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Top Best Pet Insurance Companies Of November 2022

One way to add some financial security in your household is to have pet insurance. It’s a way to guard against having to pay the full cost of unexpected vet bills if your pet is injured or gets sick.

While pet insurance plans have a common foundation of basic coverage, such as injuries and hereditary and congenital conditions, there are differences in benefits, prices and extras. We evaluated 13 plans to find the best pet insurance plans.

Pet Insurance Companies Of November 2022

The Best Pet Insurance Plans

  • Embrace – Best For Superior Benefits
  • Pets Best – Great For Choices Of Deductible
  • ManyPets – Best For Lowest Out-Of-Pocket Claims Costs
  • Figo – Great For Short Waiting Period For Accident Coverage
  • Lemonade – Best Price For Kittens And Puppies
  • Spot – Best For Annual Coverage Choices
  • ASPCA – Great For No Waiting Period For Special Conditions
  • Nationwide – Best For Unlimited Wellness Coverage
  • Prudent Pet – Great For Extras
  • TrustedPals – Great For Service Dogs

What Is Pet Insurance?

Pet insurance is a health insurance policy for your pet that pays for medical expenses and sometimes other costs. Pet insurance plans are typically reimbursement-based, meaning you pay up-front for the pet’s vet bills and submit a claim to the insurance company. A few companies can pay the vet directly, which helps keep your out-of-pocket payments low.

There’s usually a deductible before coverage starts. For example, you might pay the first $500 in vet bills before the pet insurance starts to pay.

Even after your deductible is paid, the pet insurance may not pay 100% of vet bills. You can typically choose your reimbursement level. Common reimbursement options are 70%, 80% or 90% of your vet bills.

What Does Pet Insurance Cover?

What’s covered by pet insurance will depend on the type of plan you buy. Pet insurance plans are generally available in three varieties:

  • Accident and illness plans (the most common)
  • Accident-only plans
  • Wellness plans for routine care such as vaccinations, usually available as an add-on

Accident and illness plans generally cover injury or sickness such as broken bones, cancer, hereditary conditions and congenital conditions, and more. Accident-only plans cover only accident-related problems, like a broken bone.

You can add a routine wellness plan to many pet insurance policies. This will offset the cost of the annual vet wellness visit, vaccinations, heartworm treatment and other routine care costs that help keep your pet healthy.

Pet insurance may not cover pre-existing conditions, meaning conditions your pet had before the policy went into effect, including any waiting period. Ask whether there’s a look-back period so that conditions before the look-back period can be covered.

Related: What does pet insurance cover?

What Doesn’t Pet Insurance Cover?

Some typical pet insurance exclusions include:

  • Pre-existing conditions. When a pet is diagnosed with or indicates signs of an illness or injury before coverage begins, pet insurance generally won’t cover it. However, some pet insurers extend coverage for what they consider “curable” pet pre-existing conditions. For example, Embrace Pet Insurance will reestablish coverage for a curable pre-existing condition if the medical records illustrate no indications of the condition for at least 12 months.
  • Preventive or elective procedures. Plans won’t cover preventive or elective procedures such as nail trimming, ear cropping, declawing or tail docking.
  • Exam fees. Some insurance companies exclude exam fees from coverage, even if the fee is for an accident or illness-related visit. An exam fee is what veterinarians charge to see your pet.
  • Grooming. When you take your pet to the spa for a bit of pampering, pet insurance won’t cover grooming or shampooing.
  • Breeding costs. Costs associated with breeding aren’t covered.
  • Expenses not related to veterinarian care. This includes expenses such as taxes or administrative fees charged by the vet.
  • Food and vitamins. Regular food isn’t covered, but some plans cover prescription pet food.

“It’s also important to point out that some policies exclude coverage if a pet owner does not maintain the level of recommended care from the veterinarian,” says Beth Wymer, a spokesperson for Pumpkin Pet Insurance. “So, suppose your veterinarian recommends a dental cleaning due to dental issues, and you choose not to follow through with the recommendation. In that case, with some pet insurance companies, your coverage will now no longer apply to any expenses tied to that illness.”

How to Find the Best Pet Insurance For You

Pet insurance plans can be hard to compare in an apples-to-apples way. Coverage, exclusions and pricing variations make it hard to calculate the potential value of each plan. Here’s how to find the best pet insurance for you.

