Is Pet Insurance Worth It?

To sustain this free service, we receive affiliate commissions via some of our links. This doesn’t affect rankings. Our review process.

1stHealthy Paws logo

2ndPets Best Logo

Petplan Logo

A big misconception about pet insurance is that it’s too expensive. We spend hundreds of dollars on ourselves each month for health insurance, yet we don’t get coverage for our furry “children.” In reality, paying $35/month for pet insurance could end up saving your pet’s life.

Instead of being hit with a $6,000 vet bill because your dog was diagnosed with cancer and needs treatment you can have almost all of that covered through pet insurance. The worst thing that can happen is learning that your dog has cancer, but then having to turn down treatment because you can’t afford the bills.

No one wants to face that decision and signing up for pet insurance takes care of it. Pet insurance allows you to make the best choices instead of the least expensive ones when an emergency arises.

For this reason, it’s vital that pet owners consider buying pet health insurance to protect their loved ones (and their wallets) from some of life’s most unfortunate accidents.

This comprehensive pet insurance guide will explain all you need to know to determine what’s most important for you and your pet. We will also provide helpful recommendations for the best pet insurance plan to fit your needs.

Article Overview

What Is Pet Insurance?

Pet insurance is the human health insurance equivalent, but for your pet. Having your dog or cat protected by a good health insurance plan can put your mind at ease knowing that large, unexpected medical bills will be covered.

There are 3 types of pet insurance coverage: accident, illness and wellness. Depending on your preference, you may sign up for 1, 2 or all 3 of these coverages.

1) Accident Coverage

There is no way to plan for an accident, but you can prevent it from costing you a fortune. Accident coverage is the most common type of pet insurance and every pet health insurance company offers it. Accident coverage can include things like a torn ligament, broken bones, bite wounds and more.

2) Illness Coverage

Illness coverage is often limited and becomes more expensive as your pet ages. That’s why it’s important to get pet insurance while your pet is at the youngest age possible to reduce pre-existing condition exemptions and your monthly cost. Illness coverage can cover things like cancer, arthritis, UTIs, allergies and more.

3) Wellness Coverage

Wellness coverage is always optional. Depending on your preferences, you may choose to save up and pay for wellness expenses on your own, or you may wish to spend a little every month for this coverage to avoid paying out of pocket all at once during your routine vet visit.

A Pet wellness plan may include:

  • Annual exams
  • Spay/neuter
  • Routine blood panels
  • Heartworm testing
  • Fecal testing
  • Urinalyses
  • Routine vaccinations (rabies, DHLP, Bordetella, parvo, Lyme, giardia)
  • Teeth cleanings
  • Flea, tick and heartworm treatments

Keep in mind; a single routine annual vet exam can cost upwards of $300 depending on your vet, where you live and the types of procedures, vaccinations and tests your pet requires during an annual exam. Wellness plans are becoming increasingly popular to manage these expenses, which is why more companies are offering them, including as an add-on to a pet insurance health plan.

Read our article on pet wellness plans to learn how you can cover all your bases.

Video: Pet Insurance & Types Of Plans Explained

How Does Pet Insurance Work?

The majority of pet health insurance plans reimburse you for the cost of veterinary care. After paying the initial price of your pet’s vet visit, you’ll request a duplicate itemized receipt which you then send to your pet’s insurance company along with a completed claim form. Claims repayment is usually within a month, and then you’ll receive a reimbursement check.

Some companies guarantee a specific turnaround time for payout as an added benefit. The amount of your reimbursement depends on your insurance policy details and exclusions, the type of procedure, the cost of that procedure, the allowance per procedure on your policy and your plan’s deductible.

Can You Provide An Example?

Let’s say you faithfully saved $35 a month for 5 years, and your vet bill savings account sits at $2,100 — that’s roughly the equivalent of 5 years of pet health insurance premiums. Unfortunately, your $2,100 in savings won’t stretch beyond initial testing, diagnosis and a few treatments for most pet illnesses.

With a pet health insurance plan, that monthly investment of $35 ensures that your finances are safe and your pet has coverage for minor and major accidents and illnesses such as cancer, unexpected injuries, chronic condition care and in some cases even routine visits. So if your cost were $10,000 for emergency treatment, pet insurance would cover you well above the $2,100 you saved in the example above.

