Trupanion Review: What Makes This Pet Insurance Unique?

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Girl and dog running through yard (caption: Trupanion Pet Insurance Review)Almost any kind of insurance is notorious for being difficult to decipher — from inclusions and exclusions to complicated deductibles and premiums. Trupanion, however, claims to set itself apart from the pack. Does Trupanion live up to its promise to provide a straightforward and transparent pet insurance experience? Or it is just hype to get your business?

Visit Trupanion’s Website

Article Overview

Trupanion

3.55 / 5
Trupanion
Policy Coverage 4.3
Customer Service & Reputation 3.5
Timeliness of Claim Payment 3.3
Price of Policy 3.3

Pros

  • 90% reimbursement with no payout limits
  • Offers optional benefits for additional expenses that cover acupuncture, physical therapy, hydrotherapy and behavioral modification training and therapy
  • Hip dysplasia has no age restrictions (but 12-month waiting period)
  • BBB rating: A-
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Pet is covered in the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico

Cons

  • Quotes tend to be more expensive
  • One time $35 administration fee ($25 in WA and $0 in MD and MI)
  • Policies have 30-day waiting period for illnesses (industry average is 14)
  • Allows up to a 20% increase on premiums from year to year (based on the state you live in)
  • Pets aren't eligible for enrollment after 14th birthday
  • No wellness plan available
  • Does not cover exam fees
  • No multi-pet discount
  • Claim repayment is within 60 days (but averages 14 days)

2 yellow dogs in grass (caption: Pet Insurance Reviews)Alternatives To Trupanion

While Trupanion has a lot to offer, it did not make it into our top 3 picks for best pet insurance providers. Our experts have analyzed over a dozen pet insurance providers. Check out our pet insurance reviews to learn more about this year’s top-ranked companies.

Key Features

Trupanion Key Features icons

  • Underwriter: American Pet Insurance Company (same as Pets Best)
  • Trupanion has a per-incident deductible instead of an annual deductible; this means you’ll have to meet the deductible multiple times for every new emergency your pet encounters instead of one annual deductible, which means all claims go toward one deductible (annual deductibles are usually less costly to the policyholder)
  • No exam period
  • No bilateral exclusions (a condition or disease that affects both sides of the body)
  • Claim repayment is within 60 days and averages 14 days
  • Must submit claims within 90 days of the treatment date via mail, email or fax
  • Option to have Trupanion pay vets directly, so you don’t have to pay a hefty vet bill in advance and wait for reimbursement (not available everywhere but ask your vet, and they may be able to call to set up Trupanion Express)
  • 30-day free look period (similar to a money back guarantee)
  • Continues coverage for a pet if its policy transfers to a new owner
  • State Farm offers pet insurance through Trupanion
FLORIDA RESIDENTS: The plan reviewed here is not available for new customers in Florida. Contact Trupanion to learn more about what is available in your state and read the policy carefully for details.

Pre-Existing Conditions

Defined by Trupanion as:

I. Illnesses or Injuries for which signs or evidence of their potential manifestation existed within the 18 months prior to the Policy Enrollment Date.
II. Illnesses or Injuries masked or controlled by treatment or Medication at any time during the 18 months prior to the Policy Enrollment Date. SAMPLE 14 Medical Insurance for Your Pet – TRU 00001 (v09.201601) SECTION 9 CONTINUED
III. Illnesses or Injuries that occurred or began within the 18 months prior to the Policy Enrollment Date and would have been observable or reasonably known to be present by You or Your Veterinarian or that are evidenced by the presence of typical signs, even if they are not noted in Your Pet’s medical records.
IV. The Actual Cost of Treatment for the following if signs or evidence presented on either side of Your Pet during the period 18 months prior to the Policy Enrollment Date through to and including the 30 days after the Policy Enrollment Date: luxating patella, glaucoma, entropion, ectropion, elbow dysplasia, cataracts, prolapse of the tear gland of the third eyelid (cherry eye), and disease, weakness, instability, tear, partial tear or rupture of the cranial cruciate ligament.
V. Hip dysplasia if there was any sign or evidence of the potential manifestation of the Condition any time prior to the Policy Enrollment Date or if the Condition was reasonably known to be present by You, even if not noted in Your Pet’s medical records.
VI. Illnesses or Injuries that arise from a repetitive and specific activity that leads to medical or surgical treatment of Your Pet (e.g., ingestion of foreign materials and bite wounds) if the same or similar activity occurred two times within the 18 month period prior to the Policy Enrollment Date.
VII. The Actual Cost of Treatment for any cutaneous or subcutaneous mass if cutaneous or subcutaneous mass(es) of the same type (determined by diagnostic testing or medical records descriptions) are present during the 18 months prior to the Policy Enrollment Date through to and including the 30 days after the Policy Enrollment Date.
VIII. The Actual Cost of Treatment relating to intervertebral disc disease if there was any sign or evidence of the potential manifestation of it in any part of the spine prior to the Policy Enrollment Date or during any applicable waiting periods.

