Vet Wellness Plan vs Vet Care Plan vs Pet Insurance Comparison

When looking at the best option for your pet’s health care, there is a lot of terminology, labels and jargon that can cause confusion and make you give up on the whole process altogether. Terms such as “pet plan”,  “vet care plan”, “pet health plan” and “pet health cover” sound very similar to pet insurance, but does that mean they are all basically the same thing? In this article, we delve into these and other terms that are often bandied about and try to make sense of all of them for you.


Pet Insurance vs Wellness Plans

The distinction between pet insurance and pet health and wellness plans is quite clear:

A pet insurance plan is intended to help cover unexpected veterinary costs, such as those incurred for an injury or illness, which can often become very expensive and are tricky to budget for. The costs of treatment for an illness such as Cruciate Ligament Disease, for example, could easily run into the thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars  (data from the Australian Pet Health Monitor 2022).


On the other hand, a pet wellness plan is intended to help cover expected or routine preventative veterinary care costs, such as those incurred for annual check-ups, vaccinations, parasite prevention and desexing.

These routine or wellness vet visits are not usually covered by standard pet insurance policies, although some pet insurance providers may offer this type of cover as an optional “add-on” to your policy. For example, Bow Wow Meow Pet Insurance offers the option of adding Routine Care cover to your policy, which helps cover some of the costs of your pet’s routine care needs.


Vet wellness plan vs Vet care plan – is there a difference?

No, these terms basically refer to the same thing – a stand-alone pet wellness plan that is offered by a veterinary practice or chain to cover some of the routine, predictable veterinary expenses. They may also simply be called a Vet Plan or a Pet Plan, or in fact any term that the provider wishes to call it!

The important thing is that these type of pet care plans are not pet insurance and it is obviously essential that the owner is aware of this distinction.


Vet plan vs Pet Insurance routine care cover – what is the difference?

Both of these types of plans assist you and your vet in providing for your pet’s routine care needs. They both help encourage regular vet consultations and promote early detection of potential health problems.

The main differences between them are:

  • Vet car plans are stand-alone, annual plans provided by veterinary clinics that can only be used at their individual clinic or chain of clinics. If you move away or wish to change to a different vet, you won’t be able to use any remaining benefit you have on the plan. Pet Insurance routine care cover does not tie you down to a particular vet or practice.
  • While a vet care plan may seem more affordable than a Pet Insurance plan with additional routine care cover, the vet care plan is for preventative care only and won’t cover your pet for illnesses and accidents, including diagnostic tests, treatment and medications, all of which can really add up in dollar terms.

In combination, with Routine care cover added onto your Bow Wow Meow Pet Insurance plan, you have peace of mind that your pet will be covered for both predicable and unpredictable expenses.


A pet insurance policy with Bow Wow Meow will help ensure you can always afford to give your pet the best treatment, whatever your budget.




This article is written by

Nicky Klugman

Nicky is our Marketing Communications and Content Specialist. She is an animal-lover who is particularly interested in animal behaviour and the relationships between humans and their pets. While growing up, dogs were always an integral part of the family. Nicky is mum to three human sons and a rescue pup called Dobby.

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*Please note, any pet insurance advice provided is general only. Refer to the applicable Product Disclosure Statement for details of Bow Wow Meow Pet Insurance cover.