The 9 Best Pet Insurance of 2020

Company Best for Star Rating Cost Estimate Animals Covered Deductibles Annual Limits
Pet Assure Best Overall 4.14 $11.95/mo. Dogs, cats, horses, exotics $0 No Caps
PetFirst Routine Care 4.05 $24.21/mo. Dogs, cats $50 to $500 $2,000 to $10,000
GEICO Discounts 4.04 $24.02/mo. Dogs, cats $200 to $1,000 $5,000 to $30,000
USAA Servicemembers 3.99 $24.02/mo. Dogs, cats $200 to $1,000 $5,000 to $30,000
Embrace Emergencies 3.99 $24.02/mo. Dogs, cats $200 to $1,000 $5,000 to $30,000
Hartville Older Dogs 3.99 $47.18/mo. Dogs, cats $100 to $500 $5,000 to no cap
24PetWatch Chronic Conditions 3.98 $41.79/mo. Dogs, cats $100 to $1,000 $3,000 to $20,000
Figo Holistic Care 3.98 $24.74/mo. Dogs, cats $100 to $750 $5,000 to no cap
ASPCA Multiple Pets 3.96 $39.43/mo. Dogs, cats, horses $100 to $500 $3,000 to $10,000

How Does Pet Insurance Work?

Pet insurance is a type of insurance policy that helps protect you financially in the event of unexpected veterinary costs. Every month, you pay a premium to the insurance company in exchange for ongoing coverage. If your pet gets sick or is injured, you can submit the vet bill to the insurance company for partial or full reimbursement depending on your plan. You’ll typically need to pay an annual deductible before the insurance company starts covering costs. From that point on, all eligible veterinary costs will be covered up to your policy’s annual limit.

What Does Pet Insurance Cover?

Pet insurance covers different types of treatments depending on the plan. Accident-only policies only pay for bills that result from an injury, for example, if your pet is hit by a car or ingests a foreign object. Accident and illness policies cover these injuries in addition to most illnesses, from common viruses to serious diseases like cancer.

Some insurers give pet parents the option to add on wellness coverage, which pays for some or all of your pet’s preventive care costs like vaccinations and annual checkups. Without a wellness rider, however, these treatments generally aren’t covered by a standard policy.

Is Pet Insurance Expensive?

The cost of pet insurance depends on many different factors. First and foremost is your pet’s age, size, and breed, which can affect the likelihood that they will become sick or require veterinary attention. Your monthly premiums will also depend on the annual limit, deductible, and reimbursement percentage you choose when you sign up for coverage. Finally, of course, each company sets its own pricing. Among the top pet insurers we reviewed, average costs for a two-year-old dog ranged anywhere between $11.95 and $47.18 per month.

Is Pet Insurance Tax-Deductible?

Unfortunately, pet insurance is not tax-deductible in the vast majority of cases. The only exception may be if you rely on a guide dog or service animal for a disability. According to the IRS, the costs of feeding and caring for a legitimate service animal fall under tax-deductible expenses, which might include an insurance policy that helps pay for veterinary expenses. This rule does not apply to emotional support animals.

Is Pet Insurance Worth the Cost?

It’s impossible to say whether pet insurance will ever pay for itself simply because no one can predict the future. Ideally, your pet will never suffer a major illness or injury that requires extensive veterinary care. But as with all insurance, the idea is that by paying a nominal fee for coverage, you’ll eliminate the risk of having to pay thousands in the unlikely event that your pet does face a critical emergency. Many pet owners feel that this cost is worth knowing they’ll never face a time that they can’t afford a life-saving procedure for their beloved four-legged family members.

For example, let’s say your pet is hit by a car and is rushed to the nearest veterinary hospital. After an emergency surgery, the total bill comes to $2,500. Without pet insurance, you’d be on the hook for the full amount. However, if you had a mid-tier policy with a $500 deductible and an 80% reimbursement rate, you’d only be responsible for $900 out of pocket.

How We Chose the Best Pet Insurance

To choose the best pet insurance companies, we evaluated 23 of the most popular providers of both standard pet insurance policies and non-insurance alternatives. We broke down pricing, services included, policy terms, and limitations to fully understand the product that each insurer provides. We also considered the quality of customer service and ease of filing a claim to gauge the experience pet parents can expect. Finally, we looked at third-party data to get a sense of each company’s overall reputation within the pet insurance industry.

Learn more: Read our Full Pet Insurance Review Methodology.


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