What to Know Before Buying Senior Cat Insurance
Whether your feline friend has officially become a senior or you’ve recently adopted an elderly cat, I unpack whether pet insurance is the right choice for your cat!
In recent times, I have found that reading the FAQ pages of popular insurance companies has become a pastime of mine. Now before you go and judge me, I genuinely enjoy discovering what the general public wants to know about pet insurance. And perhaps I like seeing how many I can answer...but, I digress.
One of the most frequently asked questions, that surely makes its way onto every list, relates to cat insurance. More specifically, if it is worth it to take out a pet policy for a senior cat. So, instead of wasting your time flipping through FAQs (unless you’re into it) then this blog is aimed at helping clarify that question for you.
Why does everyone want to know about senior cat insurance?
Look, cats may age gracefully but that doesn’t mean that they are immune to age-related health issues. All nine of your cat’s lives run the risk of serious health risks as they get older, which is why most people begin to panic buy pet insurance the second they see signs of ageing.
However, most pet parents all come back to the same question: is it worth it?
And it’s a valid question. Naturally, your cat will most likely need more medical attention during its senior years. This often comes with a pretty hefty price tag since your visits to the vet will probably be more frequent!
Those are a lot of zeros!
The above subtitle should honestly be a direct quote because the number of times I’ve found myself saying that in a vet’s office is unheard of. Owning a pet means understanding that going to the vet requires a little more than a small change. However, in order to avoid a major blindsiding, it’s important to note that the price increases as your pet gets older.
Your vet will base their diagnostic and treatment procedures on your cat’s life stage. As your cat ages, internal changes will take place which can be challenging to notice as a pet parent. And, as your pet gets older, your vet will have to take special precautions and care when diagnosing and treating health concerns, which only adds to the expenses.
And so, if your brain wasn’t already trying to add up these costs, just know that for the average household, these costs aren’t feasible without a little help!
The reality of pre-existing conditions
Alright, so you’re busy making the proactive decision of taking out pet insurance but then you stumble onto your biggest hurdle: pre-existing conditions. Now obviously, your senior cat is more prone to have pre-existing conditions prior to you taking out pet insurance.
As a general rule of thumb, most pet insurers do not cover pre-existing conditions. This is based on the fact that they’re just too expensive. Pets with pre-existing illnesses require a lot more medical attention and are a higher risk, so most insurers will choose to steer clear.
Unless you’re Oneplan.
Oneplan pet insurance is my personal insurer and my deep love for them is based on the fact that they’re pretty badass. It seems they’ve embraced their rebellious nature and gone and done things their own way. So much so that they will cover your senior cat’s pre-existing condition after a 12-month waiting period has passed.
When your pet borders between senior and ancient
Let the record show that I am in no way trying to age shame your poor cat. However, according to veterinarians, if your cat is older than 9 years old, they’ve gently passed the “senior” threshold. The issue here is that this means that they may not be eligible for pet insurance. A quick Google search will reveal that most pet health care plans only cover your cat up until a certain age.
But fear not, because there is still a way that your senior cat can get the medical help they deserve.
Your best option in this scenario is to take out Accident Only cover. While this may not have all of the bells and whistles of comprehensive pet insurance, it covers all the important stuff. Your senior pet will be able to access any medical professional in the event of an accident.
This is also a win for you as it means less pressure on your wallet as the surprise costs involved with an accident will not be your worry. Accident Only cover is also significantly cheaper than comprehensive pet insurance, so again, another win for your wallet.
The bottom line
The main takeaway of this blog is pretty simple: you are not alone!
Ensuring that your pet is comfortable, happy and healthy can often feel like a mammoth task with your senior cat. Not only are their masters at hiding their illnesses but require a little more TLC than a kitten. It is important to remember that there are experts out there that will know exactly how to cater to your senior cat’s specific needs. All you need to do is ask! Have a chat with your vet – they will be your greatest source of wisdom and comfort!
Until next time,
The Pet Insurance Team