Pet insurance is an important consideration when acquiring any new furry member of the family. As always, there are many factors that can affect whether a pet is eligible for insurance; including the company provider, the pet’s age, breed and veterinary history. But are there any cats that are so high risk that they cannot be insured at all?
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Whether a cat can be insured depends on the individual insurance company as well as the cat itself. Unlike for dogs, there isn’t a specific list of domesticated cat breeds that are considered to be potentially dangerous, or for whom ownership is prohibited. This doesn´t include, obviously, wild non-domesticated cats. Or large felines that might be owned by wildlife parks etc; and for which special licences are required for their acquisition, ownership and maintenance, this is a whole other ball game! However, it is not uncommon for insurance companies to reject lesser-known breeds of cat that are considered exotic to the UK, for example, various pet insurance providers will not cover breeds such as the Keetso, the Asian Leopard cat, or Chausies, based on their breed alone. There are also many who will reject hybrid cat species, such as Savannah Cats (a hybrid between a domestic cat and a Serval).
Are there breeds that are more difficult to insure?
More commonly, certain breeds are more difficult to acquire comprehensive insurance for. Pet insurers may be reluctant to cover a cat of a breed that is at greater risk of certain diseases. Even if the cat itself is generally healthy with no history of disease. Such breeds often demonstrate a higher incidence of genetic or inherited diseases. This makes the individual cats more likely to suffer certain problems than other breeds. These may include, for example, snub-nosed or brachycephalic breeds such as Persian cats, owing to their increased risk of respiratory compromise; or Maine Coons for the incidence of heart problems. These breeds may be issued policies with certain pre-defined restrictions owing to the risk perceived by the insurance company.
What if I can’t insure my cat?
Unfortunately, some owners may find themselves in a situation where their cat is refused insurance cover. Researching different providers may unearth an alternative policy. However, it should be emphasised that any policy details and fine print must be thoroughly read to make sure that it’s clear exactly what the policy will cover, for how long and what any excess is. When faced with the undesirable situation in which a cat cannot be insured, it might be a good idea to set aside a small fund specifically for your cat, just in case. This way, should your pet have an accident or suffer an unexpected illness, you will be better prepared for funding the care that they may need. This is particularly helpful in an emergency when the last thing on your mind is finding the money to help your beloved feline.