Top5 Review

Petplan Pet Insurance Review

Petplan's happy dogs and catsPetplan is a pet insurance company that provides coverage for dogs and cats. Founded in 1976 in the U.K., it entered in the U.S. market in 2002 and today is the largest pet insurance provider in the world, and thus our top pick for The Most Popular Pet Insurance Provider.

Overview

Plans

Petplan’s plans insure pets of all ages and cover accidents and illness, as well as dental disease, hereditary conditions and even routine vet exam fees. 

Charitable Component

Petplan partners with Best Friends Animal Society, a nationwide animal rescue and advocacy organization. For every policy sold, Petplan donates to the Best Friends Animal Society’s Save Them All campaign, which helps adoptable pets find their forever homes.

Pros

A Petplan ad featuring a Jack Russel Terrier

  • Covers fees associated with lost pets: If your pet becomes lost, Petplan will help you do whatever it takes to find them. Petplan will help cover the cost of signage, as well as a reward. 
  • Covers fees associated with canceled vacations due to pet illness or injury: Petplan goes above and beyond with some of its policies, and it’s “canceled vacation policy” is one of them. They understand that pets are part of the family, and if your pet is sick you won’t want to leave them and go on vacation. Thankfully in addition to simply understanding this, they also help cover any fees you may incur for cancelling your travel plans. 
  • No lifetime or per condition claims limit: No lifetime or per condition limits mean your claims won’t be capped at a certain point should your pet become “too sick” or “sick too often.” 
  • BBB rating: A+ (under its incorporated name, Fetch, Inc.): A BBB A+ rating is important as it further illustrates customer satisfaction and in an unbiased way.  In a sense, it’s a “proven” score. According to the Better Business Bureau, “BBB ratings represent the BBB’s opinion of how the business is likely to interact with its customers. The BBB rating is based on information BBB is able to obtain about the business, including complaints received from the public. BBB seeks and uses information directly from businesses and from public data sources.”
  • Fast claims payments: Claims are typically paid within 5-14 days (but can take as long as 30 days).
  • Easy-to-use app enables you to quickly submit claims: While some people may prefer paying their bills by mail, most of us enjoy paying them online, as effortlessly and quickly as possible. Petplan’s easy to use app makes filing claims are simple as possible. 
  • 24/7 customer care: If you ever has a questions about your policy or an urgent need, Petplan’s customer service team is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
  • Covers hip dysplasia: Hip dysplasia is one of the most commom heriditary conditions found in large dogs, and most pet insurance companies don’t cover it. Petplan covers hereditary conditions such as hip dysplasia as long as there were not any visible symptoms before your dog was enrolled under Petplan or during the 15-day waiting period.
  • Charitable Component: Petplan partners with Best Friends Animal Society, a nationwide animal rescue and advocacy organization. For every policy sold, Petplan donates to the Best Friends Animal Society’s Save Them All campaign, which helps adoptable pets find their forever homes.
  • Discounts: Petplan provides a 5 percent discount if you purchase your pet insurance plan online.
  • Alternative therapy: Not all pet insurance providers cover alternative therapies, but Petplan does. Veterinary acupuncture, homeotherapy, chiropractic treatment and stem cell therapy are all covered as long as the treatments are recommended and administered by a licensed vet.

Cons

  • Can be significantly more expensive than competitors: Depending on what type of pet you have, your pet’s age, and your city of residence, Petplan may be more expensive than the competition. We recommend getting quotes from a few providers and making your decision. Keep in mind though that price isn’t everything, and Petplan offers benefits that other pet insurance providers do not. 
  • Complaints from veterinarians that Petplan requires more busywork for them as it requires all claims to have medical record documentation and vets’ initials, unlike competitors: You want to keep your vet happy. While Petplan’s claims process is simple for the pet owner due to the easy app submission process, that is not the case for vets. Hopefully, this is something that can be improved soon. 
  • Complaints from existing customers of premium increase being drastically higher than competitors’: This is cause for concern, but again is a risk you take with any pet insurance company. Some pet insurance companies guaranttee they won’t raise your monthly premiums due to your pet’s age, but they cannot guarantee it will not increase due to inflation or other factors. 
  • In order for coverage to apply, you must take your pet to the vet within 48 hours of noticing symptoms of an illness or injury: If you notice your pet is ill or injured, we hope you would take your pet to the vet immediately. However, it must be noted that this a requirement of Petplan. If your pet is injured or sick and you do not take them to the vet within two days, they will not be covered by pet insurance.  
  • Complaints from existing customers that Petplan delays payment on claims: Petplan states that all eligible claims will be paid within 30 days, but there are customers that say their claims have been delayed. That being said, Petplan does have an A+ BBB rating, so these complaints are worth mentioning, but have not affected the company’s non-biased customer satisfaction score. 
  • CLL/ACL Limitations: Petplan will only cover CCL (ACL) treatment on a second leg if the first leg remains healed for 12 months
  • No wellness plan: Wellness plans are what cover routine and preventative veterinary care. Most pet insurance companies exclude wellness plans, or offer them for an additional fee. If this is something you require in your pet’s insurance coverage, then Petplan is not the best pet insurance provider for you. 

