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Considering purchasing pet insurance in Canada? Find out which companies offer the best pet insurance in Canada, and how to choose the right coverage, deductible and terms for your furry friend.

We love our pets like children, and we want to give them the best life possible. We buy them the best food and research the best dog walkers and pet sitters – but what about finding the best pet insurance? If an emergency strikes, how will you pay for your furry friend to get quality veterinary care?

At first, getting pet insurance may seem extreme. But think about it: from our homes to our cars to even our laptops, we have insurance to protect our most valuable possessions. So why not get a policy for your pet? If an emergency or illness befalls your beloved beast, you should be able to do what’s best for them without worrying about your wallet.

Fortunately, pet insurance is a thing, and it’s an excellent way to insulate yourself from the shock of an unexpected veterinary bill. But just like any other type of insurance, no two policies are the same, and you’ll need to do some research to determine which pet insurance company in Canada is best for you, or whether you need pet insurance at all. We’ve looked at everything you need to know to determine which pet insurance company is right for you, and here are our top picks for the best pet insurance in Canada.

The Best Pet Insurance in Canada

CompanyBest ForMore Info 
Trupanion CanadaBest Overall Pet Insurance in CanadaRead OnVisit Site
Petplan CanadaBest for Totally Customized CoverageRead OnVisit Site
Petsecure CanadaBest for Complete Coverage including Wellness PlansRead OnVisit Site
Pet Plus UsBest for Accident-Only CoverageRead OnVisit Site

How Does Pet Insurance Work?

Pet insurance works like most other types of insurance in Canada. You pay a monthly fee (called a “premium”), and in return, if your pet becomes suddenly ill or injured, your insurance company will cover a portion of the expenses up to a maximum percentage. Here are some examples of costs that are commonly covered by pet insurance:

  • Accidents
  • Sudden illness
  • Diagnostic tests
  • Hospitalization
  • Emergency Care
  • Prescriptions
  • Surgery

Some pet insurance plans offer additional wellness packages that also include checkups, vaccinations, and parasite prevention. Your policy will list what exactly is covered, and usually, it is separated between “accidents” and “illnesses.” There may be a maximum dollar value that is covered, and that cap may be applied annually or per illness. Sometimes, depending on your pet’s age, you’ll need to have it examined by a veterinarian before coverage can begin.

Comparison of the Best Pet Insurance Plans

Not all pet insurance plans are created equal. Let’s break it down and take a look at our top pet insurance companies in Canada.

 Trupanion CanadaPetplan CanadaPetsecure CanadaPets Plus Us
DeductiblePer ConditionAnnual or Per ConditionPer IncidentAnnual, age-based
CoverageIllness, injuries, hereditary and congenital conditions as well as miscellaneous expenses including medications and diagnostic testsMedication, testing, hospital stays, non-routine examsHospitalization, surgery, hereditary conditions, diagnosis, prescriptions, dental coverageHospitalization, surgery, hereditary conditions, diagnosis, prescriptions, medical devices
Payout90% of actual costs paid directly to vet70% - 90% of actual veterinarian bills80% of actual veterinarian bills70% - 90% of actual veterinarian bills
Coverage LimitNo lifetime limitAnnual $2,500 to Unlimited, no lifetime or per condition limits$1,000 – to UnlimitedUp to $7,500 or $15,000 for accident and illness, or $5,000 accident only
Bonus Perks/Add-OnsHomeopathy, naturopathy, chiropractic, acupuncture, and rehabLost pet reward, boarding fees, loss due to theftBoarding fees, trip cancellation coverage, lost pet reward, burial services, multi-pet (3+) discountCoverage when traveling with your pet outside of Canada, acupuncture, chiropractic, physiotherapy
Drawbacks30 day waiting period, maximum enrollment age is 14 years.Pets over the age of 6 will need to have a physical examPets over the age of 8 will need to have a physical exam, blood profile, and urinalysisPets over the age of 8 will need to have a physical exam, blood profile, and urinalysis
More InfoVisit SiteVisit SiteVisit SiteVisit Site

Best Pet Insurance in Canada: Trupanion Canada

TrupanionFor determining the best pet insurance company in Canada, we looked for an insurance company that would offer the best coverage for the average Canadian pet owner. We avoided companies with excessive coverage options that are usually unnecessary, as well as companies with confusing maximum coverage and enrollment rules. We also wanted comprehensive coverage with no lifetime limit and clear deductibles. For this reason, Trupanion Canada stands out as a winner.

Trupanion Canada is one of the largest providers of pet insurance in Canada, and our top pick for the best pet insurance in Canada. We like Trupanion because it offers a single and very good pet insurance plan that will cover the needs of most Canadian per owners.

This company has an excellent reimbursement rate of 90% and can even bill your veterinarian directly. Trupanion does not penalize you for making claims on your policy, and they have an excellent customer service track record.

What We Liked:

  • Deductible is per condition
  • Offers direct payment to your veterinarian
  • Reimbursement is 90% of your actual bill
  • There is no lifetime cap on accidents and illness coverage

What We Didn’t Like:

  • One plan means no customization options or wellness add-ons
  • Maximum enrollment age is 14 years
  • Preventative treatments are not covered, and there is no option to add it

Learn more about Trupanion Canada.

