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Does Pet Insurance Cover Grooming? Does It Cost More?

Elizabeth Gray

By Elizabeth Gray

yorkie being groomed on table

Before purchasing a pet insurance policy, it’s important to do your research regarding what is covered and excluded. Depending on the type of pet you have, exclusions in coverage can wind up costing you a lot of money. Owners of Poodles, Doodles, and similar breeds might be curious whether pet insurance covers grooming and, if so, does it cost more?

Unfortunately, pet insurance typically doesn’t cover grooming services under standard policies. Some insurance companies may offer a path to get reimbursed for at least some grooming procedures, but it costs more. We’ll tell you why in this article and give you tips to save money on grooming services.

Divider 8Why Pet Insurance Doesn’t Cover Grooming

Pet insurance policies almost exclusively function as accident-and-illness coverage or sometimes even accident-only. This means they reimburse a wide-ranging array of medical procedures and expenses related to emergency or sick vet visits, but not routine or preventative care.

All pet insurance policies also maintain a list of excluded care, some of which are standard (like pre-existing conditions), while others vary between companies. Among the most frequent exclusions is any cosmetic or elective procedure. Grooming typically falls into that category.

As always, you should check the details of any policy you’re considering. Generally, you’ll find grooming, bathing, and other similar procedures specifically listed as exclusions.

poodle being groomed
Image credit: Rasulov, Shutterstock

The Exception to the Rule

Many pet insurance companies offer optional wellness or preventative care plans. These add-ons cover or reimburse various non-emergency procedures, such as vaccinations and fecal tests. The types of procedures covered vary quite a bit from plan to plan.

Some wellness plans cover routine dental cleanings, which technically fall under the grooming category. We found a wellness plan from Embrace Pet Insurance that reimburses up to a certain amount for non-emergency care per year and includes grooming. However, paying for wellness care generally doesn’t count towards your annual deductible.

Even though many pet insurance companies don’t cover grooming, there are multiple other good reasons to get one. If you are considering this, check out some of these top-rated pet insurance companies:

Top Rated Pet Insurance Companies

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Our rating: 4.0 / 5

Ways To Save Money on Grooming

Since you most likely can’t rely on pet insurance to cover your grooming costs, here are some other ways you can save money. Brush and comb your pet frequently. Neglecting this simple chore can lead your pet to develop severe matting that to be removed by a groomer.

If you don’t have a place to bathe your pet at home, see if there’s a self-service dog bathing location in your area. They’re less expensive than paying for a groomer.

Shop around to find the best deal on grooming in your area. Check if your groomer offers discounts on grooming packages or pre-purchased products.

Finally, consider investing in your own grooming equipment and learning to do the job yourself. Grooming tables, clippers, and other supplies are available to purchase. Ask your vet or groomer for tips on keeping your pet looking fresh, or look for instructional books or videos.

Divider 8Conclusion

Not every pet has complicated grooming needs, but those that do will suffer if it’s not performed correctly. As you consider adding a new pet to your family, consider how much time, money, and energy you want to spend on grooming as a factor in your decision. Pet insurance may not cover grooming, but it’s still a wise investment for new pet owners. Unexpected veterinary emergencies will occur, and knowing you have assistance to pay for them can be life-changing and life-saving for your pet.


Featured Image Credit: Dmytro Zinkevych, Shutterstock

Elizabeth Gray

Authored by

Elizabeth Gray is a lifelong lover of all creatures great and small. She got her first cat at 5 years old and at 14, she started working for her local veterinarian. Elizabeth spent more than 20 years working as a veterinary nurse before stepping away to become a stay-at-home parent to her daughter. Now, she is excited to share her hard-earned knowledge (literally–she has scars) with our readers. Elizabeth lives in Iowa ...Read more

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