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Pricey purebred? A mongrel mutt could save you money on insurance

4 min read
28 Jul 2021
  • Mixed breeds are generally the cheaper to cover, with some costing half the price of certain purebreds, according to figures from Compare the Market.
  • Popular ‘Frenchies’ are some of the priciest pooches to cover while Maltese cross breeds are among the cheapest.

Demand for pets has surged with more Australian families welcoming fur babies during the pandemic to keep them company while in lockdown.

But new figures from Compare the Market show it may be worth comparing insurance prices before deciding on a breed with the entry level annual costs varying up to $645 between the dog varieties we considered.

French Bulldogs are among the most expensive breeds to insure, with a lower level of cover starting at $1,213.77 a year for a one-year-old pooch, increasing to $1,439.21 for a five-year-old dog, based on figures from Compare the Market’s pet insurance comparison engine.

Mixed breeds, mongrels or ‘designer dogs’ generally cost far less to insure. For example, cover for a one-year-old labradoodle costs $175.74 less than cover under the same policy and with the same insurer  for a one-year-old purebred Labrador.

Premiums for a one-year-old Maltese cross start at $567.06, compared to $698.86 for a purebred.

It also pays to check your pet’s background and make sure their breed is spelt correctly when applying for cover. For example, cover for ‘Cavalier King Charles Spaniels’, starts at prices that are nearly $200 cheaper than the very similar ‘King Charles Spaniels’. Cats are generally much cheaper to cover, regardless of their breed.

Compare the Market’s General Manager for Insurance, Stephen Zeller, said there has been a surge in pet insurance enquires since the start of the pandemic, with thousands using the comparison tool to find a better deal.

“Next time you ask yourself ‘how much is that doggy’ it’s worth considering the ongoing cost of their care,” Mr Zeller said. “Premiums for popular purebreds take account of hereditary issues like breathing problems and a higher risk of back injury, which drive up the risk of a vet visit.

“If you’re looking for a good family pet that won’t break the bank, a mongrel could save you money in the long-term.

“We encourage people to shop around and compare to ensure they’re getting the best deal. Some more expensive packages might actually deliver better value, depending on your dog’s needs.”

Cost to insure a dog by breed and age in New South Wales:

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel$698.86 – $824.93$797.04- $931.52
King Charles Spaniel$874.60 – $1,032.85$944.12 – $1,103.76
French Bulldog$1,213.77 – $1,434.20$1,439.21 – $1,683.48
Labrador$874.60 – $1,032.85$944.12 – $1,103.76
Labradoodle$698.86 – $824.93$797.04 -$931.52
Maltese$698.86 – $824.93$797.04 – $931.52
Maltese Cross$567.06 – $668.99$603.51 – $704.90
Great Dane$1,035.89 – $1,223.71$1,241.36 – $1,451.79

Source: Pet insurance comparison engine.

Cost to insure a cat by breed and age in New South Wales:

Domestic short hair$534.13 – $629.99$603.51- $704.90
Persian$534.13 – $629.99$603.51- $704.90
Ragdoll$534.13 – $629.99$603.51- $704.90

Source: Pet insurance comparison engine.

These tables show the price range for cover with up to 60% reimbursed for relevant vet expenses as at 26 July 2021.

When interpreting the data, please keep in mind:

  • There are a range of variables concerned in any price calculation including animal breed, age and location. This table provides some examples to give users an idea of possible costs but your actual costs will vary depending on your pet and circumstances. You should always read the product disclosure statement and consider whether a product is right for you before purchasing a product.
  • These tables show some of the basic cover available. They exclude more comprehensive options that offer a higher level of coverage and other benefits including routine care.
  • These figures are based on the assumption the animals had no pre-existing conditions. This is another factor that can impact prices.
  • Prices shown include time-limited discounts which were available through Compare the Market at the time of comparison.


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avatar of author: Sarah Orr

Written by Sarah Orr

Sarah is an avid storyteller, passionate about improving financial literacy and helping Australians make informed choices with their money. Outside the newsroom, she enjoys cycling around Brisbane and snapping scenery on her camera.

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