cheap. Depending on what type of animal you have (cat or dog) or what type of policy you take (basic to all inclusive) you can be looking at $25 to $60 per month per animal.
  • There is often a hefty excess or a part portion that you have to pay
  • As with any insurance policy there are limits to how much cover you have and exclusions as to what is covered.
  • Not all animals can be insured

As Murphys Law would have it, we cancelled our pet insurance not long ago as we’d never claimed and were looking for ways to cut our costs. Biggest. Mistake. Ever. One of the fur babies promptly developed a limp which after numerous vet visits, a visit to an orthopaedic surgeon (yes! they exist for animals too), anti-biotics, anti-inflammatories and over $1000 in bills is still not fixed! Are we going to renew our pet insurance? We’re definitely looking into it……

Post Script: An update on the pet saga, since writing this post my cat has undergone an operation to fuse his shoulder joint ($3,000), developed a skin infection as a result (daily vet visits @ $65 a pop) and if the infection doesn't clear up he may have to have an operation to fix it (circa $1,000). Murphy has a lot to answer for! 

The information contained in this article is of a general nature and should not be taken as advice. It reflects the opinions of the writer only and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of New Zealand Home Loans.

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Emily Doran
  • Emily Doran Author