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Known for their loyal, protective nature, small pointed ears, and gorgeous fur, the Akita is a favorite breed for dog parents all over the world. Akitas are strong, intelligent protectors and fun-loving, energetic companions at the same time.
As great as this breed is, Akitas tend to be prone to certain medical conditions. While several of these health issues can be expensive to treat, you may be able to cover the high costs if you invest in pet insurance for your dog early.
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed when it comes to choosing the right pet insurance plan for your beloved Akita. This guide will help you select a plan that covers everything you want it to, so you can be there for your dog when they need you most.
Compare The Top 9 Pet Insurance Plans for Your Akita Using our Free No-Obligation Quote Tool below
The simplest way to compare pet insurance prices is to use our tool below. This comparison tool will show you quotes from the top 9 pet insurance carriers, including Trupanion, Pets Best, Lemonade, ManyPets, FIGO, HealthyPaws, Prudent Pet, Spot, and Embrace pet insurance.
How Much Does Pet Insurance for an Akita Cost?
Below are some sample pet insurance plans for a 1-year-old male Akita using the zip code 75001 (Texas) as an example.
Ultimately, your plan’s premium will depend on several factors, including your dog’s age, size, and breed, as well as where you live. You also want to know what type of coverage your plan has and if it will help with Akita-specific health problems. Let’s get more into those medical conditions and how much you can expect to pay to treat them.
Common Health Problems Associated With Akitas
Progressive Retinal Atrophy And Cataracts in Akitas
Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) is a degenerative eye disorder that leads to eventual blindness from the loss of photoreceptors at the back of the eye. This can affect your dog’s depth perception and make them hesitant to walk at night.
Your Akita may also develop cataracts, a grayish-white film that forms over the lens of their eye. Surgery can remove cataracts, but it’s expensive, and it is possible for a dog to live comfortably with some treatment and adjustments.
Hip Dysplasia in Akitas
Hip Dysplasia is one of the most common problems in larger breed dogs, including Akitas. The hip joint is a ball and socket joint, and hip dysplasia causes malformation of the two components. That makes it difficult for your dog to walk, and the chronic laxity can cause abnormal wear, which leads to osteoarthritis.
RELATED: What You Need To Know About Hip Dysplasia
Autoimmune Hypothyroidism in Akitas
The thyroid gland regulates the body’s metabolism. Sometimes, the thyroid can become under-active, which is called “hypothyroidism.” It occurs when the immune system recognizes the dog’s thyroid as foreign and attacks it, slowing your dog’s metabolism.
Hypothyroidism could result in weight gain, lethargy, or changes in hair and skin condition in your Akita.
Gastric Torsion (“bloat”) in Akitas
Gastric Torson (aka “bloat”) occurs when your dog’s stomach fills too rapidly with gas, food, or fluid. Bloat is a sudden, life-threatening condition where the stomach can twist, blocking the organ’s entrance and exit. It can even obstruct blood flow, which is a medical emergency.
Bloat more commonly affects large breed dogs like Akitas. Early diagnosis and treatment are essential when it comes to gastric torsion. Preventative measures, like regular exercise, proper diet, and not eating or drinking too quickly help as well.
If you notice any of these warning signs, you should take your Akita to the vet right away:
- Swollen belly
- Rapid heartbeat
- Difficulty breathing
Uveodermatologic Syndrome in Akitas
Uveodermatologic Syndrome is caused by the immune system destroying melanocytes (pigment-making cells) concentrated in the skin and eyes. Dogs affected by the condition will likely suffer eye problems (including retinal separation) and skin or fur pigment changes. While the skin and hair symptoms are basically just cosmetic issues, this condition can lead to blindness in your Akita.
Typical Costs Of Treating Health Issues In Akitas and How Pet Insurance Can Help
If left untreated, many of the health conditions listed above can result in long-term consequences and even require surgery, which ultimately makes them more expensive to manage. Selecting a pet insurance plan that’s suited for your Akita’s particular needs might save you tons of money on medical costs.
Here are just some sample veterinary expenses for Akitas:
- Progressive Retinal Atrophy and Cataracts Costs: Sadly, there’s currently no effective treatment for PRA, but there are home adjustments and wearable halos to make your blind dog’s life more comfortable. Cataract surgery can cost between $2,700 and $4,000 on average.
- Hip Dysplasia Costs: The cost of surgery for hip dysplasia can range from $4,000 to $6,000 per hip. Surgical options include Triple Pelvic Osteotomy, Femoral Head Osteotomy, and Juvenile Pubic Symphysiodesis, all costing thousands of dollars. Without surgery, your dog will suffer discomfort and eventually severe pain.
- Autoimmune Hypothyroidism Costs: Hypothyroidism isn’t curable, but it is treatable. You’ll need to administer thyroid replacement hormone for the remainder of your dog’s life, meaning monthly or bi-monthly purchases. Weight gain, however, can lead to other medical problems, which could cost a lot.
- Gastric Torsion (“bloat”) Costs: If your dog’s stomach has twisted, it will probably need emergency surgery to untwist it. The average cost of treating a bloat case with surgery runs between $2,000 and $5,000. If there are complications, the cost could be even higher. Pet insurance with emergency coverage can literally be life-saving in this case.
- Uveodermatologic Syndrome Costs: Diagnosing this condition could be pricey if a dermatologist and ophthalmologist are both involved (typically costing $500 to $1,500.) Doctors will likely prescribe corticosteroids, and if your dog’s eyes and skin don’t respond, more expensive meds may be necessary.
Knowing the signs and symptoms of these conditions common in Akitas can help you catch them early, saving your dog and your money. When in doubt, take your pup to the vet to have them diagnosed.
What Is Pet Health Insurance And Why Do I Need It For My Akita?
Pet health insurance works very similarly to human health insurance. Your policy quote will range in monthly price, depending on your dog’s breed, age, and where you live. Typically, you’ll spend around $15-$103 per month as a pet parent.
Pet insurance is mainly about peace of mind, knowing you won’t be totally overwhelmed in case of an emergency. Enrolling even when your dog is young and healthy will ensure you have plenty of coverage when they need expensive medical care later. If you choose a plan more suited to your dog’s particular breed, you’ll be more prepared when something happens later on in their life.
Some plans cover accidents and illnesses, while others only cover accidents. Certain plans do cover breed-specific illnesses, and others do not. It all depends on what type of coverage you choose. With our free pet insurance comparison tool, you can get quotes from multiple insurance companies with no obligation to commit.
Whatever plan you choose, you’ll feel better knowing you can take care of your dog when they need you most. Plus, you won’t have to suddenly shell out thousands of dollars. Learn more about how pet insurance works here.
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