Runner Up: Petplan Canada

petplanOne of the leading providers of pet insurance in Canada, Petplan Canada has over 40 years of experience in the pet insurance industry. There are no limits on where you can use this pet insurance anywhere in Canada or the US.

What We Liked:

  • Many tiered options, highly customizable
  • Coverage caps are annual, and start at $2,500 and go up to unlimited
  • There is no age limit on enrolling your pet
  • Reimbursement is between 70% – 90% of your actual bill
  • 24/7 customer service

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Pets six years and older are required to have veterinary screening within 30 days of enrollment date.

Learn more about Petplan Canada.

Runner-Up: Petsecure Canada

Petsecure Canada was founded in 1989 and is 100% Canadian owned and operated and is underwritten by Petline Insurance Company. This company calls itself the #1 pet insurance provider in Canada and has 150 employees, allowing them to offer services in both of Canada’s national languages. You can buy insurance from Petsecure Canada either online or over the phone.

What We Liked:

  • Four levels of coverage from Secure 1 to Secure 4
  • Coverage ranges from $1,000 per accident and illness to unlimited coverage
  • Annual wellness care option includes exams, vaccinations, and flea prevention
  • Extra benefits include boarding kennel fees, holiday trip cancellation coverage, lost pet advertising and burial service
  • Reimbursement is 80% of your actual bill
  • Multi-pet discount: when you have 3 or more pets you can save 10%

What We Didn’t Like:

  • The optional wellness package is expensive, at $450 per year for dogs and $350 per year for cats

Learn more about Petsecure Canada.

Runner-Up: Pets Plus Us

petsplususPets Plus Us is a newer entrant into the pet insurance industry and offers several insurance options for both cats and dogs. Headquartered in Oakville, Ontario, Pets Plus Us is a subsidiary of Pethealth Inc., and their insurance coverage is available in all Canadian provinces and territories.

What We Liked:

  • No increase in premium based on claim history, but annual deductibles are pegged to age and may still increase
  • Option of two plans: Accident and Illness, or Accident Only
  • Coverage caps between $5,000 and $15,000 depending on your plan
  • Reimbursement is between 70% and 90% of your vet bills
  • Optional Wellness Care package is its stand-alone plan and covers regular appoints for an annual fee.

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Reimbursement may be slow. They guarantee payment within six months from treatment date.

Learn more about Pets Plus Us.

Average Cost of Pet Insurance 

Basic pet insurance can be obtained inexpensively. In Canada, the average monthly insurance premium is $39 for a dog and $29 for a cat. This monthly premium may seem affordable, but the cost can climb quickly depending on the following factors:

  • The age of your pet: Older pets are more likely to have health issues and are therefore more expensive to insure. That’s why it’s important to purchase pet insurance when your pet is young.
  • The type of pet: Some breeds of cat and dog are more prone to chronic health problems than others, and some rare types of pet (for example, reptiles) may leave you with fewer (and more expensive) insurance choices.
  • The level of coverage you choose: More pet insurance companies offer several tiers of options from inexpensive basic coverage to premium coverage that includes wellness visits.

Is Pet Insurance Worth the Cost?

Unless you have a hefty emergency fund sitting in a Tax-Free Savings Account, pet insurance is usually a worthwhile way to ensure you don’t have to decide between your wallet and your furry friend. That said, not every pet insurance plan is suitable for every situation, so it’s important to ask yourself the following questions before signing up for a policy of your own.

What is the Purpose of Your Pet Insurance?

Start by making a list of what you’d like your pet insurance to cover. Like most types of insurance, pet insurance comes with many extra features that are expensive and not necessary. Making a list of your desired coverage beforehand will help you avoid these upsells. It’s important not to purchase more coverage than you need, because it will be more expensive.

What Type of Pet Do You Have?

The type, breed, and age of your pet will affect the insurance coverage you select. For example, purebred dogs tend to have more chronic health issues than mixed-breed dogs and may need more coverage. In the same vein, cats tend to live longer than dogs and may benefit from a policy that does not increase your deductible based on age. If you have an exotic pet, you may be limited in the companies that will offer you insurance coverage at all.

What Can You Afford to Pay Out of Pocket?

Consider how much you can afford to pay out of pocket. If you have a $10,000 emergency fund in a high-interest savings account and you are comfortable spending a good portion of that on your pet, your insurance needs will be different than someone living on a reduced income with no emergency fund. If you make a budget and regularly contribute to a “pet fund” regularly, you can likely opt for a less expensive policy.

How Much is Your Deductible?

Your deductible is the amount you must pay out of pocket before your insurance kicks in. For example, if your pet needs emergency surgery and the cost is $5,000 and your deductible is $1,000, you’ll pay that first $1,000 and the insurance company will pay the remaining $4,000 (subject to something called “reimbursement percentages,” but we’ll cover that later).

A higher deductible usually results in a lower monthly premium, while a lower deductible means you will pay more month to month. If you choose a higher deductible, you will need to make sure you always have that money on hand in case your pet needs emergency veterinary care. There are several different types of deductibles in Canada:

  • Annual: You pay one deductible for any condition being treated.
  • Per-Condition (Lifetime): You have a separate deductible for each condition
  • Per Condition (Yearly): Similar to above, but it resets every year

Our pick for the ideal deductible is an annual deductible, but that is often the most expensive option. If you must choose a per-condition deductible, choose a lifetime one.