Insurance ensures that you receive a significant portion of what you spend at the vet. (Keep in mind, just like human health insurance, vet insurance reimbursements can vary based on a variety of factors such as level of coverage chosen, the breed and age of the animal, pre-existing conditions, etc.).

Why Do I Need Pet Insurance?

There are 3 primary reasons we feel you should consider obtaining pet insurance for your furry friend.

1) You’ll Never Have To Decide Between Your Wallet & Your Pet

Choosing whether or not to have a surgery in a case of emergency is one of the hardest decisions you will ever have as a pet owner. With pet insurance, you can take the financial aspect out of your consideration and base your costly medical decisions purely on what’s best for your pet.

2) Accidents Happen

It doesn’t matter how well you take care of your pet, accidents happen. Whether it is a toenail that gets caught in the couch cushion or a cruciate ligament that gets torn from jumping off the bed, your dog could have an accident that leads to large vet bills. A pet accident or illness can cost thousands in vet bills, but having a good emergency pet insurance plan will ensure that you’re able to recoup up to 90% of the costs.

3) You Can Pick A Plan That Fits Your Needs

Pet insurances can be tailored to fit your budget and needs. If you sign up when your pet is young, you have more options to choose from. These options range from major accidents and illness to vaccinations and general checkups. Check out our pet insurance reviews to see the different options that are available.

How Much Does It Cost?

Get 3 Free Pet Insurance Quotes

Pet insurance prices vary by provider and plan. They are also unique to your pet’s breed, age, geographical location, pre-existing conditions and other variables. So, how do you know which is the cheapest?

Well, you don’t until you run price quotes with a few companies to know what to expect. We’ve made this easy for you by creating a free quote widget (above) that will pull price quotes from our top 3 companies when you fill out one short form with your pet’s details.

We suggest you get quotes from at least 3 companies to find the best value (best coverage for the price). Just because the pet insurance company is a household name or has the best price doesn’t mean it’s the best for your pet. Vet costs are on the rise, and the best way to protect your wallet is by purchasing pet insurance.

What Does Pet Insurance Cover?

Want to know if pet insurance will cover what you need? The table below helps you see which company will give you the best bang for your buck and protect your dog during the darkest times.

 1st: Healthy Paws2nd: Pets Best3rd: Petplan24PetWatchASPCA/HartvilleAKCEmbraceFigoNationwidePetFirstTrupanion 
1st: Healthy Paws2nd: Pets Best3rd: Petplan24PetWatchASPCA/HartvilleAKCEmbraceFigoNationwidePetFirstTrupanion
Visit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit Website
Read ReviewRead ReviewRead ReviewRead ReviewRead ReviewRead ReviewRead ReviewRead ReviewRead ReviewRead ReviewRead Review
Exam Required to Set Health BaselineCheckmark




Exam Required to Set Health Baseline



Blood TestsCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark

CheckmarkBlood Tests


Cat ScansCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark


CheckmarkCat Scans




Behavioral TherapiesCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark

CheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkBehavioral Therapies
Specialized ExamsCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark


CheckmarkSpecialized Exams



Exam FeesCheckmarkCheckmarkExtra FeeCheckmarkExamCare PlanCheckmarkExtra FeeExtra FeeCheckmark

Exam Fees
Emergency CareCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark


CheckmarkEmergency Care
Specialty CareCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark


CheckmarkSpecialty Care


Pre-existing ConditionsPre-existing Conditions
Preventative CareExtra FeeExtra FeeExtra FeeExtra FeeExtra FeeExtra FeePreventative Care
Non-Routine Dental TreatmentCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkNon-Routine Dental Treatment
Chronic ConditionsCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark


CheckmarkChronic Conditions
Illness Waiting Period15 Days14 Days15 Days14 to 30 Days14 Days14 Days14 Days14 Days24 Hours or 14 Days14 Days30 DaysIllness Waiting Period
Accident Waiting Period15 Days3 Days5 DaysNoneNone2 Days2 Days5 Days24 Hours or 14 Days1 Day5 DaysAccident Waiting Period
Hereditary ConditionsCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark

CheckmarkInheritedPlus PlanCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark

