Best Affordable Pet Insurance Plans (2023 Review)
If you have a pet, you’re undoubtedly aware of the importance of pet insurance. Pets may get into all sorts of mischief or become sick at inopportune moments, necessitating long-term care. As a result, it’s essential to have affordable pet insurance to cover the financial damage caused by life-saving veterinary treatment. Several firms provide different levels of coverage, premiums, and deductibles, which gives pet owners many options to keep their pets healthy.
As a result, you should ensure you do thorough research before deciding to purchase pet insurance. As a customer and a devoted pet owner, you should seek low-cost or even free pet insurance that provides significant value to you and your furry babies.
In this review, you’ll find a breakdown of the best affordable insurance plans provided by:
- Spot: Best overall
- Lemonade: Most affordable
- ASPCA: Most experienced
- Embrace: Best for deductibles
- Healthy Paws: Best for chronic conditions
- Prudent Pet: Best for dog and cat parents who want basic options
- Figo: Most flexible reimbursement rates
- Wagmo: Best for immediate reimbursement
- Trupanion: Most flexible deductible
Best Affordable Pet Insurance Plans
Most pet insurers have three options for policies and plans, comprehensive, accident, and wellness/preventative coverage. You should always get the most coverage possible to minimize costs. At the very least, you want to cover your pet for tests, vaccinations, and essential checkups. This is key to keeping your pet its healthiest and prolonging its life.
|Provider||Waiting Period||Money-back Guarantee||Maximum Enroll Age||BBB Rating|
|Spot||14 days*||Yes||No age limit||A|
|Lemonade||14 days for illnesses*, 48 hours for accidents||No||14 years old||N/A|
|Embrace||14 days for illnesses*, 48 hours for accidents||Yes||14 years old||A+|
|Healthy Paws||15 days*||Yes||14 years old||A-|
|ASPCA||15 days*||Yes||No age limit||N/A|
|Prudent Pet||5 days for accidents, 14 days for illnesses*||Yes||No age limit||A+|
|Figo||1 day for injuries, 14 for illness*||Yes||No age limit||B|
|Wagmo||15 days for accidents and illnesses*||No||15 years old||N/A|
|Trupanion||5 days for injuries, 30 days for illnesses*||Yes||14 years old||A+|
*Certain conditions, such as cruciate ligaments or orthopedic conditions, may have longer waiting period times, usually six months to a year. This is common among many pet insurance providers, but most illnesses will be covered after the waiting period listed above.
Spot Pet Insurance
Spot pet insurance, based in Florida, has been around since 2019. The insurance it offers is provided by Crum & Forster Pet Insurance Group. Spot uses Cesar Millan as its spokesperson, giving it some credibility even though it’s only been around for a few years.
It offers customizable coverage and has annual limits that range from $2,500 to unlimited, making it an excellent option for pet owners wanting the best for their pets. In addition, plans start at only $10 for accident-only coverage and $16 for complete coverage. Multiple preventive care packages can also be added to a policy starting at $10 per month.
Spot won’t cover:
- Pre-existing Conditions
- Cosmetic Procedures
- Breeding Costs
Spot is an excellent affordable pet insurance option due to its 10% multi-pet discount on added pets with a choice of reimbursement amount. Cat insurance options average $18-$25 a month, and for dog insurance, $30-$50 a month gives you peace of mind that you haven’t overpaid for coverage.
If you want more info and examples of monthly premiums, read our full review of Spot.
- No age limit
- No exam fees
- No prescription pet food coverage
- no mobile app
ASPCA Pet Insurance
The ASPCA® is the oldest and largest animal welfare organization in the United States, established in 1866. Its pet insurance is provided through a collaboration with Hartville Pet Insurance Group, one of the country’s oldest and biggest pet insurance companies.
The ASPCA pet insurance policy is one of the cheaper options on the market and still covers many issues. It offers three levels of coverage including:
- Accident Only plan
- Injuries and Illnesses
- Injuries, Illnesses and Advanced Care
The ASPCA also offers preventive care options for both dogs and cats. Starting at just $10 a month, it’s a no-brainer. The average cost of ASPCA’s pet health insurance is $49 a month for dogs and $29 a month for cats. All coverage levels come with a 15-day waiting period and cover issues such as broken bones, hospitalization, and X-rays.
Some of the ways you can save money with the ASPCA include its 30-day money-back guarantee and 10% multi-pet discount.
You can find more details in our full review of ASPCA pet insurance.
