When you hear the words pet insurance, you can’t help but think of cats and dogs. There is a good reason for that, as both of them have been domesticated for thousands and thousands of years. One serving as man’s best friend and the other one… Well, not serving anything with a pulse.
With an average lifespan of 10 years, rabbits can be both very meek and highly energetic at any given moment. That being said, most people will be surprised by the fact that rabbits, much like cats and dogs, can be domestirabbited with litter box training, as well as regular exercise and activities.
Why Do You Need Rabbit Insurance?
Instead of running around, bunny proofing your house by placing everything out of reach and covering everything that can even remotely resemble a carrot, we suggest that you look into some rabbit insurance policies. When push comes to shove, you’ll know exactly where to turn to.
Rabbit insurance, for the most part, mirrors cat and dog insurance plans with a few key differences that correspond to rabbits. Pet insurance companies provide coverage for accidents, emergencies, illnesses, veterinary bills, and wellness but also feature some exclusions for things like pre-existing conditions, grooming, behavioral training, boarding, and supplements, to name a few.
Rabbit parent-owners will need to do a vet check-up for their pet at least once a year in regards to their teeth and health condition. At some point, rabbits generally have overgrown teeth which can lead to some serious issues down the road, if left untreated.
Where Can You Get Rabbit Insurance and What Does It Cover?
In partnership with VPI, Nationwide Pet insurance is the only pet insurance company in the United States that offers coverage for rabbits at the moment, as part of their Bird & Exotic Pet Plans, which is primarily targeted at birds but also covers chameleons, guinea pigs, hamsters, hedgehogs, Iguanas, lizards, snakes, turtles, and of course, rabbits.
With Nationwide, you will be able to get reimbursed on up to 90% of your vet bill and get coverage for everything from common illnesses and chronic diseases to holistic and alternative treatments. They impose no bilateral conditions and you don’t have to worry about taking your rabbit with you when traveling because your insurance is valid anywhere in the world.
According to Nationwide, there are three common claims when it comes to rabbit insurance:
overgrown teeth, ileus (when the bowel is unable to work normally and move waste out of the body through the intestine), and a phenomenon known as pink eye or conjunctivitis (when the outer membrane of the eye gets infected or irritated).
Rabbits must be in good health and between the ages of three or six weeks, depending on the breed, and ten years old, in order to be considered eligible for Nationwide’s exotic pet plan coverage. A provisory quote can be established by phoning Nationwide’s toll-free phone number listed on its website.
The company’s website states that plans start at as low as $35 per month and have an accident and injury claim waiting period of 14 days, once the first payment is processed. The waiting period is a way of ensuring that your rabbit isn’t ill or doesn’t have a condition that could be classified as pre-existing.
It’s noteworthy to mention that cosmetic work, parasites, preventative care, birth-related conditions, pre-existing conditions, or congenital issues are not covered by Nationwide.
You also might require some kind of wellness plan as preventive care so that you can stay in front of the curve and be proactive. However, Nationwide does not offer a wellness plan for rabbits as it does for birds.
Take a look at our full Nationwide Pet Insurance review.
If a wellness plan is an absolute must, then you’ll need to turn to alternative companies with unconventional approaches such as Pet Assure and Wells Fargo Health Advantage and enroll in one of their all-inclusive pet insurance policies.
Once you register your rabbit at Pet Assure you are eligible for a discount, and since Pet Assure isn’t an insurance company, there are no exclusions, no forms to fill out, and no deductibles to meet. You just need to visit a participating vet and pay less at checkout. Pet Assure is active in all 50 states, along with Puerto Rico, and Canada. There are no exclusions for pre-existing conditions like allergies, periodontal disease, hereditary conditions, hip dysplasia, or diabetes.
With Pet Assure you can sign up for a $10 monthly fee and get 25% off all illnesses, preventative care, and pre-existing conditions, but keep in mind that if choosing to do so, you’ll need to switch from your regular vet, assuming that you already have one, because their policies are valid only for their network of veterinary providers.