What is Your Coverage Limit?

Pet insurance usually has a coverage limit, also called a cap. Some pet insurance policies have annual or lifetime caps on coverage, and some have no caps whatsoever. It’s important to consider these caps because, depending on your pet, you may be more likely to reach them. For example, if you have a purebred pet that is likely to have a chronic condition, you may reach your policy’s cap regularly.

Does Your Pet Insurance have Exclusions?

Most pet insurance companies in Canada have exclusions and limitations on their policies. Common exclusions include pre-existing conditions and known health issues. Make sure to research the exclusions on your potential policy thoroughly, because they may render the insurance policy useless for your purposes. Working pets like service animals or herding dogs may be excluded from pet insurance policies.

What are the Terms of Reimbursement?

While most pet insurance companies make the promise to reimburse you promptly, the reality is that you will most likely need to pay for your pet’s procedure out of pocket initially and wait for reimbursement. This is why having an emergency fund in a high-interest savings account or TFSA is essential. In some rare instances, your pet insurance company may authorize the treatment with the clinic and pay them directly.

If you must wait for reimbursement and your savings are nil, charge your pet’s medical care onto a travel rewards or cashback credit card, so at least you’ll get something back from the expense. Just make sure to pay off your credit card debt fast, as interest rates can be 18% or higher. If you must carry a balance, consider getting a low-interest credit card or a balance transfer credit card to minimize the interest paid on the expense.

Lastly, your reimbursement rate is also important to consider. The reimbursement rate is the percentage that your insurance company will reimburse you after your deductible is paid. The usual reimbursement rate is between 70% and 90% of your actual bill, and the higher the rate, the better.

What are the Terms of Your Coverage?

Some pet insurance companies have certain requirements to satisfy the coverage rules. Most of the time, this is related to your pet’s health. Often, if your pet is over a certain age, you’ll be required to schedule an appointment with your local vet to rule out any pre-existing conditions.

There may also be a waiting period before the policy kicks in (for example, between 7-30 days). Finally, some pet insurance companies will not insure pets over a certain age, since they are more likely to have claims. The bottom line? Read the fine print of your policy.

The Last Word: How to Choose a Pet Insurance Company

Our choice for the best pet insurance company in Canada may not be your top choice, because you may have unique needs and require additional services. You may have a pet that requires significantly more coverage, or you may be in a situation where a wellness package and the additional add-ons make financial sense.

It’s important to consider your needs with regards to coverage, deductibles, exclusions, and reimbursement before choosing a pet insurance policy.

The real takeaway here is that you want to be prepared both mentally and financially in case an unexpected event arises.  You don’t want to have to be making financially crippling decisions when a family’s beloved pet is on an operating table, and you’re at a stressful breaking point. Instead, plan ahead, be honest about your financial situation, and invest in coverage that will serve your pet in their time of need.

Article comments

Anuj Philip says:

Do not join Petplan. They attract you with the lowest premium and then raise the premium by huge percentages from year to year when you cannot leave the company as pre-existing conditions will then not be covered. Petplan has increased the premium for my 3 year old dog by $1,000 in just 3 years. I have never had this terrible an experience with any other insurance company. Save yourself and keep away from this company.

Jen says:

I just got off the phone with Trupanion as I was SUPER concerned about the almost 25% increase on my 1 year old pup. It went from $95 to $123 and I am SO disappointed-other than raising my deductible, they were unwilling to help at all. It sounds like I got the same company line that many of you have – increase in claims in his breed, in my area. But it now concerns me that this will be the case going forward every year, based on what I have read below. I wish there was a better option – I am certainly keeping my ears open now.

Kiran says:

I just got insurance from my 4 year old cat. Company didn’t ask for any documents from vet and told me that they will find out from vet at the time of claim if there is any preexisting condition or not. At this time my cat has no preexisting condition. Does anyone knows how they check it when we will need the claim in case. Also, I was told that the premium might decrease annually if there is no claim during the year. Is it correct if anyone has experience with pet plan

PC says:

I am planning to adopt a 2 years old cat. She is currently facing intermittent diarrhea and is on a sensitive tummy food and probiotics. Her stool samples were tested at the vet and nothing was diagnosed. Hence she is said to be healthy. Now my question is: Will this thing be considered as a pre-existing condition when I go fishing for a pet insurance?


Lisa Jackson says:

Hi PC,

You would have to talk to a pet insurance company about this. Your vet may also be able to advise.

Judy says:

What insurance companies did you compare to come up with the best ones for this article?


I bought PetPlan 1.5 years ago and let me tell you all – watch out!!! They increase the premiums every single year. I started with $450 and I am up at $670. At this rate, by the time I will actually need it, I will not be able to afford it

Shannon Lockhart says:

Hi, I’m shopping for pet insurance for the first time and I was starting to feel a bit overwhelmed. Thank you posting this article, it’s really helpful to people such as myself. I really appreciate how you’ve made it all very comprehensive to understand so that shopping for pet insurance is far less daunting now.

