There are many factors to consider when choosing the best Pet Insurance that Covers Dental Cleanings for your needs. One important factor is whether or not the policy covers dental cleanings. Dental cleanings are an important part of pet care and can help prevent serious dental problems down the road. Many pet insurance policies do not cover dental cleanings, so it is important to check before you purchase a policy.
Some things to look for in a pet insurance policy that covers dental cleanings are: coverage for routine and preventive care, no waiting periods, and no annual limits. You should also make sure that the policy covers the specific type of pet you have. Some policies only cover dogs or cats, while others may also cover rabbits, birds, and other types of pets.
When choosing a pet insurance that covers dental cleaning policy, be sure to do your research to find the best policy for your needs.
Maintaining good dental hygiene is an essential part of caring for your pet and ensuring good health. Just as you feed your pet a healthy and balanced diet to prevent malnutrition, keeping your pet’s teeth clean is important to prevent dental disease.
Just like regular exercise, dental care should be a part of your dog or cat’s daily routine. When we think of paying for veterinary care for our pets, we often think of routine check-ups, vaccinations and the cost of treatment in the event of a serious illness or accident.
But just like with humans, dental care is an important part of maintaining your pet’s overall health.
Is pet dental care really important?
Dental diseases in dogs and cats can be as serious as any other disease. If left untreated, poor oral hygiene can lead to bad breath, infections, tooth loss, and malnutrition.
Unfortunately, this often happens because dental treatment at the vet can be very expensive.
Many owners choose to defer the expense of routine dental cleanings and allow the problem to slowly worsen over time, leading to more expensive treatments later on.
Some dental procedures can cost more than $1,000, so consider dental insurance as part of your pet insurance.
Some, but not all, pet insurance plans cover illnesses related to dental work, such as dental infections, gum disease, and dental injuries resulting from accidents.
However, no pet insurance covers pre-existing medical conditions, including dental disease, which is known to develop in 80% of dogs and 70% of cats by the age of three.
That’s why it’s important to get pet insurance when your pet is young.
What is Pet Insurance?
Pet insurance is a type of liability insurance that covers pet medical expenses related to accidents and illnesses.
Most companies primarily offer dog and cat insurance; Some providers expand coverage to include exotic pets like birds and reptiles, but they make up less than 1% of US policies, according to NAPHIA (North American Pet Health Insurance Association).
A key difference between pet insurance and your own health insurance is that pet preventive care is sold separately. This includes expenses like vaccinations, parasite prevention, dental cleanings, and microchips.
Types of pet insurance
If you want to insure your pet, you must first take a hard look at your finances and how much you are able and willing to spend in case of an emergency.
Pet insurance policies differ in coverage and, of course, premiums. Understanding the different types of policies and their respective offerings is crucial to understanding how to get pet insurance.
- Accident-only policies – An accident-only policy may be better for you if your main concern is your cat or dog’s susceptibility to breakdowns (poisoning, broken bones, gas). They are usually cheaper than plans with broader coverage.
- Accident and Sickness Policies – These are all-inclusive pet insurance plans that cover both accident and sickness insurance. They can be expanded to a truly comprehensive offering by purchasing wellness insurance, which is typically more of an add-on than an integral part of the plan.
- Comprehensive Policies – Some insurers offer comprehensive policies that cover everything from accidents to illness, wellness and routine care.
For example, it may cover the cost of dental care, chiropractic care, sterilizations, vaccinations, behavioral therapy, and more.
Of course, these plans come at the highest price, but for the security they offer, they may be worth it.
If you want to assess whether an insurer is right for you, it’s a good idea to download their sample policy, which is usually available on the company’s website.
How does pet health insurance work?
- Waiting times – your insurance only pays for care after a waiting period has expired. Most companies require at least 14 days after registration before they will reimburse you for a vet visit due to illness.
- Exclusions – The language of pet insurance policies often excludes some specific conditions. Read the policy carefully before you buy to find out what is and is not covered.
- Network Restrictions – Unlike human health insurance, pet insurance generally does not have a restricted or preferred network of providers.However, some insurers may limit certain coverages to certain veterinarians. However, there may be geographic restrictions; For example, your pet may not be insured if you travel to Canada or Puerto Rico.
Why do I need dental insurance for my pet?
According to Tufts University , Approximately 80% of dogs and 70% of cats over the age of three will show signs of oral disease by the age of three.
This widespread prevalence at such a young age poses a cost risk to health insurers, which is why they often limit or deny dental coverage.
For example, they typically set a maximum rate of reimbursement, exclude coverage for certain treatments, and deny claims related to pre-existing medical conditions.