Trupanion waiting period chart

Customer Service Hours

  • Email, phone and SMS: 24/7

Waiting Periods

What Does Trupanion Cover?

Services included are not limited to this list and are subject to change.

Covered by TrupanionNot Covered by Trupanion
IllnessesExam fees
InjuriesSales tax where applicable
Hereditary conditionsWellness and preventive care (parasite control, spay/neuter, vaccinations)
Congenital conditionsPre-existing conditions
Diagnostic tests
Surgeries
Hospital stays
Medications
Veterinary supplements
Herbal therapy
Prosthetic devices and carts

NOTE: This plan is not available for new enrollments in Florida. See policy for details.

Pet Owner Assistance Add-On Package

The Pet Owner Assistance package costs $4.95/month in addition to the core plan premium.

  • Boarding fees in the event you’re hospitalized
  • Liability coverage for third-party property damage
  • Holiday vacation cancellation costs
  • Cremation or burial for deaths due to an accident
  • Advertising and rewards for lost pets

Recovery & Complementary Care Rider

The price of this plan can vary from a couple of dollars up to $30 and is in addition to the core plan premium.

  • Acupuncture
  • Chiropractic
  • Homeopathy
  • Hydrotherapy
  • Physical and rehabilitative therapy
  • Behavioral modificationDog in wheelchair on beach (caption: Canine Hip Dysplasia)
  • Naturopathy

Is Hip Dysplasia Covered?

Trupanion covers hip dysplasia in its core policy. There is a 30-day waiting period, and it has an exclusion, which states the following.

Hip dysplasia (is covered) if there was any sign or evidence of the potential manifestation of the Condition any time prior to the Policy Enrollment Date or if the Condition was reasonably known to be present by You, even if not noted in Your Pet’s medical records.

Pricing Quotes

Trupanion has a set 90% reimbursement with the option of a $0 to $1,000 deductible and unlimited annual limit.

The cost of each policy is unique to your pet and depends on many variables, including your pet’s age, breed, location, health conditions and more. Below are some example monthly premiums for various pets from December 2019.

BreedLabrador Retriever German Shepherd Yorkshire Terrier Mixed Breed Cat
Age4 Months2 Years6 Months4 Years
Male/FemaleFemaleMaleFemaleMale
LocationNew York City (10005)Los Angeles (90010)Chicago (60604)Miami (33114)
Reimbursement Level90%90%90%90%
Annual Deductible$200$200$200$500
Price Per Month$125.57$142.10$66.80$51.13

You can get personalized price quotes for your pet(s) from reputable companies when you fill out just 1 short form. You can also visit our pet insurance quotes page to see how the cost of Trupanion stacks up against the competition.

Coupon Code

Use this link to get the best deal we can offer from Trupanion.

Reimbursement Story

Vet with clipboard

  • Dog: Maelee
  • Condition: Spay complications
  • Trupanion Reimbursed: $34,401.80

A few days after a healthy spay procedure, Maelee had a horrific accident while recovering at home. Within 24 hours she went from the veterinarian’s to the overnight emergency clinic, then on to the emergency hospital. Trupanion was covering Maelee’s bills at 90%. Maelee had better health insurance than me! – Elizabeth S.

Customer Reviews

Positive Reviews

I rarely have to contact Trupanion. I had log on issues which were resolve promptly by Pamela. She was incredibly helpful and resolved the problem right away. I received a standard customer service survey shortly thereafter. The first question was, why did I rate customer service a 10. Here is the text of my response… Because there isn’t an 11. Trupanion has been wonderful. Our pups have had coverage since they were born. This is the first time we have ever had to use our coverage, and thank God we have it! Claim submission and processing are so easy and fast. When I have had to contact directly, your team has been so helpful and kind. I have recommended multiple times to family and friends – even my vet’s office. You are wonderful, thank you so much. – Ken W., Yelp 11/12/2019

