Top 10 Pet Insurance Claims

5 July 2017
Ears, eyes, and stomach upsets are among the top 10 most common pet insurance claims, according to new research from Pet Insurance Australia.

Pet insurance has become one of the fastest-growing sectors of the insurance market in recent years, as Australian households have begun to get savvy about rising veterinary bills.

According to Pet Insurance Australia, which researched common claims for kittens and puppies across Australia, the most common kitten complaint was diarrhoea, and the most common puppy complain was otitis externa (an inflammation of the ear canal).

Treatment for these ailments can range from $100-$600 and $100-$1,500 respectively, depending on the severity of the condition and your amount of pet insurance cover.

The second most common health issue for both cats and dogs was conjunctivitis, costing from $100-$900 to treat.

Following that, lethargy in kittens ($350-$2,500) and diarrhoea in puppies ($150-$1,500) made up the third most common claims.

Top 5 Kitten Claims Top 5 Puppy Claims
Condition Cost To Treat Condition Cost To Treat
Diarrhoea $100 – $600 Otitis Externa (ear) $100 – $1,500
Conjunctivitis $100 – $900 Conjunctivitis $100 – $300
Lethargy $350 – $2,500 Diarrhoea $150 – $1,500
Foreign Object $500 – $4,500 Ear Infection $100 – $1,000
Eye Conditions $100 – $350 Vomiting $300 – $6,000
Source: Pet Insurance Australia

A routine vet check-up and vaccination typically costs between $80 and $120 out of pocket, but if your beloved pet has a more serious condition, these costs can quickly reach into the thousands.

Nadia Crighton from Pet Insurance Australia says these increasing costs are not due to extortionate vet pricing, but rather to advances in veterinary care that could potentially save your pet’s life.

“10 to 20 years ago, many of the life-saving techniques currently offered by veterinarians around the globe simply were not on offer,” Ms Crighton said.

“The vast majority of cats and dogs facing life-threatening disease or injury back in the 80s and early 90s would have been euthanized.”


PIA’s research also delved into the costs of other common veterinary procedures, many of which can cost several thousand dollars.

For households without pet insurance, bills for complex procedures can reach into the tens of thousands.

Approximate Cost For Top Claims: Without Pet Insurance
Gastric Dilation $1,500 – $8,500
Elbow Dysplasia $1,200 – $4,500
Peritonitis $1,000 – $7,000
Cataract $1,000 – $8,000
Intervertebral Disc $1,000 – $10,000
Cruciate Ligament $1,000 – $7,000
Gallbladder $1,000 – $10,000
Adenocarcinoma Pulmonary (lung) $1,000 – $5,000
Envenomation $1,000 – $4,000
Foreign Body $1,000 – $12,000
Source: Pet Insurance Australia

“Unfortunately, unlike in the human world, veterinary care is not subsidised by the government,” said Ms Crighton.

“So 100% of the cost falls on the owner, and when you are seeking such specialised treatment for life threatening illness or injury, the cost can be quite substantial.”

Picking the right type of pet insurance cover can see you claim up to 80% of your vet bills. For a procedure costing $10,000, this would mean you receive $8,000 in reimbursement.

*Please note report mentioned is from March, 2017

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