Today’s Veterinary Business Staff
Nationwide has enhanced health insurance plans for small mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians to provide as much as 90% reimbursement of eligible veterinary expenses.
The company had covered such pets since 2000 under a benefit schedule.
“Our new avian and exotic pet plan provides broader coverage and reimburses pet owners up to 90% of eligible veterinary fees,” a Nationwide spokesman said. “For instance, the new product provides protection for things like internal or external parasites as well as preventive routine care, examinations and vaccinations.”
Nationwide reported that it is the only U.S. company to insure the health of pets other than cats and dogs. ASPCA Pet Insurance, a brand of Crum & Forster Pet Insurance Group, insures veterinary care for horses in about a dozen states.
“Many households include parrots, frogs, even potbellied pigs as family members. And like dogs, cats and ourselves, they need care, too,” said Nationwide’s chief pet officer, Heidi Sirota. “So, Nationwide has designed a comprehensive health plan for the unique needs of these pets.”
Small mammals eligible for coverage are chinchillas, ferrets, gerbils, goats, guinea pigs, hamsters, hedgehogs, mice, mini pigs, potbellied pigs, rabbits, rats and sugar gliders. Eligible bird species range from Amazon parrots and cockatoos to parakeets and toucans. Everything from toads to iguanas to snakes is covered under the reptile and amphibian group.
According to Nationwide’s website, ineligible animals include:
- Venomous, poisonous, endangered or threatened reptiles and amphibians.
- Animals that require a state or federal permit, license or registration.
- Species kept in flocks, such as pigeons and chickens.
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