Published by Joe Davine on
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How to get exotic pet insurance

What is exotic pet insurance?

Like any pet insurance policy, exotic pet insurance covers the costs associated with illness, injury, and subsequent treatment. And exotic pet insurance policies will also commonly include the replacement of your pet should they die as a result of an accident.

As exotic pets are often more difficult to maintain and store than more common pets such as cats and dogs, their enclosures/cages can also come with its own associated costs. Therefore, many exotic pet insurance providers also offer coverage for your pet’s housing, in the instance of both accidental and deliberate damage/vandalism.

Keep reading to find out how to get the best policy for your exotic pet, what animals you can insure, the costs, and what you can expect from a policy.

What is classified as an exotic pet?

The term ‘exotic’ is used loosely in terms of insurance. However, generally it includes any sort of animal that isn’t native to the UK. The animals eligible under exotic pet insurance will vary from provider to provider, but generally covers the following pets:

  • Reptiles - including lizards, snakes, tortoises, etc.
  • Exotic birds - including parrots, cockatoos, etc.
  • Birds of prey - including eagles, hawks, buzzards, etc.
  • Exotic mammals - including chipmunks, alpacas/llamas, micro pigs, meerkats, etc.

What does exotic pet insurance cover?

Like all insurance policies, coverage for exotic pets varies from provider to provider. However, most insurers will usually cover the cost of:

  • Vet treatment resulting from an accident or illness, up to a certain limit.
  • Medication should they fall ill.
  • Replacing your pet if they die as a result of an accident or illness.
  • Getting a new pet if they are lost or stolen.
  • Replacing your pet if they die as a result of a fire, wind, storm, lightning, or flooding.
  • Public liability should your pet harms someone or their property (limitations apply, and not all providers will offer this coverage).
  • Replacing your pet’s housing or enclosure should it be stolen, intentionally damaged, or destroyed through fire, lightning, storm, or wind.

The level of cover you can take out varies depending on the type of animal you’re looking to insure. For example, you can usually take out up to £5,000 worth of cover for parrots and exotic birds, but often you can only get around £1,000 worth of coverage for lizards.

What doesn’t it cover?

As with any insurance policy, there are exclusions which your policy won’t cover. Here is a list of some of the common restrictions that apply to many exotic pet insurance policies:

  • Pre-existing medical conditions.
  • Medical issues caused by poor storage or maintenance.
  • Commercial use of the pet, such as a visitor attraction or in a zoo.
  • Death or theft allowed through insecure storage (in order to be eligible for a payout in the case of theft, you may be required to install an alarm, security lights, and steel padlocks on doors or gates).

How much does insurance for an exotic pet cost?

It’s hard to say, as it’s dependent on a variety of factors. £10 to £20 per month is the usual price range that most exotic pets fall into. However, your premiums can vary considerably depending on the following:

  • The market value of your pet and how much you paid for them.
  • The age of your pet.
  • The type of animal you have.
  • The health of your pet.
  • The level of coverage you can take out for your pet.
  • The location of your veterinary surgery.

Why should I get exotic pet insurance?

Any pet insurance policy is primarily designed to offset any unexpected vet bills, and with exotic pets, the cost of medical treatment and veterinary specialists can be especially expensive. While exotic pet insurance averages out at a mere £120 - £240 annually, according to ExoticDirect the following claims were made in 2016:

  • £413 for a Degu with a lump.
  • £668 for a Bearded Dragon with a respiratory infection
  • £1405 for a Hermanns Tortoise with post-hibernation anorexia

Not all vets will have the skills and experience required to handle your sick or injured exotic pet, and can cause even further strain on your wallet. Therefore, many people find taking out an exotic pet insurance policy a good financial safeguard to make sure their pet gets the right treatment.

How do I find the best pet insurance for my exotic pet?

This is where we come in. Our in-depth reviews of each insurer will give you all the information you need in order to find the right policy for your pet. Whether you're looking to insure just one exotic pet, or are trying to find a multi-pet policy for many animals, have a read and we’ll take you through all the options on offer.

Where can I get a quote now?

Right here. If you already know what you’re looking for, then click below and one of our trusted brokers will get you a great quote in minutes!