Pet Insurance for Exotic Animals: Everything You Need to Know

Posted on May 19, 2019

Unfortunately, bad things tend to happen at bad times. Dogs swallow pieces of chew toys, birds can get mites, and iguanas can overheat. Literally, anything can happen at any given time.

Are you prepared to spend several thousand dollars on emergency surgery for your pet?

It’s OK if you’re not, in fact, most of us can’t drop that kind of cash on a dime. This is what insurance is for.

But what kind of pet insurance do you need? What you have an exotic pet? Is it really worth it?

Most people know about pet insurance for dogs and cats, but did you know that there is insurance available to cover just about any pet you could legally own?

Pet insurance for exotic animals is not only more common than you might think, but it is recommended by most veterinarians.

Interested in learning more? Check out this complete guide for all your exotic questions.

What is Exotic Pet Insurance?

OK first off, what is exotic pet insurance?

To put it simply, it’s just like people insurance.

You will pay an agreed-upon monthly premium, to which the insurance company agrees to cover the cost of veterinary services for any agreed-upon pet illnesses.

As with people insurance, pet insurance typically does not cover any pre-existing conditions. So if your pet is currently suffering from an illness, your new policy likely won’t cover any of the medical costs related to that illness.

Since exotic pets typically require special care, they often need to be seen by specially trained veterinarians. And just like any specialist, these vets tend to cost more per visit.

Exotic pet insurance gives the peace of mind in knowing that these visits will be covered under your plan, so you never have to hesitate when your pet needs to be seen.

Is My Pet Considered Exotic?

Do you need a regular pet insurance policy or an exotic pet policy?

“How can I know if my pet is considered exotic? They aren’t very exotic to me.“

This question can be confusing to some people, as you probably don’t consider your pet exotic. A good rule of thumb is to think of domestication. Is your pet more likely to be found in a domesticated environment or a natural environment?

Pets like dogs and cats aren’t often found in the woods. Pets like hedgehogs, squirrels, or exotic birds, on the other hand, are more often found in their natural environment than in the standard home.

To give you an idea, here is a list of a few pets that are considered exotic:

  • Amphibians
  • Hedgehog
  • Most Birds
  • Iguanas
  • Mice
  • Ferrets
  • Goats
  • Sugar Gliders
  • Potbellied Pigs
  • Chinchillas
  • Turtles

The list, of course, goes on further, but this can help you to understand if your pet is considered exotic. Many people tend to be surprised by just how many common pets are considered exotic.

Why You Should Insure Your Exotic Pet

We mentioned earlier that bad things tend to happen at bad times. This doesn’t make you a bad pet owner. Sometimes our pets like to stick their noses where they don’t belong, and it can result in serious health damage or injury.

There are dangers lurking everywhere. Household cleaners, cars, toxic foods, and even play toys can pose a serious threat if your pet isn’t careful. On that note, it’s impossible to monitor your pet 100% of the time.

They need their freedom and we need ours. We just have to do our best to keep them safe.

Unfortunately, our best isn’t always perfect. This is why having a pet insurance policy is absolutely necessary for all pet owners.

5 Common Pet Insurance Myths

Now that we have a basic understanding of what pet insurance is and how it works, let’s debunk some common myths floating around the Internet.

Pet Insurance is too Expensive

Many people pass off pet insurance as too expensive before they even look into a real policy. The simple fact is that different policies are offered for different situations and different pets.

Some insurance policies will let you pay monthly, while others require six-month full-term payments.

If in fact you have questions or think you will struggle with the suggested monthly payments, you can always call the Insurance Company to discuss your options. They are usually willing to work with you to come up with a plan that works for you and your pet.

It’s For Emergencies Only

A lot of people think that pet insurance is for emergencies only, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. While it’s true that people primarily use pet insurance for emergencies, there are also many people who need it during old age or illnesses such as arthritis or cancer.

Cancer, is fairly common animals, Just like it is in humans. And, just like with us, treatments are very long, unpredictable, and expensive.

Cancer treatment for pets can run up to several hundreds of thousands of dollars.

If you look into a lifetime policy, your pet will be covered for any emergency or illness that occurs.

Pet insurance is especially important for those breeds that are predisposed to certain illnesses. Purebred German Shepherd‘s, for example, tend to suffer from heart disease. Pugs tend to have respiratory illnesses or damage.

If you’re not prepared to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on the drop of a dime, you might want to consider a pet insurance policy.

All Pet Insurance is the Same

Many people think that all pet insurance is the same.

The fact of the matter is that there are different policies, different prices, and different coverages. Pet insurance is not as black-and-white as many people might think.

More and more procedures like organ transplants and pacemakers are becoming available for our pets. With higher dollar procedures comes higher dollar vet bills.

Again, if you compare it to people insurance, you will see that different insurance companies offer different coverages and prices.

For this reason, it’s important to research the company before making a final decision on the policy.

After all, this could be a life and death decision.

Companies Won’t Insure Older Pets

You might think that you’re out of luck if your pet isn’t a baby anymore.

The good news is, pet insurance companies do not age discriminate. If you are just now learning about pet insurance, it doesn’t have to be too late to cover your pet for the remainder of its future.

Many pets develop arthritis as they age, just like we do. As sad as it is, a pet can be as healthy as can be internally but have so much joint damage that it affects their quality of life in extreme ways.

A pet with arthritis may be on able to do the things that they once loved, or they may not even be able to walk to their food bowl anymore.

Taking care of a pet and it’s older years can be stressful on both you and your pet. Pet insurance companies know all about this and are happy to help during these years.

You Can Only Use Vets Approved by the Insurance

This one is our favorite. Some people don’t like to look into pet insurance because they feel like they will have to switch veterinarians.

We get it. You finally found a vet that understands your pet and your pet understands them. Switching veterinarians is not an option.

This is where pet insurance differs from people insurance. You don’t have to worry about finding medical care that’s in the network.

For most pet insurance companies, “in-network“ means any licensed veterinarian. As long as your vet accepts any pet insurance at all, you should be covered.

Pet Insurance for Exotic Animals is a Must

All in all, Obtaining a pet insurance policy for your exotic baby is not a difficult or uncommon thing to do.

Pet parents, we do everything we can to make sure our babies are happy and healthy.

Just because you don’t have the funding for an emergency situation or an unlucky health trait doesn’t mean your pet has to suffer. Pet insurance for exotic animals is easy and affordable.

Are you ready to look into a policy? Click here to get a quote now.

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