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Does Pet Insurance Cover Dental? Does It Cost More?

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove

brushing dog teeth

Dental care is essential for our beloved pets. Proper dental maintenance will keep your pet healthy and happy, although sometimes these services can be expensive. When left untreated, dental problems can lead to more severe issues, which is why you should have proper coverage for them.

Many people wonder if pet insurance covers dental issues and care. Luckily, there are insurance companies that cover dental, and their price can vary depending on your exact needs and the policies you choose.

If you’re considering a dental policy for your furry friend, check out the rest of our article to find out why it is important, whether it costs more, and which insurance companies offer it.

Do You Need Dental Insurance for Your Pet?

Dental hygiene in pets is vital as it prevents bad breath, periodontal disease, tooth loss, and gingivitis. Poor oral hygiene could lead to severe dental issues, and your pet could develop life-threatening symptoms.

Many pet owners forget to include proper dental maintenance into their routine, leading to plaque and tartar that can potentially infect the gums. If that happens, your pet can develop abscesses which would require costly treatment.

If you are looking for the best dental plan, we recommend checking a few different companies to compare policies and find the one that best fits your needs. These are just a few of the best-rated pet insurance companies you can start with:

Top Rated Pet Insurance Companies:

Most Affordable
Our rating: 4.3 / 5
Most Customizable
Our rating: 4.5 / 5
Best Wellness Plans
Our rating: 4.1 / 5

Pets with improper oral hygiene can also suffer from periodontal disease that can cause tooth loss and gingivitis, leading to other expensive treatments and medication you’ll need to fund. There are various other dental health issues and diseases which can be costly to treat on your own.

If you have dental insurance, it will cover the majority of costs depending on your premium, saving you money in the long run. However, as not all companies have this type of policy, you’ll need to do your research to find the best fit for you and your pet.

brushing teeth of labrador dog
Image Credit: Pixel-Shot, Shutterstock

What Represents Pet Dental Care?

Pet dental care includes any procedure involving your pet’s mouth, gums, and teeth.

It’s best to take your pet to regular dental vet checks at least once a year. However, if you notice any of the following signs, you should go for a checkup sooner:

  • Broken/loose tooth
  • Bad breath
  • Retained baby teeth
  • Extra teeth
  • Bleeding inside the mouth
  • Discolored teeth
  • Tartar on teeth
  • Swelling near the mouth
  • Abnormal drooling and chewing

Our pets cannot talk, so it’s up to us to figure out when something is wrong and provide them with the needed care and support, lowering the chances of severe issues.

How Can I Take Care of My Pet’s Teeth?

The best way to promote good oral hygiene in pets is to daily brush their teeth. It’s best to start this from a young age so your pet will have time to adjust to brushing. Once brushing becomes a habit for both of you, it will develop into a bonding routine with extreme health benefits for your pet.

You could also introduce dental “diets” and dental chews to your pet as they are excellent at controlling plaque and tartar. Another thing you can do is consult your vet for dental hygiene gels and products you can use on a daily basis.

brushing cat's teeth
Image Credit: cynoclub, Shutterstock

Common Dental Problems In Pets

Not taking proper care of your pet’s dental health could develop various issues, from mild to severe, which is why you should never neglect this portion of the daily maintenance routine. If your furry friend doesn’t receive the needed oral hygiene, it could develop:

  • Periodontal disease
  • Gingivitis
  • Endodontic disease
  • Plaque
  • Tartar
  • Unerupted teeth
  • Tooth infection
  • Cavities
  • Abscess
  • Benign oral tumor
  • Deciduous teeth
  • Tooth resorption
  • Oral trauma
  • Ulcerative stomatitis
  • Enamel defects

Some of these conditions are included in insurance cost treatments while others are not, so you should always discuss all the available policies with your insurance company to find the proper coverage.

