DEFINITION of 'Pet Insurance'

A policy purchased by the owner of a pet that will lessen the overall costs if expensive medical bills are incurred by that pet. This is similar to health insurance policies except that it relates specifically to pets and will cover, either fully or in part, the often expensive fees that are incurred during veterinary procedures. Pet insurance started in the U.S. in 1980, and was the first policy was sold in 1982 for television's Lassie.

BREAKING DOWN 'Pet Insurance'

Many animal medical procedures, such as surgeries and sickness, are very expensive to treat. To help with these costs, a pet owner can buy a policy that will save out-of-pocket expenses by paying a yearly or monthly fee known as the premium. The cost and coverage changes with which policy you get and for what type of animal you're insuring. For instance, it costs more for an outdoor cat than an indoor, and premiums are higher for the percentage of coverage you wish to buy.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Blanket Medical Expense

    An insurance policy which provides coverage for all medical expenses ...
  2. Extra Expense Insurance

    Insurance coverage that provides funds for reasonable and necessary ...
  3. Health Insurance

    A type of insurance coverage that pays for medical and surgical ...
  4. Cover Note

    A temporary document issued by an insurance company that provides ...
  5. Expense Constant

    A fixed amount added to a policy to cover the cost of administering ...
  6. Prior Acts Coverage

    A feature of an insurance policy that extends the coverage of ...
Related Articles
  1. Insurance

    Is Pet Insurance Worth The Price?

    Should you insure your pet? Here's how pet insurance works and how to decide if it's worth buying this coverage.
  2. Investing

    3 Reasons Why Pet Stocks Could Be Recession-Proof

    Consumers are spending increasingly more on their animals, regardless of how the economy is doing.
  3. Insights

    U.S. Pet Care Spending Has Grown 60% Since 2006 (WOOF, IDXX)

    News of Mars Inc.'s deal to buy pet hospital chain VCA Inc. has spurred interest in the pet care industry and for good reason.
  4. Retirement

    Here's How To Care For Your Pet (Financially) After You're Dead

    Find out how to protect and provide for your pet after you pass away.
  5. Insurance

    What You Need To Know About Pet Wellness Plans

    Here's a breakdown of wellness plans and pet insurance, and some tips for keeping your pet healthy.
  6. Investing

    Top 3 Pet Food Stocks of 2016 (BUFF, SPB)

    The pet food industry rakes in more than $22 billion annually. Consider these top stock picks for 2016.
  7. Investing

    Citi Sees ‘Premiumization’ in Pet Food Category

    Report says ‘humanization’ of household pets Is good news for these companies.
  8. Insurance

    5 Types Of Insurance You Can (And Should) Afford

    With insurance and warranties being offered on seemingly everything, it's hard to know what policies are worth your money. Learn about five affordable insurance policies that are worth considering.
  9. Managing Wealth

    5 (Mostly) Costly Exotic Pets You Can Legally Own

    Exotic pets can be fascinating to look at, but most are expensive to acquire and maintain. And avoid being bitten, especially if you get a scorpion.
RELATED FAQS
  1. If I don't have any kids and want to leave all of my worldly possessions to my dog, ...

    A 1993 law, Section 2-907 of the Uniform Probate Code, changed the treatment of a deceased individual's pet from that of ... Read Answer >>
  2. How does CareCredit for pets work?

    Understand how using a CareCredit credit card aids pet parents in the payment of potentially high veterinary care costs. Read Answer >>
  3. Which insurance policies do I really need?

    Your needs for insurance depend on your situation and can't be generalized for everyone, but there are a lot of options available. ... Read Answer >>
  4. Why is my insurance premium so high/low?

    Insurance premiums can be affected by many factors including: type and amount of risk size of deductible amount of coverage ... Read Answer >>
Hot Definitions
  1. Gross Margin

    A company's total sales revenue minus its cost of goods sold, divided by the total sales revenue, expressed as a percentage. ...
  2. Current Ratio

    The current ratio is a liquidity ratio measuring a company's ability to pay short-term and long-term obligations, also known ...
  3. SEC Form 13F

    A filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), also known as the Information Required of Institutional Investment ...
  4. Quantitative Easing

    An unconventional monetary policy in which a central bank purchases private sector financial assets in order to lower interest ...
  5. Risk Averse

    A description of an investor who, when faced with two investments with a similar expected return (but different risks), will ...
  6. Indirect Tax

    A tax that increases the price of a good so that consumers are actually paying the tax by paying more for the products. An ...
Trading Center