Surprising new findings from pet insurance provider PDSA Petsurance show that while 76% of households* take out contents insurance for their possessions, only 42% of pet owners insure their four-legged friends. This leaves the owners of around twelve million pets at risk financially should anything happen to their four-legged friends, warns leading vet charity, PDSA.

The top reason given for not getting pet insurance was cost. But by prioritising our household possessions over our pets, owners could be leaving themselves open to fees of hundreds, possibly even thousands of pounds, should their pet get ill or injured. In 2015 the average claim for pet insurance was £679, compared to the average premium of just £20 a month*. 

“It’s surprising to learn that a laptop is more likely to be insured than a family pet,” said Claire Jenner of PDSA, “especially when you consider the potential costs involved in a vet claim. We know the UK is a nation of animal lovers and whilst we all like to hope that our pets will never become ill or get injured, there really aren’t any guarantees.”

Yet pet owners are not averse to spending money on their pets in other ways: findings from the PDSA Animal Wellbeing (PAW) Report 2015 show that UK owners are happy to splash out on luxuries and spend plenty of time with their pets. For instance, 73% have bought their pet a Christmas or birthday present and 12% have even Skyped or ‘Face-timed’ their pet. Equally, the importance of pets in our lives is in no doubt with 95% of pet owners believing that owning a pet provides invaluable companionship, while 75% believe that pet ownership makes them physically or mentally healthier**.

“It’s no surprise that people love to pamper their pets,” continues Claire, “they are members of our families and bring us unconditional love and companionship. However, there is no NHS for pets and many owners will be in for a shock if they don’t have plans in place to protect their pets in the event of illness or injury.”