- Low deductibles
- 9.5/10 on Trustpilot
- 15-day waiting period
- No online claim submission
Lemonade Pet Insurance
Lemonade Insurance Company is a fully regulated and licensed insurance firm based in New York City. Lemonade provides a wide range of insurance products. Lemonade also offers home, renters, and condo insurance, among other things. In addition, Lemonade is now available in 35 states, with plans to expand into additional states soon.
Lemonade prides itself on donating to reputable causes instead of focusing on profit. This is done through the Lemonade GiveBack program. The program works by taking a flat rate after claims have settled and donating up to 40% to charities chosen by policyholders.
Lemonade offers pet insurance plans that focus on ease of use and processing quickly. It also has an app that will allow you to track your policy and submit claims. By doing so, it can offer inexpensive premiums.
Lemonade offers a 10% discount if you have any other insurance policies with the company, such as home or renters insurance. It even provides a 5% multi-pet discount, making it an excellent option for those with more than one pet.
Lemonade offers one basic accident and illness plan. The treatment of injuries or illnesses your pet suffers is covered by this plan, plus diagnostic testing, surgical procedures, and prescription medicines. With plans starting at $10/month, Lemonade is an excellent choice for affordable pet health insurance.
Learn more about Lemonade in our full review.
- Optional wellness plan
- Multi-pet discount
- Easy-to-use app
- Not available in all 50 states
- Exam fees covered via add-on
Embrace Pet Insurance
Another great and affordable option comes from Embrace. Established in 2003, Embrace was founded due to a Wharton Business School project, and it has assisted over 100,000 pets.
Embrace even donates $2 to a pet-related charity for each policy purchased.
The company has an employee match program, where it matches 100% of all charitable donations made by employees. Embrace has also been working with American Modern Insurance Group since 2012 for underwriting.
Embrace makes the affordable list due to its cost-effective policies averaging $30 to $40 for dogs and $15 to $20 for cats. In addition, its coverage, referred to as nose-to-tail insurance coverage, offers customizable plans with deductibles ranging from $200-$1000.
One of the ways you can save money with Embrace is the Healthy Pet Deductible that allows you to reduce your deductible by $50 per year if you don’t file a claim. Also, Embrace offers a Wellness Reward for routine care. It will give you money towards other procedures when you spend money on training and grooming services.
Also, Embrace offers a 10% multi-pet discount and a 5% military discount.
To learn all the ins and out of Embrace, check out our full review.
- Mobile app for 24/7 access
- Healthy Pet deductible
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Strict pre-existing condition guidelines
- No zero-deductible options
Healthy Paws Pet Insurance
Healthy Paws was founded in 2009. The policies it offers are underwritten by the Chubb Group, an A+ rated insurer. It also has grant programs that have led to millions in donations to rescues, such as Every Quote Gives Hope™ and Refer-A-Friend.
Healthy Paws offers customizable coverage on its plans with customizable deductibles and reimbursement rates. It does charge a one-time new customer fee of $25, but with plans starting at $8 a month for cats and $20 a month for dogs, it is still one of the best choices for pet insurance.
Healthy Paws doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions like most companies, but it does cover:
- Hereditary Conditions
- Congenital Conditions
- Chronic Conditions
- Blood Tests
- Prescription Medications
- Emergency Care
For a complete list of what is and isn’t covered, take a look at our full review of Healthy Paws.
- Customizable coverage
- Mobile app for claims
- No vet exam fee coverage
- No wellness or preventative care options
Prudent Pet Insurance
Prudent Pet offers comprehensive and accident-only insurance to meet your needs and budget. Prudent Pet was founded in 2018, making it one of the newest pet insurers on the market. Despite this, the plans are insured by more well-known names in the insurance business. Markel Insurance Company is the underwriter for Prudent Pet’s policies.
Prudent offers three options for policies, Accident-only, Essential, and Ultimate. Each features all of the previous tier’s benefits with additional benefits like behavioral disorder treatment, hip dysplasia, and cancer treatment.
Prudent also offers wellness packages starting at $8 a month for cats and $12 a month for dogs. The plans come in three tiers to choose how much coverage you want.
Reimbursement options range from 70 to 90%, with annual deductibles ranging from $100-$1,000. Prudent’s waiting period is five days for an accident, 14 days for illness, and six months for knee or ligament issues.
For all the info you need, take a look at our full review of Prudent Pet.
