Understanding Pet Insurance Expenses & Risks

What to expect


Expenses come with the territory of responsible pet ownership, and vet care represents a large part of those expenses. Here are the average annual costs of caring for a pet, according to a survey by the American Pet Products Association.

Pet Expenses

These are average costs—meaning many pet owners can expect higher expenses in a given year. Serious accidents and illnesses can drive up vet expenses. According to ASPCA Pet Insurance, the most common accidents and illnesses are:


  • Growths & cancer
  • Ear infections
  • Upset stomach
  • Skin problems
  • Vomiting


  • Bite wounds
  • Swallowed objects
  • Cuts
  • Car accidents
  • Poison ingestions

And medical treatment for pets, especially in emergency situations, can get expensive quickly. Here’s a sampling of recent pet insurance claims to a leading pet insurer.

Situation Total Vet Bill
Dog needed joint ligament surgery $4305.18
Cat needed emergency care for vomiting $923.04
Dog ate a sock and needed surgery for removal $4658.80
Cat needed x-rays, hospitalization and medication after eating a plastic plant $1036.18
Dog needed surgery to remove growth on her face $1227.71
Cat needed treatment for a fractured tooth $720.36

In all of these cases, vet care was necessary—and costly! Pet insurance is designed to help cover high-cost, unpredictable situations like these.

Last updated on Nov 23rd 2017