08:53 AM

Dermatitis, otitis externa continue to top common conditions that prompt veterinary visits

In 2022, Nationwide® members filed more than 1.43 million individual claims for treatment of top 10 medical conditions affecting dogs and cats

Columbus, Ohio – For veterinarians, treating canine and feline conditions such as dermatitis, otitis externa, and gastropathy is part of everyday practice, but these common conditions can be unexpected and costly in the eyes of pet owners.

“When we talk about protecting pets from the unexpected, many families might envision things like traumatic injuries, poisoning, or foreign body ingestion,” said Dr. Jules Benson, Nationwide’s Vice President, Pet Health and Chief Veterinary Officer. “While these are definitely situations where it’s beneficial to have pet health insurance, our data actually shows that the majority of claims come from extremely common conditions.”

In 2022, Nationwide pet health insurance members filed more than 1.43 million claims for treatment related to the top 10 most common medical conditions affecting dogs and cats. The nation’s pet health protection leader analyzed its database of more than 1.2 million pets to determine the top medical conditions that prompted veterinary visits for dogs and cats last year:



1. Atopic or allergic dermatitis1. Chronic kidney disease
2. Otitis externa2. Cystitis
3. Enteropathy3. Gastropathy
4. Gastropathy4. Enteropathy
5. Pyoderma5. Hyperthyroid disease
6. Anal gland sacculitis6. Dental disease (tooth infection, cavity, abscess)
7. Arthritis7. Diabetes mellitus
8. Benign skin neoplasia8. Atopic or allergic dermatitis
9. Cystitis9. Upper respiratory infection
10. Dental disease (tooth infection, cavity, abscess)10. Otitis externa

“Year over year, we see that ear infections, urinary and gastrointestinal disease, and skin allergies account for huge portions of the claims Nationwide receives for cats and dogs,” says Dr. Benson. “And as clinicians know, all are conditions that can start out small but become serious, even chronic, if left untreated. Having a pet protection solution in place can make a big difference in whether pet parents seek veterinary care early, and then in what diagnostics and treatments are viable for them.”

Among Nationwide-insured dogs:

  • For the 11th year in a row, skin allergies were the most common health issue, with more than 373,000 individual claims received (up from 335,000 in 2021).
  • For a single dog, the highest cost with a skin allergy diagnosis came in at just over $9,480, from a dog in New York who has multiple chronic conditions. He receives monthly Cytopoint injections, in addition to daily oral Atopica and weekly at-home allergen injections.

Among Nationwide-insured cats:

  • Chronic kidney disease reclaimed the top spot as the most common medical condition, with more than 18,400 individual claims received.
  • For a single cat, the highest cost from any of the top 10 conditions came in at more than $19,821 for a cat from Georgia who suffered a severe diabetic episode. He was admitted to a veterinary emergency center but declined so quickly that he was transferred to a 24-hour specialty center under the care of a board-certified veterinary internist. This team were able to stabilize him and get him back on his feet. He’s now receiving insulin to manage his diabetes and is doing well at home.

With Nationwide pet health insurance, many veterinary expenses associated with the diagnosis and treatment of these common conditions are eligible for reimbursement based on the member’s chosen coverage. To explore pet health insurance coverage for dogs, cats, and many avian or exotic pets, visit petinsurance.com.

About Nationwide pet insurance
With more than 1.2 million insured pets, Nationwide is the first and largest provider of pet health insurance in the United States. Nationwide pet health insurance plans cover dogs, cats, birds and exotic pets for multiple medical problems and conditions relating to accidents, illnesses and injuries. Medical plans are available in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Products underwritten by Veterinary Pet Insurance Company (CA), Columbus, OH; National Casualty Company (all other states), Columbus, OH. Agency of Record: DVM Insurance Agency. All are subsidiaries of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. Pet owners can find Nationwide pet insurance on Facebook or follow on Twitter. For more information about Nationwide pet insurance, call 800-USA-PETS (800-872-7387) or visit petinsurance.com.

About Nationwide

Nationwide, a Fortune 100 company based in Columbus, Ohio, is one of the largest and strongest diversified insurance and financial services organizations in the United States. Nationwide is rated A+ by both A.M. Best and Standard & Poor’s. An industry leader in driving customer-focused innovation, Nationwide provides a full range of insurance and financial services products including auto, business, homeowners, farm and life insurance; public and private sector retirement plans, annuities, mutual funds and ETFs; excess & surplus, specialty and surety; pet, motorcycle and boat insurance. For more information, visit www.nationwide.com. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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