- Chose any vet for care
- 24/7 chat with a vet feature
- No maximum age limit
- Fixed annual limits
- No mobile app
Figo Pet Insurance
The average Figo Pet Insurance customer pays between $23 to $25 per month for coverage, making this company more expensive than average. But you get more for your money: Figo’s policies and plans tend to be more comprehensive than what you’ll find from many of its competitors. Each of Figo’s plans include both accident and illness coverage with fewer exclusions than other companies, meaning that you can use your benefits in a wider range of circumstances.
Another plus: Figo offers some of the most customizable plans on the market, allowing you to tailor your policy to your financial priorities. With a variety of coverage levels, deductibles and reimbursement levels to choose from, you can save money on your monthly premium if you’d like, or pay more each month for better coverage when something goes wrong with your pet’s health.
For example, we quoted a bare bones policy offering $5,000 in annual coverage with a $750 deductible and 70% reimbursement rate at just $11 per month for a 4-year-old beagle mix. However, you can also opt for unlimited annual coverage and a $100 deductible and 90% reimbursement rate for about $74 per month. While you’ll have to do a little more homework before buying a Figo policy, you can be relatively certain you’ll be able to find the right mix for you.
- Option for unlimited coverage available
- Wide range of deductible options allow you to better customize price
- Not the most affordable provider
- Unlimited coverage can be exceptionally expensive
Wagmo Pet Insurance
Wagmo Pet Insurance costs between $22 and $55 for most pet owners, which is higher than the industry average. However, plans include coverage for both accidents and illnesses, and are available with lifetime limits of $100,000. Pet owners can also choose up to a 100% reimbursement rate, which can help provide peace-of-mind for pet owners with limited savings for veterinary emergencies.
Where Wagmo really shines is when it comes to wellness care. Wagmo offers three tiers of wellness coverage ranging in price from $12 to $36 per month in most areas, and you don’t need a traditional insurance policy to qualify. This can help keep your pet healthy and avoid costly vet bills in the future.
- Can buy wellness coverage independently of insurance
- Up to 100% reimbursement rates
- Higher plan prices
- Not available in all states
Trupanion Pet Insurance
Trupanion Pet Insurance is a straightforward accident and illness plan insurance provider offering completely customizable deductibles. With Trupanion, you can choose any deductible between $0 and $1,000, adjusting your coverage and payment and viewing how they will affect your premium in real-time. Expect to pay between $55 and $106 a month for coverage issued through Trupanion.
- Completely customizable deductible
- Doesn’t automatically increase premiums annually as your pet ages
- No preventative coverage options
- Must choose a high deductible to get the most advantageous premium pricing
Compare the cheapest pet insurance plans
To help you get a better idea of what you might expect to pay for pet insurance coverage, we collected quotes from a few of the top providers in the industry. Quotes below represent the more affordable and most expensive coverage option from each plan for a three-year-old male mixed-breed dog living in Atlanta, Georgia. Quotes were collected on 1/14/2023.
$13.43 to $26.88
Accident and illness
$14.97 to $81.43
Accident and illness
$21.02 to $75.09
Accident and illness
$22.51 to $73.80
Accident and illness
$25.16 to $49.48
Accident and illness
$33.63 to $71.44
Accident and illness
$38.92 to $138.30
Accident and illness
$47.54 to $61.97
Accident and illness
$61.92 to $148.99
Accident and illness
What does pet insurance cover?
Most pet insurance coverage plans are accident and illness plans, which means that they provide coverage for veterinary services no matter the emergency. You can expect most accident and illness plans to provide you with reimbursement for the cost of:
- Diagnostic tests
- Prescription drugs
- Inpatient treatment
- Physical therapy
Most pet insurance plans do not provide any coverage for routine care, breeding care, or cosmetic surgeries. While you’ll need to cover veterinary care costs you incur out-of-pocket first, your pet insurance provider will reimburse you for qualifying claims after filing. Be sure to review your policy before signing onto coverage so you know exactly what is and isn’t covered.
How does pet insurance work?
There are multiple types of pet insurance plans, and the type of plan that you buy for your pet will dictate which vet bills you’ll have help paying. Pet insurance plans reimburse you for a percentage of qualifying veterinary care bills according to the terms of your coverage. The following are three of the most common types of pet insurance plans you might want to purchase.
Accident-only insurance plans provide you with coverage for veterinary bills associated with sudden, traumatic accidents. For example, an accident-only plan may cover x-rays and prescription medications associated with broken bones following a car accident, but it will not cover the same tests if they are needed for a sickness that develops over time (like cancer).