CheckmarkHereditary Conditions
Congenital ConditionsCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark

CheckmarkInheritedPlus PlanCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark

CheckmarkCongenital Conditions
Cancer TreatmentsCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark


CheckmarkCancer Treatments
Diagnostic TreatmentCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark


CheckmarkDiagnostic Treatment
Alternative/Holistic TherapyCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark


Extra FeeAlternative/Holistic Therapy
Prescription MedicationsCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark

CheckmarkCheckmarkExtra FeeCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark

CheckmarkPrescription Medications
ACL Surgery Waiting Period15 Days6 Months6 Months14 to 30 Days14 Days180 Days6 Months6 Months12 Months12 Months30 DaysACL Surgery Waiting Period
Hip Dysplasia Waiting Period12 Months14 Days15 Days14 to 30 Days14 Days180 Days (InheritedPlus Plan)6 Months14 Days14 Days14 Day30 DaysHip Dysplasia Waiting Period
Claim LimitsUnlimited$5,000 or unlimited$2,500, $5,000, $10,000, $20,000, $25,000 or unlimited$1,500, $3,000, $5,000, $10,000 or $20,000$5,000, $10,000, $15,000, $20,000 or unlimited$3,000 to $16,000$5,000, $8,000, $10,000, $15,000 or $30,000$10,000, $14,000 or unlimitedUnlimited$2,000, $5,000 or $10,000UnlimitedClaim Limits
Claim Repayment2 days (Allows 10 days)Averages 5 days or less5-14 days (Allows 30 days)Allows 60 daysAverages 8-9 daysAllows 30 daysAverages 5 business days for wellness, 10-15 days for illness/accidentN/AAllows 30 days10-14 daysAllows 60 daysClaim Repayment

InheritedPlus endorsement is only available for dogs enrolled who are two-years-old and younger.

Compare Pet Insurance Providers Side-By-Side

Pet Insurance Quotes TableDo you have a good idea of what pet insurance is all about and are now ready to start comparing providers? Visit our pet insurance quotes article to see quote samples from all the pet insurance companies we review in one place. That way you can get a better idea of what your deductible and reimbursement costs might be for each provider given the type of dog (or cat) you have.

Puppy Insurance Comparison

Below is a table with quotes for younger dogs from our 3 top pet insurance providers: Healthy Paws, Pets Best and Petplan. Note: these prices are provided only for example purposes; quotes will vary based on your pet’s specific breed, geographic location, age, etc.

CompanyPurebred Golden Retriever AgeLocationDeductibleReimbursementLimit AmountLimit TermMonthly Price
Healthy Paws5 months old maleNew York City (zip code 10011)$50070%UnlimitedAnnual$36.17
Pets Best5 months old maleNew York City (zip code 10011)$50070%UnlimitedAnnual$41.36
Petplan5 months old maleNew York City (zip code 10011)$50070%UnlimitedAnnual$52.00
Healthy Paws7 months old femaleChicago (zip code 60617)$25080%UnlimitedAnnual$56.20
Pets Best7 months old femaleChicago (zip code 60617)$25080%UnlimitedAnnual$54.04
Petplan7 months old femaleChicago (zip code 60617)$25080%UnlimitedAnnual$50.88

*Quotes are from December 2018, and all prices are monthly premiums.

Video: How Much Does Vet Care Cost?

This video visually summarizes some of the vet costs you should expect during your pet’s life. Feel free to watch and share with others who you think could benefit from learning these facts about pet health and the rising cost of pet ownership.

How Do I Choose The Right Dog Insurance?

Before you purchase your dog’s insurance plan, make sure to familiarize yourself with what each plan offers. Compare the coverage provided under each plan with individual health concerns for your dog and its breed.

Even if you have a healthy puppy today, knowing what illnesses are prevalent in your dog’s breed will help you select the right plan for your dog. Talk with your vet about what you should plan for as your pet ages. For example, some breeds are more susceptible to hip and joint problems and cancer. While no one wants to anticipate the worst, it is the best plan of action when shopping for an insurance policy for your dog. Choose the best plan based on the right cost AND coverage benefits, not price alone.

