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Pet insurance payouts passed £1bn in 2022

Nick Cheek
Written By:
Nick Cheek

Research from an industry body has found that pet insurance claims spiked last year, rising by nearly 28% year-on-year.

Data from the Association of British Insurers (ABI) recorded that payouts hit a £1bn record last year.

Research by ABI reveals that £2.8m a day was paid out for 3,600 new daily claims for sick cats and dogs. The elevated figures reflect the high costs of veterinary treatment, which include drugs and diagnostic equipment increasing claims costs.

Claims were up by 28% on 2021 reaching the highest level since ABI began collecting the data in 2007. Payouts from 2022 were up by 17% from the year prior.

Puppy problems

Dogs were responsible for three quarters of all claims, cats took up a fifth and other animals claimed the rest.

There were one million claims in 2022, an increase of 35% from 2021 and payouts increased by almost a quarter to £800m for dogs.

For cats, claims increased by a fifth since 2021 to 269,000 and payouts were up by 22% to £184m.

Pet insurance premiums increase by 1% from 2021 to 2022.

Considering costs

Spinal surgery accounted for a significant proportion of claims costing between £8,000 and £10,000.

It could cost over £8,000 to fix a fractured femur on a pedigree cat. Diabetes and skin conditions are the most common on-going claims costing £1,000 to treat diabetes in cats. Arthritis in dogs can cost over £2,000.

How to manage pet insurance costs

Speaking with the insurer to find the best options can help with affordability and paying a high excess could lower the monthly premium. And it is important to read any policy in detail to fully understand its limits and what it covers.

Jonathan Purvis, policy adviser at general insurance at the ABI, said: “Pet insurance gives you peace of mind that should an accident or illness happen to your pet, then you will not face a nasty surprise which makes a dog’s dinner of your bank account.

“Insurers appreciate that these are tough financial times for many pet owners. If you are concerned about being able to afford your pet cover then talk to your insurer to see what options may be available.”