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LONDON, ENGLAND, November 07, 2009 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Collectively the pet insurance industry is estimated to have paid out around GBP77,000,000 in first six months of 2009 for claims by cat and dog owners
Customers taking out Sainsbury's Pet Insurance qualify for Double Nectar points on their Sainsbury's shopping for two years
Sainsbury's Finance estimates that UK pet owners have made just under 180,000 claims already in 2009 on their pet insurance policies for their pet cats and dogs. The Sainsbury's Finance Pet Insurance Claims Index, which tracks claims data on a six monthly basis, reveals that cat owners have made over an estimated 50,000 claims between January and June this year, while dog owners are estimated to have made 129,000 different claims in the same period.
Worryingly, however, with only around 26% of cat and dog owners believed to have pet cover, Sainsbury's Finance, who provides competitively priced Pet Insurance, estimates that non-insured owners could collectively be facing costs for treatment and other expenses of around GBP435 million every year. These costs would relate to an estimated 1.02 million illnesses and incidents experienced each year by cats and dogs whose owners do not have pet insurance.
Lucy Hunter, Sainsbury's Pet Insurance Manager, said: "The sheer volume of claims made should belie the idea that pet insurance is a luxury. With vet fees rising, the potential cost of treatment for those pet owners doing without cover is considerable and it's a genuine concern that cats and dogs may be missing out on necessary treatment as a consequence."
The claims made in the first half of 2009 comprise over 240 different types of incidents for dogs and around 180 incidents for cats, the frequency and cost of which vary significantly.
In dogs, the most frequent claim is for skin tumours. Sainsbury's Finance estimates that as many as 10,500 claims were made for this condition in the first half of 2009. The next most frequent claims include those for lameness, vomiting, and lacerations. The Index suggests that cats are far more likely to have suffered a road accident, with around 2,200 claims estimated to have been made by cat owners following road accidents in the first six months of 2009. Dog owners are estimated to have made just under 1,000 claims following accidents on the road.
Lucy Hunter, Sainsbury's Pet Insurance Manager, said: "Our research earlier in the year suggested that many people were looking to cut back on insurance cover generally and pet insurance in particular. However, these new findings from our pet insurance claims index, indicate just how valuable good quality cover can be."
Top five most frequent claims for cats January - June 2009 (estimated)
On average, treatment for dogs is considerably more expensive than that for cats with the average claim for canines in 2009 almost GBP104 more expensive than that for cats at GBP458. The average claim for treatment of a cat was GBP354.
Sainsbury's shoppers are rewarded with double Nectar points on their shopping in store, online and in petrol filling stations for two years when taking out Sainsbury's Pet Insurance, which is one of only 3% of products on the market which offer cover for veterinary fees of GBP7,500 or more. Customers who spend GBP50 a week with Sainsbury's and have Sainsbury's Pet Insurance as well as a Nectar card would receive GBP52 worth of Nectar points a year.
Good quality pet insurance does not need to be expensive, good cover at a competitive price can be found by shopping around. Sainsbury's Pet Insurance offering up to GBP7,500 cover for vet fees is also designed to offer some of the widest range of benefits available at a competitive price. For further information call 0800 0565758, log on to www.sainsburys.co.uk or pick up a leaflet in a Sainsbury's supermarket.
For further information, please contact:
Max Duddy / Sarah Rowan
Citigate Dewe Rogerson
020 7638 9571
Notes to Editors:
Sainsbury's Pet Insurance is underwritten by AXA Insurance UK plc which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority.
(1) Based on analysis of Sainsbury's Pet Insurance data (July 2009) and market share statistics
(2) Based on figures from the Mintel Pet Insurance Report, December 2007
(3) Policy must be renewed with the same cover level and be claim free at the first renewal
Sainsbury's pet insurance cover: (note, a lower level cover option is also available)
To view our latest press releases and product information, please visit the Sainsbury's Finance online media centre at www.sainsburysfinance.co.uk/media.
Sainsbury's Finance offers a range of quality, competitively priced, award-winning products. It opened for business on 19th February 1997 and was the UK's first supermarket bank. It is a 50:50 joint venture with Sainsbury's and Lloyds Banking Group.
Sainsbury's provide a wide range of financial services including credit cards, loans, personal loans, savings account, pet insurance, life insurance, home insurance and car insurance, visit www.sainsburysbank.co.uk now to find out more.
For further information and general Sainsbury's Finance enquiries customers can call the freephone number on 0500 40 50 60 or visit www.sainsburysfinance.co.uk
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