It is not that rare to take in or adopt an abandoned dog or cat and in this case, its age is often not known. However, age is an important criterion that allows an insurer to set the price and terms of the formula chosen by the owner, or even to refuse a subscription request for an animal that is too old. Is it then impossible to insure a dog or a cat if you do not know its age? Our responses in this dossier.
How to determine the age of a cat or a dog?
A global examination of the animal
If you’ve adopted an abandoned cat or dog, you may want to go to the vet to try and estimate their age. To do this, the practitioner examines the animal, weighs it and measures it before comparing the data recorded with the growth curve of a cat or a dog of this breed. In addition to these criteria, the veterinarian can refine his estimate by observing the musculature of the tomcat or the doggie, the appearance of his coat or the tone of his skin. These are important criteria, especially in a healthy animal.
The observation of the teeth of the cat or the dog
Finally, it should be noted that the dentition of the cat or the dog is a determining element in determining the age of a small feline or a canine. Indeed, it evolves over the years and can help identify a more precise niche.
The evolution of a cat’s teeth is detailed as follows:
- Before the age of 12 months, the cat gradually builds its teeth. From the age of 15 days to a month, the incisors are formed. Around 4 to 5 weeks, it is the canines, then the premolars before 6 weeks, then you have to wait 4 months for the molars to appear. Finally, between 6 and 12 months, all of the cat’s teeth come out. These young teeth are white, without wear and very sharp. The gums are pink and the tartar is not yet visible.
- After two years, the cat’s teeth start to turn a little yellow and show signs of wear.
- From the age of 5, a cat’s teeth are markedly yellowed.
- Between 5 and 10 years old, all teeth are yellow, even brown. The teeth are more worn, less sharp, some break or come loose.
- Cats over 10 years of age have more scaled teeth and pale gums. Some loose teeth may have fallen out.
The evolution of dog teeth is as follows:
- The dog’s milk teeth come out very early, between 2 and 5 weeks of life, and are gradually replaced by its adult teeth from the age of 4 months.
- The puppy under 6 months old still has baby teeth. They are very white and pointed.
- From 6 months, the dog has permanent teeth. It has 42 teeth, 20 on the lower jaw and 22 on the upper jaw.
- From the age of 15 months, there are signs of wear that help determine the approximate age of a doggie.
- Over the years, the dog’s teeth turn yellow, wear out, become lumpy and scale up more or less quickly depending on the breed. Indeed, some dogs have an average life expectancy of 8 years, against 15 to 16 years for others.
Can we insure a cat or a dog of which we do not know the age?
Even if you consult the veterinarian, he will only be able to establish an approximate age of your animal. This gives you a more or less broad indication, but in no way constitutes a proven fact. How then to insure his little companion?
Indeed, the majority of mutual health insurance requires knowing the age of the animal you want to insure, because this age is decisive. On the one hand, insurance companies impose an age limit before which it is not yet possible to insure your cat or pooch and after which it is no longer possible to consider coverage. Before 2 to 3 months, most insurance companies refuse to cover a kitten or a puppy. After 5 to 10 years, depending on the species and the breed, the majority of insurers no longer want to take care of an animal deemed to be aging and too expensive to insure.
However, you should know that there are insurance companies that agree to cover older animals and offer, to do this, contracts without age limits. By turning to these companies, you will be able to insure your little companion.
However, the age of your pet will be asked. If you can’t provide it, there is a good chance that you will be charged a senior cat or dog rate, since you will not be able to prove that your little companion is not. We recommend that you have a health certificate drawn up by your veterinarian and mention the approximate age of the animal determined after a complete examination. With this expert report, you can ask your insurer to take into account the supposed age of your doggie or your tomcat to obtain a reduction in price, up to animals of its age group. However, in the absence of undeniable proof, the insurer may refuse to grant your request and offer to insure your cat or your dog at the rate for elderly animals.
Use online quote comparators to find the formula that’s right for you. These free and non-binding tools allow you to formulate a personalized request. You then receive offers from companies that agree to cover your small animal without knowing its age. It’s up to you to select the quotes that appeal to you and to request details to compare to make the best choice. And to get a lower price, do not hesitate to play the competition by presenting the other offers that are suggested to you!