Sharing your life with a cat or dog is magical. But as with any loved one, sometimes things can go wrong. Having pet health insurance doesn’t make an illness or accident disappear, but it does soften the financial blow—and make it easier to provide the best veterinary care for your pet without money being the deciding factor.
At its simplest, Lemonade pet health insurance provides coverage for your pet’s treatments and medical care if they get sick or hurt. The base policy helps out with veterinary bills for diagnostics and treatments related to accidents and illnesses (provided those occur after your policy’s waiting period has ended).
Okay, we know thinking about this stuff gets a little heavy! The thing about insurance is that you hope you never have to use it. But if you do, your furry friend will certainly appreciate the safety net you gave them.
Let’s dig into what a pet health insurance policy covers, as well as what extra add-ons Lemonade offers to improve your pet’s medical care.
Here’s what we’ll go over:
Does pet health insurance cover diagnostics?
Will pet health insurance cover vet bills after an accident?
Does pet health insurance cover cancer treatments?
What sort of illnesses are covered by my pet health insurance policy?
Does pet health insurance cover hospitalization?
Does pet insurance cover my pet’s allergy medications?
Am I covered for my pet’s physical therapy?
What about pre-existing conditions?
Does pet health insurance cover arthritis?
What does pet health insurance not cover?
Yes! A Lemonade base policy will cover many of the things that vets use to keep your pup or kitty healthy. That includes blood tests, urinalysis, X-rays, MRIs, labwork, CT scans, and ultrasounds.
Your insurance policy will come in handy if your pet gets a broken bone or is hurt by a car, or if they accidentally eat something dangerous they shouldn’t have. (This is provided that you’re past the 2-day accident waiting period; if the accident happens within the 48-hour span after you get your policy, it, unfortunately, won’t be covered.)
Your pet health insurance covers surgery that might result if your dog or cat ingests a toy. The only exception here is if your pet has a history of eating similar toys multiple times in the past. Being a good pet parent means watching out for your fur fam! If your cat chows down on a box of laundry detergent one day, and the vet manages to save her—that’s reason to celebrate. But it’s your responsibility after that to make sure your loved one isn’t able to get into that detergent.
The Big C is one of the toughest challenges a pet can face, so it’s good to know that cancer treatments are indeed covered by your pet’s health insurance policy.
If your cat or dog is diagnosed while they have a Lemonade policy, treatments like chemotherapy will be covered—just not experimental treatments. Your policy also helps pay for diagnostic tests. If there’s a suspicious lump that you want to have checked out by your vet, your policy will cover things like cytology, needle aspiration, or biopsy (for eligible conditions). But remember, the biggest factor is that you can’t wait until after a cancer diagnosis to purchase a pet health insurance policy. The key is in planning ahead.
Your pet health insurance policy will cover a wide range of things, from ear infections to diabetes. You’ll also have coverage for a range of hereditary and congenital conditions, from elbow and hip dysplasia to hernias and eye disorders.
But it’s important to note that many of these may fall under the category of pre-existing conditions. If your pet is diagnosed with such conditions—like cancer or diabetes—after their pet health insurance policy’s waiting period, they’ll be covered. But if they suffer from those conditions, or show signs of them, before getting pet health insurance, treatment related to those specific conditions will not be covered.
TL;DR: The best thing you can do is get your furry friend covered with pet health insurance when they’re young, and keep them covered as they age.
It does! Overnight visits at the vet can get pricey quick, and we’ll help cover those costs (provided they relate to an eligible condition). We’ll cover you for veterinarian recommended hospitalization, fluids, medications, and additional testing. We’ll even cover the costs for follow-up exams if you added our Extended Accident and Illness package to your policy.
Okay, okay, tell me more about this Extended Accident and Illness package…
Wow, glad you asked! If you add this package to your base policy we’ll be able to reimburse you for treatments related to functionality issues. What does that mean? Let’s say your energetic Pomeranian sprains her knee while running to greet you at the door. Your base policy covers necessary X-rays and surgery. But doesn’t your dog deserve to be extra? With the Extended Accident and Illness package, she’ll be able to recover in style—including perks like acupuncture and hydrotherapy.
Bonus: With this package we’ll also help pay for vet visit fees that are charged for accidents and illnesses (that’s the fee some vets charge for their time and labor, in addition to the actual cost of the treatment).
Yup. As long as the allergy isn’t considered a pre-existing condition, your pet’s allergy meds, like Apoquel and Cytopoint injections, are covered.
That depends. Your base policy won’t cover this. But if you added our Extended Accident and Illness package to your policy, physical therapies and exams are all covered. For example, this could be applied to a cruciate ligament repair. (That’s a scary sounding term for a common knee injury that dogs can suffer.)
Our base policy does cover you for the cost of a cruciate ligament repair… but without the Extended Accident and Illness package, we can’t help with any costs for physical therapy or exams. At the risk of sounding like a broken record: It’s another reason why you might want to consider choosing that add-on for your policy.
The short answer here is: Unfortunately not.
But that doesn’t mean pet insurance companies will deny coverage for your pet if they have an ailment like cancer or hip dysplasia before applying. It just means that the plan you get won’t cover costs that are directly related to the condition they had been diagnosed with before you signed them up. So while treatment for diabetes is covered under a basic policy, you’ll only be reimbursed for eligible costs if your pet started showing signs of diabetes after your policy was already active.
This is one reason that pet health insurance companies require that you submit recent medical records while applying for a policy. If you want a whole lot more info about pre-existing conditions, we’ve got you.
Are there other coverage packages I can add on to my pet insurance policy?
There sure are. In addition to the Extended Illness and Accident package, Lemonade offers a Preventative and Wellness package to supplement the base policy.
This one covers a ton of important stuff, from annual physical checkups to heartworm tests and internal parasite or fecal tests (gross but helpful!). The package will also cover bloodwork, and three important vaccinations—for example Rabies, DHLPP, and Bordetella. Plus you’ll get the extra touches that Lemonade is known for, like health and wellness reminders, plus access to an online medical advice chat.
If your pet has shown signs consistent with arthritis before you get a Lemonade policy, this will be considered a pre-existing condition—and therefore not covered. But if your pet develops arthritis while they have a health insurance policy, they will be covered. That’s yet another reason why it pays to get your cat or dog signed up when they’re young!
What will your policy cover if arthritis is found while your pet has a policy? We’ll help with medications, including injectables like Adequan. Your plan will also chip in for supplements, as long as they’re not herbal products, like CBD. (Sorry, California kitties.)
This is a great question, and one that we’ve covered in its own article. You should know that pet health insurance won’t cover the cost of grooming—even though your good boy certainly deserves to be pampered every now and then. The policy also won’t cover things like prescription diet food, elective cosmetic procedures, or dental upkeep like cleanings and tooth removals. Your plan will, however, cover most dental work that’s needed following an accident.
Why should I get pet health insurance?
Because you love your cat or dog, and don’t want to bankrupt yourself to keep them healthy if they get hurt or sick! Not to freak you out, but vet bills and exam fees can creep up quickly after an illness or emergency. Cancer treatment that includes chemotherapy can run up to $35,000; even diabetes medication can cost you $1,200 a year.
Having pet health insurance ensures that you and your furry friend can rest a little bit easier, even when life gets tough.