Accident and illness plans cover diagnostics, treatments, and prescriptions needed for both sudden accidents as well as illnesses that develop over time. Most pet owners will want to choose more comprehensive accident and illness coverage, as illnesses after often more long-term expenses.
Preventative care plan
Preventative care plans, also known as wellness plans, help cover routine care and treatments that your pet might need when they are sick. Examples can include annual checkups, dental cleanings, and routine blood work.
How Can You Make Pet Insurance More Affordable?
There isn’t any “one-size-fits-all” insurance policy when it comes to pet insurance. That is why most providers allow you to customize a plan to make it match your budget and needs. What factors will come into play with customization?
It’s what you’re responsible for paying before pet insurance reimbursing you. Increasing the deductible brings down the cost of the policy. Choose a deductible that matches your budget by asking yourself what you’re comfortable paying before you’d have to be repaid.
Tip: See if the insurance policy has an annual deductible or per-incident deductible. Some providers make you pay the deductible for every incident. This means that if in one year your kitty gets an ear infection then, later on, requires an operation to extract a toy he ingested, you will need to pay the deductible two times.
It’s the most the pet policy will reimburse you within a policy year. It reduces the annual maximum and decreases the policy’s cost.
It is vital that you keep your furry pal in mind as you determine this. If you choose a $10,000 annual maximum for your domestic shorthair kitten, you may be overpaying for the insurance plan. However, you might want to think about a $15,000 maximum if you own a large purebred pooch who might be susceptible to hereditary conditions.
Tip: Watch out for “per-incident maximums.” A few providers have limitations per illness or injury. For instance, they might say that they only will reimburse as much as $5,000 for cancer within your pet’s lifetime; however, cancer treatments over a period of years can easily reach $10,000.
It’s the percent of the bill which is reimbursed after the deductible is met. Lower reimbursement percentages reduce your premium. Some providers only provide one reimbursement percentage choice, not permitting you to modify your premium based upon this feature.
A few pet insurance providers have riders for things such as genetic and hereditary conditions or even cancer. That means you must specifically ask for those things to be covered. Otherwise, they aren’t included. Adding those things will increase the annual or monthly price.
What Will Impact Your Pet’s Premium?
All of us are fairly clear on what might impact your health insurance premiums or auto insurance premiums. However, when it comes to your dog or cat’s premium, many factors are considered to determine the cost. What you’ll pay for your Labrador likely will be the same as what a neighbor pays for his Pomeranian or even what your mother-in-law pays for her Lab in some other state. Some factors are things you’re able to control. Some are not.
First, let’s rule out some typical assumptions about things some folks believe affect their premium. Contrary to what some think, the following items don’t impact your premium:
- Where you got the pet from and whether she or he has “paperwork.”
- The pet’s “extracurriculars,” like therapy visits or agility games
- The pet’s training level
- Animal’s weight
- Declawed status
- Whether the pet lives outdoors or indoors
- Prior chronic conditions or medical history
Let us take a look into some factors which affect your rate:
Frequently, canines are more expensive than felines to insure. There are a couple of reasons why: 1.) Dogs generally are larger than cats and require more expense to medicate, sedate, care for, and hospitalize. 2.) Canines generally are more prone to accidents than felines. When was the last time your kitty swallowed a corn cob, which cost $1,400 in veterinarian bills?
The “larger the breed, the more expensive” logic also applies here. A 130-pound Newfoundland is more expensive to sedate, care for, and medicate than a 4-pound Yorkie. However, an additional component of size affects price: predisposition to genetic issues. Shepherds and Rottweilers are a lot more likely than Cocker Spaniels and Shi-Tzus to require an expensive operation for things such as hip dysplasia and cruciate injuries.
However, it isn’t only about size. Even the smaller breeds have their fair share of genetic problems. As it’ll come down to it, increased genetic illness risk or predisposition to specific injuries may place any pooch at greater risk. That is why we have levels of risk for the most common breeds and most common mixed breeds. Therefore, a Pit Bull mix may be somewhat “riskier” because of his predisposition to knee problems and cancers than a relatively healthy, small pure breed. It is also possible that a Heinz 57 mutt will be less pricey than most pure breeds.
One factor for pricing for gender did not come about until just a couple of years ago, yet research shows that males are somewhat more likely to be seen by a veterinarian than their female counterparts. And why? Could it be hormonal? Their personality types? Difference in size? Odds are, it is a combination of all those things.
