Best Pet Insurance Companies of 2022

Anyone who has ever taken a sick or injured pet to the vet knows how expensive veterinary care can be. It’s in those situations where having a financial safety net to fall back on can be most helpful. It’s also in those situations where you shouldn’t have to decide between the health of your pet and your family’s financial well-being.

As a relatively new form of insurance, the first policy issued in 1982, pet insurance is not as well understood as other types such as homeowners, renters, or life insurance. In our unbiased rating of the Best Pet Insurance Companies of 2022, we aim to help you choose the best insurance company for your pet and illuminate pet insurance by looking at what it does and doesn’t cover as well as what factors will affect the price of a policy for your pet.

 

 

 

 

 

Healthy Paws  »

Best Pet Insurance

360 OVERALL RATING

4.3 out of 5

SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR DOGS$39.10
SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR CATS$12.71
APP AVAILABLEYes

Any rates listed are for illustrative purposes only. You should contact the insurance company or insurance agent directly for applicable quotes.

 

 

Pros:

  • No coverage limits

  • Provides coverage for alternative care

Cons:

  • No wellness coverage

  • No multi-pet discounts

 

Healthy Paws: Healthy Paws offers a single pet insurance plan that covers accidents and illnesses with an annual deductible and no payout limits. If you want to lower your premiums, Healthy Paws gives you the option of either raising your deductible or lowering your reimbursement level. Also, Healthy Paws covers what it calls alternative care for your pet, which includes hydrotherapy, acupuncture, and chiropractic care.

What Healthy Paws’ plan doesn’t cover is things like wellness expenses, vet exams, and treatment for behavioral issues. As a bonus, it has a Refer-a-Friend program. After your referred friend completes the application process, Healthy Paws will donate $25 to help homeless pets.

Read more in our Healthy Paws review.

 

Trupanion  »

Offers Per-Condition Deductibles

360 OVERALL RATING

4.1 out of 5

SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR DOGS$63.61
SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR CATS$28.06
APP AVAILABLEYes

Any rates listed are for illustrative purposes only. You should contact the insurance company or insurance agent directly for applicable quotes.

 

 

Pros:

  • No coverage limits

  • Optional coverage for rehabilitative care

Cons:

  • No wellness coverage

  • No discount for enrolling multiple pets

 

Trupanion: Trupanion is unique in our rating for offering direct payment of veterinarian expenses. This means that if you use a participating vet, Trupanion will pay the vet’s office before you leave and you won’t need to file a claim.

Trupanion is similar to Healthy Paws in that it also has only one plan and no payout limits, but Trupanion offers more plan options, including a Recovery and Care Rider and a Pet Owner Assistance Package. The Pet Owner Assistance package is designed to pay for things like rewards for a lost pet, fees for boarding your pet in the event that you’re hospitalized, and liability coverage if your pet damages someone else’s property.

It also offers a lifetime per-condition deductible, as opposed to Healthy Paws’ annual deductible. The company also has a refer-a-friend program, where you can earn $25 for each friend referred, up to a limit of $100 a year.

Read more in our Trupanion review.

 

Pets Best  »

No Upper Age Limits for Enrollment

360 OVERALL RATING

3.9 out of 5

SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR DOGS$18.80
SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR CATS$11.13
APP AVAILABLEYes

Any rates listed are for illustrative purposes only. You should contact the insurance company or insurance agent directly for applicable quotes.

 

 

Pros:

  • Offers two wellness care options

  • Offers three levels of pet insurance plans

Cons:

  • Rehab coverage only available in highest tier plan

 

Pets Best: The main plan from Pets Best covers accidents and illnesses for cats and dogs with no age restrictions on enrollment. This plan has three levels: Essential, Plus, and Elite. Going up the tiers adds benefits like covering exam fees for accidents and illnesses and coverage for rehab.

