Some pet owners may view dog insurance as an unnecessary cost when it comes to their lifestyle and overall dog wellness. However, not insuring your pet can be much more expensive when accidents or illness strike. So, what’s the reality of not having pet insurance? And how much can signing up for preventative care insurance for dogs save pet parents? Below, we discuss what dog owners face if they choose not to take out dog insurance for their furry friends.

Is pet insurance for dogs worth the cost?

Pet Insurance premiums and deductibles can be pricey. This is simply the nature of the insurance industry. When pet owners shop for dog insurance, these prices often turn them off from signing up for a plan. However, not having adequate pet insurance for dogs can be more costly in the long run compared to the initial deductible.

If you're adopting a puppy, you'll understandably consider the financial expenses you'll be undertaking. Perhaps you have to pay adoption fees. Or maybe you need to buy the puppy essentials before coming home (e.g., doy toys, bedding, food, etc.) they need to live a happy life in your home once they arrive. However, once they're safe at home, it doesn't mean your expenses stop there.

Owning a dog isn’t cheap—that's why you should never rush into welcoming a dog into your family without giving it plenty of thought from both a financial and personal time point of view. Daily essentials, such as dog food, will bump your grocery budget up a notch. So will the routine care for your canine friend, including dog vaccinations, blood work, dental care, and grooming.

This list doesn't include medical treatment costs if your dog becomes ill or is involved in an accident and needs X-rays or emergency surgery. Choosing not to sign up for preventative care insurance for dogs means your bank balance will be taking the brunt of these expenses. So, is dog insurance worth it? In our eyes (and your dog's), it is.

What are the financial costs of owning a dog?

Don't solely rely on our word. Instead, let's look at the actual costs of pet ownership. Even the most prepared pet parents can face a mountain of debt due to unforeseen pet expenses. According to a Synchrony study, half of all pet owners surveyed underestimated their pets' lifetime cost of care. And one in three pet parents will face unexpected expenses that cause financial worry.

So, let's break down the costs of owning a dog in the United States, including one-time and annual expenses. Typical expenses include:

  • Adoption fee: $0 to $500;
  • Spaying or neutering: $200 to $1,500;
  • First medical exam: $70 to $150;
  • Food and water bowls: $10 to $50;
  • Collar, leash, and harness: $15 to $50;
  • Bedding and crate: $50 to $500;
  • Travel crate: $60 to $200;
  • Obedience training: Approximately $50 per class or up to $600 per week for dog obedience training schools;
  • Pee pads: $40 to $100;
  • Food: $120 to $550;
  • Vaccines and routine care: $80 to $250;
  • Heartworm and flea preventative treatment: $76 to $370;
  • Vitamins: $58;
  • Pet license: $8 to $250;
  • Treats and dog toys: $50 to $300;
  • Grooming services: Up to $80 per visit;
  • Doggy daycare: Approximately $50 per day, depending on the type of daycare;
  • Boarding and travel fees: Up to $350.

Depending on your dog's life expectancy, you can plan on paying up to $20,000 on annual care during their lifetime. This doesn't even take into account the emergency vet expenses you could potentially face if they are unexpectedly injured or diagnosed with a medical condition.

Pet owner scenario: Your dog gets into an accident

While dog insurance won’t cover all the costs of being a pet owner, it can help soften the blow of veterinary and hospital expenses. Let's look at an example of two dog owners' vet bills if their dog gets injured in an accident.

Imagine this scenario: Your medium-sized dog was hit by a car while playing in the street with your kids. You rush your fur baby to the vet for an emergency visit. Upon initial examination, the vet orders various tests to see whether your dog has broken bones or internal bleeding.

Uninsured dog

If you decided to forgo pet insurance for dogs, your emergency veterinary fees may look like this:

  • ER exam: $100 to $190;
  • Anesthesia: $75 to $200;
  • IV catheter and fluids: $150;
  • X-rays: $150 to $250;
  • Ultrasound: $300 to $600;
  • Blood pressure measurement: $50 to $75;
  • Pain medication: $80 to $120;
  • Wound treatment: $800 to $1,500;
  • One to two-day hospitalization: $600 to $1,700.

Thankfully, your dog didn't sustain any significant injuries and will recover without needing surgery or ongoing aftercare. In this situation, your emergency vet bill could be upwards of $4,500.

Insured dog

With a dog insurance plan, your emergency vet bill will still be upwards of $4,500 in this scenario. The main difference is that once you bring your dog home, you can submit a claim for the costs of your visit examination and medication. Depending on your pet insurance provider, they could reimburse you between 50% and 95% of the total vet bill.

This means unexpected medical expenses will only be a slight hit on your bank balance rather than a gaping hole you're struggling to cover.

How Wagmo pet insurance for dogs can save you money

When you look at the big picture of pet ownership, signing up for preventative care insurance for dogs can help you save on unnecessary costs.

A Wagmo Dog Insurance plan provides three deductible options: $250, $500, or $1000. If you choose the middle-tier option, for any emergency vet visits, you'll only have to pay $500. We then cover the rest. No more surprises. No more waiting periods. It's that simple.

By adding pet wellness protection to your insurance plan for dogs, we'll also help you cover the costs of routine examinations, such as fecal tests, vaccines, heartworm treatment, and more. Get help with pet ownership costs today and sign up for Wagmo Pet Insurance.