Pet insurance in Victoria
Compare your pet insurance options in Victoria.
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Looking for pet insurance in Victoria? Compare your options and find out what you need to know in order to get cover that works for you.
Pet insurance policies in Victoria
How does pet insurance work?
There are three types of cover to choose from:
- Comprehensive. The highest level of cover available. This can insure against vet bills resulting from accidental injuries and illnesses, as well as including a range of extra benefits, like covering some of your routine care expenses.
- Accident and illness. Can cover both accidental injuries and illnesses, but might not have some of the additional benefits of comprehensive cover.
- Accident only. Basic pet insurance. Only covers treatments following accidental injuries.
When you compare the different pet insurance options around Victoria, you’ll see some other differences between policies.
- Percentage of costs covered. One policy might cover 80% of vet bills, while you need to pay the remaining 20%. Another might split the costs 50/50.
- Annual limits. At the upper end, pet insurance can pay out over $15,000 each 12-month period. This is the total policy limit. Some of the more basic ones, however, might have limits of around $5,000, or less.
The cheapest pet insurance in Victoria is naturally going to be a very basic one but it’s not necessarily the best value for money.
How much does pet insurance cost in Victoria?
In addition to the type of policy you choose, your pet insurance premiums will also depend on a range of other factors.
- Age. Older pets are more prone to health issues, and are therefore typically more expensive to insure.
- Gender. This can affect the types of health issues a pet may encounter.
- Breed. Different breeds have very different risk levels. A pedigree with a high chance of congenital illnesses, for example, might have higher premiums.
- Whether your dog is desexed: Desexing or neutering your pet can make it much less prone to certain health issues, leading to lower premiums.
Have a dog? Find out how much pet insurance costs for each breed.
Your location can also plays a significant role, and insurers will often want to know your postcode, which might be used when determining premiums. Sometimes, an insurer might divide an area into city, suburbs and regional areas. For example:
- Pet insurance in Melbourne city. A higher risk of traffic accidents, and other factors, might lead to higher premiums. In other ways it might be safer, which can lead to lower premiums.
- Pet insurance in suburban Melbourne. A lower risk of being hit by a car than in the city, but there may be a higher likelihood of other issues depending on the neighbourhood.
- Pet insurance in regional Victoria. There may be a higher chance of wildlife injuries in regional areas, such as snake bites and kangaroo attacks.
Insurers might consider each of these location-based factors differently, and many might also assess the breed and the risk factors of individual animals in different ways. This can lead to very different premiums from different insurers.
Is pet insurance worth it in Victoria?
Are you going to get value for money out of pet insurance? It all depends. For example, if you take out cover and your pet later develops a chronic health issue you might be glad to have it.
Or you (and your pet) might get lucky and never develop any serious health issues, and you’ll never have to make a claim. Even though you’re not getting your money’s worth, this might still be the best case scenario.
Consider the typical costs of pet insurance in Victoria.
|Policy||Cost per week||Cost per month||Cost per year||Cost of cover over 5 years||Cost of cover over 10 years|
|Accident and illness cover||$8.08 to $12.69||$35 to $55||$420 to $660||$2,100 to $3,300||$4,200 to $6,600|
|Accident and illness cover plus routine and preventative care||$13.85+||$60+||$720+||$3,600+||$7,200+|
Now consider the cost of some common vet bills.
|Illness or injury||Total cost of treatment||Amount covered by pet insurance (80% of bill)||Remaining amount you would need to pay|
|Cruciate ligament surgery||$2,500||$2,000||$500|
|Vomiting/diarrhoea||$200 to $3,000||$160 to $2,400||$40 to $600|
|Ingesting a foreign body||$2,000||$1,600||$400|
*Disclaimer: Please note that the costs quoted in the above table are guides only. Costs can vary greatly based on severity, required treatment and how much your vet charges. For example, the quoted cost of snake bite is $2,000, but in severe cases treatment could cost well over $10,000.
Is it worth it?
Although the cost of pet insurance can vary widely, depending on a wide range of different factors, you’re probably going to be hit with a considerable vet bill at some point.
You know your pet better than anyone, so if you’re on the fence about whether it’s worth it, you might consider more individual factors. For example:
- How’s your pet’s temperament? If your pet has a tendency to get into fights, or is a little too friendly with potentially dangerous animals like snakes and spiders, you might want to consider pet insurance.
- How energetic is your pet? Some breeds are naturally higher energy than others, but some particularly high energy pets might be more likely to experience health issues in later years, as all the activity takes its toll.
Generally, the older your pet gets, the more likely it is that health issues will emerge and that pet insurance will be worth it, even as premiums rise with your pet’s age.
However, because of the way pet insurance policies work, it can be a good idea to take out cover sooner rather than later. This is because of:
- Pre-existing conditions. These might not be covered if you only take out pet insurance after they develop.
- Age limits. At a certain age, such as 9 years old, insurers might decline to cover your pet. However, if you take out a lifetime pet insurance policy before then, you can maintain cover for life, regardless of age.
Are there any exclusions to be aware of?
You could have the best pet insurance in Victoria, but even that would still come with a range of exclusions. Some of the typical exclusions you may encounter are:
- Dental. Some insurers won’t cover pet dental issues.
- Pre-existing conditions. These are typically not covered if they existed before you took out a policy.
- Specific diseases, and types of illness: Infectious diseases and parasites are often excluded, as well as a range of specific types of illness, especially if they can be prevented with a vaccination.
Insurers may also decline claims if they resulted from your breaching pet ownership laws in Victoria.
Laws for pet owners in Victoria
- All dogs are 3 months or older must microchipped and registered with your local council
- You are legally required to securely confine dogs to your property. This means having a closed gate and escape-proof fence.
- A range of procedures, such as debarking, tail docking and ear cropping are strictly prohibited, except when required for therapeutic reasons or in accordance with appropriate veterinary practices
- Shock collars are strictly regulated, and there are also specific rules on how you can travel with dogs in the backs of cars. You are generally required to take all appropriate steps to ensure their comfort and wellbeing, such as making sure they don’t overheat or burn their paws on hot metal while a car is in the sun.
Your local council may also have its own rules. For example, you will typically be legally required to pick up any of your dog droppings left in a public area.
In all parts of Victoria, you are legally required to take good care of your pet. This includes:
- Providing adequate food, water, shelter and veterinary treatment
- Treating your pet humanely
- Handing over stray dogs to the local council as soon as possible
- Following all local council, and state regulations that may exist around microchipping, neutering and other pet care
What insurers can I access in Victoria?
There are many different policy types and cover options. The wide variety of potential factors that insurers consider mean you might find some very different premiums from different providers
It can be worth taking some time to compare your pet insurance options in Victoria, to make sure you find cover that’s right for you and your pet.
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