The company also has two wellness plan options to cover things like microchipping, flea and tick prevention, spaying/neutering, vaccinations, and deworming. This is the highest-rated company in our rating to offer coverage for routine and preventative care.

Plans through Pets Best have an annual deductible, with payout limit options ranging from $5,000 a year to unlimited. Among companies in our rating, Pets Best also has a shorter than average waiting period (the period of time between when your policy takes effect and when you can file claims) of three days for accidents. If added to your policy, routine care can be used immediately.

Read more in our Pets Best review.

 

Embrace Pet Insurance  »

Offers Healthy Pet Deductible Credits

360 OVERALL RATING

3.9 out of 5

SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR DOGS$24.16
SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR CATS$11.65
APP AVAILABLEYes

Any rates listed are for illustrative purposes only. You should contact the insurance company or insurance agent directly for applicable quotes.

 

 

Pros:

  • No lifetime coverage limits

  • Plans have a diminishing deductible

Cons:

  • Plans have annual coverage limits

 

Embrace Pet Insurance: Like all the companies in our rating, Embrace doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions, though it does have an exception to this rule. If your pet suffers from what is deemed to be a curable condition and has been symptom- and treatment-free for at least one year, the company may cover the condition again in the future. Embrace also features what it calls a diminishing deductible, which lowers your deductible each year your pet is healthy and you don’t file a claim.

Policies through Embrace also cover veterinary exam fees, which is unusual among companies in our rating. And while Embrace doesn’t offer wellness insurance policies or riders, it does offer a Wellness Rewards plan that covers items such as grooming and training.

Another important feature of Embrace is that there is no upper age limit on how old your pet can be when initially purchasing a policy.

Read more in our Embrace Pet Insurance review.

 

ASPCA Pet Health Insurance  »

Covers Range of Pets Including Horses

360 OVERALL RATING

3.8 out of 5

SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR DOGS$32.21
SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR CATS$18.41
APP AVAILABLEYes

Any rates listed are for illustrative purposes only. You should contact the insurance company or insurance agent directly for applicable quotes.

 

 

Pros:

  • Some plans cover behavioral and alternative therapy

  • Covers some pre-existing conditions after 180 days of being symptom-free

Cons:

  • Can take up to 30 days to process claims

 

ASPCA Pet Health Insurance: ASPCA Pet Health Insurance offers accident and illness coverage as well as accident-only coverage for cats and dogs. These plans have adjustable annual deductibles and adjustable annual payout limits. In addition to covering most accident and illness-related issues, ASPCA covers treatment for behavioral issues such as fur pulling, destructive chewing, and excessive licking.

ASPCA will also cover the re-emergence of pre-existing conditions after 180 days of being symptom-free. Many companies in our rating may never cover the re-emergence of a pre-existing condition no matter how long your pet has been considered cured or symptom-free. For example, Healthy Paws has no stipulations in its sample contract for when it might cover the re-emergence of a pre-existing condition.

You also have the option to add a preventative rider to your main plan. ASPCA is unique in our rating for offering insurance policies that cover horses. ASPCA Pet Health Insurance licenses its name from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) and is not a part of that organization.

 

PetFirst Pet Insurance  »

360 OVERALL RATING

3.7 out of 5

SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR DOGS$23.19
SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR CATS$12.35
APP AVAILABLENo

Any rates listed are for illustrative purposes only. You should contact the insurance company or insurance agent directly for applicable quotes.

 

 

Pros:

  • Diminishing deductible

  • Optional routine care coverage

Cons:

  • Charges a fee if you pay monthly vs. annually

 

PetFirst Pet Insurance: Founded in 2004 and purchased by MetLife in 2020, PetFirst offers accident and illness coverage for cats and dogs along with the option of adding routine care coverage. As with Embrace, there is no upper age limit for when you can purchase a PetFirst policy to cover your pet. The only age restriction is that they must be at least 8 weeks old.

PetFirst has a few different ways you can save money with its policies. First, it offers a discount for having policies for more than one pet. Your deductible will also generally go down $25 for every year that you don’t file a claim.

