Rabbits are becoming more and more common house pets. Across the United States, more than 2.2 million households have welcomed a rabbit into their home as the family pet, as of 2012.
If you own a rabbit, you want to provide it with a high quality of life and a loving home. That includes making sure your rabbit has quality veterinary care in the event of an unexpected illness or injury.
This is where pet health insurance plans come in to give peace of mind that your rabbit needs and/or health problems are covered by a rabbit health insurance policy.
For many families, a rabbit pet insurance policy is the only answer since the rising costs of veterinary care make pet health care treatment often too expensive to pay out-of-pocket.
Best Rabbit Pet Insurance Companies
1. Nationwide Pet Insurance
Nationwide (formerly VPI) is known for offering some of the most comprehensive pet insurance policies on the market.
While most competitors provide plans exclusively to dogs and cats, Nationwide’s policies cover a wide array of animals, including birds, reptiles, ferrets, guinea pigs, exotic animals, and rabbits.
To be eligible for their exotic pet plan coverage, rabbits must be between the ages of six weeks and ten years and generally in good health.
The company’s online quote calculator is only available for pet owners looking to insure a dog or a cat. Those who want to purchase a rabbit insurance policy or any other exotic pet insurance product can receive a quote by phoning Nationwide’s toll-free phone number, which is listed on its website.
According to the company’s website, plans start as low as $35 monthly and have a waiting period of 14 days for accident and injury claims once the first payment is made.
Nationwide Pet Insurance Coverage Types
- Whole Pet with Wellness: This plan is the company’s most comprehensive option providing coverage for a long list of ailments including exam vet fees, diagnostic testing, hospitalization, and routine care such as check-ups and vaccinations. You can purchase this plan at a lower rate by declining the wellness coverage. The Whole Pet with Wellness Plan is one of the most comprehensive plans available, and when it comes to rabbit pet insurance, it’s the best way to make sure you’re covered on all bases. The plan includes coverage for all medical and wellness care, with the only exceptions being pre-existing conditions, grooming, boarding, and taxes.
- Major Medical: While still comprehensive, the Major Medical plan excludes all wellness care and provides less coverage for medical treatments.
- Pet Wellness: This plan provides strictly routine wellness care such as parasite prevention, spay/neuter procedures, micro-chipping, routine check-ups, and vaccinations.
Nationwide Pet Insurance Rates
Nationwide’s starting rate of $35 is relatively average when compared to its competitors, but the value the company offers is almost unparalleled. The price depends on several factors, including the animal being insured, the average cost of vet bills in your state, and the policy options you choose. Customers can keep their premiums lower by opting for a higher deductible, which ranges from $100 to $250 annually.
Nationwide Pet Insurance Coverage Gaps
There are no coverage caps on Nationwide’s rabbit pet insurance plans so you can access veterinary care as often as required. The Whole Pet with Wellness Plan provides reimbursement of 90 percent after paying the deductible. Those with a Major Medical or Pet Wellness plan are reimbursed based on the company’s fee schedule, which sets a predetermined amount per condition or treatment.
Nationwide Pet Insurance Claims Process
Nationwide offers a simple claims process. There are several options for submitting claims, including a mobile app and the company’s secure online portal. Unfortunately, there isn’t an option to have your veterinary office bill the company directly for services rendered, but reimbursements can be deposited electronically to reduce turnaround time. Nationwide promises to pay within 30 days of processing and approving a claim; however, the company is known for processing claims far more quickly.
Nationwide Pet Insurance Financial Strength
Nationwide is accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) with a rating of A+, despite the 296 registered complaints in the past three years. Though this number is typical for comparably sized companies, it’s important to note that the majority of the complaints relate to the company’s home, auto, and life insurance divisions, rather than its pet products.
2. Pet Assure Discount Plans
Although Pet Assure isn’t necessarily a pet insurance provider, it’s discount plans can help rabbit owners drastically reduce their veterinary bills, when their pet receives care in a participating clinic.
Pet Assure customers receive a discount card that entitles them to 25 percent off all services (and some products) in veterinary offices that are part of the substantial Pet Assure network, with multiple participating clinics located in every state. Rates are highly affordable, and the company’s online quote calculator provides a quick quote based on the animal’s breed and zip code.
Pet Assure doesn’t exclude any animal breed or species from its plans. Animals of any age or health condition are eligible. Most traditional insurance providers exclude preexisting conditions and grooming from coverage inclusions. With Pet Assure, all costs are eligible for the discount with no exclusions whatsoever.
Pet owners who have previously purchased insurance with another provider can use Pet Assure to reduce their out-of-pocket expenses because the plan can be used on deductibles, exam fees, and other costs that insurance hasn’t covered.
Some of the services that Pet Assure’s discount card can be used toward include:
- Routine checkups
- Exam fees
- Dental checkups
- Emergency care
- Dental cleaning
- Dental exams and x-rays
- Allergy treatment
- Cancer treatment
- Tumor removal
- Diabetes treatment and management
- Spay and neuter procedures
- IV fluids
- Prescription medication
While no care at a participating clinic is excluded from the discount program, the company doesn’t offer the discount on any outsourced care, such as tests sent to an outside laboratory.