Joel says:

I had Pet Plan with my previous dog. Had a $5000 limit per condition. She had cancer and the $5000 limit was used up before she died. I was attracted to Trupanion because of this because they offered no limits on the amount they will insure. I stated paying $70 per month (0 deductible)with the new puppy which I thought was fair. Now he is 7 and they want a 25% increase from $150 to $200 per month. I took out a $100 deductible 3 years ago to keep my premium the same. It’s obvious that they will offer to raise my deductible yet again the keep the premium stable. I’m choked by their arbitrary premium hikes based on data which they say necessitates such increases. It’s unsustainable and very disappointing. By the time my dog is a senior the insurance premiums will be unaffordable. I suppose that’s part of their overall strategy – to have customers with older dogs withdraw from the plan to avoid paying out claims that many older pets incur.

Anna says:

Thanks for this succinct breakdown.
My question is this: has anyone found an insurer with a fixed premium option?
From the comments, it seems that premiums skyrocket a couple years in and there seem to be a few older comments about being sold a plan with fixed premiums only to discover it vastly raised Year over year due to ‘admin fee’ loopholes etc.
I like a fee I can budget around long term, and I for one would prefer to pay a higher premium if I knew it was locked in throughout the pets life.

Greg says:

Yeah I’m similar with Trupanion, the premiums are going up by around 20 percent every year – I started at $38 a month around 6 years ago and now I’ve just been informed this year it’s going up to $105 a month. I’m going to just start a savings account next time.

Sara says:

That’s really good to know thanks

Shannon says:

I switched from Pet Secure to Trupanion a few years ago because I was told by the animal nurses how good Trupanion was. I wish that I had stayed with Pet Secure to be honest. My dog is only 5 years old and his insurance is raised every year even though I have never had a claim! They now said his rate will go from $118 to $150 per month during the pandemic when I am laid off work to top it off. Does anyone have another insurance company to recommend that is not so expensive?

Melissa says:

Have you looked at Peppermint? I’m just shopping for pet insurance now and I’ve found they have the best rates and seem to be pretty fair in terms of what they cover, etc.

Ilya says:

I’d be glad to have increase like yours. Our company PetPlan increased the annual premium for our dog from $590 in previous year (the dog was 6 years old) to $1287 (he is now 7 years old). We didn’t have any claims and didn’t change anything in the insurance. So it is increase 2.2 times!

Alexis says:

Should we consider a certain type of coverage for our dog who will be bred more than once? I’ve heard bitches who nurse pups can be more prone to cancer.

Michele says:

Hello my name is Michele.
am inquiring about Exotic Pet Insurance.
I have pet rabbits and I’m looking for insurance. I was recommended my others that you offer such insurance even with the fact I am Canadian?
Thank you for your time and responses.
Sincerely. Michele

Lisa Jackson says:

Hi Michele,

You would have to reach out to each insurance provider to get a quote. Our list of recommended insurance providers are above. Good luck!

Claire says:

Hi Michele, did you find one?

StephenDC says:

From this article and comments above it is heartbreaking at times to see that these insurance companies know our pets are precious to us. We adopted our dog at 18mths who was a rescue and he has been in great health with no pre existing conditions except for an allergy shot maybe we suspected as he was licking his paws possibly due to separation anxiety after we came back from vacation after 2 weeks and that was it. We don’t know his exact breed but he looks like a poodle / schanuzer mix about 22lbs. I checked Trupanion and seemed to lean towards that at the premium seems fixed for the rest of the life of your pet and you pay the deductible only once per condition per lifetime?

Suzanne says:

Stephen – We have Trupanion – the upside of them is that they pay quickly and submitting a claim is really easy. The downside is that they don’t pay a lot of expenses, even in an emergency. So our dog ate chocolate and needed her stomach pumped – we took her to the emergency vet – the cost was around $1200, but Trupanion only paide $398. We have a hefty deductible of $500, so that lowered the amount to $700 – but they don”t pay for vet the examination fee, which is necessary – how do they administer emergency care without the fee. Earlier in the year, we had to bring my dog in for another emergency – but our deductible is only per incident – so we still paid the $500, examination fees, etc. Plus our premium went up this year, it is not fixed. I’m not convinced the fees were paying monthly are worth the what we get reimbursed when there is an emergency.

Britt says:

You can find out the exact breed of your pet “DNA my Dog”

Paul says:

My question is this. Why does it cost 10,000 dollars for this type of surgery. Vets are definitely taking advantage of people which is immoral and disgusting. We should not need any pet insurance and if people are willing to pay for it the insurance premiums should be much lower than they are. Has the world gone mad!…just my 2 cents

Naren says:

Agreed… Vets are taking fulll advantage… My vet charges me a 100 $ fee to just check my puppy’s physical condition…. The test takes less than 3 mins and 100$… Seriously robbed….

Becky says:

I can say I firsthand that I totally recommend PetPlan. My cat also had a urinary/kidney stone blockage and the emergency surgery cost over 10k and they covered it completely and their customer service was fabulous. The other commenter mentioned they didn’t take the pet to the vet annually and that they were Denied because of that. But you have to are sure you read the fine print and adhere to the terms. My personal al vet was happy to email me all my pets records and that seemed sufficient to prove he’d been healthy up u til the point of surgery and the claim went through no problem.