  1. Narrow down your choices from our pros and cons lists in our review of the top 3 providers.
  2. Contact at least 3 companies and obtain quotes based on information you provide about your pet’s breed, age, health, conditions and needs. (Use our quote form to get pricing from our top 3 picks.) If you have more than one pet, ask about a multi-pet discount.
    Pro tip: Have your vet send in each of your pet’s records to the company that you are considering. A company that is genuinely interested in your business will review your pet’s records and clearly outline any excluded conditions from your pet’s insurance plan (such as pre-existing conditions). It’s important to understand the coverage details before you buy any insurance plan.
  3. Weigh the cost of monthly premiums against the types of coverage offered: accident, illness and wellness, as well as any add-ons.
  4. Review plan deductibles and payout percentages that may impact your real out-of-pocket costs.
  5. The sooner you sign your pet up for health insurance, the lower the premiums will be. So, consider purchasing a plan for your puppy before they get too much older and possibly develop pre-existing conditions.

Note: No pet insurance company covers pre-existing conditions, but different companies may have different criteria and waiting periods for what they consider a pre-existing condition. If you’re not sure, ask. It’s better to know upfront.

What Are The Top Pet Insurance Companies in 2018?

Our best pet insurance comparison covering the top companies are continually being updated so be sure to check in regularly for new information. We maintain constant watch on this sector and audit our reviews of companies on a regular (quarterly and annual) basis.

Why Trust Our Reviews?

Our reviews are conducted in an unbiased fashion by independent researchers that do rigorous analysis and gather consumer feedback from across the Internet. Check out our review process for details.

Best Insurance For Cats & Other Types Of Animals

If you’re looking for cat insurance, you’re in luck. Our ratings for cat insurance are the same as dog insurance. Cat insurance works the same as dog insurance and is excellent protection against massive vet bills.

Our reviews above can help you decide the best company to cover your feline, and we encourage you to get a personalized quote from our top 3 to help you get specifics about your cat. The nice thing about cat insurance is you can typically cover your cat for around $20 (or less) per month. Investing $20 per month toward cat insurance will ensure that your cat has protection in the event of an emergency and you won’t have to think twice about whether you can afford the bill or not.

Looking for other pets? We have covered those topics in our articles on insurance for exotic pets and horse insurance.

What Criteria Do I Need To Consider?

These are the factors that we find most important when deciding who is the best company to manage your pet’s emergency funding needs. These are also the criteria that we use to evaluate the companies in our reviews.

A.M. Best Ratings

How stable is the company? Can I trust them to pay when an emergency happens?

A.M. Best has reported on the financial stability of the insurance industry for over 100 years with the goal of giving consumers insight into the financial strength and durability of insurers. They report on more than 3,500 insurance companies in over 90 countries. An insurance company’s A.M. Best rating is similar to an individual credit score, only it’s done as a letter grade instead of a number. Ratings range from A++ (superior) to D (poor). Pet Insurance buyers, like all buyers of insurance, should seek companies with as high a rating as possible.

BBB Rankings

What does the public think of the company and are there any complaints to the Better Business Bureau about how the company operates? If so, how are these complaints being handled?

Most pet insurance companies tend to score high with the BBB. This is a very promising sign for us as consumers.

Claim Repayment Reputation

Are claims easy to submit? Are the claims paid promptly and is what the customer is expecting to be covered actually covered in the case of emergency?

Contract Coverage

This is a unique category that you will not find included on many websites, but we feel it is crucial for you as a customer to know what the contract says and whether you can count on it to truly cover what you think an insurance policy should. This was there are no surprises when an urgent situation presents itself. We have reviewed all of the companies’ contracts to understand coverage specifics and, more importantly, what is not (look for the exclusions before you sign on the dotted line).

Customer Service

This is pretty self-explanatory, but this is how well customers feel companies treat them when problems or questions arise. Are they able to reach someone quickly who can help? Are there lots of different communication methods available to contact a customer service representative? Is that person friendly and helpful?

Multiple Accidents

If your pet is accident prone or not the healthiest, you will want to make sure you find a policy that pays claims with an annual deductible vs. a per incident deductible. This means that if you have three accidents in one year, all claims will be applied to one annual deductible and after that is met, the company will pay in full for all covered portions of the vet bill vs. per incident policies which will restart the $ count on the deductible for every new emergency.