What raises and lowers pet dental insurance premium costs?
The average monthly cost of pet insurance with medical and accident coverage is $49.51 for dogs and $28.48 for cats. But the exact amount you spend to insure your pet varies, and not just by which insurer you choose.
Pet insurance costs vary widely and depend on several factors, including breed, gender, age, location, and the coverage options and deductible you choose.
- Pre-Existing Medical Conditions – Pet insurance providers will not reimburse you for medical conditions your dog, cat, or other pet had before you purchased pet insurance.
- Preventive care add-ons: You’ll benefit most from a health or accident insurance plan, but you can add preventive care coverage. Policies that cover both routine care and care due to accident or illness are called comprehensive coverage.
- Age of the pet: Premiums increase with age, considerably for very old pets. Also, after your dog or cat reaches the age of 10 or 12, your options with insurers become significantly limited.
- Excess – With many plans, you set an excess, which is the amount you must pay before your policy kicks in. But in addition to the amount of the deductible, make sure you understand its nature.
An annual deductible for all care services is common, but some require an incidental or per-sickness deductible instead (or in addition).
- Where you live: In general, pets living in urban areas, especially coastal ones, have higher pet insurance rates due to higher veterinary care costs, among other socioeconomic factors. States with particularly high veterinary costs, and therefore premiums, include New York and California.
How does supplemental dental insurance for dogs and cats work?
Unlike human health care, pet dental insurance is not sold separately. Rather, it is included as a feature in most traditional pet insurance plans.
In most cases, owners pay a monthly fee in addition to their annual premium and are reimbursed for a percentage of their initial out-of-pocket veterinary expenses once they meet their deductible.
Keep in mind that not all pet insurance plans cover the cost of dental work, nor are all treatments covered. Therefore, it is important to carefully compare the details of each policy to ensure you get the right solution.
Pet insurance policies often cover the costs of a pet’s dental problems, but not all do. Be sure to consider dental benefits when comparing plans.
What are the most common dental problems in pets?
Below are some of the most common dental diseases in dogs and cats . Some of these can be prevented with proper dental care, including wellness measures like brushing your teeth, using the right toothpaste, and regular veterinary checkups.
Gum disease occurs when bacterial infection of the tissues surrounding the teeth causes inflammation of the gums, the ligaments that support the teeth, and the surrounding bone.
If left untreated, dogs can suffer from tooth loss and deterioration of supporting tissues. Gum disease is the most common cause of tooth loss in dogs.
Certain races, genetics, age and diet can contribute to the development of gum disease. There are two forms of gum disease: gingivitis and periodontitis.
Gingivitis occurs when the gums become inflamed due to plaque bacteria, but the ligaments and bones are not affected. Symptoms include:
- swollen gums
- Red or purple gums
- Bleeding gums on contact
- Bad breath
Gingivitis is often diagnosed around the age of two. Fortunately, gingivitis can be reversed with proper teeth cleaning. But, if left untreated, it can lead to periodontitis.
Periodontitis is more serious than gingivitis and includes damage to the gum tissues, ligaments, and bones. It usually appears after years of plaque, tartar, and gingivitis.
Unfortunately, it is irreversible and leads to permanent loss of dental support.
This is more common in smaller breeds than larger ones. Dogs on a hard kibble diet tend to have fewer problems because chewing on the kibble can help clean their teeth.
The back teeth and the upper teeth are usually more affected by periodontitis than the front teeth and the lower teeth.
Periodontal disease is often diagnosed around four to six years of age. It is treated with professional cleaning and often requires x-rays of the jaws to determine bony support.
Extractions are common, and your vet may recommend special oral hygiene practices at home, including:
- Daily tooth brushing
- dietary changes
- Plaque Prevention Gel
Endodontic disease, also known as pulpitis, occurs when the living tissue of the tooth, known as the pulp, becomes damaged or infected. The cause is usually an injury, fracture, enamel abnormality, or tooth decay.
Fractures are a common cause of pulpitis in dogs and can be the result of external trauma such as aggressive play or a car accident, chewing on bones, antlers, hard nylon toys, rocks, fences, etc.
There are two types of endodontic disease: reversible and irreversible. Reversible pulpitis is when the pulp is damaged but can heal. Irreversible pulpitis is when the pulp is dead and a root canal or extraction is needed to treat it. Symptoms include:
- Painful teeth that your pet refuses to pick or touch
- Tooth with a reddish-brown, purple, or gray tint
- visible break
- Red or black hole in a crown
- facial swelling
- Decreased appetite
Dogs are good at hiding their pain, which can make diagnosis difficult. A vet can take x-rays to identify affected teeth. Treatment includes a root canal or tooth extraction.