In the 8 years I have been using Trupanion, they have always been cheerfully helpful and quick to respond whenever I have had to make a claim or just simply had a question. I am very happy with the services they provide. ****** *. – Sandra B., BBB 5/19/2019

Negative Reviews

Beware of trupanion! In 2009, I decided to get this insurance for my 2 month old puppy that I had adopted. I paid $31 monthly with $1000 deductible for “lifetime” of coverage. Sound good on paper, but I am now finding out that this insurance is useless and it is the worst insurance out there. In Sept 2019, my now 10yr old dog had a surgery to remove a lump on his paw, neck, and stomach area that cost $811. I also filed a claim for his eye and skin allergy bills worth $450. I thought I had met the $1000 deductible right?, but NO! they categorized the lumps into two different lumps meaning my deductible was $2K and another $1K deductible for the eye/skin allergy. So for a $1261 claim, I had a $3k deductible in total. I was disappointed to say the least. To make matters worst, a week ago I received an email that they are increasing my monthly fee from $31 to $38. I asked why and I was told that it was based of their data report. BS! this insurance is a SCAM! After 10 years of having this insurance, I have yet to see a penny and now they want more money? Trupanion is a joke! – Ena O., Yelp 11/9/2019

Buyer beware, you’ll be charged an extra $35 when you sign up: I enrolled my kitten in Trupanion based on an article in the *** **** *****’ **********  newsletter. I received my quote online and signed up. Today I checked my bank balance and they deducted $35 for an administrative fee. Notice of this fee was not included in the total quote. When I called, the customer service rep assured me it was included on another page. I guess I should have gone hunting for it. At the outset of this relationship, subterfuge is not a good look, Trupanion. What other hidden fees can I expect? – Patricia A., BBB 9/12/2019

Why Get Pet Insurance?

Need a better understanding of why you should consider purchasing pet insurance for your pup? Check out our video below.

Trupanion vs Other Companies

See what the key differences are between Trupanion and other leading pet insurance companies.

Trupanion vs Healthy Paws

  • Trupanion has a shorter 30-day waiting period for hip dysplasia, while Healthy Paws is 12 months.
  • Healthy Paws has a better customer service reputation and pays out 99% of its claims within 2 days as opposed to the 60 days Trupanion allows.
  • Trupanion is consistently more expensive than Healthy Paws in the quotes we ran.

Compare Trupanion and Healthy Paws

Trupanion vs Petplan

  • Trupanion has a shorter 30-day waiting period for hip dysplasia, while Petplan is 6 months.
  • All Trupanion plans include unlimited claim limits, while Petplan offers claim limits ranging from $2,500 to unlimited.
  • Petplan pays out claims within 5 to 14 business days on average as opposed to the 60 days Trupanion allows.

Compare Trupanion and Petplan

Compare Trupanion To Other Leading Pet Insurance Providers

Visit Trupanion’s Website

Trupanion’s policy choices are less complicated than many other pet insurance providers, which may be appealing for some consumers. Of course, this also means fewer options. It’s also on the expensive side compared to similar coverage from other companies, and its underwriter is unrated by A.M. Best.

Visit our best pet insurance comparison to see a comprehensive review of the leading insurance providers for your four-pawed family members. See how Trupanion stacks up against the competition and if they’re the right pick of the litter for you.

Are you considering pet insurance through Trupanion?

About The Author:

Kimberly received her Bachelor of Arts in multimedia journalism from Simpson College. She has been writing about dogs since 2014, covering subjects such as dog insurance, training, health, accessories, and more. Her work has appeared in many notable brands, including The New York Times' Wirecutter, Reader's Digest, Forbes, People, Woman's World, and Huffington Post.

Kimberly's natural curiosity helps her research as she seeks the truth when learning about, comparing, and personally testing canine products and services. With every piece she writes, her goal is to help our readers find the best fit for their unique needs. Kimberly grew up in a family that loved Labrador Retrievers and remembers running and playing in the yard with them as a child.

In 2017, she and her husband adopted their Coonhound mix, Sally, from a local shelter. Kimberly’s research was put to good use since Sally faced some aggression issues with other dogs and needed some training to be an inside dog. She worked daily with Sally and sought help from professionals to help Sally become the happy pup she is today. One of Kimberly’s favorite pastimes is spoiling Sally with new toys, comfy beds, and yummy treats (she even makes homemade goodies for her). She tries to purchase the safest products for Sally and knows that each canine has their own specific likes and dislikes. Kimberly is passionate about dogs and knows the bond between humans and canines is like no other.

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.

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