Should I Get Pet Insurance for My Puppy? A Vet Weighs In

3 min read
Mar 18, 2024

Getting a new puppy can be exciting. However, while they’re adorable and sweet, caring for puppies can cost a lot of money. This is where MetLife Pet Insurance can come in. But should you get pet insurance for your puppy? After all, aren’t puppies pretty healthy?

Puppy parents generally spend anywhere from $450 to $900 on their pup's health care in the first year alone.1 There’s the cost of vaccinations, spaying or neutering, and other preventive care — but that’s not all. At some point, your new puppy is probably going to eat something they shouldn’t or become infected with something like kennel cough. Pet insurance can help cover those costs.

Is Pet Insurance Worth It for a Puppy?

Some folks believe that puppies don’t need pet insurance because they tend to be healthier than older dogs. However, not insuring a puppy may not be advisable.

As famous TikTok star and veterinarian Dr. Hunter Finn, says, “Young pets benefit from pet insurance as well! No one ever seems to think that their young pet will get sick or injured, but I can’t tell you how many parvo puppies we see who need thousands of dollars worth of treatment be thankful or wishing that they got pet insurance.”

As puppies explore their surroundings and start getting exposed to the world, accidents and illnesses can happen. Pet insurance can be worth it as it can help you feel more financially prepared for any unforeseen vet visits, allowing reassurance that your puppy’s health is prioritized.

In addition to emergency vet costs, pet insurance can provide coverage for preventive care and early detection of potential health issues. And as your puppy gets older, pet insurance is there to continue supporting your dog’s future health needs.

Ultimately, the sense of security and coverage support provided by pet insurance might make it a worthwhile choice for you and your puppy.

"I can't tell you how many parvo puppies we see who need thousands of dollars worth of treatment ... wishing that they got pet insurance." – Dr. Hunter Finn

Here are seven other reasons you may want to consider pet insurance for your puppy — ensuring every health care decision for your furry friend is based solely on their well-being, not financial constraints.

1. Your Pet Insurance Premiums Could Be Lower

Younger pets can be less expensive to insure than older ones. Naturally, older dogs may need more health care than pups. Health insurance providers know this, and monthly premiums tend to increase as your pet ages. Puppy owners can get lower quotes, since puppies tend to be healthier. MetLife Pet Insurance policies start as low as $15 for dogs.2

2. You Could Save on Dog Health Care in the Long Run

Preventive care can be more valuable than accident or illness care. That’s because it can help you seek care for your pet that may help identify certain issues before they become larger issues.

Let’s look at the cost difference between canine parvovirus (CPV) prevention and treatment. Pet care and treatment for a parvo diagnosis can easily exceed $2,100. Plus, recovering from parvo can be scary and traumatic for your pup. Meanwhile, the parvo vaccine is part of any puppy’s core vaccinations and costs between $30 and $50. By protecting your pet early, you could save a significant amount of money and a lot of heartache.

3. Your Dog Could Live a Longer and Healthier Life

The other key with preventive care and early detection is that it can help give your puppy a better chance of recovering from sickness or injury. Protecting your pet against common illnesses and taking them to regular vet checkups can help keep them healthier. Similar to humans, dogs with healthier immune systems can fight viruses better than those with compromised or weak ones.3

4. You Can Be Covered for Future Conditions

Pet insurance typically doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions, so it can be beneficial to consider coverage before your puppy shows any symptoms or is diagnosed with an illness or issue.

For instance, consider a disease like dog diabetes. Many dogs develop the condition around the age of 5, which is not that far off from puppyhood. If your dog is not covered by pet insurance before they start showing symptoms of this disease, you could be on the hook for the vet bills for a pricey lifelong illness.

Dog insulin alone costs around $60 – $180 for a 1 – 2 month supply.4 But with pet insurance, insulin and related medical expenses can be covered.

Finally, insurance can help cover your puppy before they develop any conditions known to affect their breed type, such as epilepsy for beagles or hip dysplasia for golden retrievers.