How expensive is the policy on a monthly, annual, and/or lifetime basis? How does this monthly cost compare to that of other companies with comparable coverage? How much do annual premiums increase over the life of the pet? What do I expect to get back in the case of emergency treatment (reimbursement % amount) and how much am I willing to pay out of pocket before insurance comes into play (aka deductible)?

Pet Insurance Statistics & Facts

Below are some pet insurance trends that fascinated us and we think they may surprise you too.

  1. The #1 reason pet owners buy pet insurance is that they, “Want to make decisions about my pet’s health care without worrying about whether or not I could afford the procedure.”2
  2. 91% of U.S. pet parents consider their pets to be family members and 81% consider their pets as equal members of the family2
  3. 50% of pet insurance policyholders file a claim each year2
  4. 35% of pet insurance claims are for chronic conditions (ongoing issues with recurring vet bills)2
  5. Less than 1% of pet parents have pet insurance even though healthcare costs are increasing faster than human healthcare4
  6. Pet insurance companies allow you to use any licensed veterinarian, clinic or specialist in the U.S.2
  7. No pet insurance company covers pre-existing conditions, which is why you should cover your pet sooner rather than later2
  8. Dog owners spend an average of $257 per year on routine vet expenses and $474 per year on surgical vet visits1
  9. Allergies are one of the most common pet insurance claims for dogs4
  10. In 2015, 1.6 million pets in the U.S. and Canada had insurance which is a 12% increase from 20143

Pet Insurance Stats Infographic

Pet health infographic

To share this infographic on your site, simply copy and paste the code below:

Real Reimbursement Stories

Some of our readers that have pet insurance for their pups have shared real reimbursement stories with us. Check them out to get an idea of what’s covered (and what’s not) given specific conditions and circumstance.

Pet Insurance Terminology

Dog with glasses on: Pet Insurance TerminologyWe know that insurance can be a confusing topic. Here’s a breakdown of any terms you might come across, so you have a better understanding of the lingo.

  • Chemotherapy and Radiation Treatment Allowance: The schedule of benefits will also list the maximum reimbursement limit for chemotherapy and radiation treatment as they apply to specific conditions. These two amounts are generally split into two allowances with the allowance for radiation being much higher than that for chemotherapy.
  • Code: The word “code” is listed on your schedule of benefits with most pet insurance companies. Underneath this term, you will see a number listed. This is the “code” the company uses to identify the diagnosis given to your pet.
  • Co-Payment: The co-pay is the amount of out-of-pocket expense you must cover per incident after your deductible. The co-payment is usually listed as a percentage, for example, 80/20 means that the insurance company will cover 80% of the remaining balance after your deductible is paid and you must pay the remaining 20%.
  • Deductible: The deductible is the amount of money you must pay out-of-pocket before you are eligible to receive reimbursement from your pet’s insurance plan. For most companies, this deductible must be paid per incident rather than per year. Be sure to understand your agreement, as the annual vs per incident deductible is a big deal.
  • Endorsements: Depending upon the insurance company you choose, you may have the opportunity to purchase an “endorsement.” Usually, this comes in the form of a cancer endorsement. This is like an add-on to your purchased insurance plan and extends the amount of coverage your pet receives for the specific illness listed – in this case, cancer.
  • Exclusions: Exclusions are items that are not covered by your policy. This can include pre-existing conditions, certain musculoskeletal disorders, congenital disorders, hereditary disorders, intentional injuries caused by you or your family and elective or cosmetic procedures. Again, be sure to request a quote and go over any exclusions in detail before signing up.
  • General Anesthesia Allowance: On the schedule of benefits, companies will also outline the maximum limit for general anesthesia costs as they apply to specific conditions.
  • Incidents: The term incident is used to refer to the condition that is causing you to visit the veterinarian. Chronic conditions such as skin allergies are considered to be a single incident even if you pay your veterinarian multiple visits.
  • Pre-Existing Conditions: Every major company in this category excludes pre-existing conditions from their coverage. This means that any ongoing condition your dog or cat was diagnosed with before being covered by their policy will not be covered in future claims. For example, if your dog has already been diagnosed with hip dysplasia, any costs associated with this condition will not be covered by most insurance.
  • Prescription Medication Coverage: Prescription drugs are often covered by pet insurance but some may only offer it as an additional (optional) coverage for an extra fee. Read the policy you are considering before you signup to make sure it covers what you need. Note that RX medications for preexisting conditions may be excluded, so be sure to ask about your pet’s specific needs, especially for chronic conditions.
  • Primary Diagnosis or Condition: This term will appear on your schedule of benefits and refers to the financial limit that the company places on a primary diagnosis or condition which includes injections, hospitalization, exams, surgery and treatment.
  • Primary Diagnostic Testing Maximums: This term also appears on your schedule of benefits and refers to the cost limit the company places on primary diagnostic testing. This allowance is generally made per bodily system. In many cases, this benefit limit does not extend to specialized diagnostic tests.
  • Schedule of Benefits: The schedule of benefits is a document that is provided to you when you sign up for your policy. This document outlines covered conditions under your plan and the monetary allowance for each diagnosis.
  • Secondary Diagnosis or Condition: If your pet receives treatment for a second condition that occurs as a result of the primary diagnosis then it will be covered under the benefits listed as a secondary diagnosis or condition. This secondary condition will receive financial reimbursement in addition to the primary diagnosis or condition.

