Pet insurance for cats and dogs is common, but insurance for pet birds is a bit harder to come by. However, there are options and whilst your pet bird might appear perfectly healthy right now, it doesn’t take much for one to get sick. When illness, accident or other disasters are encountered, the veterinarian bills to get our birds back to health can be incredibly expensive.
That’s why we recommend all pet bird owners have an insurance plan. Since the options are limited, we’re done the hard research for you and found the best pet insurance for birds after spending hours searching. So read on to see a comparison of these exotic pet insurance options.
Exotic Pet Insurance Comparison
|Name||Logo||Type of Policy Coverage|
|Pet Assure||5/5||Read Review||Best Overall|
|Nationwide Pet Insurance||4/5|
|Exotic Direct||4.5/5||Best for UK Only|
Why You Need Pet Insurance for Birds
There are a number of reasons…
- Birds and in particular parrots are normally classified as an exotic animal. Therefore you’ll need a specific insurance policy that will cover these types of pets.
- Birds are more susceptible to disease than dogs or cats.
- Parrots in general will live much longer than other pets, as shown in our guide here.
- Vets can be very expensive. If you’re not covered you might end up with a massive bill.
- Some pet birds are incredibly pricey. If you can afford to buy one then it would be silly not to insurance your expensive bird.
What Parrot Insurance Covers
Some of the benefits offered under exotic pet insurance plans include:
- Accident or injury, see our guide to this here.
- Illness, see our guide to this here.
- Coverage of your pet due to escape or theft.
- Life insurance to cover the death of your bird.
- Cost savings on examinations, prescriptions and lab work.
As with most types of insurance, there is a sliding scale of premiums that increases with the range of coverage provided by the plan. You can opt for lower cost plans that only cover emergencies to full wellness coverage that assists with regularly scheduled veterinary care. Claims are usually handled in a manner similar to car insurance, with payments made to the policy-holder once the care has been given to the animal.
How Much Do Avian Vets Cost?
Without bird insurance, if your pet ends up getting sick, you can expect to pay a hefty fee of over $200 for a minor treatment and over $1,000 for large treatments. Major operations can cost several thousand dollars. So as you can see, these fees are pretty large and will make a dent in your pocket if you’re not covered by an insurance plan.
How Much Is Bird Insurance?
Instead of paying the large amounts listed above, you can cover yourself with small monthly payments. This amount can vary depending upon the company and policy you choose but typically you can expect to pay from $10 to $50 per month.
How Does Bird Insurance Work?
First, let’s examine what would happen if you don’t have any form of exotic animal insurance. Imagine your parrot was flying around your house and it happened to break its wing. You take them to the vet and they manage to fix up your bird and after several weeks of treatment and recovery, your bird is back to full health. But then your bill arrives and you see the amount for $1,000!
Unfortunately, this type of thing is more common than you’d expect.
Now on the other hand, the costs for this bill could be 50% or even 100% covered with a good quality bird insurance plan. Instead you simply pay a small amount each month to a policy that covers certain health problems that might arise with your bird.
What to Look For When Buying Exotic Animal Insurance
When buying exotic animal insurance for your bird, you’ll want to check all of the following details to see what’s covered:
- Starting date and ending date of the policy.
- If pre-existing conditions are covered or not.
- Whether they will cover your breed of bird and it’s age (if it is very old).
- If preventative care is covered? This includes things such as routine examinations, beak trimming and nail clipping, examinations and tests.
- What types of injuries and illnesses are covered?
- Payouts, how much each treatment is covered? If the treatment is covered at all? Plus, how much you would still need to pay?
- How much you’ll be charged each month.
- How good is their customer service, reviews of the company and whether or not you can get to someone on the phone easily.
3 Best Pet Insurance for Birds
Here are the reviews of the 3 best bird insurance plans.
1. Pet Assure (USA)
This company is not an insurance company in the traditional sense of the word. Rather, it is a discount card that will lower costs at veterinarians in their network. You’re provided with a card which you simply show to your veterinarian when you visit their office. Because this isn’t a typical pet insurance company, you only get a discount and not full coverage of your fees, plus you have to use a vet that is part of their network.
The advantage of this plan is that you automatically get a discount on your vet bills. There are no limits on the age of your bird and your animal won’t be excluded due to its pre-existing condition. Plus you can sign up immediately and there’s no waiting period. To find out more, click on the button below.
2. Nationwide Pet Insurance (USA)
Their plans include a wellness-only option that is economical and covers the costs related to regular checkups. You can also obtain major medical insurance that takes care of hospitalization and emergency treatment. Their coverage includes plans for accidents, emergency visits, illnesses, examinations, lab work, x-rays and prescriptions.
3. Exotic Direct (UK)
This UK pet insurer offers plans that include policies covering up to £2,500 to £5,000. They also offer a specialized death and theft only policy. A typical example would be if your bird costs £200, then your coverage would cost just £4 per month over a 10 month period. This basic coverage encompasses death benefits for an accident, injury or illness, and peril protection in the case of fire or weather. The company also has more comprehensive plans that will cover up to £5,000 veterinary charges per coverage period. Some claims they paid in 2016 include over £1,000 for a Blue-Fronted Amazon with respiratory disease and over £700 for a Macaw with the same ailment. The company claims a 93% renewal rate and a 5 day claim processing period.
Which Bird Insurance Should I Get?
You aren’t required to have pet bird insurance or any type of exotic animal insurance, however, we do recommend it. You need to weigh the costs of coverage with your overall financial situation. Unless you can cover the costs listed above in straight, one time payments, then you’re putting your animal’s health and your bank account at risk.
Before getting a bird insurance plan, you need to think a few different things such as: what type of coverage is provided, whether there is a waiting period, if pre-existing conditions are covered, and how much are the monthly payments. We looked at these factors (and a number of other things) to discover that the following insurance plans are best for pet birds:
- Pet Assure
- Nationwide Pet Insurance
- Exotic Direct (UK only)
Post Updated: 2019-09-12
As I was planning to ensure my bird with insurance. Then I found your article which was really informative, I am looking forward to ensuring my bird. Thanks for sharing this useful details.
Jack Taylor says
Glad you found this helpful!
Diane W. says
I have had Nationwide insurance for my macaw for several years (formerly VPI Pet Ins). They pay quickly and anytime you have a question they are available to help. Last year my bird had a bacterial infection which would have cost me over $1000 for testing, dr visits, etc., but I was reimbursed over $400, which more than paid for the cost of the whole year insurance policy.
I plan to renew every year……