Pet Dental Insurance Explained – Forbes Advisor


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Maintaining your pet’s pearly whites is essential for their overall health. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, inadequate dental care can cause problems such as periodontal (gum) disease or lead to serious health problems and excruciating pain.

The average cost of pet insurance claims for periodontal disease in dogs was $ 1,942 between 2017 and 2020, based on claims with insurance agency C&F, said Beth Wymer, door -by Pumpkin Pet Insurance. “When you look at the cost that dental disease can cause to your pet’s health and your wallet, it’s a significant financial burden,” she says.

Pet insurance policies often cover the costs resulting from a pet’s dental problems, but not all do, be sure to look at dental benefits when comparing plans.

What is covered by dental insurance for pets?

Dental coverage can be found in pet health insurance plans. Although coverage varies among insurers, there are generally two categories of dental coverage for pets: dental accidents and dental disease. Companies such as Embrace Pet Insurance and Pets Best cover both accidents and dental illnesses and reimburse dental problems such as:

  • Damaged teeth
  • Root canals
  • Crowns
  • Stomatitis
  • Periodontitis
  • Gingivitis
  • Tooth extraction

But some pet insurance plans only cover dental accidents or problems resulting from an accident. For example, Lemonade’s pet insurance covers dental accidents but not dental illnesses.

Check the policy to see if there are any requirements for making a pet dental insurance claim. For example, Pets Best covers dental illnesses only if the pet is under 3 years of age or has had a dental exam in the last 13 months under general anesthesia that has not shown any dental problems.

Here are examples of pet insurance companies that cover both dental accidents and dental illnesses:

  • To kiss
  • Healthy paws
  • Nationwide Whole Pet with Wellness
  • Pet plan
  • Pets
  • Careful pet
  • Pumpkin
  • Place
  • Trupanion
  • TrustedPals

What is not covered by dental coverage for pets?

Here are some common exclusions:

  • Cosmetic, endodontic or orthodontic services such as caps, implants and filings
  • Routine dental care such as cleaning teeth
  • Pre-existing conditions of a pet that arose before coverage began

How To Find Affordable Pet Dental Care

Pet insurance can help you avoid debt if your furry friend needs medical attention.

“The cost of veterinary care is increasing at a rapid rate, as is the gap between what pet owners can afford and what the best veterinary care costs. Pet insurance helps close the affordability gap and can also provide pets with longer, healthier lives, ”says Wymer.

In addition to a pet insurance plan with good dental coverage, here are some ways to reduce the cost of dental care for a pet.

Practice preventive care. According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, many pets show early signs of periodontal disease once they reach 3 years of age. As they age, it is essential to take preventative measures so that dental problems do not worsen or end up affecting their kidney or liver functions.

“While many dental specialists generally recommend annual dental cleaning, see your vet and see if they’ll do a dental assessment instead. This way you and your veterinarian can review best practices for caring for your pet’s dental health, such as brushing or chewing, and assess whether a cleaning or x-ray is warranted due to the condition of the teeth. your pet, ”says Dr. Shawna Garner. , Chief Veterinarian in the United States at FirstVet.

Consider pet welfare insurance. While no pet health insurance policy covers routine dental care, you can often add a wellness plan that will. Adding a wellness plan to your policy will increase the cost of your pet insurance, but can offset dental cleaning expenses (on average from a few hundred dollars to over $ 1,000, depending on your site).

Consider CareCredit. If your pet has a costly dental emergency that you can’t pay for, you can use a financing option like CareCredit, with caution. With CareCredit, pet owners can apply for short term funding ranging from six months to two years without interest on veterinary bills over $ 200.

You must use a provider registered with the CareCredit network. And if you don’t pay off the balance by the end of the promotional period, you’ll be charged 26.99% interest. So be prepared to pay off the balance before interest is charged.

Set aside your savings. Every pet insurance plan has a deductible and a coinsurance percentage that you must pay. So, putting money aside when possible can make your vet bills more manageable.

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