Ready To Get Pet Insurance?

It’s easy to become confused with all the insurance lingo, pricing plans, coverage, etc. That’s why we’re here to help. We are pet insurance experts, so feel free to ask any questions below. If you’re ready, head on over to our best pet insurance comparison to see the current rankings of our top recommendations.

Do you have enough information to choose the best pet insurance plan for you?

Sources: [1] American Pet Products, [2] InsuranceNewsNet, [3] NAPHIA, [4] Pet Life Today

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.
Disclaimer: The information provided through this website should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or a disease. It is not a substitute for professional care. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, you should consult your health care provider.

Disclaimer: This website contains reviews, opinions and information regarding products and services manufactured or provided by third parties. We are not responsible in any way for such products and services, and nothing contained here should be construed as a guarantee of the functionality, utility, safety or reliability of any product or services reviewed or discussed. Please follow the directions provided by the manufacturer or service provider when using any product or service reviewed or discussed on this website.

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 and her husband adopted Sally, a four-year-old hound mix, in early 2017, and she has brought so much joy into their lives. Life as pet parents has been very rewarding.

Leave a Reply

newest oldest most voted
Karyl Lawson
My 13 year old Bichon Frise died 3 months ago after his 2 year fight with lymphoma. I had him on a Wellness plan to help me keep track of when routine treatments were due and to budget the cost out of my income, it was the best investment I ever made. He lasted 1 1/2 years longer than predicted because a close friend is a vet (not our vet) recommended a medication that extended his life in comfort until the obvious end. Still broken hearted. I have as of yesterday adopted a rescue dog who has had all the necessary shots, spay, chip etc. I want a plan for her that includes wellness coverage but also accident coverage. I have reviewed charts, articles, etc. to choose which is financially feasible for me but am very confused at this point. Any input would be helpful. I am on a low budget but my dog comes before anything else. I’m not sure what to do as far as choosing the right plan. Any help would be appreciated.
Millie Hue
It really helped when you said that we should contact at least three companies first since it can help us decide which one has the best policy and rates. I will keep this in mind since I will be adopting cats from a shelter next year. I just decided to get the insurance policies because I earn just enough each month, so I will not be surprised with the bills that I might get once they get sick.
Reality is Calling
While I agree with the sentiment expressed here, a distinct lack of real-world calculations were done. You can’t brag about the coverage offered as if it were 100%, when it can be from 60% – 90%. You also can’t brag about this mystical $35 a month fee without showing the rest of the fees/coverage details. An example; with every discount offered, my small mixed breed dog would cost around $900 a year under PetPlan with a $300 deductible, 90% coverage. By the time he is 15, it would be around $3000 a year. Hence my comment that reality was lacking in this post – pet insurance can be impressively expensive as they age, and by the time you’re done reducing the coverage (to keep it affordable) you might actually be better off without it.

It’s great to suggest pet insurance, but you’re only providing part of the story – and a cherry picked part of it no less.