These are often genetically inherited. Developmental disabilities that affect your dog’s comfort, health, or function may require treatment. But if it’s just a cosmetic abnormality, it’s okay to leave it untreated.
Smaller breeds tend to have teeth that fall below the gum line (unerupted teeth). Dogs with shorter, flatter heads (also known as brachycephalic breeds) may have unerupted teeth.
X-rays can help diagnose unerupted teeth and determine if a cyst is present. Cysts can be dangerous because they can destroy the jaw. It is important to extract teeth that have not erupted to prevent further damage to the mouth.
The growth and development of the mouth and teeth must occur in the correct order, otherwise complications can arise. Various problems can arise, including:
- Overbite (Collies, Shelties and Dachshunds are predisposed)
- Underbite (Boston Terriers, Pekingese, French Bulldogs, English Bulldogs, Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Pugs, Lhasa Apso, Boxers, and Shih Tzus are predisposed)
- extra teeth
- Incorrect position of a milk tooth
- Delayed loss of milk teeth.
- Abnormal positioning or inclination of the teeth (Shih Tzus, Pugs, Bulldogs, Lhasa Apsos, Boston Terriers, and Maltese are predisposed)
- Crowded teeth (Shih Tzus, Pugs, Bulldogs, Lhasa Apso, Boston Terriers, and Maltese are predisposed)
- Crooked teeth (Shih Tzus, Pugs, Bulldogs, Lhasa Apsos, Boston Terriers, and Maltese are predisposed)
When both baby teeth and permanent teeth develop, fever and a buildup of chemicals on the tooth can cause permanent damage.
The canine distemper virus attacks the enamel-producing cells of the teeth, causing fever. This deteriorates tooth enamel and causes it to thin.
There are also other diseases with fever that can cause tooth enamel not to develop properly.
Enamel defects can occur in young dogs with severe malnutrition. If there are enamel defects on individual teeth, it is most likely due to trauma or infection.
A common reason for infection is broken baby teeth that affect the enamel of the permanent teeth. Some breeds are predisposed to tooth enamel defects, as they can be inherited from their parents.
Trauma to the face and jaw
Trauma can include falls, aggressive chewing, fights with other animals, car accidents, and more. Jaw fractures can occur due to periodontal disease or cancer.
Depending on the severity of the trauma, your vet may recommend specific treatment.
Placement of crowns, root canals and wound care are among the possible corrective measures.
Various procedures can incur a variety of costs, and mouth treatment can cause difficulty eating, resulting in a temporary feeding tube while healing occurs.
What does pet dental insurance cover?
Dental insurance can be found under pet health insurance plans . Although coverage varies by insurer, there are typically two types of dental coverage for pets: dental accidents and dental disease.
Companies like Embrace Pet Insurance and Pets Best cover dental accidents and dental disease and reimburse the costs of dental problems such as:
- damaged teeth
- root canals
- inflammation of the gums
- tooth extraction
However, some pet insurance plans only cover dental accidents or problems resulting from an accident. For example, Lemonade pet insurance covers dental accidents but not dental disease.
What does pet dental insurance not cover?
Here are some common exclusions:
- Cosmetic, endodontic, or orthodontic services, such as caps, implants, and fillings
- Regular dental care, such as teeth cleaning.
- Pre-existing medical conditions of pets that occurred before the start of insurance coverage
Best Pet Insurance that Covers Dental Cleanings
Some pet insurance companies are more detailed in their policies than others, so some reviews include more information. Here are examples of pet insurance policies that cover both dental accidents and dental disease:
Pets Best is very detailed about their dental care and has an entire section dedicated to it. Offers an optional preventive plan to cover the cost of dental cleaning.
It also covers non-routine dental procedures such as periodontitis, tooth extractions, and trauma to the teeth, face, jaw, etc.
Trupanion offers a single insurance plan for both cats and dogs. In addition to standard benefits such as diagnostic tests, surgery, hospital stays, and prescription drugs, coverage also extends to alternative treatments, dental conditions, dentures, and prescription groceries.
If your vet uses Trupanion’s direct payment software , you don’t need to apply; Trupanion pays the vet directly. Therefore, policyholders do not have to worry about costly up-front payments or filing claims, which is standard for most pet insurance industries.
Trupanion lacks affordability and flexibility: premiums are high and there is only one policy option.
Embrace is willing to insure pets up to 15 years old against accidents and illnesses. After that age, he can still get insurance, but only for accidents. This is quite rare as companies generally do not insure pets over the age of 10 in any way.
Embrace does not offer wellness services as a separate policy. Instead, pet owners can enroll in the Wellness Rewards plan and contribute a certain amount toward preventive care costs.