Choose the best pet insurance plan type for you

Do you want a pet insurance that goes the extra mile every time, or do you want to hold down costs with an accident-only plan that won’t pay anything for pet illnesses? Or something in between?

Comprehensive pet insurance plans that cover a wide range of health-related problems plus wellness are typically the most expensive, but it might be worth considering if you want complete coverage.

Pet insurance can generally be broken down into these plan types:

  • Comprehensive coverage. Sometimes called a “nose-to-tail” policy, this typically provides coverage for accidents and injuries, including serious or chronic illness, hereditary conditions, diagnostic tests, surgeries, treatments, and wellness, such as routine veterinary checkups and vaccinations.
  • Accident and illness coverage. This type of policy typically covers vet bills for accidents (like an ACL rupture) and illnesses, including common illnesses, hereditary conditions and serious illness (like cancer). You won’t be covered for wellness exams such as routine veterinary visits, flea and heartworm prevention, or vaccinations, but you can often add a wellness plan in order to get comprehensive coverage.
  • Accident-only coverage. This type of policy covers vet bills only if your pet is injured in an accident, and you won’t be covered for illness-related medical bills.
  • Pet wellness coverage. This type of plan covers wellness-related medical expenses, like routine veterinary checkups, flea and heartworm prevention, and vaccinations. You can often add wellness benefits to an accident and illness plan.

Find the coverage level you’re comfortable with

When you purchase a pet insurance policy, you’ll usually select an annual maximum, a deductible and a reimbursement level.

  • Annual maximum coverage: You’ll usually have a choice of an annual maximum payout level. This is the cap on how much the pet insurance plan will pay for the year. Many pet insurance plans offer choices between $5,000 and an unlimited payout. Choosing an unlimited payout will raise the premium price but you won’t have to worry about exceeding your annual maximum if your pet needs very expensive treatment.
  • Deductible: Choosing a higher deductible will lower your monthly pet insurance bill. Typical deductible choices are $100, $250 and $500. Once your deductible is met, you can submit vet bills to your pet insurance company for reimbursement. Trupanion offers a unique lifetime per-condition deductible: You’ll pay a deductible once for every new condition, without a reset every year.
  • Reimbursement percentage: You’ll choose a reimbursement level when you buy the plan, and the lower the reimbursement level, the less you’ll pay in pet insurance premiums. The most common reimbursement choices are 70%, 80% or 90%.

Check the pet insurance waiting periods

A waiting period is the time between the policy purchase date and when the coverage begins. Every pet insurance company has waiting periods. Make sure you find one you’re comfortable with. For example, Embrace has a waiting period of only two days for accident coverage. Other plans, like ASPCA Pet Health Insurance, have 14 days.

Also, be careful about special waiting periods for certain conditions, such as cruciate ligament issues. For example, Embrace has a six-month waiting period for orthopedic conditions for dogs but ASPCA’s plan does not have a waiting period for orthopedic conditions or any other specific issues.

Pet insurance discounts

Pet insurance discounts are a good way to save. Here are some common discounts:

  • Multipet discount. Many insurers offer a discount if you insure more than one pet.
  • Spay/neuter discount. Some insurers offer discounts to pet owners who have their pet spayed or neutered.
  • Annual pay discount. You can often reduce costs if you pay your annual premium in one lump sum.
  • Military discount. Some insurers offer discounts for military members and veterans.
  • Group discount at work. Some employers offer pet insurance as a voluntary benefit, which could get you a 5% to 10% discount.
  • Bundle discount. You can get up to a 10% discount when you bundle Lemonade pet insurance with a Lemonade renters or homeowners insurance policy.

Other pet insurance comparison factors

Here are two more factors to consider when buying a pet insurance plan:

  • Exam fees. When you take your pet to the veterinarian for an accident or illness, you pay an exam fee, costing $100 or more depending on your veterinarian and visit type. Make sure the policy covers these exam fees because not all do.
  • Benefits. Look for extra benefits like a 24-hour vet helpline in case your pet gets sick at night. As another example, Nationwide pet insurance members have access to preferred pricing on pet prescriptions at any Walmart pharmacy.