I personally can’t say enough good things about Pet Plan and I’m so glad we were able to take care of my cat. Recommend 100% as long as you read their terms – which I would recommend for any Insurance obviously

Hannah says:

Hi Becky, does PetPlan price increase every year due to premium?

Richard R says:

Why isn’t there a plan for people who have multiple pets? Like a reduced price to include both. There’s no mention of that. And I think it’s unfair that p/b cats or dogs are excluded by certain things that could happen to them based on their breed. It’s stupid human interference & over breeding that caused it, no fault of the innocent animal and people should be held accountable. That right there makes me think these company’s are nothing but a scam. Just another business at the end of the day. Heartless idiots excluding breed related illnesses. According to your policies their lives don’t matter? You make me sick!

chey says:

Has anyone had any experience with dejardin or OVMA (Ontario Veterinary Medical Association) pet insurance?

david says:

I have been with PET PLAN over 2 years, recently my pet got urine blockage and spent $7000 but this company refused the claims because we didn’t do check up every year as the reason they told which I didn’t get any mentioned before as their term and policy (Hidden clause). I told them even we do check up every year won’t find out urine blockage which happened as emergency and we insured over 2 years. but they still refuse to pay . I think they only want collect money won’t want to pay. STAY AWAY from PET PLAN

Sara says:

Tank you for this – I will def stay away

Ann Guiden says:

Good info!

Lia says:

I have to agree that PetCare is not a good option at all. Stay away. We were with them for 7 years and anytime we tried to make a claim they would come back with some sort of reason as to why this “could have been linked” to a surgery she had on her hip as a puppy, a false hip joint (LPC). ( She was not insured at the time and we paid for it in full. She recovered 100 % and there was no reason to ever connect it to that again, outside of ‘previous illness’ or ‘reoccurring issue’.) They even went so far as to try and ‘link’ her loosing a tooth to that same hip replacement. Unreal. They kept raising the rate and then sent us a letter canceling our policy… 3 months AFTER they claimed the policy premium did not go through. no previous notice. But when I checked my statement, it had gone through and the CC company backed it up. They also tried to say the CC was outdated by 3 years and I sent them the email they sent me when I had updated it 2 years prior. COLES NOTES: When I called to have it sorted out they apologized but said that due to technical issues in their system they would have to issue a new policy at double the monthly cost…even though they knew it was their mistake. It was never ending with them. After 7 years our vet kindly suggested we change companies, if we could afford to, as he was having issue after issue with PetCare. ‘Snakes of Pet Insurance Industry’ was his exact term. We opted to just put money away every month and stay out of the chaos that is this ever growing money maker unfortunately. @Susan YES!!! do it.

Kimberley says:

I am thinking that starting another pet insurance company is in order. I would love to do it, but I have no idea how to start and how to come up with the initial capital. I want to have unlimited coverage, free vet visits for maintenance as well and all conditions covered preexisting or not with 100% coverage. All for a low monthly premium of perhaps $50 or so. And or have a multiple pet plan that would cover everyone for say $100 a month up to a maximum of say 5 pets?

Duane says:

I have had Pet inc on two dogs. The first dog(poor thing) had a lot of problems health-wise and If I did not have inc I would have spent just upwards of 20 grand. With the inc I payed half (still no chump change) The current company I am with was bought out by an American company and I was going to cancel the plan since putting in 5 claims and getting 0 back. So I am on the phone with the agent and he tells me they will not raise our premium if we stay with Petplan. So guess what I just received two letters from them about two claims I filed. Both denied due to the premium I was told would not be raised. This is outright lying to people to keep them on the plan. It gets to the point where if they spent as much time on customer service and loyally recognize as they do on their B.S. accountant spins I might be able to say “Well at least they seem to care” Skip PETPLAN. I can see why cats are more popular with people again.(Yes I know cats get sick too I had a diabetic one) they seem more resilient and IMO Inc companies are such a nightmare to deal with it hardly seems worth it anymore. BUT If someone recommends one I will look into it.@Susan I think that is a great idea and would be willing to volunteer my time to that cause.

Marina says:

My puppy is under a year and I’m currently looking into insurance. Was interested in the President’s Choice plan, anyone have any experience with this?

Val says:

Hi there! I’m on the fence about getting insurance for my 2 year old cat. I’ve looked into various plans and one, which I’d thought I’d settled on is called Petplan. Do you have any insight on this one? Like many it has a sliding scale and I found a customized plan that I’d be satisfied with:
Policy details
annual coverage: $5,000
annual deductible: $450
reimbursement: 90%
monthly premium: $19.98
The only thing is Yelp reviews suggest this company is know for raising monthly premiums. Is there any way of predicting by how much?

Amanda says:

8 years with petcare and have had no issues claiming the yearly General Wellness and a 3 surgeries. This year they switched to 24hr pet watch. I had major issues submitting the yearly vaccination and check up, it was denied twice. This month my pup has been very sick and numerous vet visits and a surgery. 24hr pet watch claims a delay in processing and it has been two months since I submitted my claim Very nervous it will be denied again. I would not recommend PetCare insurance as they have been sold to 24hrPet Watch.

