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Home > General > Are Pet Wellness Plans Worth It for Routine Care? (2024 Price Guide)

Are Pet Wellness Plans Worth It for Routine Care? (2024 Price Guide)

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As a pet parent, you want to make sure that your pet is always healthy and happy. But pet healthcare can be expensive, especially if an unexpected expense arises. One way to counteract the costs of healthcare for your animal is with pet insurance; however, insurance can be costly as well, depending on where you live and what type of pet you have. So, how can you save money at the vet?

Another way to save on some costs (but not all) is with a pet wellness plan. These are different from insurance plans, as they cover items insurance doesn’t, like routine care. They are typically more affordable if you take your pet for regular routine care visits. But are pet wellness plans really worth it for routine care? Let’s take a closer look.


What Is a Pet Wellness Plan?

A pet wellness plan is a plan that covers the things regular pet insurance does not, most often preventive care,1 such as vaccines and routine exams. These plans will either reimburse you for these sorts of costs or help you spread routine care costs out over the course of the year, so expenses are more manageable without being subject to deductibles, etc. And because they make preventive care more affordable, you’ll be less likely to skip the small stuff, which can help you catch anything significant right away (or before it starts).

Many pet insurance companies will allow you to add a pet wellness plan of some kind onto a regular insurance plan. But there are some companies where you may be able to purchase only a wellness plan if you don’t want to go the insurance route.

pet insurance concept
Image Credit: thodonal88, Shutterstock

What Do Pet Wellness Plans Cover?

Preventive care can cover a lot of stuff, and each pet wellness plan will cover different items, so you should always read the policy closely before purchasing. But some of the most common items pet wellness plans cover include:

  • Twice yearly checkups
  • Vaccinations
  • Fecal tests and deworming
  • Heartworm testing
  • Preventatives for fleas, ticks, and heartworms
  • Testing for feline leukemia virus (FeLV) and/or feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV)
  • Routine bloodwork and lab tests

A few of the items that might be covered by some wellness plans (but not all) include:

  • Dental cleanings
  • Microchipping
  • Spay/neuter
  • Grooming
  • Discounts on certain services and products not covered

Again, ensure that you read the policy for any pet wellness plan you’re considering very closely and ask questions if needed before purchasing. You may find that something you want to be covered isn’t, so you’ll need to continue shopping around to avoid unexpected expenses!


How Much are Pet Wellness Plans?

Like regular pet insurance plans, the cost of pet wellness plans varies depending upon the insurance company you go with, the sort of pet you have, your pet’s age, your geographical location, and more. Most plans are relatively affordable, though, costing anywhere from $10 to $60 a month.

For example, a wellness plan from Lemonade Pet Insurance for a 3-year-old mixed-breed dog in Alabama would cost $17.95 a month. But a basic wellness plan for the same dog from Spot Pet Insurance is only $9.95 a month. And Wagmo Pet Insurance offers three wellness plans ranging from $20 to $59.

According to SpendMeNot, the average pet owner will pay anywhere from $559 to $652 (for cats) and $893 to $921 (for dogs) each year on preventive care just in the first year of the pet’s life. After that, the cost is approximately $350 for cat owners and $469 to $514 for dog owners each year. Using a pet wellness plan, you could pay as little as $120 a year or as much as $300 a year for preventive services.

a couple with pet signing insurance contract
Image Credit: Drazen Zigic, Shutterstock

Are Pet Wellness Plans Worth It?

A pet wellness plan can be worth it, but it depends on your pet’s needs. A wellness plan for a kitten or puppy will help you save on expenses, as these animals require many vet visits within the first year of their lives. However, your pet will need fewer vet visits for routine care as it ages. Depending on your financial situation, though, having those few visits covered by a wellness plan can be beneficial. And adding a wellness plan onto a regular pet insurance plan can help you save a lot in the long run!

One important thing to note is that if you don’t take your pet in for routine care while having a wellness plan, then you’re essentially wasting money because you’re paying monthly for something you aren’t using.


Final Thoughts

Pet wellness plans cover preventive care that regular pet insurance plans do not, such as vaccines, lab tests, and yearly exams. Getting one for your pet can help you save money on these costs, as a wellness plan will either reimburse you for some costs or help you spread those costs out over the year rather than paying all at once. While purchasing a wellness plan as an add-on to a regular pet insurance plan may be your best bet so your pet has full coverage on everything, some companies will allow you to get just a wellness plan.

Whether a wellness plan for routine care will be worth it depends upon your budget and your pet’s needs. These plans are quite useful for puppies and kittens in their first year of life since they need to visit the vet often. But they will be used less as your pet gets older. You have to actually take your pet in for routine care for a wellness plan to be beneficial, though, so consider whether you have a tendency to skip out on some things or if you’ll take your animal to the vet for every appointment.

Featured Image Credit: huoadg5888, Pixabay

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