How Does Pet Health Insurance Work?

If you have a pet insurance plan, you’ll generally have a deductible amount that you pay for veterinarian bills before coverage starts. After that, you’ll still pay your vet directly and then submit your bills to the pet insurer for reimbursement. The insurance company will send you reimbursement until it has paid the maximum your plan allows in a year, such as $5,000. Some plans offer unlimited payout maximums.

Check the plan documents for any limitations to what’s covered, such as:


Your policy will have a list of exclusions. Common exclusions include grooming, breeding costs, certain pre-existing conditions and expenses not related to veterinary care (such as taxes or your vet’s administrative fees).

Waiting periods

All pet insurance plans have waiting periods. Your coverage won’t kick in until the waiting period is over. For example, your policy might have a 14-day waiting period before it covers accident-related veterinarian costs.

Veterinarian restrictions

Generally, pet insurance does not have network restrictions, and most insurers will cover any licensed vet.

Check to see if your policy has any geographic restrictions or if your coverage is extended to other regions. For example, we analyzed a Trupanion pet insurance policy that covers licensed veterinarians in the U.S., Australia, Canada, Puerto Rico and any other region under Australian, Canadian or U.S. government control (such as a military base in a foreign country).

Average Cost of Pet Insurance

Over one-third (37%) of dog owners haven’t considered pet insurance because they think it will be too expensive, according to a Forbes Advisor survey. Yet 89% of dog owners estimate that the cost of pet insurance is higher than it actually is. And 76% of dog owners overestimate the cost of pet insurance by at least three times the average price, our survey found.

Here’s a look at the actual average cost of pet insurance, according to a Forbes Advisor analysis:

  • Pet insurance with $5,000 in annual coverage costs an average of $34 a month for a puppy, $35 a month for a dog and $28 a month for a cat.
  • Pet insurance with unlimited annual coverage costs an average of $53 per month for a dog and $39 per month for a cat.

Why have you not considered buying pet insurance?




Reason% of dog owners
I think pet insurance will be too expensive37%
I don’t think pet insurance would be worth it25%
I can afford to pay vet bills myself14%
I don’t know what pet insurance covers9%
None of the above8%
Don’t know4%
I have not heard of pet insurance before4%

How much would you estimate that pet insurance costs per month for a 3-month old puppy, for $5,000 of annual coverage?




Estimate of monthly pet insurance cost Actual average is $34 a month% of dog owners
Less than $5011%
$50 – $9913%
$100 – $14928%
$150 – $19923%
$200 – $24912%
$250 – $3004%
More than $3009%

Pet insurance plans typically have a choice of maximum annual coverage amounts, such as $5,000, but some plans offer unlimited annual coverage. This financial safety net can help dog owners reduce the potential cost of a dog.

How Pet Insurance Costs Are Determined

The type of pet is just one factor in the cost of pet insurance. For example, cats are generally cheaper to insure than dogs, and birds, ferrets, rabbits and reptiles are cheaper to insure than cats.

Here are some common factors that determine pet insurance cost:

  • Pet’s breed. Certain breeds are predisposed to illnesses and hereditary problems, which often means more veterinary visits and higher medical expenses.
  • Pet’s age. Older pets are more expensive to insure than younger pets. We found the best prices were after a pet’s first birthday until around age six. As the pet gets older, your pet insurance premiums could increase when you renew the policy.
  • Pet’s gender. Insurers have found that male pets usually have a higher number of claims than females, so some use gender in pricing. Female pets cost about 5% less than males for pet insurance, according to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
  • Your location. Veterinary costs vary by location, so pet insurance plan costs account for that.
  • Annual maximum, deductible and reimbursement level. These are the three main variables that determine your reimbursement level when you have a claim. You will pay more if you select a high annual maximum, low deductible and high reimbursement level. For example, a plan with unlimited annual coverage, a low deductible and a 90% reimbursement level would be most expensive each month because it has the potential to pay out much more.

Related: How much does pet insurance cost?

How to Buy a Pet Insurance Plan

The best way to find a policy within your budget is to compare pet insurance quotes among several different insurers.

