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How much is pet insurance?

If you’re about to become a pet owner - or are one already - you may be considering taking out pet insurance. But, how much is the average cost of pet insurance in the UK? Read on to find out the average price for pet insurance and get a quote with Sainsbury’s Bank.

Provided by Pinnacle Insurance plc.

What affects the cost of pet insurance?

Finding an average cost of pet insurance isn’t straightforward. The price of pet insurance varies due to a few different factors including:

Your location

Where you live can impact your pet insurance premium as vet fees can vary from region to region. 

Pet species and breed

Different species and breeds of animal can be more prone to developing health conditions than others. For example, some pedigree dogs like Dachshunds, Pugs and French Bulldogs are more likely to develop health problems, which will mean insuring them is more expensive. Often you’ll also need to take out specialist policies for animals such as horses or exotic pets.

Your pet’s age

It goes without saying that older pets are more prone to health problems in the same way older humans are. Joint problems, cancer and weight-related health conditions are more likely to develop as your dog ages. This means your pet’s age will be factor when working out your insurance premiums. 

Your pet’s health and medical history

If your pet has known medical conditions this may increase the cost of pet insurance, and could also mean some insurers won’t insure your pet.

Cover level

There are a range of cover levels you can choose from when selecting pet insurance. Larger monthly payments will generally mean your pet’s cover is higher. 

What cover level is cheapest? 

Different cover levels for pet insurance allow you to pay different monthly premiums depending on how much cover you need. Find out about our cover levels, provided by Pinnacle Insurance plc, below.

Lifetime pet insurance

Lifetime pet insurance is our most comprehensive cover, which covers your pet throughout its life, at home and abroad. With four different cover levels available, you can access up to £10,000 towards vet costs each year. 

Time limited pet insurance

Time limited pet insurance helps pay for short-term treatment for health conditions or illnesses your pet hasn’t suffered from before. It covers up to 12 months of treatment or up to £3,000 of vet fees. 

Maximum benefit pet insurance

Maximum benefit pet insurance allows you to claim vet fees per condition for the lifetime of your policy, up to the policy limit. With two different cover levels available - £3,000 and £6,000 - you can select which works best for you and your pet. 

Multi-pet insurance

Multi-pet insurance covers all your dogs, cats and rabbits. Plus, you’ll get a £1 discount per pet per month (terms and conditions apply)†. 

Please note that we won't cover any pre-existing conditions and that terms, conditions, excesses, exclusions and limitations apply. You can find out more about the terms of our cover in our policy documents.

How can I cut the price of pet insurance? 

Get a lower level of cover

Many pet insurance plans are available in a range of cover options. For example, our lifetime cover offers five cover levels: £2,000, £2,500, £5,000, £7,500 and £10,000. If you’re currently on a high level of cover and want a lower cover level, you can take out a new policy. Any pre-existing conditions, or anything claimed for, would be excluded. Switching your pet insurance  to a lower cover level could mean your monthly payments reduce. However, it’s worth bearing in mind that this will impact the total amount you can claim for vet fees if your pet needs treatment.

Increase your excess

excess is the amount you pay towards each vet fee claim. Increasing your excess could mean you pay less towards your insurance each month, but you may have to pay more if you make a pet insurance claim. 

Insure all your pets with the same provider

If you have more than one pet (including dogs, cats and rabbits), with Sainsbury’s Bank you can enjoy a discount of £1 per pet, each month†.

Have your pet chipped, vaccinated and neutered

Making sure your pet is microchipped and vaccinated is not only responsible but it may reduce your premiums too. Neutering your pet also reduces the likelihood of them developing some health conditions, which may reduce monthly costs. 

Make sure your pet has a healthy diet and lifestyle

Keeping your pet fit and healthy means they’re less likely to develop health conditions as they age. Weight gain is linked to overfeeding and a lack of exercise, which can lead to your pet developing other health conditions like diabetes or joint problems. Having these conditions could lead to claims which may increase your monthly premiums, so keeping your pets healthy can also save you money. 

Ready to protect your pet?

If you’d like to get a quote for your pet insurance, you can get started right away. If you’re ready, we’re ready.


Frequently asked questions

Does where you live impact the cost of pet insurance?

Yes, where you live can be a factor. This is because regional vet fees can vary which impacts the price you pay for pet insurance overall.

Do I need to pay an excess for pet insurance?

Yes, just like with any other type of insurance you’ll need to pay an excess. This is how much you agree to pay towards a claim you make. It’s sensible to set it at a fee you know you’ll be able to afford to pay should something happen.

Does the breed impact the price of pet insurance?

Yes, breeds of dog can significantly impact the price of your pet insurance. A lot of pedigree dogs tend to be more expensive to insure as they can be more prone to hereditary health problems. It is a little bit less important when it comes to cats and other animals but you will find the cost does vary depending on the breed and the associated health conditions with each type.


Terms and conditions

† Multi-pet discount is a minimum of £24 when insuring more than one pet as this is worked out at £1 per pet per month for each pet on a policy. Pets can have different cover levels. Discount deducted separately from any other offer.

* The discount is based on information related to you and the Sainsbury’s and Sainsbury’s Bank transactions linked to your Nectar account. For more information on how we use your data, go to