 

Figo  »

360 OVERALL RATING

3.6 out of 5

SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR DOGS$22.15
SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR CATS$23.40
APP AVAILABLEYes

Any rates listed are for illustrative purposes only. You should contact the insurance company or insurance agent directly for applicable quotes.

 

 

Pros:

  • Mobile app provides access to a veterinary professional 24/7

  • Highest level plan has no payout limits

Cons:

  • Exams for covered illnesses and injuries are an option you must pay extra for

  • Pet insurance for cats may be more expensive than pet insurance for dogs

 

Figo: Figo offers three pet insurance policies that cover accidents and injuries for a cat, dog, or other pet. Higher-level plans increase the annual payout limit. There are also options to cover vet fees and prescription food. You can use its Pet Cloud mobile app to connect with a licensed veterinarian or other veterinary professional 24/7, to gain access to your Figo account, and for more social purposes like finding local dog parks or sharing photos with other pet owners.

Read more in our Figo review.

 

Fetch by The Dodo  »

360 OVERALL RATING

3.6 out of 5

SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR DOGSN/A
SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR CATSN/A
APP AVAILABLEYes

Any rates listed are for illustrative purposes only. You should contact the insurance company or insurance agent directly for applicable quotes.

 

 

Pros:

  • Coverage includes online vet visits

  • Covers behavioral therapy and rehabilitation

Cons:

  • No preventative care options

  • No multi-pet discounts

 

Fetch by The Dodo (formerly Petplan): Fetch by The Dodo (formerly Petplan) offers one plan that covers accidents and illness. There are no options for add-ons. However, one benefit that Fetch by The Dodo’s plan offers is coverage for vet exam fees when your pet is sick or injured.

This insurer also covers virtual vet visits, which may be of interest to those who have trouble making it to a vet’s office. Additionally, Fetch by The Dodo says it will cover up to $1,000 in boarding fees for your pet should you be hospitalized. Fetch by The Dodo’s policies come with an annual deductible and payment limits.

Read more in our Fetch by The Dodo review.

 

Nationwide  »

360 OVERALL RATING

3.4 out of 5

SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR DOGS$60.52
SAMPLE PREMIUM FOR CATS$35.45
APP AVAILABLEYes

Any rates listed are for illustrative purposes only. You should contact the insurance company or insurance agent directly for applicable quotes.

 

 

Pros:

  • Provides coverage for exotics pets

  • Standard plan includes wellness coverage

Cons:

  • Premiums are among the highest in our rating

 

Nationwide: Nationwide is the first insurer in the U.S. to offer pet insurance. Its main plan covers both routine and preventative care for your cat or dog. You also have the option of separately purchasing accident and illness insurance or wellness plans. Nationwide is the only company in our rating to offer coverage for birds and other exotic pets such as chinchillas, ferrets, rats, amphibians, lizards, snakes, and tortoises.

While Nationwide looks expensive compared to other companies in our pet insurance rating, keep in mind that the plan includes wellness coverage, something most of the other companies don’t include in their main plans.

Read more in our Nationwide review.

There are a lot of factors to consider as you shop for pet health insurance. The steps below can help you find the right company and policy for you and your pet.

Decide what type of policy you need. Pet owners can typically choose between three types of policies:

  • Accident and illness insurance: covers treatment of broken bones, swallowed objects, cancer, UTIs, ear infections, etc.
  • Wellness insurance: covers routine care, such as vaccinations, exams, spaying and neutering, and nail trims
  • Exotic pet insurance: designed for pets other than cats or dogs, such as hamsters, rabbits, geckos, and snakes

Determine what is (or isn’t) covered under the policy. Closely examine which conditions, diagnostic tests, and treatments are covered for your pet and identify any limits, exclusions, or age-specific restrictions. If you own a breed of pet that is prone to hereditary or congenital conditions, such as hip dysplasia or asthma, verify that the policy will provide coverage for treatment. Keep in mind that insurers generally don’t cover pre-existing conditions.

