Pre-Existing Conditions

Pre-existing conditions

Unlike most pet insurers in New Zealand, we can cover some pre-existing conditions. Here are some handy FAQs to help you better understand how cover for pre-existing conditions works. It is important you also read the Policy Wording so you’re confident in knowing what your pet can and can’t be covered for.

What is a pre-existing condition?

A pre-existing condition is defined as a condition that exists or occurs before you take up a policy, or during any applicable waiting periods. A condition doesn’t need a vet diagnosis to be considered as a pre-existing condition – so signs and symptoms can be considered as pre-existing conditions too.

What pre-existing conditions do you cover?

We know that some pre-existing conditions can be cured. So, pre-existing conditions are assessed differently depending on whether they are considered chronic conditions or temporary conditions.

We can cover some temporary conditions that occurred or existed before you took out the policy (or which arose during the relevant waiting period) as long as your pet has not shown any symptom for that condition for at least 18 months.

However, chronic conditions will always be excluded if they are pre-existing.

What is a temporary condition?

A temporary condition is a condition which normally resolves itself with treatment, like eye infections or gastroenteritis. However, there are some conditions that can be resolved with treatment, which

we don’t consider as temporary conditions, such as cruciate ligament conditions and hip dysplasia. You can see the full list of conditions that we don’t consider to be a temporary condition in our Policy Wording.

What is a chronic condition?

A chronic condition is long-lasting or recurring and affects your pet for more than three months (which doesn’t have to be consecutive). Chronic conditions may also include conditions that are intermittent or managed by medication, with intervals of remission. Examples of chronic conditions are diabetes and seasonal allergies. If your pet has a chronic condition before you take up your policy, or if it arises within the applicable waiting period, it will not be covered under your policy.

My pet has a chronic condition. Does this mean that I can’t apply for pet insurance?

You can still apply for pet insurance even if your pet has a chronic condition. However, your pet’s chronic condition will not be covered under your policy. For example, if your pet has diabetes, you won’t be able to make any claim related to their diabetes treatment – but you could still be covered for other illnesses and accidents.

How does cover for temporary conditions work?

If your pet has been symptom-free for 18 months, you can apply for the condition to be covered. This means, that if your pet had a temporary condition (e.g. dietary-related gastroenteritis), before you took up the policy, but it had been resolved by medication, they will be covered under your policy, as long as they don’t suffer from the same illness within an 18-month period.

My pet had a temporary condition that is currently excluded from my policy, but they have been symptom-free for 18 months. How do I get this condition covered?

When assessing a claim our team will consider the length of time between symptoms and will automatically remove the temporary condition where appropriate. You can also request a review of a pre-existing condition that is currently being excluded from your policy outside of claims time. Simply fill out this form and send it to Please allow 30 days for us to complete the review. We’ll let you know if we can cover your pet’s condition in writing.

The Insurer

AA Pet Insurance policies are brought to you by the New Zealand Automobile Association Incorporated (AA), are administered and managed by PetSure (Australia) Pty Ltd, and are underwritten by The Hollard Insurance Company Pty Ltd.

Financial Strength Rating

The Hollard Insurance Company Pty Ltd has a financial strength rating of A- (Excellent) issued by A.M.Best Company Inc. For more details on the Financial Strength Rating, please click here.

Financial advice

Our website provides general information about our products and services to help you make choices when it comes to protecting the things in life that really matter. The information doesn’t take into account your specific financial situation, needs or goals and is not intended to be financial advice.

If you'd like to receive financial advice, you should get professional advice from a registered financial adviser.