Pet insurance and vet expenses

When is animal health insurance worthwhile and how veterinary costs are developing. Inform now!

Tierärztin mit Katze

It doesn't matter whether it's a cat, dog or horse - the desire for security for the beloved furry friend is at the top of the list of priorities, especially in this country. Pet owners know the problem: pet insurance offers are a dime a dozen – but are they even worth it? We explain which pet insurance policies are available, when it makes sense to take out and how veterinary costs are made up.

There is pet insurance

The insurance jungle of the pet world is almost as confusing as the one that two-legged friends have to navigate. It is also important to keep track of animal insurance offers. This is the only way you can find out which insurance options actually make sense for you and your loved one. Let's take a closer look at the most important offers:

Pet Liability Insurance

We all know it, many of us have it: Pet liability insurance. Because it is mandatory in most states. Especially when owning a dog. If you cannot prove liability insurance for your four-legged friend, it is often impossible to register the animal in your city. Even if taking out liability insurance for horses is not mandatory, it makes sense in most cases. Because pet owners are fully liable for the pranks of their darlings. This could get expensive.

Hund Haftpflichtversicherung

Pet Surgery Insurance

If you want to protect your loved one during surgical procedures, surgical insurance is an option. It covers the costs of necessary medical operations. But be careful: As the name suggests, the insurance actually only applies to operations. This type of ailment is only covered by surgical insurance if wounds have to be stitched up. Minor wound injuries fall into the category of curative treatments and are therefore not covered by surgical insurance.

Tierärzte Operation

This type of veterinary care does not fall into the surgical category, but into that of curative treatment. However, most surgical insurance plans cover the follow-up care that follows an operation.

Health insurance for pets

Health insurance for dogs, cats and horses is comparable to classic health insurance for people. If pet owners take out this type of insurance for their four-legged friends, all costs for veterinary treatment are covered in most cases. Incidentally, surgical insurance is included in animal health insurance. The contributions to be paid for this all-round carefree package are correspondingly higher. In general, the larger the animal, the higher the cost. For horses, monthly fees can be as high as €170.

Pet insurance - the fine print counts

Hund beim Arzt

Even if it can be nerve-wracking: Before taking out pet insurance, it is worth taking a look at the small print of the respective contract. Because often good-sounding aspects with which the insurance is advertised have one (or even several) catches. It is therefore essential to pay attention to the contract period and the corresponding notice periods. Like all contracts, pet insurance policies run for a maximum of three years. After that they can be canceled annually. However, some providers only promise a one-year term. If you want to cancel the insurance contract early, this is usually only possible if your four-legged friend is handed over or dies. Caution is also advised with offers that promise up to 100% reimbursement of costs: There are waiting times before the insurance actually takes effect. The waiting time is usually three months. Attention: For breed-specific diseases or joint operations, there are often hidden waiting times of up to 18 months. In addition, any animal diseases that occur during this waiting period are not covered by insurance. Accidents are an exception here: If your darling falls down the stairs or slips in the paddock, the necessary treatment costs are also covered during the waiting period.

Is pet insurance worth it?

Dogs and cats should visit their trusted veterinarian at least once a year. Horses even twice a year. You should definitely plan for these costs for routine checks and vaccination boosters. But what if accidents happen or your loved one suddenly falls ill? The costs for emergency treatment and any necessary operations can quickly turn out to be four figures.

Pferd mit Ärzten

Whether pet insurance is worth it or not depends primarily on how you are financially positioned and whether you create your own monthly reserves for your furry friend. If you are also able to cover unexpected costs on your own, pet insurance is not a must. If this is not the case, you should consider taking out insurance to protect your treasure. Because should something really happen, the benefits of this insurance are often significantly higher than the costs that they previously caused. The decision for or against pet insurance is entirely up to you.

Animal liability insurance is an exception here. You should definitely take out this – and not just because it is mandatory for dog owners in most federal states. The costs for animal liability are relatively low at an average of around €35-50 per year for a dog. The benefit of this insurance is enormous. If your darling destroys someone else's property while romping around, or chews on your sister's laptop out of boredom, the animal liability insurance will take effect and pay for any damage caused.

How are the costs at the vet made up?

Important to know: Costs for veterinary visits in Germany are based on the scale of fees for veterinarians, GOT for short. This regulation sets the minimum fees for veterinary services. Bad news for all pet owners: In 2022 a new fee regulation came into force, which has increased veterinary costs by up to 30%. Particularly annoying: The prices specified in the GOT only serve as a guideline. Veterinarians are free to demand up to 2.9 times the rate. In emergencies, veterinarians can even charge four times the rate for treatment. Falling short of the fixed fees is not permitted. In plain language, this means that visits to the vet have become significantly more expensive. You should also take this fact to heart when deciding for or against animal insurance.

Our partners in animal insurance


Are you looking for the right insurance for your four-legged friend? At Annimally we work together with the Allianz general agency Mareike Edelmann from Worms. Insurance protection has been a priority there for 45 years, because Mareike is the second generation to run the Allianz agency. In addition to Mareike, the team consists of two other animal friends: Julia and Janika. While Julia and Corinna are there for you as specialists in insurance for everything to do with horses and cats, Janika takes care of everything to do with dog insurance. The three see their own horses, cats, dogs and guinea pigs as full members of the family. They know and understand pet owners' desire to know that their darling is fully protected.

Does that sound like a good starting point? If you have any questions about pet insurance or would like to insure your pet with Allianz, Mareike and her team look forward to hearing from you:

Find out more now!

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