Embrace is transparent to help you avoid reporting surprises.
Fetch’s sample policy does not address many dental conditions or injuries, which can be good or bad.
We encourage you to ask specifically what types of coverage you can expect for your pet’s teeth and other dental needs.
Healthy Paws only offers an accident and illness policy for cats and dogs. There are no per-occurrence, annual, or lifetime benefit limits, and you can choose a deductible ranging from $100 to $500.
Healthy Paws offers fast claims processing through its mobile app, with most claims processed in as little as two days. It also offers a direct payment option instead of a refund if you can’t pay the vet bill up front.
Healthy Paws is best suited for pets who enroll at a young age, as coverage options and reimbursement rates are more limited for older pets.
Healthy Paws says that it will cover elements of dental care when caused by an accidental injury. Does not cover routine dental care (this is quite common with pet insurance providers, unless you purchase a wellness plan).
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) offers preventative care for cats and dogs for accidents, accidents and illness only. Horse riding enthusiasts can also insure their horses, but only in certain federal states.
The ASPCA’s premium rates are among the most affordable, and the company is also more flexible than its industry peers on certain contract terms.
While other policies impose an age limit on coverage for hereditary or congenital conditions, the ASPCA guarantees coverage regardless of your pet’s age at the time of enrollment, as long as the conditions are not pre-diagnosed.
With Spot, you can easily maximize your pet’s coverage. It is one of the relatively few companies that offer policies with a full (100%) coverage option, which means you are not responsible for paying any bills.
In addition, the company offers a very low deductible option ($100) that further reduces your copays for care.
However, choosing one or both of the low copay and low deductible results in higher premiums for the policy.
Spot’s prices are already higher than the norm for young pets, though the company doesn’t have an upper age limit for insuring new pets, which may make it a good option if your furry companions are older.
Pumpkin offers affordable plans with the option to add preventive care packages for kittens and dogs that are not included in the standard insurance.
For example, the company’s puppy care packages include an annual wellness assessment fee, four puppy shots and an annual fecal test.
Pumpkin will also reimburse the cost of up to four vaccinations your puppy received prior to being insured under the Preventive Package, as well as the cost of laboratory tests for parasites.
However, these supplements, known as Pumpkin Preventive Essentials, are not available in all states.
FIGO offers pet owners the opportunity to reduce their copay to 0% thanks to the 100% refund option. (With other providers, the lowest copay is usually 10%.)
Figo also does not impose annual limits, but the company applies a lifetime maximum, that is, how much it reimburses during the life of your pet.
Be prepared to pay above-average premiums for a policy with 0% copay, unlimited paid benefits, or both. Other notable drawbacks include Figo’s hereditary disease coverage limitations and lack of driver options.
Pet owners can purchase additional coverage for veterinary exam fees, but not for preventive or wellness care .
Figo’s Pet Cloud app offers extensive mobile support. The app allows you to contact a licensed veterinarian 24/7, manage your pet’s insurance records, and make payments, among other things.
Figo’s Pet Cloud app has comprehensive mobile support. With the app, you can contact a licensed veterinarian 24/7, manage your pet’s insurance documents and make payments, among other transactions.
Lemonade offers comprehensive accident and health insurance, and you can further expand coverage with a preventive plan for annual check-ups, vaccinations, and heartworm and parasite detection.
A separate tab is also available to cover fees for veterinary examinations and alternative treatments such as acupuncture.
Lemonade also donates excess premium payments to charities chosen by policyholders. Lemonade is currently available in 36 states, but you can sign up for updates on the site.
Nationwide is the only pet insurance company of its size to offer a bird and exotic pet plan. Most birds, reptiles, and small mammals can be covered, including goats and pot-bellied pigs.
(Any animal not specifically listed on Nationwide’s website, however, including those listed as endangered or poisonous, is disqualified.)
TrustedPals policies are issued by Zurich, a global insurance company. TrustedPals issues policies for dog and cat owners with no age limit and 1% of company profits are donated to pet-related charities.
It offers accident and illness plans and wellness policies, and there are several discount programs available.
In addition to a multi-pet discount, you may also qualify for a discount if you are a military employee or veteran, first responder, veterinary student, or if your pet is a service animal.
MetLife Pet Insurance, formerly known as Pet First, offers a simple online application and multiple coverage options.
You can choose your maximum benefit amount, which ranges from $2,000 to $10,000. The deductible is only $50 and you can take advantage of one or more of the discount programs that MetLife offers:
- 10% discount for veterinarians and shelter workers
- $10 off online purchases
- Discount for military service members, veterans and first responders
- Discount for health workers.