Overall I feel even with a few higher claims from surgery I have paid more in premiums than have received in claims made. I wouldn’t purchase pet insurance with my next animal. I would put my money in a separate account for the dog and use it if needed.

Marie says:

Hi my name is Marie here in Calgary Canada.
I have had my 2 dogs babies and they were on PetCare insurance. They now are 9 and 12 years old.
August came and the insurance coverage renewal came through, i thought there was a mistake on the amount they took out of my account $ 208.54 which was pretty much double of what i was paying on a regular basis up until july this year being $115.16.
Calked them and the only straight answer was that policy coverage was reviewed every year and that anount was the new amount of the insurance cover for both my dogs. I was so upset i asked them to cancel my insurance and refund that august payment, they had no problem and cancelled my insurance wuthout a say nor a try to look at ither coverage level with me, they just did not care at all. This said, i have been looking for another insurance and had to spend $ 350 vet to have blood test, urinalysis and complete examination as well as sending all medical history to another insurance so they ll let me know of all pre existing conditions that may not be covered. The sales guy for that new insurance promised that raised payment as i experienced with PetCare would not happen with them, however when i talk with another person few days later to check they receive all documents they asked for, i asked again as i could not see any clause mentioning how much yearly raise on payment could go to a maximum, and i was told they dont have any clause in that regard..
I am waiting their conclusion on the pre-existing condition but i dont trust any of them no more. I paid over 12000 dollars of insurance in the past 10 years and could have just put that money aside and raise an emergency fund rather than loosing it to insurance company that just dont care. I do not think one might be better than the other. The cheaper the coverage you take the least they cover and yet there is a deductible like that new insurance would be $500??? I am unsure if i will really take that insurance or perhaps go for the minimum and start an emergency fund..
Oh to top it off, there were some anomalies in the blood test of one dog and abnomalies in the urinalysis of the other, nothing major and nothing that never came up before, so guess what the vet tells me in that regard: for one dog the test abnormalities might be due to a metacam medication she took a couple months ago, and for the other dog, the urinalysis abnormality might be due because the dog was scared when they put the needle in her bladder, so we should do the test again in a couple months!!!@!@@ more expenses not covered because they cant get test results to be right???,?? So i talked to the new insurance about it, they also said they could leave those abnormalies to be rechecked in 6 months and perhaps down the road take them off their pre-existing conditions!!@@

Ashley says:

Hi! So I now have 3 dogs- when we had 1 dog we did the put $50/month away and all was good. Our second dog had a number of issues since he was a puppy- close to $8000 to get him stable and managed. So we investigated pet insurance for our 3rd dog as she was a farm dog on our farm. Thank god we did. We got a top plan to start from Pet Secure- Pet secure 4- $110/month. She was a rescue so we figured start with the best plan and after the puppy years around 2-3 years old we can reduce her. Well, at a year, she was diagnosed with a rare cancer. We did everything possible for her. Pet Secure was amazing- no hassles and covered 80% of all costs. It added up as our bills totaled around $22,000 all said and done. We couldn’t have done it without insurance. Unfortunately she passed away. Her plan covered her cremation and they sent a nice card- no hassles with any claims. We still have 3 dogs and all are on a plan now after that experience. We saved up an emergency fund for them and have that for quick access to cash $7000 right now. Then we put all of them on a plan with Trupanion- $105 for all three with a $1000 deductible. It’s meant for emergencies or long term conditions and they are unlimited after your one time deductible for that condition. So far we haven’t needed it but the key thing is understanding emergency insurance versus comprehensive (including preventative care) and consider those with your financial situation. We love on a farm so it’s a common thing to have a healthy animal emergency fund but I think all pet owners should consider what their needs maybe in an emergency. I’m always researching if we went with the right option so this blog is great for others experiences.

Arlene Schneider says:

I think vetinarians are overcharging for their services and making it impossible for pet parents to care for their babies. You could pay $400. In one visit. Beware, they are preparing u for more charges because their planned treatment never ends.

For seniors or people on social assistance this is beyond their income. If vets have compassion for animals then they should make it more affordable for their pet parents. These people are vulnerable to being able to pay or not, putting their only companions at risk.

Kyle says:

Thanks for commenting Arlene. Just to play Devil’s Advocate, shouldn’t vets get to charge what the market dictates is fair? It takes roughly seven years to become a vet and amass the knowledge & skills needed to save animals – shouldn’t they be rewarded for all of that hard work? In any case, perhaps folks on a fixed budget need to look at pet insurance carefully.

Dr. Pippa Elliot says:

Julie, I think it’s likely that there are plenty of companies that would be willing to accept him, but they’ll be extremely reluctant to cover ANYTHING related to the amputation and your premium will probably be pretty high.

Unfortunately that’s just the way it goes with pets with pre-existing conditions 🙁

Lee Ann says:

Why would an amputation count as a pre-existing condition!?

Julie Taylor says:

Such an informative website! We’re about to adopt a 14 month old dog that we’vebeen fostering. He has had a leg amputation 2weeks ago. Do you think any pet insurance companies will accept him?
Thank you!

Kyle says:

Thanks Julie! It’s really tough to say for sure to be honest. It might cost a pretty penny to be honest.