Pet Assure has an A+ rating from the BBB and is fully accredited. The company has received only one complaint in the past 12 months.
3. Wells Fargo Healthy Advantage
Wells Fargo’s Healthy Advantage program is designed to ease the stress of high veterinary costs by offering customers an alternative payment method.
Wells Fargo Healthy Advantage is a credit card that offers a reasonable interest rate and flexible payment options, making it easier for pet owners to access quality veterinary care when they need it most.
You can use a Healthy Advantage account to pay for any treatments received in a participating veterinary office with no exclusions. All breeds and ages of animals are eligible.
Customers who already have pet insurance can use the Healthy Advantage card to pay for their out-of-pocket expenses, such as their copay and deductible, as well as any costs not covered by their insurance provider.
Wells Fargo has temporarily had its BBB accreditation and rating revoked while it responds to five separate government actions that have been filed against it.
Common Rabbit Ailments and Claims
Just like dogs and cats seem prone to ear infections and skin allergies, some ailments commonly seen in rabbits require treatment and result in insurance claims, though regular preventative care, close attention, and a balanced diet can all help prevent their occurrence.
Myxomatosis is a virus typically caused by an insect bite, and it can be highly contagious. The disease causes severe swelling around the eyes, ears, and genitals. It’s often fatal, and unfortunately, there’s no cure.
Common insurance claims related to myxomatosis are typically for pain management, administering of fluids, and hospitalization. Vaccinations for myxomatosis are available and highly recommended.
Rabbits are highly allergic to ivy, mistletoe, and holly. Veterinarians frequently treat wild and house rabbits for plant poisoning.
Common symptoms include diarrhea, abdominal tenderness, convulsions, and paralysis. Different recommended treatment options are activated charcoal, gastric lavage, IV fluids, and blood transfusion, depending on the severity of the symptoms.
Viral Hemorrhagic Disease (VHD)
VHD spreads between rabbits through either direct contact, or indirectly via contaminated food, water, or feces.
The disease is almost always fatal, and symptoms often don’t appear, though some rabbits develop bloody diarrhea shortly before the virus becomes fatal. Vaccinations are available against VHD.
Pasteurellosis, or snuffles as it’s commonly called, is a bacterial infection that spreads when an infected rabbit is in close contact with other rabbits.
It causes swelling, irritation, and discharge in the eyes, sneezing, and a runny nose. Untreated, pasteurellosis can lead to head tilt, abscesses, and uterine infections. Treatment entails long periods of antibiotic medications and surgery when the disease is advanced and results in abscesses.
Ear mites are common in many animals, and rabbits are no exception.
While mites aren’t typically an emergency, without treatment they can cause ear lesions that may become infected. Infected wounds can then lead to long-term balance and hearing problems, though treatment is usually simple. Often ear mites can be eradicated with several doses of ear drops, but in severe cases, further treatment for infected lesions may be required.
Abscesses and Tumors
Abscesses and tumors tend to appear near rabbits’ heads and backs.
Although they’re not always cancerous, they can lead to other complications and should be removed as quickly as possible. Often there are no accompanying symptoms, and abscesses and tumors tend to grow gradually over several weeks or months. Typically, treatment involves surgery and aftercare, which includes prescription medication to relieve surgical pain.
Head tilt is often the result of an infection in the inner ear or the brain. In some cases, the parasite Encephalitozoon cuniculi can also result in head tilt. This parasite can, in some cases, be passed to humans, which makes it considerably more dangerous than others.
Head tilt can cause severe loss of balance, circling, and loss of appetite in rabbits. Rabbits with head tilt should be kept in a quiet, dimly lit room to keep them relaxed. Veterinary treatment depends primarily on the cause but can require prescription medications or expensive surgical procedures.
Looking at the above conditions that can afflict your pet rabbit should emphasize the importance of finding appropriate care, preventative and medical. The above companies can help protect your wallet while you protect your pet.
Shopping For The Best Rabbit Pet Insurance
Purchasing a comprehensive insurance policy for your rabbit means that you can easily access veterinary treatment for a wide array of medical conditions or injuries as soon as they occur. Domesticated rabbits suffer from a number of medical issues that can be prevented with good care and understanding of the small signs that can be indicative of ill health.
Since rabbits are so closely related to their wild counterparts, they tend to instinctively hide any signs of illness, and therefore require close monitoring, regular vaccinations, and checkups, as well as the proper food.
The best pet insurance policies for rabbits and any other pet come at affordable rates and provide access to a variety of treatment options. It’s important to carefully consider all of your options before committing to an insurance provider. That way, the policy you choose is best suited to your animal’s needs and your budget.
When you’re searching for pet insurance for rabbits, you’ll likely find limited options, because there’s only one traditional insurance provider that sells rabbit pet insurance policies on a national scale. Be sure to read your insurance contract thoroughly, making sure you understand the coverage you chose completely to stave off any future budget-busting treatments.
However, other resources are available to help reduce the high cost of veterinary care, or at the very least, make it easier to pay.
*While we make every effort to keep our site updated, please be aware that “timely” information on this page, such as quote estimates, or pertinent details about companies, may only be accurate as of its last edit day. Huntley Wealth & Insurance Services and its representatives do not give legal or tax advice. Please consult your own legal or tax adviser.