fbpx

Pet Insurance with a Pre-Existing Condition

If you need pet insurance but your pet has a pre-existing health condition, you can explore coverage options and compare policies with Savvy today.

Written by 
Savvy Editorial Team
Savvy's content writing team are professionals with a wide and diverse range of industry experience and topic knowledge. We write across a broad spectrum of finance-related topics to provide our readers with informative resources to help them learn more about a certain area or enable them to decide on which product is best for their needs with careful comparison. Meet the team behind the operation here. Visit our authors page to meet Savvy's expert writing team, committed to delivering informative and engaging content to help you make informed financial decisions.
Our authors
, updated on October 6th, 2023       

Fact checked

At Savvy, we are committed to providing accurate information. Our content undergoes a rigorous process of fact-checking before it is published. Learn more about our editorial policy.

Pet Insurance Banner

Compare pet insurance

Looking into pet insurance for your beloved furry friend? Whether you have a playful pup or a curious cat, you can compare pet insurance options from a range of providers and find the perfect coverage that suits your pet's unique needs and your budget. 

site-logos Fetch Care Plan

Annual benefits limit

Excess

% Benefits reimbursement rate

Covers illness?

Covers accidental injuries?

$30,000 $100 80%, 90% or 100% pros-item-petins pros-item-petins

Pet insurance we think you’ll love. 24/7 vet support + dental, physio and behaviour cover added (see PDS) all in one app.

More details
site-logos Petsy Most Popular 80% Cover $150 Excess

Annual benefits limit

Excess

% Benefits reimbursement rate

Covers illness?

Covers accidental injuries?

$25,000 $150 80% pros-item-petins pros-item-petins

Protect your furry friend with Petsy's pet insurance policy. Get a free quote.

More details
site-logos Fetch Premium Plan

Annual benefits limit

Excess

% Benefits reimbursement rate

Covers illness?

Covers accidental injuries?

$30,000 $0 80% or 90% pros-item-petins pros-item-petins

Pet insurance we think you’ll love. 24/7 vet support + dental, physio and behaviour cover added (see PDS) all in one app.

More details
site-logos Knose Pet Insurance

Annual benefits limit

Excess

% Benefits reimbursement rate

Covers illness?

Covers accidental injuries?

$7,500, $12,500 or $25,000 $0 / $100 / $200 70%, 80% or 90% pros-item-petins pros-item-petins

Multi-award winning pet insurance designed with the help of vets.

More details
site-logos Petsy Value Cover 80% Cover $500 Excess

Annual benefits limit

Excess

% Benefits reimbursement rate

Covers illness?

Covers accidental injuries?

$10,000 $500 80% pros-item-petins pros-item-petins

Protect your furry friend with Petsy's pet insurance policy. Get a free quote.

More details
site-logos Petsy Top Cover

Annual benefits limit

Excess

% Benefits reimbursement rate

Covers illness?

Covers accidental injuries?

$25,000 $0 / $150 / $500 90% pros-item-petins pros-item-petins

Protect your furry friend with Petsy's pet insurance policy. Get a free quote.

More details

Disclaimer: Savvy is not advising or recommending any particular product to you. We provide general information on products for the purposes of comparison, but your personal situation or goals are not considered here. Although we try to make our comparisons as thorough as possible, we do not have information on all products on the market on our site.

Savvy earns a commission each time a customer buys a pet insurance policy through our website. We don’t arrange for products to be purchased from these brands directly, as all purchases are conducted via the individual pet insurance companies.

You should always consult a given offer's PDS or further documentation in the process of deciding on which loan to choose, as well as seeking independent, professional advice. If you decide to apply with one of the lenders listed above via our website, you will not be dealing with Savvy; any applications or enquiries will be conducted directly with the lender offering that product.

As a responsible pet owner, ensuring the well-being of your animal companion is of utmost importance. Pet insurance provides financial protection against unforeseen medical expenses, offering peace of mind in times of need. However, what if your pet has a pre-existing condition?

Navigating pet insurance with a pre-existing condition can be tricky, but you may still be able to take out cover for your pet. Using Savvy’s online comparison tool, you can compare a range of policies from our panel of trusted insurers in minutes, helping you find a pet insurance plan that suits your needs and budget. Get started with a free, no-obligation quote today!

What is a pre-existing condition in pet insurance?

A pre-existing condition refers to any health issue, injury or illness that your pet experienced or was diagnosed with before insurance cover began. These conditions can be either temporary ailments or more chronic concerns.

  • Temporary conditions: temporary pre-existing conditions are health problems your pet experienced before, but they have been treated and are no longer present. For instance, things like soft tissue injuries, broken bones, urinary tract infections and respiratory infections that have healed fall into this category.
  • Chronic or permanent conditions: chronic pre-existing conditions are ongoing health issues your pet had before your insurance started. These conditions need continuous care and might include diabetes, arthritis, cancer, heart disease and allergies.

Understanding these types of conditions helps you know which ones might be covered by your pet insurance and which ones might not.    