You can find free pet insurance quotes:

  • Online: Many pet insurance companies offer free quotes online. You’ll typically answer a few basic questions about your pet. You can also use a pet insurance comparison site to look at several options at once.
  • Phone, email or in-person: If you prefer to correspond with someone directly, you can contact a representative from an insurance company or an independent insurance agent.

Is Pet Insurance Worth It?

Vet medical bills for injuries and illnesses can be very costly, and pet insurance can be a good way to cover some of these costs.

For example, if your dog ruptured his ACL, surgery could cost thousands of dollars. Let’s suppose the total cost for surgery is $3,000 and you have coverage with a $500 deductible and 90% reimbursement level. In this scenario, your out-of-pocket cost would be $750 ($500 deductible + 10% of $2,500 = $750).

Some pet owners prefer to set aside money in a savings account for a pet’s medical needs. But if you can’t afford a surprise vet bill that could be thousands of dollars, pet insurance is a way to guard against racking up a credit card bill or finding another way to pay.

How Much Are Dog Owners Spending?

Dog owners spend an average of $730 a year on their dogs, according to a Forbes Advisor survey of 5,002 U.S. adults who own dogs:

  • About one-third (36%) of respondents said they spend between $200 to $499 per year on their dogs.
  • 41% said they spend between $500 and $1,999 a year.
  • Only 8% of dog owners said they spend more than $2,000 per year on their dogs.

Nearly half (47%) of dog owners said they spend the most money on dog food, and more than a quarter (28%) said their top costs were vet bills and vaccinations. Only 10% of dog owners said most of their dog-related spending goes to treats and toys.

What do you spend the most money on when it comes to your dog? (Choose the answer that applies most to you)




Dog expenditures% respondents
Dog food47%
Vet bills/vaccinations28%
Treats and toys10%
Professional grooming6%
Clothing and accessories3%
Pet insurance2%
Kenneling and daycare1%
Other/none of the above2%

A Surprise Vet Bill Would Cause Many Pet Owners to Go Into Debt Amid Inflation

Nearly two-thirds (63%) of pet owners said they would have difficulty paying a surprise vet bill amid inflation, according to a Forbes Advisor survey on pet costs and inflation. More than a quarter of pet owners (28%) said a vet bill of $499 or less would cause them to go into debt, while a bill of $999 or less would cause 42% to go into debt.

Even with so many pet owners concerned that a hefty vet bill would wreak financial havoc, more than three-quarters (79%) of pet owners said they do not have pet insurance. Many pet owners are unlikely to purchase pet insurance amid inflation:

  • Nearly one-third (30%) of survey respondents said they are much less likely or somewhat less likely to buy pet insurance amid inflation.
  • And 22% said they were much more likely or somewhat more likely to buy pet insurance amid inflation.

Which of the following vet bill amounts would cause you to go into debt?




Vet bill amount% of respondents
None of the above12%
Prefer not to say5%

Taming Veterinarian Bills

Vet bills and vaccinations ranked second among dog-related expenditures. Regretfully, no amount of pampering can prevent a dog from getting sick or injured. If you don’t want a surprise vet bill to take a bite out of your budget, consider pet insurance as a financial safeguard.

Pet insurance can cover accidents and illnesses, such as a torn ligament, ingestion of an object or a serious condition like cancer. It can also help defray expenses for annual physicals and vaccinations for your dog if you add a routine wellness plan to a pet insurance policy.

A Forbes Advisor analysis found that pet insurance for a dog costs an average of $35 a month. That may be a worthwhile expenditure if you couldn’t afford to pay out of pocket for a big vet bill.

Related: Is pet insurance worth it?

Dog and Cat Breeds With the Highest Vet Bills

Unexpected emergencies and expensive vet bills can happen with any pet. But some dog and cat breeds end up with higher veterinary bills, according to a Forbes Advisor analysis. We looked at insurance filings made to state insurance departments to identify the dog and cat breeds that have the most expensive bills, based on three years of pet insurance claims data.

Key Takeaways:

  • The Greater Swiss Mountain Dog tops the list of dog breeds with the highest vet bills, with an average pet insurance claim of $425.
  • For dog owners that are hoping to avoid costly trips to the vet, the dog breed with the lowest average pet insurance claim is the Australian Labradoodle ($226).
  • The Siberian Forest Cat has the highest medical cost among cat breeds, with an average pet insurance claim of $457.