Theresa says:

I work in claims in another sector of insurance so thought to look up the different options. It appears that Western Financial underwrites (& likely adjudicates) Pet Insurance for CAA, Petsecure, PC insurance, HBC, Desjardin, and the Personal. Essentially, there may be slight differences in wording/coverage/pricing, but at the end, it will be the same individuals finalizing your claim and applying provisions of that claim. So my suggestion with any insurance is always read the small print/coverage, exclusions, waiting period etc before committing to paying. 🙂

Cara says:

My little 2 1/2 yr. old Chi went to the vet yesterday for the 2st time since I got her 4 months ago. Sadly, I discovered she has an enlarged heart, heart murmur and 2 rotten, loose teeth with lots of plaque!!! When I asked about pet insurance (I’m on a pension) I was told I should have gotten it before I brought her in because now that I know her problems, they aren’t covered! WTH?! So now nobody will cover her and I’m on my own? But if I had purchased insurance and then gone to the vet I would have been covered? This is so unfair! I want to be able to provide my Sweet Pea with the very best care but how can I do that with no money? This is breaking my heart. ????????????

Kyle says:

I’m sorry to hear that you’re in a rough spot Cara. Unfortunately this is how insurance works. If we don’t purchase insurance when healthy, we can’t afford to pay out to all the claimants that need it.

Annette says:

I’ve been with PetSecure for 2 years now, Plan 4, most complete and the one who is suppose to give your family peace of mind.
My Mica will be 3 y.o. this winter and already had luxation patellar and two cases of gastritis that required ultrasound. =(
The good thing is that petsecure covered almost 80% of these treatments, the bad news is that now they have changed from 80% to 60%. There’s no free lunch and even when they stated that no changes were about number of claims you made and you know sales speech…. but sure they did. Even when my contract renewal was in August, they are going to change this rule from January.
Their customer service is amazing at the beginning but then after a few claims it declines.
Ah! they also excluded allergies for my Mica (allergic to vaccine also, most probably rabbies).
I guess pet insurance is a necessary evil….

Jill says:

I was with Vetinsurance (Trupanion) for nearly 10 years. Although they assure you your premiums will never go up due to age or claims they still go up, apparently admin costs and inflation. When i started the insurance (for my Pug) I was paying $28 per month, 9 years later it was over $80 per month and no longer affordable. So, be very careful before you sign up with anyone because it is almost impossible to change insurances with an old animal, too expensive and too many excluded pre-conditions. I am about to get a new puppy and am in two minds wether to take out insurance again.

Colleen Baillie says:

I’ve noticed all the insurance companies I’ve looked into are mentioned in this arrival. I just happened to come across another that isn’t mentioned, and that is the OSPCA Pet insurance. They have three different coverages and they start cheaper also. The thing I like most with them is when you add another pet you get a discount, and really I in my opinion are looking out for the best interest of the animal. Check it out and feel free to let me know what you think. I’m new at this insurance thing and could use advice. Thanks a bunch for opening my eyes up to some of these companies.

CD Baillie

Angie says:

Does anyone know of any existing pet insurance companies that cover vaccination costs? we just adopted a puppy and she will be having several more vaccinations as well as her rabies shot and later we would also like to neuter her. Any information will help. Thanks.

Hooman says:

24petwatch.com has a full package that you have to call the reps and get a customized quote for. But they will cover vaccination and regular check up bills as well.

Mady Wilson says:

Another to look up, for Ontario: OSPCA Pet Insurance (powered by PTZ Pet Insurance Brokers, which is connected to PetHealth in the States).

My premiums for both dogs are approx $50 each, under the top plan (which includes a $500 wellness plan per year). I’ve been on it for just about 6 months now and I’ve only submitted claims twice. Processing time is pretty long (6-8 weeks) and they do hunt through your pet history to find a pre-existing condition… I had a claim for both my dogs for horrible diarrhea and one was rejected because I’d mentioned diarrhea at her annual checkup 2 months before that… in their minds diarrhea was a pre-existing condition -_-

So I’d say that the prices are affordable, coverage is pretty good but unfortunately they will hunt for loopholes.

Karen Hay says:

My toy poodle just passed away from cushings diease. We had several thousand dollars in vet bills. If we ever get another dog I will definiantly get pet insurance. I have been looking into it already and I like the HBC insurance best because your premiums will not increase, just your deductible and it is very reasonable deductible.

young says:

@Karen Hay- I’m sorry to hear about your poodle 🙁 Cushings disease sounds awful. Yeah, seems like HBC is the winner. I haven’t had any friends personally use it, they use Vet Insurance and were happy with it.

Carl Luke says:

Been looking at the pet insurance available and they all sound like crooks. I did however look into HBC insurance and they have the most affordable plan out there. Any body have any experience with this company? I’m scared to make the commitment without first knowing from someone who uses them.

Sean says:

I have a basic petcare policy for my Dog, its the tenant care plan. Premiums were around $17 when we first signed up, and have increased to $21 (4years later). We have submitted 2 claims so far, with no problems at all. Both claims fell under the “first time illness” clause of our policy. Our Vet seems to be aware of how to write up the paper work in a way that makes then insurance company happy. I find it’s important to let your vet know that you have a policy and what it covers.

