Healthy Paws vs Pets Best: A Tight Race to the Finish

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Healthy Paws vs Pets BestHealthy Paws is our #1 overall pick this year but Pets Best has fewer limitations for senior dogs, so why is it ranked #2 for best pet insurance? We’ll explain why we think Healthy Paws is generally a better choice than Pets Best in this article. However, be sure to keep an open mind because even we will admit that there may be some instances where Pets Best is a better option for you.

Visit Healthy Paws Website | Visit Pets Best Website

The table below shows the different categories we considered while choosing the best pet insurance provider. As you can see, this was a close race. We recommend reassessing your dog’s pet insurance company annually to make sure you’re getting the best deal. But be sure to note that there are fewer pre-existing conditions in your pet’s earlier years so coverage pricing will be cheaper for younger animals. This will also likely mean that you are better off to stay where you are once you sign up, but you never know for sure. Also, be sure to check back regularly to see if our rankings have changed.

 Healthy PawsPets Best
Best Coverage OptionsCheckmark

Best PriceCheckmark

Best Customer Service & ReputationCheckmark

Best Claim TermsCheckmark

Shortest Waiting PeriodsCheckmark

Overall WinnerCheckmark

Best Coverage Options

The table below shows specifically what is and isn’t covered by Healthy Paws and Pets Best. To summarize, Pets Best covers exam fees which is a big bonus and Healthy Paws covers alternative/holistic therapy. Neither company covers behavioral therapies or cremation. Healthy Paws limits pets who are enrolled after the age of 8 to a 70% reimbursement level and $500 deductible due to increased risk of illness or accidents due to age. Healthy Paws also does not accept dogs older than 14-years-old for coverage. Pets Best has similar restrictions on dogs that have already experienced certain issues – they will only offer accident coverage. So, be sure you are getting insurance that will cover your pet best. Also, make sure to always get multiple quotes and read the fine print closely to ensure your needs are covered by the policy you choose.

 HealthyPawsPets Best
Overall Ranking in our Pet Insurance Reviews1st2nd
X-RaysCheckmarkCheckmark
Blood TestsCheckmarkCheckmark
UltrasoundsCheckmarkCheckmark
MRICheckmarkCheckmark
RehabilitationCheckmarkCheckmark
SurgeryCheckmarkCheckmark
Hip DysplasiaCheckmark
Waiting Period - 12 Months*
Checkmark
Waiting Period - 14 Days
ACLCheckmark
Waiting Period - 15 Days
Checkmark
Waiting Period - 6 Months
HospitalizationCheckmarkCheckmark
Emergency CareCheckmarkCheckmark
Specialty CareCheckmarkCheckmark
Pre-Existing Conditions
Check Ups, Vaccinations, Spay/Neuter, Teeth CleaningExtra Fee
14 Day Waiting Period
Non-Routine Dental TreatmentCheckmarkCheckmark
Chronic ConditionsCheckmarkCheckmark
IllnessesCheckmark
Waiting Period - 15 Days
Checkmark
Waiting Period - 14 Days
AccidentsCheckmark
Waiting Period - 15 Days
Checkmark
Waiting Period - 3 Days
Hereditary ConditionsCheckmarkCheckmark
Congenital ConditionsCheckmarkCheckmark
Cancer TreatmentsCheckmarkCheckmark
Diagnostic TreatmentCheckmarkCheckmark
Alternative/Holistic TherapyCheckmark
Behavioral Therapy
Prescription MedicationsCheckmarkCheckmark
Exam FeesCheckmark
Territories for CoverageUnited States, CanadaUnited States, Canada, Puerto Rico
Euthanasia (for humane reasonsCheckmarkCheckmark
Cremation
BBB RatingAA+
30-Day Money Back GuaranteeCheckmarkCheckmark
Enrollment Fee$25None
Unlimited Lifetime BenefitsCheckmarkoptional
Claim LimitsNone$5,000, $10,000 or Unlimited

*Healthy Paws only offers hip dysplasia coverage to dogs enrolled before the age of 6.

Wellness plans are gaining popularity but not every pet insurance company offers them. A wellness plan typically covers annual checkups, vaccinations, etc. These are things (asides from the spay/neuter) that all dogs should have every year. We feel that most pet parents are better off just saving for these expenses each year rather than paying a vast wellness plan fee because these are annual costs that you can budget for with the help of your vet’s office (visits will be more frequent during the dog’s first year of life).