Methodology: To find out which dog and cat breeds have the highest vet bills, Forbes Advisor analyzed data from insurance filings with pet insurance claims data from July 2017 to June 2020. The claims data reflects the portion of the vet bill that the pet insurance company covered. This amount is typically 70% to 100% of the total bill, not including the deductible.

Interesting Findings:

  • Across all breeds, the average pet insurance claim for cats ($355) is higher than the average pet insurance claim for dogs ($306).
  • The dog breeds with the highest vet bills are the Greater Swiss Mountain Dog ($425), the Rottweiler ($401) and the Dogue de Bordeaux ($395).
  • The Australian Labradoodle had the least expensive medical bills ($226), followed by the Miniature Goldendoodle ($230) and Shichon ($241).
  • Among cat breeds, the Siberian Forest Cat has the most costly medical care ($457), followed by the Bengal ($404) and Mixed-medium hair cats ($403).

Most Insured Pet Breeds

Medium-sized mixed breed dogs (22.4%) and domestic shorthair cats (52.5%) are the most insured pets, based on pet insurance quote data from Golden Retrievers (4.3%), Goldendoodles (3.9%) and German Shepherds (3.5%) are the most insured purebred dogs, based on the percentage of quotes. Among cats, Siamese (2.3%), Maine Coon (2.1%) and Ragdolls (1.9%) are the most insured purebred cats.

While some breeds of dogs and cats may be predisposed to certain types of problems, such as hip dysplasia, you and your furry companion could both benefit from a pet insurance plan, no matter the breed. That’s because it covers medical expenses for unexpected health problems, such as cancer and torn knee ligaments.

Most insured dog breeds




Breed% of pet insurance quotes
Mixed Medium (23-70 lbs.)22.4%
Mixed Small (up to 22 lbs.)16.2%
Mixed Large (over 70 lbs.)5.7%
Golden Retriever4.3%
German Shepherd3.5%
French Bulldog3.4%
Yorkshire Terrier2.7%
Shih Tzu2.6%

Most insured cat breeds




Breed% of pet insurance quotes
Domestic Shorthair52.5%
Domestic Mediumhair12.4%
Mixed Breed11.5%
Domestic Longhair7.4%
Other/Breed Not Found2.3%
Maine Coon2.1%
American Shorthair (purebred)1.2%

Most Common Pet Poisons in Your Home

Your home can be a dangerous place for an unsupervised and curious pet. Common items could spell trouble if your pet gets a hold of them. For example, that harmless looking plant in the corner could be toxic. Or a double-layer chocolate cake carelessly placed within your pet’s reach could result in an emergency trip to the pet hospital.

The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) helped more than 401,000 animals in 2021. That’s an 8% increase from the year before when the APCC helped more than 370,500 animals.

Here’s a list from the APCC of the top 10 toxins for pets.

  1. Over-the-counter medications. This includes items like acetaminophen, cold and flu medicine, ibuprofen, and vitamins and supplements.
  2. Prescription medications for people. This includes prescriptions like anticonvulsant and cardiac medications and antidepressants.
  3. People food. You might love to share a snack with your pet, but people food can be toxic. This includes common foods like garlic, grapes, onions, protein bars, raisins, onions and foods that contain xylitol, which is a sweetener found in sugar-free foods like candy, energy bars and protein powder.
  4. Chocolate. This delicious treat can be especially toxic for dogs and cats.
  5. Bouquets and plants. Indoor and outdoor plants found in your home and garden can be dangerous. Here’s a list of toxic and non-toxic plants.
  6. Household toxicants. This includes items like beauty products, cleaning products and home repair products.
  7. Veterinary products. Even items designed for pets can be dangerous if they manage to eat an entire container, such as chewable medications like calming chews.
  8. Rodenticide. If your pet ingests rodenticide, it can cause bleeding, kidney failure, seizures and even be fatal.
  9. Insecticide. Ant sprays, bug sprays and other pest products can be toxic to your pet. It’s a good idea to look for pet-safe alternatives.
  10. Garden products. Fertilizers (especially those made from organic products) might be delicious to your dog, but they’re also toxic.

If you believe your pet has ingested a toxic item, it’s best to immediately contact your veterinarian or the APCC at (888) 426-4435.

