How to get the best rabbit insurance policy
Rabbit insurance policies typically offer coverage if your furry friend falls ill or gets injured, and some offer optional extra cover for many other factors that affect your pet’s welfare. Like other forms of pet insurance, rabbit insurance is usually paid for in either monthly or annual instalments.
You may find that the number of insurance companies who offer insurance policies for your rabbit to be considerably lower than those that insure cats and dogs, but there are still options out there.
Keep reading below to find out more about how exactly rabbit insurance works, why it’s valuable, and how much it’ll cost you.
Why should I look into rabbit insurance?
According to the RSPCA, 1.5 million rabbits are kept as pets in the UK alone. With a lifespan of roughly 8 - 12 years, and a particular susceptibility to recurring medical conditions such as coccidiosis and fly strike, Rabbits can be expensive pets to keep should they get ill.
That’s where pet insurance for you rabbit comes in. Rabbit insurance policies are paid for in either monthly or annual premiums, and provide coverage up to a certain figure per situation - whether that’s loss, illness, or fees for your rabbit to be taken care of when you’re away or ill.
Often owners choose to take out rabbit insurance because it’s relatively hassle-free. While it varies from provider to provider, many insurance companies offer a 24/7 claims line, and you can even arrange for the provider to pay the vet directly on your behalf.What are the different insurance options?
When taking out rabbit insurance, there aren’t many options to choose from, making the whole process simpler than other pet insurance policies. While some providers will allow you to customise the amount of coverage you’re looking for, others will have more standardised policies.
However, with all rabbit insurers you’ll have the option of choosing between an annual policy or a lifetime policy. To make things easy, we’ve broken down how both lifetime covers and annual covers work:
- Lifetime cover. These policies cover your pet for the entirety of their life, allowing you to claim up to a certain limit for vet fees each year (usually around £2,000), and a smaller limit for other circumstances. This style of cover is more expensive than an annual cover, but is particularly suitable for pets which suffer from recurring illnesses.
- Annual cover. This style of policy offers coverage for a year and then expires. During this year you can claim up to a set limit (much like a lifetime cover policy), but once 12 months is over, you are no longer eligible for a payout should your pet fall ill. It’s worth noting that when you renew your rabbit insurance policy, any treatments which your pet underwent from the last cover will need to be declared as a pre-existing condition, and this can affect the cost of your future premiums.
What is covered by rabbit insurance?
Much like any type of insurance, the coverage offered will vary from provider to provider. However, rabbit insurance is fairly straight-forward, so here is a list of circumstances that most providers cover:
- Vet fees. Rabbit insurance is primarily designed to offset the cost of vet fees. Coverage for this is typically capped at around £2,000.
- Complementary treatment. Many insurance providers offer coverage for complementary treatments such as acupuncture and homeopathy. However, the coverage for these treatments is usually capped at roughly £750 cover.
- Ongoing conditions. Many insurance providers offer coverage for your rabbit’s ongoing conditions but exclude pre-existing conditions.
- Loss or theft. Many insurance providers offer coverage for advertising and reward fees should your rabbit go missing. This figure is usually around £250 annually.
- Dental cover. Very few policies offer dental cover for rabbits, especially as many rabbits have issues with their teeth which require constant medical attention and maintenance throughout their life. However, some policies still do cover dental bills.
- Boarding fees. Some insurance providers offer to offset the costs associated with your pet’s care should you have to go you’re away for a period. This can be beneficial should you fall ill and have to spend time hospitalised. This coverage is usually capped at around £250 per year.
It may also be worth noting that you can cover up to 3 rabbits on one policy, providing £2,000 coverage for each pet. However, this will lead to an increased monthly premium.
What exclusions apply?
It’s important to make sure you understand what’s covered by your insurance policy, as each provider will have different exclusions. However, when it comes to rabbit insurance, many providers will not cover the following:
- Pre-existing conditions.
- Dental issues
- Older rabbits (e.g. over 5 years old)
- Baby rabbits (e.g. under six weeks old)
How much does rabbit insurance cost?
Roughly £10-£16 monthly. However, like all insurance, the premiums you pay vary between providers and can be affected by a variety of factors.
Additionally, all rabbit insurance policies require you to pay an excess of around £50 - £70, and even then this figure is subject to change and increase.
Can you get rabbit insurance with no excess?
In short, no. Every rabbit insurer will require you to pay an excess. The exact excess figure will vary from company to company, but usually costs between £55 and £65.
Some providers state that they may occasionally increase the excess you pay when you claim. Or alternatively may impose an additional excess (e.g. 20%) alongside your fixed excess on your rabbit’s 7th birthday. However, you will always be notified of any changes in your excess around a year in advance.
What affects the cost of rabbit insurance?
The main factors that affect the price you get quoted are as follows:
- Breed. Depending on the breed of your rabbit, your monthly premiums can vary. Certain breeds are more susceptible to certain illnesses, and how much it costs to treat those illnesses affects how much you pay.
- Age. The older your rabbit is, the more you’re likely to have to pay.
- Whether it’s chipped/tagged. With many pet rabbits housed outside, the risk of them getting lost is heightened. If you take out cover for this, having them chipped or tagged can bring down your premiums.
- Where you live. The cost of vet fees vary across the country. In areas where vets charge more, you’ll have to pay higher premiums.
- Increasing veterinary fees. With ongoing advancements in veterinary medicine, vet fees are ever-increasing. This increase is likely to be reflected in your pet insurance premiums.
Do I have to take out rabbit insurance?
No, there’s no legal obligation for you to take out pet insurance for any pet. Due to the excess fees, many people choose to self-insure by setting aside money each month in case they ever need to cover expensive vet bills or loss.
However, compared to the growing cost of vet bills, rabbit insurance is fairly cheap. In 2017, ExoticDirect paid out the following claims:
- £610 for a Mini Lop rabbit suffering with gastric dilation.
- £768 to investigate then treat weight loss in a Dwarf Lop rabbit.
- £664 for a Mini Lop rabbit with gut stasis.
- Therefore, considering rabbits are susceptible to a variety of conditions - such as fly strike, coccidiosis, and bone fractures - you may find it worthwhile to take out pet insurance for your rabbit.
Where can I get a quote right now?
While rabbit insurance policies are harder to find than cat or dog insurance policies, Pure Cover has done the hard work for you. Our brokers have found the top quotes from the best pet insurance providers throughout the UK.
Ready to get a quote right now? Click below and we’ll find you a quote in minutes!