Healthy Paws does not offer a wellness plan. Pets Best does offer one but it includes a 14-day waiting period. Below are the two plans offered by Pets Best that pay up to the following, per year, with no deductible.

 EssentialWellnessBestWellness
Price Per Month$16 ($14 in Washington)$26 ($30 in Washington)
Spay/Neuter - Teeth Cleaning$0$150
Rabies$15$15
Flea/Tick Prevention$50$65
Heartworm Prevention$30$30
Vaccination/Titer$30$40
Wellness Exam$50$50
Heartworm Test of FELV Screen$25$30
Blood, Fecal, Parasite Exam$50$70
Microchip$20$40
Urinalysis or ERD$15$25
Deworming$20$20
Total Annual Benefits$305$535

Since Healthy Paws has more limitations to its coverage, has restrictions on senior dogs and doesn’t offer a wellness plan, we’ve selected Pets Best as the winner. However, if alternative/holistic therapy is something you want to be covered, you’ll want to go with Healthy Paws.
Pets Best logo
Winner: Pets Best

Best Price

This category was tricky for us to declare a winner. For the most part, both companies are priced similarly in terms of monthly premiums. When they do vary, it’s typically by a couple of dollars. In instances where they varied greatly, Pets Best was generally priced higher than Healthy Paws. Below are some quotes we pulled on April 20, 2017. All information is for pets without a microchip, no multi-pet discount and no pre-existing conditions. Please note that your pricing will vary based on your pet’s breed, age, geographic location, etc. so you will want to be sure to get your own quotes to understand how the pricing stacks up for you and your pet.

 BreedBirthday/GenderLocationDeductibleReimbursement %Annual MaximumPrice Per Month
Healthy PawsYorkshire TerrierDecember 2016
Male
Columbus, Ohio (zip code 43205)$10080%Unlimited$32.24
Pets BestYorkshire TerrierDecember 2016
Male
Columbus, Ohio (zip code 43205)$10080%Unlimited$30.04
Healthy PawsYorkshire TerrierDecember 2016
Male
Columbus, Ohio (zip code 43205)$10090%Unlimited$37.77
Pets BestYorkshire TerrierDecember 2016
Male
Columbus, Ohio (zip code 43205)$10090%Unlimited$33.38
Healthy PawsLabrador RetrieverApril 2016
Female
Los Angeles, California (zipcode 90024)$25080%Unlimited$40.59
Pets BestLabrador RetrieverApril 2016
Female
Los Angeles, California (zipcode 90024)$25080%Unlimited$70.33
Healthy PawsMedium Mixed BreedJanuary 2014
Female
Chicago, Illinois (zipcode 60604)$50070%Unlimited$32.32
Pets BestMedium Mixed BreedJanuary 2014
Female
Chicago, Illinois (zipcode 60604)$50070%Unlimited$25.75
Healthy PawsMedium Mixed BreedJanuary 2014
Female
Chicago, Illinois (zipcode 60604)$10070%Unlimited$47.32
Pets BestMedium Mixed BreedJanuary 2014
Female
Chicago, Illinois (zipcode 60604)$10070%Unlimited$46.52
Healthy PawsAmerican Pitbull TerrierSeptember 2016
Male
New York City, New York (zipcode 10012)$25090%Unlimited$58.27
Pets BestAmerican Pitbull TerrierSeptember 2016
Male
New York City, New York (zipcode 10012)$25090%Unlimited$81.98

Other factors we took into consideration are that Healthy Paws has a one-time enrollment fee of $25, Pets Best has no enrollment fee. However, Pets Best has a $2 transaction fee that is charged every time a payment is processed, which could add up if you are paying monthly. You can eliminate this fee if you pay annually or reduce the frequency of this charge if you opt to pay semi-annually or quarterly.

Additionally, while premium increases probably won’t happen every year, when they do, Healthy Paws told us that they try to keep increases to a few dollars totaling a 9% increase or less. When we spoke to Pets Best, they told us they increase 5-7% as the pet ages. These increases are fairly similar since Healthy Paws generally is below 9% and Pets Best is around 5-7%.