Gerty Gift
I appreciate that you mentioned pet insurance is so important because you can make decisions about your pet’s health without worrying about the cost. We want to make sure that we take care of our husky puppy as well as possible. I think that this is definitely something that we’d be interested in investing in so that we won’t have to worry so much about her.
AJ North
Under what category would you place accidental injestion of foreign objects?

Wow these are super informative! I had no idea Cockers were the most unhealthy, I have a spaniel and she seems to be a little overweight but she’s a sweetie and I want to make sure she stays healthy so will look into getting her some insurance.

If I get pet insurance will it cover my dog’s acupuncture treatments for her arthritis?
Michelle Schenker (Admin)
Some companies do cover alternative/holistic therapies, including acupuncture, but not all. Be sure to read the fine print and consider calling them to make sure before you sign on the dotted line. You can see a chart of who is most likely to cover your needs here.
Figo covers holistic and alternative medicine. My dog is on Figo. It covers exam, acupuncture and even Chinese herbs
David Marsh
You cannot bet no disease would take a toll on you since you are very cautious on health. Similarly, you cannot say that your pet dogs and cats would dominate diseases as you are giving them proper health care. Therefore, the pet owners should spend in buying insurance to save dollars. Before that you should understand the policy carefully. You should make sure that the insurance would reimburse the cost of the treatment of such diseases that are most prevalent in your vicinity. You have to also check out the standard of the vet clinics, which are partnered with the insurers.
Rita Chesterton
In your article, you say: “There are plenty of plans that cover most pets regardless of age or pre-existing conditions.” Can you tell me the names of pet insurance plans that cover pre-existing conditions (for cats)?
What does HM stand for?
Hi! I’m about to be a first-time puppy owner and am researching policies. I see that some of them exclude Behavioral Health. Could you please give me a few examples of what that might be? Thanks!
Jenn H
I love the number two statistic! Our pup Lassie is definitely a member of the family, we treat her with the same respect we do our own children. Are dogs the most popular pets in the U.S.?
Kathleen Jones
I think the 20% copay on emergency services from PetPlan has been done away with?
Pet insurance should be required if you have a pet (just like it is for humans!) Wellness and healthcare for your pup is part of being a responsible dog owner and I am shocked only 1% of dog owners have it!
Roger Donavan
Pet insurance is truly an important factor to be considered by every pet owner. The wellness and illness of your pet needs to be understood while choosing a right plan. The animal wellness centres terms and conditions for a particular insurance plan must be reviewed as well. Great advice given in this article. Thanks for sharing it.
Sarah Yates
It might help to put exam fees on that list too. I think for some people they would like to know they have to pay a office visit/exam fee because insurance won’t cover that. I know some insurance companies cover it and some don’t.
Andy Scott
Now a days, pet insurance is very important if you do not wish to pay huge money. A good pet insurance will provide you freedom from unwanted pet expenses.

Thank you for posting this information and your experience with pet insurance. It's definitely something to consider. I really wish I would have had pet insurance when my dog tore his ACL, too. The surgery was quoted to me in $3,000 range. It broke my heart to see my pal in the condition he was, but I couldn't pay for that kind of surgery. With no time to spare, I researched and chose a conservative management approach with a WoundWear brace as an alternative to surgery. Plus, like you mentioned, dog's with one torn ACL are much more likely to have the same injury in their other leg. So now I'm prepared. I learned my lesson and carry pet insurance now — I just hope I never have to use it 🙂


Pets are always the part of our life. To care of them becomes important to us when it comes to their life. So we need to be careful while we are taking care of them. As humans need to be insured our pets also needs to be insured. We need to insured our pet as it covers many pet diseases. Firstly having pet insurance will definitely save our money as well as our pet. The above information is extremely helpful for new pet owners.


When my last dog got sick, by the time I found out what was really wrong with him, it was too late to begin treatment. The bills from just finding out the problem were over $1,000 and the doctor said that had we caught it earlier, the medical bills for treatment would have been well over $2,000. This would have been a considerable financial burden.

This was a huge wake up call and when I brought my next dog home, the first thing I did was order pet insurance. Now I can rest assured that if my dog gets sick, we won't even have to worry about the bills. So yes, in my eyes pet insurance is more than worth it.