When choosing pet insurance, it’s important to consider the deductible and reimbursement rate. Some companies exclude certain pre-existing conditions, while others will remove them after a waiting period or if they’re curable.
Many companies offer unlimited annual benefits, but these policies come with higher premiums than the average. The ASPCA, Embrace and Healthy Paws are good choices for owners who want unlimited annual benefits and flexible deductibles and reimbursement rates.
As the most popular insurer in our comparison, Trupanion stands out for its high coverage level, no maximum payout and direct payment to vets. This reduces pet owners’ stress when their pets require immediate care by keeping out-of-pocket costs low. The company also offers a variety of annual limits, allowing pet parents to customize their coverage based on their budget.
Unlike other best pet insurance providers, Trupanion covers alternative treatments like hydrotherapy and acupuncture as part of its policy. Pet owners can add this coverage to their policies via the Recovery and Complementary Care rider for an extra monthly cost. Adding this option is a big benefit because more and more vets are using these methods to help heal injuries or manage chronic conditions like arthritis or hip dysplasia.
Its deductible is set per condition, which isn’t common among pet insurance providers. Moreover, it doesn’t require a yearly dental exam, making it an ideal choice for pet owners who want to keep their pets’ teeth in top shape. Its maximum payout is also quite high, reimbursing 90% of eligible vet bills, which makes it one of the most generous options in the market.
The company’s policies exclude preexisting conditions, which are health issues that were present before the waiting period for coverage began. It also doesn’t cover exam fees, elective procedures or preventive care, including vaccinations, wellness exams and spay/neuter surgery. Additionally, it uses “previous signs” as a way to deny claims for certain breed specific conditions, even if those signs have nothing to do with the current illness or injury.
Trupanion is underwritten by American Pet Insurance Company, which isn’t rated by AM Best, the leading credit rating agency for the insurance industry. This may contribute to its higher-than-average premiums in price surveys.
The ASPCA pet insurance program covers accidents like broken bones and bite wounds as well as illnesses such as hereditary conditions and chronic diseases. The company’s most popular plan is an accident and illness policy. It is available for dogs, cats and puppies.
It offers a variety of deductible options and allows you to choose how much you want to pay toward your pet’s medical expenses before being reimbursed by the insurer. This feature helps pet owners manage the costs of routine care and wellness services such as annual exams, vaccines and heartworm preventatives. This is a nice option that many other providers do not offer.
You can sign up for a policy on the company’s website or by calling. You will need to provide your pet’s medical history, breed and age. It is important to enroll your pet at a young age to minimize the chances of any pre-existing conditions being excluded from coverage.
The ASPCA also offers a 10% discount for multiple pets and its parent company Crum & Forster has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. Its customer ratings on Trustpilot are mixed, but the company is still newer than some of its competitors.
The ASPCA pet insurance program is available nationwide and you can purchase a plan for your dog or cat online or over the phone. Its standard plan has unlimited coverage for diagnostic exam fees, prescription medications and surgeries that are associated with accidental injuries and illnesses. You can add optional preventative care coverage for a nominal fee. It is important to review your choices carefully and compare prices, annual coverages, deductibles and exclusions before making a decision.
Embrace provides pet parents with a variety of options to customize their insurance policy. Its main accident and illness plan is very comprehensive, and it offers five different annual limits, deductibles, and reimbursement amounts to choose from. It also offers a unique Healthy Pet Deductible discount that credits the annual deductible by $50 every year without a claim, saving pet parents money on their out-of-pocket costs.
Unlike some other pet insurance policies, Embrace covers hereditary conditions, dental illnesses, behavioural therapy, prosthetics, medication and supplies, and specialised care. The insurer also reimburses vet visit fees, follow up visits, prescription medications, and complementary treatments. It also covers dental trauma, hernia surgery, and cancer treatment. In addition to the above, Embrace also offers a wellness add-on that reimburses routine procedures like dental cleanings and spay/neuter surgeries.
All pet parents should carefully read their policy’s terms and conditions to be aware of what is and isn’t covered. The company averages five days to process claims for both accidents and illnesses, which is shorter than the seven- to 14-day processing time of some competitors.
Embrace also has a one-time enrollment fee of $25 and charges a $1 monthly processing fee for those who pay their premiums on a monthly basis. However, the company has a top customer service reputation and treats pre-existing conditions fairly. While it may not be the best option for those looking for preventative coverage, its affordable premiums and thorough coverage make it an excellent choice for dog and cat owners in the United States. However, it’s worth comparing other providers to find the best fit for your pet. Click below to get a free pet insurance quote today!
4. Pets Best
Pets Best was founded by a veterinarian who wanted to create a pet insurance company that put its customers and pets first. The company has since grown to be one of the top-rated in the industry, offering comprehensive coverage options that are affordable for most budgets. Its policies are highly customizable and include unlimited annual benefits, flexible deductible options, direct vet payment, a 24/7 pet helpline powered by WhiskerDocs, and optional wellness add-ons to pay for routine care.
PetsBest’s BestBenefit plans cover accidents and illnesses, with a choice of annual limits, deductibles, and reimbursement rates from 70% to 90%. Its waiting periods are among the shortest, with three days for accidents (0 in Maine) and 14 days for illness coverage. It’s also one of the few companies to offer coverage for prosthetic devices and wheelchairs, as well as a short free look period that lets you cancel the policy and get a pro-rata refund of any premiums paid.
As with all pet insurance policies, pre-existing conditions, elective procedures, and treatment of parasites aren’t covered. Other notable benefits are a short three-day waiting period for accident coverage, the option to add routine care coverage (including exam fees), and the ability to choose your own veterinarian. Its customer service is available via phone, online chat, or email.
Claims can be filed through the company’s website or mobile app, with a veterinarian’s invoice and other documentation required to process them. Reimbursements are made via direct deposit within two business days of Pets Best processing the claim. You can also choose to receive a paper cheque. PetsBest offers a 30-day free look period, during which you can cancel your policy and get a full refund of any premiums that have been paid.
5. Healthy Paws
Healthy Paws is a top-rated pet insurance company that offers comprehensive accident and illness coverage. Their deductibles are less than the industry average and they reimburse up to 90% of your vet bill (after your annual payout limit) on all claims. The insurer also pays your vet directly at checkout, which reduces out-of-pocket costs for pet owners. However, they don’t offer behavioral or alternative therapies in their base plan and only cover hereditary and congenital conditions with a Hereditary Plus add-on.
This provider is one of the few to offer flexible payment plans — you can choose between monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, and annual payments. They also allow you to pay in advance, which can save you up to $24 a year. The only downside to this flexibility is that it takes a bit longer for your policy to go into effect, as injury and illness coverage kicks in 15 days after you start paying premiums.
As with Pets Best, Healthy Paws allows you to customize your policy by choosing a reimbursement level and deductible. The quote tool is easy to use and provides instant quotes. The company does not, however, let you customize your deductible or reimbursement rate if your pet is older than six years. This can be a drawback for pet owners looking for routine care add-ons or customizable benefits for pets over the age of 6.
The cofounders of Healthy Paws met through their work at a no-kill animal shelter, so they have a genuine love of animals that serves as the foundation for their business. This is reflected in their customer service, which is highly rated among pet owners. The company has been in business since 2009 and has earned an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.