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Let me just start by saying that I don’t have pet insurance for my rabbits. Not for any reason other than…I don’t really think it’s necessary for me. At the moment.
Sometimes I have a quick look at quotes, and then decide against it.
Whether or not you insure your pet doesn’t make you a good/bad owner. It says more about your level of risk tolerance than anything else.
I’m actually a very risk-averse person, so not having rabbit insurance is the closest I come to living on the edge.
How much does it cost to insure a rabbit?
Here in the UK, we’re looking at about £10 per month for Petplan cover, which claims to cover pretty much everything up to er, a lot of money. They’re a little iffy about pre-existing conditions though, so if you’re going to go for insurance, sort it out before you need it.
If something happens and you don’t have insurance, don’t assume you can take it out after the fact without paying an additional fee.
And don’t take out insurance and hope you can keep quiet about pre-existing conditions. We don’t need anyone committing insurance fraud. It’s just an additional hassle.
What does rabbit insurance cover?
Pet plan covers:
- £2000 vet costs
- £750 complimentary treatment – acupuncture/hydrotherapy and things like that
- £250 boarding fees
- £250 missing pet advertising & reward
It will vary from company to company, but CHECK because often rabbit insurance doesn’t cover:
- Dental problems (because they’re so common)
- Spaying and neutering and
- Worming/flea treatments
- Anything preexisting
I wouldn’t consider getting the insurance unless it covered dental problems and vaccinating. It wouldn’t be worth it to me. If you can’t afford to spay or neuter, get a rabbit from a rescue that’s already been done. Hell, ALWAYS get a rabbit from a rescue.
Is it necessary to insure a house rabbit?
No, at least not in the UK. I don’t think any country mandates rabbit insurance, though please correct me if I’m wrong.
One of the reason I personally don’t feel the need to insure my rabbits is that vet costs are relatively cheap where I live compared to a cat or dog.
Whenever one of my rabbits has had surgery, the vet charges by the time taken NOT the surgery.
So when my rabbit had an operation to remover her eye, but emerging from the theatre with her eye but minus an enormous tumour that had made her eye look, er, gross and removal-worthy, we weren’t charged any extra.
I don’t think all vets work like this.
It’s also worth considering your financial situation. If you can stretch to £10-£20 per month, but wouldn’t like to be faced with a lump sum of a few hundred quid, then insurance might be for you.
Is your rabbit likely to develop health issues?
If your rabbit is young and a relatively basic breed, you may never have health issues at require vet care. Especially if you give them a proper diet and a good set up so that they have plenty of room to run about.
But if you go for a giant breed (heart problems), lop breed (dental/ear issues) or a really furry breed (mattes/bugs/cleaning issues) you may need to fork out for vet bills annually.
In which case, insurance might be the way to go.
Be sure to check what your policy covers – a lot of them won’t cover dental issues (though some might) but if your breed is likely to suffer from arthritis or diabetes, it’s worth looking into.
Expect to pay 20% once your rabbit is over 7. How ageist.
Do I insure my rabbits?
We considered it when we forked out £345 for Daisy’s hospital stay, but ultimately decided against it.
For one thing, had we known the vets were only giving nursing care rather than medication, we’d have cut her stay in half AT LEAST. She ate and drank unaided the whole time, so we could have cared for her at home.
But also vet care is cheap compared to that for a dog or cat, yet the insurance premiums are fairly similar. Both our rabbits are pretty small, and crossbreeds – statistically unlikely to need recurring medical care.
Daisy’s EC wouldn’t be covered anyway, so at the moment, we remain uninsured. The reason I keep going back to check policies is that some of them cover annual vaccinations, though they’re currently too expensive to make it worth it.
Maybe if they start to cover RVHD2 (that most rabbit boarding kennels require your bunny to have), I’d insure, since it’d be a nice way to spread the cost.
If we had a dog or cat, I would FOR SURE insure. Not because they would be more important to me, but because vet care would be so much more expensive.
Is your rabbit’s vet expensive?
If, unlike mine, your vet is expensive, insuring is the way to go.
Some vets are small animal specialists and charge more. Also, mundane things such as the cost of medications and even your vet’s rent will affect the price your vet charges, but it shouldn’t affect your premiums.
Alternatives to insuring house rabbits
Just because we don’t have rabbit insurance doesn’t mean we don’t prepare for vet visits. Rather than paying an insurance premium, I save money every month into a small emergency fund. It’s separate from my OH MY GOD I LOST MY JOB emergency fund, and is there to cover unexpected vet and car bills.
Get yourself one. Put £10 in a month (or whatever you can afford) and it’ll build into a nice little buffer should your rabbit need their teeth filing, or eats your baseboards or whatever.