Choose a deductible. Like human health insurance, pet insurance policies include deductibles, or the amount of money you pay before the insurance company will begin to cover expenses.

In general, the companies in our rating offer two types of deductibles:

  • Annual deductibles are similar to those found in human health insurance policies. Each year, you’re responsible for paying a set amount of money (e.g., $500) for covered care, regardless of what type . After you meet your deductible, the insurer will pay any additional costs.
  • Per-condition deductibles refer to a set of deductibles that are specific to different conditions. For instance, a policy may include a separate deductible for arthritis, heart disease, cancer, and liver disease.

If your pet needs to visit the vet multiple times a year, and each visit is for a different injury or illness, an annual deductible may be less expensive. If your pet develops an illness or issue requiring consistent care or multiple visits but doesn’t have other issues, a per-condition deductible may be more affordable. There are pros and cons to both deductibles, but neither is inherently better than the other.

Choose a reimbursement rate: Reimbursement rates refer to the percentage of costs an insurer will reimburse. Reimbursement rates vary by insurer, but common rates range from 60% to 100% of your veterinary bill.

Determine what limits are available. Limits refer to the total amount of money an insurer will pay for covered expenses (e.g., $10,000 a year). Some insurers don’t cap payments, but others have annual limits. If a policy has an annual limit, your insurer will only cover expenses up to that amount. You’ll need to cover any additional costs until the next policy year.

Find out if you can customize your premiums. Some insurers allow policyholders to customize their premiums by adjusting one or more aspects of their policy. Though each insurer is different, you may be able to adjust your deductible, reimbursement rate (percentage of costs an insurer will cover), or policy limits to build a premium that fits your budget or veterinary care needs. Decreasing your payout limits and the rate of reimbursement will typically lower your premiums. You can also lower your premiums by raising your deductible. However, keep in mind that each adjustment may result in more out-of-pocket expenses should your pet need frequent or costly care.

Check for discounts. Some insurers will offer discounts that can bring down coverage costs. Discounts vary in availability and type but may include annual pay discounts, multi-pet discounts, military discounts, and employee benefit discounts.

As you shop for a pet health insurance policy, there are a few other factors that can help you make your decision. Most companies in our rating offer several customer service options, including email, phone, and online chat support as well as mobile app access. Reviewing customer service and support options can help you find an insurer that meets your policy management and claims handling preferences.

It’s also worth considering any add-on or additional coverage you may want. Some of the companies in our rating offer wellness or alternative care plans that cover things like hydrotherapy, acupuncture, and chiropractic care. When all else is equal, reviewing customer support and supplemental coverage options can help you make your decision.

Most of the pet insurance policies in our rating are designed to provide coverage for your cat or dog in case of accidents and illnesses but are not intended to cover routine veterinary care. This means that if your pet becomes sick or is injured in some way, the policy would provide coverage for some of your veterinary expenses. However, if your pet is going to the vet for routine care like vaccinations, dental care, and annual exams, their expenses would not be covered by the policy.

There are a few companies that either offer pet insurance policies to cover dental care and other preventative care, like Nationwide, or riders for the main policies, like PetFirst.

Many pet insurance policies will cover hereditary conditions. The asterisk next to this is that your pet cannot already have shown symptoms of the condition or it will be considered a pre-existing condition.

Typically, pet insurance companies don’t provide pre-existing condition coverage for cats, dogs, and other pets. This means that if your pet has previously been diagnosed with a condition, or if you have noticed symptoms that are related to the condition, coverage for that condition will not be covered by your policy. Again, there are exceptions to this rule. For example, Fetch by The Dodo doesn’t provide coverage for pre-existing conditions, but if the condition has been considered cured for an extended period of time, it could be covered again in the future.