Dental Issues That Pet Insurance Covers

Most pet insurance companies that cover dental care costs have a list of diseases and procedures they fund. These can vary from company to company, but there’s some sort of a standard that you can notice among pet insurance policies. Typically, they will cover costs for:

  • Damaged teeth
  • Root canal
  • Stomatitis
  • Crowns
  • Gingivitis
  • Fractured teeth/jaw
  • Tooth removal
  • Gum disease
  • Treatments
  • Oral tumors and growths
  • Scans
  • Periodontal disease
  • X-rays
  • Prescription medication

However, some companies provide dental coverage only in cases of dental accidents and not dental illnesses. That’s why it’s crucial to check the policy thoroughly before you sign up for it.

If you're searching for a pet insurance plan that will suit you and your pet, you may want to take a closer look at Spot. This company offers highly customizable plans at a range of budget levels.

man brushes cat teeth
Image Credit: Kashaeva Irina, Shutterstock

Dental Issues That Pet Insurance Doesn’t Cover

Similarly to some standard procedures that the majority of pet insurance companies include, there’s a list of common procedures these policies exclude:

  • Cosmetic procedures
  • Teeth cleaning
  • Endodontic services
  • Orthodontic services
  • Pre-existing teeth conditions

Pet Insurance Companies That Provide Dental Insurance Policies

Although dental insurance policies are not common in all pet insurance providers, there are companies that offer this service. Here’s a list of some pet insurance companies that will cover dental costs based on the plan you have:

  • Figo: This company only covers non-routine dental treatments, meaning if there was an accident, they would reimburse costs for teeth extraction or reconstruction.
  • ASPCA: This company offers a wellness plan that includes dental cleanings.
  • Healthy Paws: This company covers part of your bills in case of accidental dental injuries. However, they won’t cover routine dental care such as polishing, brushing, cleaning, and extractions.
  • Embrace: This company has different wellness plans that include dental care. Depending on your chosen plan, the company can cover non-routine dental treatment, tooth extractions, and trauma to the dental area.
  • Pets Best: This company has a comprehensive dental policy that also includes a preventative dental care plan. It also covers periodontal disease, tooth extractions, non-routine dental treatments, and traumas to the dental area.

Besides the companies on the list, there are other pet insurance providers that offer some sort of dental coverage, so always check all the available options before choosing the one for your pet.

Dog teeth
Image Credit: Freepik

Does Pet Insurance Cost More When It Covers Dental?

Pet insurance does cost more when it covers dental care, as you’ll need to purchase separate policies that are not a part of the original package. Typically, dental care is included in:

  • Wellness policy: This policy commonly includes some type of dental care, typically for non-routine treatment and tooth extractions, and this is another policy that varies from company to company.
  • Comprehensive policy: This policy type typically covers dental illnesses and accidents. However, some companies may exclude dental care from their comprehensive policy, while some might have specific qualifications you need to meet for the dental coverage to apply to your policy.
  • Preventive policy: This policy is actually uncommon, although you can find it in some companies. It can provide dental coverage for cleaning and checkups.

As these policies are commonly not standard, it’s likely your pet insurance will cost more with these add-ons. The prices vary per the pet insurance provider, and all the services included in the policy.

Many companies will require you to bring your pet to exams and annual cleanings before covering dental treatment for illness, and you’ll need to pay for those services out of your pocket. Also, many of them have a certain reimbursement amount per year or condition, which might not cover your final costs.

Is Pet Dental Care Without Insurance Expensive?

Pet dental care without insurance is typically extremely expensive. The costs depend on your pet, region, and other factors, but the price adds up, especially if your pet needs additional scanning, x-rays, and blood tests prior to the procedure.

Another factor is that almost all animals experience dental problems once they are over 2 years old, meaning that even the healthiest pet will eventually need dental care. In our opinion, it’s better to spend a couple of bucks more on pet insurance that includes dental than to pay for procedures from your own pocket.

Divider 8Conclusion

Pet insurance occasionally covers dental, and it’s likely that your premium will be higher when dental care is included. However, it’s well worth the price as you won’t have to worry about expensive dental costs your beloved pet might face in the future.

Ensure you carefully choose the pet insurance provider to make a balance between the needed services and your budget.

Featured Image Credit: DWhiteeye, Shutterstock

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