How to Keep Pets Safe During the Holidays

It’s easy to get caught up in all of the festivities during the holiday season and overlook some of the common dangers to pets. For example, loud houseguests, leftovers and even that sparkly tinsel can be serious cause for concern.

Here are some tips to keep pets safe during the holiday season.

Holiday foods

All those cakes, cookies, roasts and tasty treats might be a delight for you and your family, but it can wreak havoc on your pet’s digestive system, and in some cases, it could be fatal. Here’s what to look out for:

  • Cocktails. While it’s cool for you to imbibe (assuming you’re of legal drinking age), it’s not so cool for your dog or cat. If your pet ingests alcohol, they could become sick and possibly go into respiratory failure, which would be lethal.
  • Leftovers. Holiday foods can be fatty, spicy and have bones. None of these things are good for your pet and could lead to expensive vet bills.
  • Sweets. Chocolates and anything sweetened with xylitol can be toxic to your pet.

Holiday parties

Gathering with your family and friends during the holiday season is a blast. Just make sure it’s safe for your pet.

  • Anxious pets. Your pet might get anxious during gatherings. Make sure your pet has a room or space (like a crate) of their own with their favorite toy.
  • Friendly guests. If one of your animal-loving guests wants to give your pet a little extra holiday attention, make sure they start a calm play or petting session.
  • Noises. Fireworks, poppers and shouting might be a fun way to ring in the New Year, but that can terrify your pet and cause them to run away. Make sure your pet is in a secure, escape-proof area.
  • Trash. A good party can lead to a lot of trash. This also means your pet might be able to get into something they should not. Be diligent to clean up and not leave any dangerous objects within your pet’s reach.

Holiday travel

If you’re hitting the road this holiday season, here are some tips to keep your pet safe:

  • Boarding your pet. Make sure your pet is up to date on vaccinations to protect them from illnesses such as canine flu and other types of contagious diseases.
  • International and interstate travel. Your destination may have requirements for your pet, such as vaccinations or time frames to obtain a health certificate. Here is more information on traveling with your pet from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
  • Packing for your pet. Make sure you have your pet’s food, medications, first aid supplies, copies of their medical records and other items, such as a blanket and favorite toy. Here is more information on traveling and packing for your pet from the American Veterinary Medical Association.
  • Traveling by car. Your pet should be restrained using a secure harness or carrier. Never leave your pet alone in the car in any type of weather.
  • Traveling by air. Some pets might be at risk traveling by air, such as short-nosed dogs. It’s a good idea to talk to your vet before you take your pet on a flight.

Seasonal plants and decorations

You might love the annual tradition of decking the halls, but some of the common types of holiday decorations can be especially dangerous for your pet, so be vigilant:

  • Candles. Unattended and lit candles could cause your pet to burn themselves or accidentally cause a fire if they knock a candle over. Try to keep lit candles out of reach of your pets.
  • Christmas trees. Make sure it’s securely anchored so that it doesn’t fall on your pet. Also be careful of your pet drinking the tree water, which could contain harmful fertilizers. If possible, cover the tree water to prevent your pet from getting access.
  • Decorations. Ornaments, tinsel and other types of decorations can be tempting for your pet to chew on, which could lead to intestinal blockage. Keep an eye on your pet when it is near your holiday decorations.
  • Electric lights. Your pet could burn or fatally shock themselves if they chew on a cord. Try to keep electric cords out of your pet’s reach.
  • Mistletoe and holly. Mistletoe, if ingested, can cause gastrointestinal and cardiovascular problems. If your pet ingests Holly, they could suffer from diarrhea, nausea and vomiting. It’s best to decorate your home with pet-safe plants.


We used data provided by to score each pet insurance company based on the following.

Average plan prices: Up to 40 points. We averaged pet insurance quotes for each insurer for a mixed-breed dog at three ages in California, Florida, Illinois, New York, Texas and Washington, when quotes were available.

Plan benefits: Up to 60 points. We scored plans based on the following important features: Annual coverage choices, whether the plan can pay a veterinarian directly, access to a 24/7 vet line, availability of routine wellness coverage, whether the plan pays the vet exam fee, dental illness coverage, end of life coverage, and multipet discount.

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