So far I have to say i’m pleased with the coverage. We mainly bough it to cover a potential catastrophe, not wanting to make the tough decision if our dog required thousands of dollars worth of care

parisindy says:

Oh i don’t expect them to pay for what has already happened.

But after having to have such a large bill, i couldn’t afford to have another bill like that, so i need to get insurance just incase. Though i have had many pets and this dog is the first one i have ever had such an accident with. (clutzy puppy). But after talking to my friend in the UK i was shocked by what their insurance covers and ours don’t. (she gets free regular vet visits)

In the end i think i am going to go with the HBC program. The premiums are the most resonable compared to the coverage at about 26$ per month. though i do worry they will increase as my puppy gets older.

now if i can keep my puppy from giving the cats a concussion with his cast life will be a lot easier lol

young says:

@parisindy- That’s what I did- and how I got my pet insurance in the first place. However I ended up cancellling because they always denied everything I claimed. I personally would recommend Vet Insurance or Trupanion. My friend had them (her cat was already 7 years old) and they were very good. She was actually very pleased with them. The thing you want to look for is a company that won’t scour your pet’s vet history and deny claims for pre-existing conditions.

parisindy says:

I have had a lot of pets. And currently i own a puppy and two cats. i have been very lucky and have not really had any major health issues with them until recently.

My puppy broke his leg 🙁 … the fee’s have been incredible. we are now hunting for pet insurance and its been very complicated. We don’t have a ton of money so totally a lower premium is needed.. we are leaning towards HBC but have not made a decision yet. I just wanted to thank you for your article.. its really helped us better understand out choices 🙂

young says:

@parisindy- I’m sorry to hear that your puppy broke his leg! 🙁 But usually pet insurance won’t cover you for anything that happens after the fact. Are you wanting to protect yourself in case of future accidents/ illness?

Hamster Cage says:

I read these articles talking about the cost of pet insurance and it still amazes me how much it costs. Lets hope our government does not try to get involved.

Sally says:

Hi, I am about to relocate from Australia to Vancouver with my 2.5 year old GSP. Am currently investigating insurance options and am very disappointed so far.
The (main) thing that concerns me over there is that they seem to specifically specify what is covered, as opposed to providing a blanket cover. This makes it much easier for them to deny a claim. The premiums are crazy expensive, AND they expect you to contribute to the claim on top of the excess….. hmmmm, this is so different to what I’m used to and it’s making me question if I should even take out insurance cover???

Basically, my dog’s policy here costs me $38 per month, is limited to $14,000 per year (which seems to be much more than the policies over there) and covers all accidents and illness (excluding pre-existing conditions which she doesn’t have any of). The excess is $100 and they pay 100% of the claim. They don’t try and find ways to deny the claim, and settlement of the claim is very fast (usually 2 weeks within receiving claim form and receipts). So, I am happy to pay for this policy as it gives me peace of mind, and so far has paid out more than I have paid in premiums and excesses.

From what I’ve read so far, I would have to pay much higher premiums, higher excess, pay a contribution to the claim, and it still might be denied… I need to do more reading but I really am on the fence with this one and am wondering if it is even worth taking out insurance.

Can anyone offer advice?

FYI – the insurance company I am currently with is Pet Plan Australia. Here is the link if anyone is interested in checking them out.

young says:

@Sally- Wow, Australia sounds amazing for pet insurance!!! You definitely won’t get a 100% payment of claim here with any amount of monthly premium. I think the best would be 90%. I hear that Vet Insurance is pretty good (it’s based out of North Vancouver) and my friend is happy with them so far. I had Pet Care and I wasn’t very satisfied. My friend with Vet Insurance hasn’t had any denied claim yet and they don’t separate the health problems like Pet Care does (e.g. kidneys won’t be covered but eyes will). Good luck and you will love Vancouver! Maybe I’ll see your dog at a dog park one day 🙂

Susan says:

I use to work in the pet insurance industry and would llike to know if your subscribers feel that there should be an unbiased consulting company to help client’s with their denied pet insurance claims as I believe that this does not exist and I am thinking of starting this in the near future.

young says:

@Susan- Interesting! We’ve got another “insider” here. I think it would be very helpful, but I suppose you would need to enlist the help of veterinarians, kind of like how they would do it for human insurance companies. That’s a fantastic idea. It can be very frustrating having your claims denied endlessly- you really feel at the mercy of the pet insurance companies.

DENISE says:

I think Vets should be involved in the claims process as they are the ones that understand the procedures.

Nancy Ball says:

Here’s another one I found while searching online today – CAA (B.C. and Ontario Only). The site claims if you are a CAA member, they will pay your first month’s fee

I’m also with PetCare and received a denial of a recent $1200 claim for removing bladder stones from my 15 yr. old Shih Tzu. She is still very healthy and only issue she has is mild cataracts, everything else is good.

young says:

Hi Nancy,

Thanks so much for sharing that link to CAA! I’ll check it out. Though I think I’m going to go with the plan of stashing $35 away per month for my dog’s needs instead of paying it to an insurance company.

What was PetCare’s reasoning for denying your claim?? Bladder stones couldn’t have been a pre-existing condition!