Wells Fargo Health Advantage, on the other hand, takes a different approach to pet insurance by offering a credit card program with a comprehensive range of financing options. Clients can use the Wells Fargo Health Advantage credit card program for many of their pets’ needs. This covers but is not limited to general veterinary practice care, treatment procedures, emergency clinic treatment and procedures, hospital care, as well as dental, allergy, and arthritis treatments. Nevertheless, you’ll still need to use their network where their credit card is approved/valid.
How Much Is Rabbit Insurance?
Rabbit insurance is relatively affordable compared to the total of the bills that one could be faced with. Through Nationwide, most plans for rabbits start at about $10 to $35 per monthly premium but vary depending on the insurance plan that you select, your rabbit’s health, needs, age, location, etc. The older the rabbit is, the higher the risk of it needing treatment.
Some of the plans also have higher vet fees than others, address different pre-existing medical conditions, and vary depending on the breed and the number of rabbits you want to insure. Nationwide’s annual maximum payout limit is $7,000, while the payout limit for every incident, accident, or illness that your rabbit might come across is $2,000.
What to Keep In Mind When Choosing Your Insurance Plan?
Going for the right option for your rabbit depends all on what you and your pet need. Focus on the following four key points to be more confident in finding the insurance plan that works best for you.
Value for Money
Every insurance provider is different in terms of the caps they have for annual/per-incident deductibles, coinsurance, and annual/lifetime reimbursement payouts.
We always like to think that insurance is an investment – the more it pays out, the better. On the other hand, a cheap plan that will only reimburse you with less than half of what you paid for your vet bill isn’t worth it, after all.
Almost all pet insurance companies protect themselves from liabilities by imposing lower and upper age limitations for your pet. For example, your rabbit must be at least three months old before it can become eligible for an insurance policy.
Luckily, your options are quite limited when it comes to exotic pet insurance, so this aspect won’t be a deciding factor.
It’s a huge mistake when pet owners wait for their animals to get sick or injured to acquire pet insurance. In order to protect themselves in this kind of instance, insurance providers implement waiting periods – a fixed amount of days (can be from 1 up to 45 days) before your policy goes into effect.
You don’t want your rabbit dealing with a bad case of diarrhea for a month before taking it to the vet, do you?
Insuring your rabbit at a young age brings the benefit of getting more coverage on your policy. As with any other animal, rabbits are prone to certain conditions that come with age, but most insurers don’t provide coverage for the conditions that already exist.
Nationwide is pretty strict when it comes to pre-existing conditions and doesn’t cover them. But the alternative methods that we’ve listed above, Wells Fargo Health Advantage and Pet Assure, include any condition when covering you. So, either opt for one of them or go for Nationwide while your bunny is still young.
Types of Rabbit Insurance
When it comes to the types and varieties that the market has to offer, you’ll be able to choose one or a combination of the following types of rabbit insurance packages.
Accidents coverage – plans that only deal with and cover accidents and injuries. These plans are usually the most affordable ones.
Illnesses coverage – provides coverage for medical bills in case of a disease.
Funeral expenses – taking care and dealing with the fees, when it’s time to say goodbye to your beloved bunny.
Dental coverage – all aspects of oral health, especially overgrown teeth.
Coverage for emergencies – for all those times when your daily activities are interrupted by something unexpected regarding your bunny.
Coverage for experimental treatments – alternative treatments such as acupuncture, holistic, and chiropractic therapy usually work and are always useful being covered for.
In terms of the duration of the policies, they can provide annual or lifetime coverage.
Lifetime coverage – running throughout one’s lifetime; the pricier of the two, but a good choice if your rabbit happens to develop certain chronic conditions.
Annual coverage – a year-to-year policy that can be renewed, changed, or edited every twelve months.
Although rabbit insurance might not be atop your priority list, it could be the difference between your bunny getting the health and medical care that it needs and you not being able to afford that astronomical vet bill.
With only one traditional insurance provider, we understand that the options are quite limited and that the market might not offer what you want or hoped for. Nevertheless, it won’t hurt to take a closer look at what’s being offered so that at least you know exactly what your options are and what’s on the table.