Also, almost all of the companies in our rating offer coverage options exclusively for cats and dogs. The exceptions include Nationwide, with its Avian & Exotic Pet plan, and ASPCA Pet Health Insurance, which also covers horses.

 

  • Accident and Illness Insurance: These policies cover your pet in the case that they are injured or fall ill.
  • Wellness Insurance: Wellness policies generally cover more routine issues like exams, vaccinations, spaying and neutering, and nail trims.
  • Exotic Pet Insurance: This type of insurance covers pets that aren’t cats or dogs. Very few companies offer this type of insurance.

Most pet insurance policies are for when your pet is injured or becomes ill. Sometimes this will be split into separate accident or illness plans.

Wellness policies, plans, and riders are rare. Some companies, like ASPCA and PetFirst, offer routine care or preventative care riders, while companies like Nationwide offer separate wellness insurance policies. One thing to look out for is that some companies, like Embrace, offer a wellness rewards plan. These are not necessarily insurance policies or riders but are designed to cover things like check-ups and other preventative care up to a certain amount each year.

When researching different companies with wellness add-ons, look to see whether the wellness plans are a type of insurance policy or not.

The third type of insurance is designed to cover pets that aren’t cats and dogs, such as birds, reptiles, and small animals. Only one company in our rating, Nationwide, offers such a policy. Its Avian & Exotic Pet policy covers accidents, illnesses, and some preventative care such as exams. While it doesn’t offer an exotic pet plan per se, ASPCA Pet Health Insurance does offer plans that cover horses.

 

Pet Insurance Plan Availability

COMPANY

ACCIDENT & ILLNESS PLAN

ACCIDENT ONLY PLAN

WELLNESS RIDER

WELLNESS PLAN

Healthy Paws »

Trupanion »

Pets Best »

Embrace Pet Insurance »

ASPCA Pet Health Insurance »


Expand List

 

The pet insurance policies in our rating cost between approximately $19 and $64 per month for a large 1-year-old female mixed-breed dog and between approximately $11 and $35 per month for a 1-year-old male domestic shorthair cat. The prices for both animals are based, where applicable, on a policy with a $5,000 annual limit, 90% reimbursement rate, and $500 deductible.

The monthly premiums for pets are based on several factors, including whether your pet is a cat or dog, their age, any pre-existing conditions, where you reside, and how you choose to adjust your deductible and coverage limits. In our ratings, and according to research from the North American Pet Health Insurance Association (NAPHIA), the average premiums for dog insurance is higher than those for cat insurance.

Companies tend to increase your premiums for pets as they age, with some companies even refusing to start new policies for pets over a certain age.

For more information on pet insurance costs visit our How Much Does Pet Insurance Cost? guide.

This will depend on a number of factors including whether your pet’s breed is predisposed to certain genetic conditions, your financial situation, and what your expectations for a pet insurance policy are.

If your pet is a breed prone to certain conditions, insuring your pet before they show symptoms could be a way to ensure you will be able to afford treatment for those conditions should they arise.

If your pet is already showing symptoms of the condition, then no company in our rating would cover treatment for that condition as it would be considered a pre-existing condition. Even in these circumstances, a pet insurance policy might still make sense for you as your pet may develop other issues that require medical attention.

Veterinary expenses for pets can be expensive and pet insurance may not cover them for you. For example, according to the 2019-2020 APPA National Pet Owners Survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), the average price of a surgical vet visit was $426 for a dog and $214 for a cat.

If your dog had an accident and required a $426 surgery, but your policy has a $500 deductible, then you would be paying for the cost of the surgery out of pocket. But, if your dog required follow-up care related to the accident, and it was covered by your insurance policy, then you would be covered for those additional expenses once your deductible was met.

Some people will enjoy the peace of mind that comes from having an insurance policy while others will be more comfortable placing money into a savings account for veterinary expenses.

 

  1. Select a pet insurance company.
  2. Fill out a form for a quote.
  3. Schedule a visit with your vet or request they send in your pet’s medical records.

