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Insurers pay out over 1 2 million every day to cat and dog owners

Pet insurers are now paying out over £1.2 million every day to cat and dog owners, according to latest figures from the Association of British Insurers (ABI). Pet Insurance 2007 - 2012

Last year pet insurers paid out £452 million in vet’s bills for treating sick or injured cats and dogs.

Between 2007 and 2012 the average claim paid rose by 52%, up £207, much more than the £57 rise in the average pet insurance premium.

Up to 1 in 3 pets1. need veterinary treatment each year and vet fees are increasing every year. The average UK vet bill is now over £300 with some more complex treatments such as hip dysplasia costing more than £4,000. Ongoing conditions could cost as much as £10,000.

Examples of medical treatment needed by pets include:

  • a vets bill for £1,500 to treat a dog who swallowed a marker pen;
  • treating a four year old cat for a damaged eye and fractured jaw after being hit by a car resulted in a vets bill of  £1,800;
  • an operation on a Mastiff dog to remove a snooker ball he had swallowed cost over £1,000

And more unusual pets that had their medical treatment paid for by pet insurance2. Include:

  • £1,064 to treat Jasper, a parrot for respiratory problems
  • £951 to treat a corn snake with digestive problems
  • £293 to treat a tortoise suffering from pneumonia

Linsey White, ABI spokeswomen, comments:

“Owning a pet can be rewarding, but also expensive – especially if they need medical treatment. There is no NHS for our pets and even minor medical treatment can cost hundreds of pounds.  Pet insurance protects you against the unexpected vet’s bills when your pet needs treatment and can help your pet live a longer, healthier life.”

For more insurance industry statistics, visit our Industry Data section.


  1. Pet Health Council
  2. Exotic Direct

Last updated 01/07/2016