PetFirst offers multiple discounts for medical personnel, military, veterans, and first responders. Employers who offer pet insurance are also eligible for a reduced rate, as are affinity groups and those who work in pet care.
Accident and illness insurance for cats and dogs is comprehensive, including benefits for holistic treatments and alternative benefits.
There is also a preventive care adjunct that appears to broadly define such treatment. However, the Company specifically excludes standard wellness services such as parasite prevention and treatment and elective surgery (including spaying and neutering).
24PetWatch offers wellness policies and plans with short waiting periods and low deductibles, but the company hasn’t made the cut because of certain policy limitations.
There is only one refund option (80%). In addition, the age of dogs at ten years and cats at 12 years of insurance coverage. At this age, it’s hard to find another company willing to start providing coverage, leaving older pets uninsured.
Also, the lack of discounts makes their plans a bit more expensive than the competition.
Hartville policies offer excellent coverage, but they come at a price: Expect about $40 a month for a mixed-breed puppy and $22 a month for a mixed-breed kitten.
Accident insurance seems like an affordable alternative, and even then, premiums start at around $30 for a puppy. Once your dog is over five years old, sickness benefit premiums also increase significantly.
Hartville also advertises an unlimited annual benefit payment, but the option is not available through online enrollment.
How to choose the best pet insurance for you
Pet insurance coverage varies by state and terms and conditions may change annually. Because policies are not one-size-fits-all, NAPHIA’s guidelines for selecting the best policy suggest:
- Consider what your pet will need throughout its life, either in general or breed-specific.
- Choose coverage levels appropriate for common practices and breed-specific conditions
- Set benefit limits that reflect the average cost of care in your region
- Pay attention to shorter wait times
- Review contract terms regarding chronic illnesses, hereditary and pre-existing conditions
- Compare costs: premiums, copays and reimbursement percentages
How often should I clean my dog’s teeth?
Your vet recommends a professional dog dental cleaning once a year as part of a routine grooming plan. This helps ensure that your vet can detect the onset of gum disease early and recommend a treatment plan before it gets significantly worse.
Brushing your dog’s teeth at home is a great idea to prevent plaque and tartar buildup. This helps them maintain good oral hygiene and minimizes the extensive cleaning required during annual dental work, which can be uncomfortable.
Is regular dental cleaning included in pet insurance?
For the most part, dog and cat dental cleanings are considered preventive care and therefore not covered by traditional accident/sickness fees.
However, most pet insurance providers offer additional pet wellness plans that you can add for additional coverage, including the cost of routine cleanings.
How can you save money on pet dental care?
Most veterinarians recommend that dogs and cats have their teeth cleaned as part of their annual checkup.
This will help your vet spot early signs of health problems and ensure your pet is at reduced risk of developing costly dental disease later in life.
You can also take care of your pet’s dental health by brushing their teeth regularly.
According to VCA Animal Hospitals, you should brush your dog’s teeth twice a day or at least three times a week. They recommend the same schedule for cats.
Dental hygiene treats and chews can also help maintain your pet’s oral health between cleanings.
How to Find Affordable Dental Care for Pets?
Pet insurance can help you avoid debt if your furry companion needs medical attention. In addition to getting pet insurance with good dental insurance, here are some ways to keep a pet’s dental care costs down.
Practice caution : According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, many pets show early signs of periodontal disease once they reach the age of 3.
As you age, it’s important to take preventative steps to prevent dental disease from worsening or affecting kidney or liver function.
Consider a pet insurance wellness plan : Although no pet health insurance will cover routine dental care, you can often add a wellness plan that does.
Adding a wellness plan to your policy increases your pet’s insurance costs, but it can offset the cost of dental cleanings (ranging from a few hundred dollars to more than $1,000 on average, depending on your location).
Consider CareCredit: If your pet has an expensive dental emergency that you can’t afford, you can use a financing option like CareCredit, with caution.
With CareCredit, pet owners can apply for financing for short periods, ranging from six months to two years, with no interest on vet bills over $200.
You must use a registered provider in the CareCredit network. So be prepared to pay off the balance before interest is charged.
Set aside savings : Every pet insurance plan has a deductible and coinsurance percentage that you must pay. So saving money whenever possible can help make your vet bills more manageable.
Dental insurance can save you thousands of dollars over the life of your pet. But it’s important to remember that not all insurance plans are created equal, and neither are all dental conditions.
Do your homework to find out if the pet insurance you’re considering offers this coverage, and don’t forget to read the fine print!
Then take it one step further and see what specific benefits the plan offers, as well as exclusions, requirements and limitations you may need to consider.