Once you’ve chosen a pet insurance company that suits your needs, you can fill out a form on the company’s website to request a quote. You will usually be asked your pet’s name, whether they’re a cat or dog, their breed, their age, where you live, and broad questions about whether they have any preexisting conditions.

After you’ve received the quote you will likely be asked more specific questions about your pet’s medical history. You will also be asked to select a plan, where applicable, and make decisions about your deductible, payout limits, and reimbursement rates.

At some point in the process, the company will likely either request you schedule an exam with your vet or that your vet submit your pet’s medical history. Some companies will wait until you file your first claim before requesting your pet’s medical records. If your pet has any pre-existing conditions, whether officially diagnosed by the vet or not, those conditions will generally be excluded from your coverage.

 

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Do Pet Insurance Plans Only Cover Cats and Dogs?

No, in our rating we have two companies that offer insurance policies for more animals than just cats and dogs. Nationwide offers a policy for birds and other exotic pets while ASPCA Pet Health Insurance offers plans that cover horses.

Do Pet Insurance Plans Offer Discounts?

Yes, many pet insurance companies offer discounts. To help make policies more budget-friendly, many companies offer discounts when you insure multiple pets. There are also some discounts for veterans, active members of the military, and people who work in jobs related to animal care.

Pet Insurance Discount Comparison

COMPANY

MULTIPLE PET DISCOUNT

MILITARY DISCOUNT

ASSISTANCE PET DISCOUNT

ANIMAL-CARE WORKERS DISCOUNT **

Healthy Paws »

Trupanion »

Pets Best »

Embrace Pet Insurance »

ASPCA Pet Health Insurance »


Expand List

* A 5% affiliation discount may apply to individuals who belong to select military, law enforcement and service animal training organizations that have a relationship with Nationwide. ** Animal-care worker discount is offered to pet owners who works at animal care facilities such as shelters

 

Does Pet Insurance Cover Dental?

Accident and illness insurance policies for pets typically will cover procedures including extraction and reconstruction for dental injuries due to trauma. However, preventative care, like teeth cleaning, is not covered. Some insurers, such as Pets Best, do offer optional wellness coverage to defray the cost of routine dental and other procedures. Others, including Healthy Paws, do not.

Does Pet Insurance Cover Spaying and Neutering?

Procedures such as spaying or neutering are considered preventative care and, as a result, are not covered by pet insurance accident and illness policies. Some pet insurance companies, such as Pets Best and Embrace, offer wellness add-ons that can offset the cost of spaying or neutering your dog or cat. Check the fine print, however, because wellness coverage from some providers like Nationwide do not include dental cleanings.

Does Pet Insurance Cover Pre-Existing Conditions?

In general, pet insurers do not cover any injury, illness, or other health conditions that exist at the time of enrollment or during the mandatory waiting period that follows. This includes pre-existing health conditions not formally diagnosed by a veterinarian. Healthy Paws and some other insurers also include what’s known as a bilateral exclusion. This means that if your pet has sustained a cruciate ligament injury to one leg prior to enrollment or during the waiting period, the corresponding leg would not be covered should a similar injury occur.

Although insurers don’t cover pre-existing conditions, most will provide future coverage for those that are considered “curable” conditions. Nationwide, for example, will cover new cruciate ligament or meniscus injuries after the first 12 months of coverage.

Do Pet Insurance Companies Have Networks?

Pet insurance companies generally don’t have networks. While Trupanion does partner with some vets to provide instant reimbursement on its policies, you can still use this insurance with other vets.

How Do You File a Pet Insurance Claim?

With most pet insurance providers, to file a claim you will fill out a claim form on the company’s website, in its app, or by printing it out and mailing it. You typically submit an invoice from your vet with your claim.

 

What Is a Pet Savings Account?

A pet savings account is a type of supplemental savings account dedicated to saving up money for expenses related to your pet.

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