Neuter or Spay Status
On that note, we’ve noticed reductions in risk for neutered or spayed pets. While we are completely aware that many responsible pet owners choose not to alter their furry pals, it is a fact that spayed females cannot get uterine infections, just as neutered males cannot get testicular cancer. As there might be some behavioral elements to the risk related to in-tact pets, we all agree that having an animal “fixed” will mean one less thing to insure.
It is a hard pill to swallow for those who live in the city, yet it’ll come as no surprise that the price of vet care is greater in major metropolitan regions than in rural or suburban areas. Not only are you more likely to locate more advanced care within the major cities in the form of medical centers and alternative care clinics, but the veterinarians also earn a bit more to account for the price of living differential.
Here’s some positive news: your animal’s coverage will not decrease as she or he ages. Your 12-year-old Shepherd will still have the same payouts and coverage he did when he was a 5-year-old or puppy.
Here’s the bad news: your rates will increase. Sometimes an older dog who was healthy for almost all of his 12 years could have quite a few medical bills in his last couple of years. With that increased price came an increased risk that most senior pet owners are usually familiar with. The premium likely will reflect this risk.
Shopping for pet insurance has many variables. Costs will range depending on your pet’s age and breed. Some companies will cover services like spaying and neutering, while others only cover accidents and provide illness coverage. But if you’re looking for affordable pet insurance, any of the options we have covered will help keep your veterinary bills at a minimum.
When shopping for the best pet insurance, make sure you get multiple pet insurance quotes and get the best coverage for your pet’s needs at the best price.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it easy to find cheap pet insurance?
Yes, finding cheap pet insurance can be easy if you’re willing to shop around. Be sure to get quotes from at least three competing pet insurers before you choose where to buy coverage to be sure that you’re getting the best price.
Are wellness care add-ons worth it?
Wellness care add-ons might be worth the cost if you have a younger pet, which may need more regular care.
Is pet insurance cheaper for cats or dogs?
Cat insurance is typically less expensive than dog insurance. But, of course, this will depend on your pet’s age, the breed, and the issues the breed is prone to.
Does pet insurance cover all veterinary expenses?
No, pet insurance won’t cover all expenses you build up at the vet’s office. However, insurance will typically cover accidents and illnesses that aren’t pre-existing. Some policies will even offer wellness and preventative care add-ons that add additional benefits to your policy, like wellness exams and vaccines.
What is the average cost of pet insurance per month?
Pet insurance costs will always vary based on age, breed, species, location, and insurance provider. The average cost range for a cat is $10 to $40 per month, and for a dog, it’s $20 to $60 per month.
Here at 365 Pet Insurance, our research team looks to examine all pet insurance policies and comes up with reviews based on:
- Plan options
- Customer service
- Species available
- Wellness benefits
We’ve created a 5-star rating system to score pet insurance brands based on a 100-point scale. To develop a list of the best pet insurance plans, we looked into plans, rating coverage, claims handling, reimbursements, deductibles, and limitations.
Each factor is weighted differently based on the following factors:
- Monthly Pricing (25 points): How each pet insurance company charges for their plans is a crucial part of the decision-making process of the customer. Affordable rates and comprehensive coverage are the defining characteristics of providing the best pet insurance.
- Coverage (20 points): We scored companies based on the treatments and procedures they cover. Providers offering broader coverage and more unique treatments received more points. Pet insurance policies are not offered by all companies for older pets. Providers who have an age limit on the pets they cover were deducted points.
- Plans (15 points): Pet insurance providers offer accident-and-illness plans, accident-only plans, wellness add-ons, and pet preventive care add-ons, so customers can choose the right plan for their pets. We also factored in costs to achieve the most comprehensible review for your pet’s needs.
- Customization Options (10 points): You can ensure your pet only gets what they need by customizing your policy. A higher score was earned by providers who offered a greater range of annual limits, deductibles, and reimbursement rates.
- Customer Service (10 points): We scored companies based on their website accessibility and usability, mobile apps, and grating points to companies with the most customer experience options.
- Industry Reputation (10 points): We assessed each company’s industry reputation by reviewing up-to-date BBB ratings and accreditation information, as well as their years of experience in the industry.
- Waiting Periods (10 points): Companies with shorter accident and illness waiting periods scored higher than companies with longer waiting periods.
Our team revisits each company’s information at the end of every month to make updates and ensure the information is as accurate as possible.