Despite their reputation for being scary outdoor critters, there are many domesticated snakes that can be great pets from garden snakes to Boa Constrictors.
Snake ownership is on the rise as some pet owners like a different pet other than a cat or dog.
And snakes have become another favorite pet from boa constrictors to pythons.
The American Veterinary Medical Association estimates that as of 2012, 550,000 households owned approximately 1,150,000 snakes. And the number is rising!
Snakes do need special care with the right cage, food and annual vet visits.
Snakes have been known to live for up to 40 years so they will be with you a long time!
The real question is whether snake insurance is worth the cost.
Why Consider Pet Insurance For Snakes
Snakes need to have their annual vet visits and check-ups for any illness just like any dog or cat.
However, snakes are known to mask their feelings, making vet visits essential.
With a life span of 15 to 40 years, health issues will surface and some of the can become costly.
If your snake gets seriously ill or even an infection, the bills can be very expensive. Not only for the vet visit but for the medication needed to fight the illness.
It’s not unusual to end up with a vet bill anywhere from $6,000 to $9,000, which is when pet insurance can be a huge financial relief.
The only pet insurance company that offers full coverage for snakes is Nationwide Pet insurance.
Common Illnesses in Snakes
Some of the common illnesses and conditions that can occur in snakes:
With Nationwide pet insurance, 90% of the bills will be covered as long as the illness is not pre-existing.
Pet insurance for snakes works very much as it does for cats and dogs.
The comprehensive coverage that Nationwide offers will cover most accidents and illnesses that your snake may develop.
Some of the procedures and treatments that are covered for snakes:
A wellness plan is typically a plan that is added on to a pet insurance plan and covers preventative care.
Nationwide does not offer a preventative care plan for snakes (but it does for some exotic pets like birds).
Pet Assure is a company that offers preventative care coverage for snakes but is structured differently from most pet insurance and wellness plans.
For a fee of $9 a month, you can get a 25% discount on many different conditions that your snake might develop:
While this is a good alternative to the pet insurance offered by Nationwide, if your snake gets very sick, your 90% of vet bill will be reimbursed.
When taking your snake in to see your vet, you might not have as many options as you would for a dog or cat.
But there are vets that specialize in care for snakes and other reptiles.
Because there aren’t as many choices and the prices of specialists tend to be higher than so are your vet bills.
Which is another reason why pet insurance can be very helpful.
What Isn’t Covered
The following is not covered for snake coverage:
- Internal or external parasites
- Anything cosmetic
- Shots and vaccinations, other related routine care
- Pre-Existing Conditions
- Endocrine disorders
- Anything related to birth
Cost of Snake Insurance
The cost of Nationwide’s snake insurance can range from $9 to $15 per month.
The price varies by the type of snake you have (large snakes are more expensive), where you live and the age of your snake.
Nationwide does not offer a preventive care plan for snakes.
Pet Assure will cost $9 a month for a 25% savings off of many treatments and conditions.
Reimbursements and Deductible
Nationwide’s snake plan will reimburse you up to 90% of the total cost of your vet bill and at the vet of your choice.
There is a $50 per-incident deductible for each illness or injury that your snake develops.
This deduction renews each policy year.
Benefit limits are the amount the company will pay out each policy year.
Nationwide’s maximum reimbursement is $2,000 for each accident or illness.
The annual limit is $7,000, but there is no maximum payout limit for the lifetime of your snake which helps.
The snake must be 3 months old to insure and there is no upper age limit.
Similar to most pet insurance policies, there is a 30 day – waiting period.
During this waiting period, you can decide if you want to have your snake insured with Nationwide and they can make sure that your snake doesn’t have any pre-existing conditions.
Claims for snakes are handled like any other pet insurance. You can submit your claims through their site, fax or mail.
Keep copies of all your bills and invoices even after you have filed a claim. If you have all your information provided, the claims usually turned around in 30 days.
Summing Up Pet Insurance for Snakes
Snake insurance can be very valuable if your snake does become sick and needs special care.
If your snake develops an infection, for example, 90% of all the testing, lab works, and treatment will be covered.
The price is relatively low to get started and if you spend up to $100 to $125 in vet costs a year then pet insurance can be really valuable.
It can be the difference of getting your snake the right care to keep any very serious illness or even an undetected secondary condition that you might not know about.
Your vet is always a good resource to see if pet insurance is a viable option.
Give a call at 1-800-874-0362, or go to their site, Nationwide and get a quote to see if snake insurance makes sense for you and your snake!
And, if also you have a dog or cat, our top pet insurance companies of 2019, is a great place to start!