Although we feel Healthy Paws is the winner for this category (by a hair), we suggest getting quotes from both companies for your pet’s specific details.
Healthy Paws logo
Winner: Healthy Paws

Best Customer Service & Reputation

Healthy Paws has one of the best reputations in the pet insurance business. Founded in 2009, Healthy Paws has better and more reviews from customers online than Pets Best. The majority of Healthy Paws and Pets Best customer complaints are from customers who, unfortunately, didn’t read or understand their policy. Complaints include the companies not paying a claim during a waiting period, not paying as much of a claim due to the deductible and reimbursement level selected, not covering pre-existing conditions, etc. We can’t fault Healthy Paws or Pets Best for these complaints because there are similar complaints about all pet insurance providers. Instead, we can hope to inform pet parents more on the terms of pet insurance, so that they understand fully what is and is not covered when they purchase pet insurance. This is something we think all pet insurance providers can help with as well.

Pets Best was founded in 2005 and has more negative reviews online than Healthy Paws. We think part of these negative Pets Best reviews may be due to the company changing its insurance carrier several times in the past. Pets Best still has great customer service and reputation, it’s just that Healthy Paws has a better reputation.

Another reason we think Healthy Paws is the winner of this category is because Healthy Paws leads the pet insurance providers with positive changes whereas Pets Best seems to react to competitors to keep up with the competition. While we think it’s great that both companies offer great customer service and coverage, we can’t help but point out that Health Paws has been consistent with its performance for a longer time running and led the industry with being the first company to offer unlimited claim limits.
Healthy Paws logo
Winner: Healthy Paws

Best Claim Terms

Healthy Paws has unlimited claim limits, period. Pets Best offers $5,000, $10,000 or unlimited. We think that having unlimited claim limits is the best option for pet parents. You can’t predict when your pet will become ill or injured and so you cannot determine how much money you’ll spend at the vet. However, we also understand that some people may want to save a little money by having a limited claim amount, so Pets Best may be appealing to them.

Healthy Paws averages 3.5 days for reimbursement checks to be out the door. The first claim may take a little longer because they review your dog’s medical history. Healthy Paws has an app which makes it easy to submit a claim for reimbursement and they launched a direct deposit option on May 1, 2017. Pets Best typically pays claims within 5 days and they offer an electronic claim filing or direct deposit. Since Pets Best has a quicker turnaround, they win this category.
Healthy Paws logo
Winner: Healthy Paws

Shortest Waiting Periods

It’s normal for pet insurance companies to have waiting periods. Below is a table of the waiting periods for both companies.

 Healthy PawsPets Best
Accidents15 days3 days
Illnesses15 days14 days
ACL15 days6 months
Hip Dysplasia12 months14 days

As you can see, Pets Best has shorter waiting periods except for ACL surgery.
Pets Best logo
Winner: Pets Best

Overall Winner

This was a tough one to compare because we think Healthy Paws and Pets Best are both excellent pet insurance providers. What it ultimately came down to was Healthy Paws has a slightly better price point and a more recognizable and established reputation. But look out Healthy Paws, Pets Best is putting up a good fight for the #1 spot and with a little more time we could see Pets Best making its way to the top by offering short waiting periods and great coverage. You can learn more about Pets Best and Healthy Paws by reading our individual reviews.
Healthy Paws logo
Winner: Healthy Paws

Do you have an experience with  Healthy Paws or Pets Best you’d like to share?

Disclaimer: Information regarding insurance company offerings, pricing and other contract details are subject to change by the insurance company at any time and are not under the control of this website. Information published on this website is intended for reference use only. Please review your policy carefully before signing up for a new pet health insurance contract or any other contract as your unique circumstances will differ from those of others who may be used for example purposes in this article.

Growing up, Kimberly used to get the sniffles when she was around dogs. Thankfully, she grew out of her allergy and is now able to play and snuggle with dogs as much as she wants! She adopted Sally, a four-year-old hound mix, in early 2017, and at the end of 2017 she adopted Kopa, a one-year-old treeing walker coonhound. She and her husband are loving life as pet parents.

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2 Comments on "Healthy Paws vs Pets Best: A Tight Race to the Finish"

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Anonymous II
Anonymous II

I like the shorter wait periods. If my dog experiences an accident, I don’t want to wait two weeks before getting him care. Plus, given the fact that both companies are very close in pretty much all other regards, I’m tending toward Pets Best.

Anonymous
Anonymous

I was on the (dog) fence about this, so I think this convinced me to go with Healthy Paws…

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