Can I get pet insurance if my pet has a pre-existing condition?

It is possible to obtain insurance coverage for your pet even if they have a pre-existing condition, but coverage for the pre-existing condition itself will typically be excluded from the policy.

There may be exceptions. Some insurers might offer coverage for pre-existing conditions on a case-by-case basis. For example, if your pet had a temporary condition that has a been fully cured and no longer affects its health, some insurers might consider covering it. However, coverage is often contingent on your pet not having shown signs of that condition for at least 18 months.

Regardless of whether or not you can get cover for the pre-existing condition, having insurance can still be beneficial for covering future accidents, injuries and illnesses that your pet might face.

What if my pet develops a condition during the waiting period?

In pet insurance, the waiting period is the time at the beginning of a policy during which specific coverage exclusions apply. It is essentially a buffer period implemented by insurance providers to prevent fraudulent claims and ensure that policies are purchased for the purpose of addressing unforeseen future issues rather than existing problems.    

Depending on the condition, the waiting period might be a few weeks or a few months. If your pet develops a condition during this time, it might be classified as pre-existing and excluded from coverage. It’s therefore vital to thoroughly review your policy terms to understand how waiting periods affect coverage.

Can I get my pet’s pre-existing condition reviewed?

Yes, it is possible to request a review of your pet’s pre-existing condition under certain circumstances. Some insurers offer the option to have a pre-existing condition reviewed, especially if the condition was considered temporary and your pet has not shown noticeable signs, symptoms or abnormalities for a specified period, often around 18 months.

To initiate the review process, you typically need to provide your insurer with veterinary records and documentation that demonstrate that the condition has been resolved and no longer affects your pet’s health. This could include medical reports, test results and statements from your vet.

If the review is successful and your insurer agrees that the pre-existing condition is no longer applicable, they may remove the exclusion for that specific condition from your policy. This means that your pet could be eligible for coverage related to that condition in the future.

Keep in mind that not all insurers offer pre-existing condition reviews, and the specific requirements and processes may vary between insurance companies. To be sure, you should consult your policy’s product disclosure statement (PDS) or contact your insurance provider to inquire about their stance on pre-existing condition reviews. 

Types of pet insurance you can choose from

Why compare pet insurance with Savvy?

Top tips for avoiding a pre-existing condition

Regular veterinary check-ups

Early detection and treatment of any health issues can prevent them from becoming chronic or permanent conditions.

Maintain a healthy lifestyle

Ensure your pet has a balanced diet, regular exercise and maintains a healthy weight.

Vaccinations and preventative care

Keep up with your pet’s vaccinations, parasite prevention and dental care to reduce the risk of certain diseases and conditions.  

Safety measures

Take precautions to prevent accidents or injuries, such as keeping your pet on a leash during walks and using safety gear in vehicles.

Breed-specific considerations

Research breed-specific health concerns and be vigilant for any symptoms associated with those conditions.

Insure your pet young

Insuring your pet when young and healthy means you will be covered for any conditions that may arise later.   

Frequently asked questions about pre-existing conditions and pet insurance

What is a bilateral condition?

A bilateral condition in pet insurance refers to a medical issue that affects body parts your pet has in pairs, such as ears, eyes and knees. These conditions may be covered under your insurance policy, depending on your chosen coverage level, and are not automatically considered pre-existing or excluded.

However, a bilateral condition is treated as a single condition. For instance, if your pet shows signs or symptoms of a condition in one ear before the policy’s start date or during the waiting period, a later occurrence of the same condition in the other ear may still be regarded as pre-existing.

What is a related condition?

A related condition in pet insurance means a health problem that stems from the same main disease or has the same diagnosis as another condition, irrespective of the specific body parts affected. This means that if your pet has a certain condition, any future conditions that share the same underlying cause or classification would be considered related. For example, if your pet has arthritis in its legs and later gets arthritis in its back, these are related conditions because they both come from the same issue.

Can I get coverage for hereditary or congenital conditions in pet insurance?

Yes – you can generally get coverage for hereditary or congenital conditions in pet insurance on certain plans, as long as there haven’t been any noticeable signs or symptoms before the policy started or during waiting periods. Hereditary conditions come from genetics and can be present at birth or develop later, while congenital conditions are present at birth and can be inherited or caused by the environment. If these conditions arise during the policy, they won’t be seen as pre-existing. However, it is important to check your PDS to understand what exactly is covered.

Can I switch pet insurance providers if my pet has a pre-existing condition?

Yes – you can switch pet insurance providers even if your pet has a pre-existing condition. However, the new provider may continue to exclude coverage for that condition. There is also a chance you will need to re-serve waiting periods. Review the new policy’s terms and exclusions carefully before making the switch to see what is or is not covered.

We'd love to chat, how can we help?

By clicking "Submit", you agree to be contacted by a Savvy broker and to receive communications from Savvy which you can unsubscribe from at any time. Read our Privacy Policy.