The average monthly cost of pet insurance is $50 for dogs and $28 for cats for plans that cover both accidents and illnesses, according to the North American Pet Health Insurance Association .
We found that the average monthly cost of a pet insurance plan ranges from about $24 to $86 for dogs and $9 to $30 for cats, based on an analysis of quotes from the largest pet insurance companies.
Average pet insurance costs
How much you pay for pet insurance varies greatly. Monthly premiums can range from as low as $10 to higher than $100, though most pet owners can expect to pay between $30 and $50 per month for a plan with decent coverage.
Your pet's age, species and breed, as well as where you live and the coverage you choose, all factor into your insurance rates.
The average cost of pet insurance is higher for dogs — 74% more expensive than cats for accident and illness policies. Older animals and larger animals also face higher pet insurance rates, as these groups tend to have the most health issues.
The average cost of pet insurance for dogs has been increasing, while the cost for cats fluctuates. Rates have decreased by as much as 11% and increased by up to 30% in the past five years, depending on the type of policy.
Five-year increase in average pet insurance rates
Accident & illness policies
Average cost of pet insurance for dogs
Across the top pet insurers, the average monthly premium for dog insurance was $45.
Even with the same parameters for location, dog and insurance plan, insurers showed a range of more than $60 across their plans. If you live somewhere with expensive veterinary costs or have an injury-prone dog, you can expect your monthly premium to be closer to $85 than $25.
Similarly, you'll pay a higher premium if you want more coverage, or if you decrease the deductible or increase your reimbursement level.
Monthly premium for dogs
|2||AKC/PetPartners (30% reimbursement)||$28.92|
|6||HealthyPaws (no annual max)||$48.63|
|7||Nationwide ($250 deductible, $10,000 max, 70% reimbursement)||$48.81|
|9||24PetWatch ($100 deductible)||$52.55|
|11||Trupanion (no annual max, 90% reimbursement)||$86.07|
Typical costs by dog breed
The costs of monthly plans also vary based on your dog’s breed. Mutts and mixed breed dogs tend to get slightly cheaper pet insurance costs than purebreds.
Average cost of pet insurance for cats
For cats, we found the average monthly premium across the largest pet insurance companies was $19.
The costs to insure a cat are significantly lower than those to insure a dog.
The cost of insuring a cat showed as much variance across companies as it did for dogs. For a four-year-old medium-risk cat, you can expect to pay $9 to $14 per month with one of the most affordable companies. For more health care coverage or a more injury-prone cat breed, you'll likely pay closer to $30 or $40.
Monthly premium for cats
|2||Figo ($10k annual max)||$9.42|
|3||Healthy Paws (no annual max)||$12.64|
|4||AKC/ PetPartners (30% reimbursement)||$13.92|
|9||Trupanion (no annual max, 90% reimbursement)||$29.40|
|10||24PetWatch ($100 deductible)||$29.56|
|11||Nationwide ($250 deductible, $10,000 max, 70% reimbursement)||$29.92|
Costs by cat breed
As with dogs, the cost to insure a cat also varies by breed. To find the affordability of insuring different breeds, we looked at the five most common cat breeds, and found less variation in price. Mixed breeds, such as the Domestic Shorthair or Domestic Longhair, tend to have even cheaper pet insurance rates.
Average cost of medical treatments for pets
If you're trying to decide whether pet insurance is worth it, you should consider the cost of treatments without insurance. To help you calculate whether pet insurance is a good investment for you, compare treatment costs for the top 10 dog and cat ailments for an uninsured pet.
According to data based on average claims from PetFirst holders, the most common dog treatments cost $253 on average, while the most common cat treatments cost $267.
Even some of the more common issues, such as treating parvo in puppies, can be quite expensive — the average claim is over $900. And serious conditions like cancer are rarer, but treatment is also much more costly — chemotherapy alone can cost $5,000 to $10,000.
Common dog conditions
Cost of vet visit
In most cases, paying for treatment out of pocket for the most common dog and cat conditions is less expensive than the annual cost of insurance.
However, it's important to remember that insurance is meant to help lower the burden of the more expensive and less common ailments and diseases, like fracturing a limb or getting cancer.
In these cases, having insurance will help lower the financial burden of a costly procedure.
Common cat conditions
Cost of vet visit
|1||Urinary tract condition (UTI)||$295.18|
|9||Upper respiratory infections (URI)||$219.27|
Methodology and Sources
We collected quotes from 11 top pet insurance companies for a male dog and female cat, both four years old. We set the coverage limits as follows, unless otherwise noted.
- $500 deductible
- $5,000 annual max
- 80% reimbursement level
Rates from different breeds are for ASPCA insurance.
National data was collected from the North American Pet Health Insurance Association's annual report.