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5. Your Puppy May Eat Things They Shouldn’t

From your missing sock to a holiday poinsettia, puppies often want to chew on and eat everything in reach. Foreign body surgeries and poisoning treatments can be expensive — and are unfortunately commonly required for puppies. Your mischievous pup’s latest adventure could land them a lengthy stay in the animal hospital.

Puppy proofing isn’t always enough. If your new pup accidentally ingests human food that’s toxic to dogs, medicines, or even a houseplant, they may need to be treated for toxicity.

Furthermore, puppies could also eat choking hazards, consuming anything from a lamp cord to an action figure’s head. If a foreign object becomes lodged in their intestines or stomach, it could block the blood supply to these vital organs.

6. Your Puppy May Be Too Adventurous

New puppies tend to be bundles of energy who love to explore. However, whenever you’re exploring the great outdoors, there’s always a risk of injuries. Puppies are prone to broken bones or ligaments, fractures, tick bites, snake bites, and more.

These injuries can lead to costly vet visits and extensive recoveries. Take, for example, an anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injury. If your puppy tears their ACL on one of your adventures, the ACL surgery cost could be nearly $5,000. Plus, there may be the additional expense of physical therapy during recovery.

7. You Can Get Coverage for Puppy-Related Expenses

Adding Preventive Care coverage to your pet insurance policy can help reimburse you for wellness services puppies need. Core vaccinations, spaying and neutering, heartworm prevention, and other routine wellness services can be covered with MetLife Pet’s add-on.5

Spaying or neutering alone without insurance can cost new pet parents around $340 – $1,500. However, this is one puppy expense you don’t want to skip. Spaying or neutering your pup can give them a longer and healthier life by helping to prevent certain cancers and tumors, not to mention help control the pet population.6

How MetLife Pet Has Helped Real Puppy Parents

MetLife Pet has helped hundreds of puppy parents save on pricey vet bills.

Take Seamus, for example, whose parents got reimbursed 100% of their $2,150 vet bill after the labradoodle puppy suffered a case of gastroenteritis.7

Then there’s Honey, a goldendoodle puppy from California. The total cost of spaying Honey was $1,180. However, thanks to their MetLife Pet Preventive Care add-on, Honey’s parents were reimbursed the full amount.7

Consider a MetLife Pet Insurance Policy for Puppies

Puppies can easily rack up expensive vet bills just living their normal puppy lives. That’s why you may want to consider a MetLife Pet Insurance policy, which can cover dogs of all ages and help you protect both your puppy and your wallet. Puppy insurance is a great way to keep your pup happy and healthy and give you peace of mind. Fetch your quote today!

We Can Help You Protect Your Pup

Dr. Hunter Finn is an integrative veterinary expert first, and social media star second. America’s favorite veterinarian owns Pet Method in McKinney, Texas, where he cares for pets while prioritizing their emotional well-being. When he’s not at his clinic, he’s starring in viral videos on TikTok (2 million followers) and Instagram (500K followers) — where he’s been known to snuggle puppies and conquer the latest dance trends.

**As with any insurance policy, coverage may vary. Review our coverage and exclusions.

1 “The Cost of Owning a Dog: Annual and Lifetime Costs,” MarketWatch, 2024

2 Calculation based upon select plans and coverages. Actual rates may vary based on pet age, breed, location, deductible, reimbursement rate, and annual limits you choose. For IAIC policies, premium is also based upon pet gender.

3 “Immune System Responses in Dogs,” Merck Veterinary Manual

4 “What to Know: Adopting a Diabetic Dog,” PetMD, 2022

5 For IAIC policies, optional Preventive Care coverage is based on a Schedule of Benefits. For MetGen policies, optional Preventive Care coverage is included in the annual limit.

6 “Spay and Neuter Your Pets!” Brown.Edu

7 All claims paid amounts are based on MetLife internal claims data from October 2022. Story altered for illustrative purposes.

Coverage issued by Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, and Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 11333 N Scottsdale Rd, Ste 160, Scottsdale, AZ 85454. Coverage subject to restrictions, exclusions and limitations and application is subject to underwriting. See policy or contact MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC (“MetLife Pet”) for details. MetLife Pet is the policy administrator. It may operate under an alternate or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota) and MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois).

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