Product Stats

  • Underwriter: XL Specialty Insurance Company (XL Catlin)
  • Vet exams are required to establish your pet’s baseline of health.
    • Vet exam must be either 60 days before or 30 days after enrollment.
    • Pet should have a vet exam 12 months prior to policy date; if not, any medical conditions found during the next vet exam will be excluded from coverage.
    • Pets older than six should be seen within one month of the effective date of the policy to establish a baseline of health.
  • 6-month waiting period for cruciate ligaments and patellas can be waived.
    • If your pet is examined within 30 days of policy issuance and the vet specifically notes that there is no indication of any knee problems, this waiting period can be declared null.
    • Petplan policy states: “Coverage will be afforded if your pet is examined by a veterinarian within the first 30 days of the policy and the medical record specifically notes your pet does not have any pre-existing conditions relating to the knees, subject to the waiting period. But if this isn’t done and then there is a knee problem, then the other knee gets excluded, too.”
  • Pre-existing conditions defined by Petplan: 
    • “A medical condition which first occurred or showed clinical sign(s) before the effective date of this policy or which occurred or showed clinical sign(s) during the policy waiting period.”
  • Claim payments
    • Claims must be submitted within 90 days following treatment. This can be done via claim forms or the mobile app. 
    • Claims payments are typically paid within 5 to 14 days (but can take up to 30).
  • Petplan covers curable, pre-existing conditions after 365 days.
  • Receive a discount on your premium if you don’t file a claim (2 percent the first year, 4 percent the second year, 6 percent the third year, 8 percent the fourth year and 10 percent the fifth year).

 

Features

dog and cat on petplan pet insurance

What Is Covered

  • Injuries
  • Accidents
  • Non-routine veterinary exams and visits
  • Specialists
  • Emergency care
  • Imaging (like MRIs, CAT scans and ultrasounds)
  • Diagnostic treatments
  • Prescription medicines
  • Cancer
  • Dental (non-routine) treatment
  • Surgery
  • Rehabilitation
  • Alternative therapies
  • Hereditary conditions
  • Chronic conditions

What Is Not Covered

  • Pre-existing conditions
  • Wellness and routine care
  • Teeth cleaning
  • Vaccines
  • Neutering and spaying

Waiting Periods

To help mitigate fraudulent claims, Petplan enacts a coverage waiting period. This is to prevent someone from enrolling in pet insurance the day their pet is injured. 

  • 5 days: Accidents
  • 15 days: Illnesses
  • 6 months: Cruciates and patellas

Costs 

petplan pet insurance | puppy with cast on paw

Petplan has annual coverage limits of $2,500; $5,000; $10,000; $15,000; $20,000; $25,000 or unlimited. Monthly premiums differ based on the coverage limit you choose; the lower the limit, the lower your monthly premium. Petplan offers $250 to $1,000 annual deductibles and 70, 80 and 90 percent reimbursements. The higher your deductible and the lower your reimbursement, the lower your monthly premium will be.

Sample Rates by Breed

As different breeds tend to have different ailments and injuries, Petplan’s rates vary. Other factors that can cause differences in rates include location and age of your pet. Below are sample rates for common breeds. To get an exact quote for your pet, visit Petplan’s Get Your Quote page

 

BreedLabrador RetrieverEnglish Cocker SpanielGerman ShepherdYorkshire TerrierYorkshire TerrierYorkshire TerrierMixed Breed Cat
Age2 years8 years4 years6 years2 months2 months2 years
LocationFlorida
(zip code: 33601)
Illinois
(zip code: 60290)
California
(zip code: 90001)
New York
(zip code: 10001)
New York
(zip code: 10001)
Florida
(zip code: 33601)
Washington D.C.
(zip code: 20001)
Price Per Month$87.73$105.98$53.69$85.78$36.02$27.12$34.05
Reimbursement Level80%70%90%90%90%80%80%
Annual Deductible$250$500$500$250$250$250$250

 

Cavalier King Charles dog licking his lips

Conclusion

While Petplan does offer more extensive coverage in some areas than its competitors (for example, routine vet visits and dental), overall they are more expensive. Looking at coverage for a two-year-old Labrador retriever in Florida with an 80 percent reimbursement level, for example, Petplan’s monthly premium is 77 percent more than Healthy Paws’ plan.

Petplan has mixed reviews among existing customers and veterinarians, as well. Existing customers have criticized Petplan for increases in premiums and poor customer service. Veterinarians complain that Petplan requires more paperwork on their end than competitors.

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