Healthy Paws vs. Nationwide Pet Insurance (2023)

by | 02/23/2023

With so many pet insurance companies on the market, you may be struggling to decide which one is the best option for your favorite furry family member. We know how important it is to select a provider that suits your budget and your pet’s veterinary needs; you need to know you can provide optimal care for your pet without putting a dent in your savings.

We’ve compiled this review of Healthy Paws vs. Nationwide pet insurance to help you compare two top options on the market. These providers offer different coverage rates and levels of customization, so you’ll be able to consider what works best for you.

In this Healthy Paws vs. Nationwide comparison, we’ll discuss:

  • Main coverage differences
  • Plan costs
  • Customization levels
  • Real policyholder reviews
  • FAQs
Healthy Paws Nationwide


  • Dedication to animal welfare charities
  • Unlimited lifetime benefit on all plans
  • Low deductible and copay options


  • No preventive care add-ons
  • Coverage limited by age


  • Optional preventive care plan
  • Exotic pet coverage available
  • Different reimbursement options


  • Plans aren’t very customizable
  • Upper age limits

Healthy Paws vs. Nationwide: What Are the Main Coverage Differences?

Before we dive into our reviews of each provider, here’s a quick comparison of some important features and exclusions. 

Healthy Paws offers unlimited lifetime payout on every plan, so you’ll never run out of coverage. Nationwide caps annual coverage at $10,000 if you select its reimbursement percentage plan. This is a relatively low coverage cap, which is something to consider if you anticipate high veterinary bills.

On the other hand, Nationwide offers preventive care coverage for your pet’s routine care needs. This is an important feature for pet parents seeking reimbursements for wellness services like checkups and vaccinations. Nationwide also offers a discount if you enroll multiple pets in health insurance plans.

Plan Features Healthy Paws Nationwide
Our rating 4.6/5 4.1/5
Average monthly cost

$40 for dogs

$20 for cats

$25-$60 for dogs

$15-$35 for cats

Annual limit Always unlimited $10,000
Deductible $100-$750 $250
Reimbursement 50%-90%* 50% or 70%
Preventative/wellness option? No Yes
Pre-existing condition coverage No No
Multi-pet discount? No Yes

*Healthy Paws’ copay and deductible options will vary based on your pet’s age at enrollment.

Healthy Paws Insurance Coverage Overview

Healthy Paws pet insurance provides comprehensive accident/illness coverage for cats and dogs. Every Healthy Paws plan has unlimited per-item, annual, and lifetime payouts, so you’ll never max out your coverage.

What Does Healthy Paws Cover?

  • Unexpected accidents and illnesses
  • Hereditary conditions
  • Congenital conditions
  • Chronic conditions
  • Cancer
  • Diagnostic testing and treatments
  • X-rays, CT scans, MRIs, and ultrasounds
  • Blood tests
  • Surgery 
  • Hospitalization
  • Prescription medications
  • Emergency care
  • Specialty care
  • Alternative treatments

What Does Healthy Paws Not Cover?

  • Pre-existing conditions
  • Preventative care
  • Spay/neuter procedures
  • Office visit fees and examination fees
  • Breeding costs
  • Boarding or grooming fees
  • Birds and exotic pets
  • Illnesses or accidents that occur during waiting periods
  • Pets over 14 years old*

*This age limit applies if you try to enroll your pet past its 14th birthday. If you enrolled your pet in a plan before it turned 14, your coverage would continue.

How Much Does Healthy Paws Cost?

On average, Healthy Paws costs $40 per month for dog insurance and $20 per month for cat insurance. Like other pet insurance providers, Healthy Paws’ rates are higher for dogs, older pets, and those living in higher-cost areas.

Healthy Paws doesn’t offer any add-on plans, so you’ll just pay for your pet’s health insurance.

Discounts Available

Healthy Paws doesn’t offer any discounts at this time.

Sample Monthly Pricing

Here are some sample premiums for a 2-year-old pet in Boise, Idaho. We selected an 80% reimbursement percentage and a $250 deductible for these quotes.

Species/Breed Sample Price for Medium Mixed Breed Dog Sample Price for Golden Retriever (Dog) Sample Price for Domestic Shorthair Cat Sample Price for Domestic Mediumhair Cat
Accident and Illness Plan $47 $69 $19 $19

Why Choose Healthy Paws?

You should consider choosing Healthy Paws if you’re passionate about animal welfare. The Healthy Paws Foundation donates to deserving animal shelters and rescue organizations every time someone retrieves a free online quote. The foundation has donated nearly $2 million since 2009.

Healthy Paws is an excellent option for pet owners seeking a straightforward plan for unexpected vet bills. It’s not a good choice for preventive care coverage for routine vet costs.

Below are some real customer reviews. These Healthy Paws policyholders explain what they like and dislike about the company.

“I’ve had this insurance for three years now, and it has more than paid for itself. I’ve used it twice now, and the turnaround time for payment was very fast both times. Definitely recommend!” –Spencer D., TrustPilot.

“Very easy process. I paid my vet, uploaded my itemized statement and all medical records to the Healthy Paws site, then filed my claim. It was approved in two days, and I received a check in less than a week. Insurance for humans should be this simple!” –D. Marcus, TrustPilot.

“Healthy Paws continually raises its prices. This year, they raised their rates to 45% higher than when I initially signed up. There are much cheaper options for the same coverage.” –Paul E., TrustPilot.

For more information, check out our comprehensive Healthy Paws pet insurance review.

Nationwide Pet Insurance Coverage Overview

Nationwide pet insurance offers two main plan options for your pet’s health insurance. The plans operate on different reimbursement systems, but each covers your pet’s unexpected accidents and illnesses.

With any Nationwide plan, you’ll get access to the 24/7 vet helpline, an on-demand chat feature staffed by experienced veterinary professionals.

The Major Medical plan has a $250 annual deductible and operates on a per-incident benefit schedule. With this plan, your reimbursement for various incidents is capped at a specific dollar amount. 

The Whole Pet plan covers accidents and illnesses, hereditary and congenital conditions, cancer, and specialty vet visits. Whole Pet is Nationwide’s only customizable plan and allows you to choose from a 50 or 70% reimbursement level. Otherwise, the plan has a $250 annual deductible and $10,000 annual benefit limit.

Whole Pet operates on a reimbursement system based on the overall cost of your pet’s treatment. After your vet visit, you’ll submit a claim, and Nationwide will reimburse a percentage of your invoice.

You can purchase Nationwide’s Pet Wellness plan for coverage of your pet’s routine care services. This plan operates on a per-item benefit schedule, so you’ll be reimbursed up to a certain dollar amount depending on the service. You can purchase a Pet Wellness plan in addition to a pet insurance plan.

What Does Nationwide Cover?

The Major Medical plan covers:

  • Unexpected accidents and injuries
    • Poisonings
    • Sprains
    • ACL ruptures
  • Common illnesses
    • Ear infections
    • Vomiting
    • Diarrhea
  • Serious illnesses
    • Cancer
    • Heart disease
    • Diabetes
  • Chronic illnesses
    • Allergies
    • Arthritis
    • Skin conditions
  • Testing and diagnostics
    • X-rays, MRIs, CT scans
    • Ultrasounds
    • Blood work
  • Procedures
    • Surgery
    • Endoscopies
    • Chemotherapy
  • Holistic and alternative care
    • Acupuncture
    • Chiropractic
    • Laser therapy

The Whole Pet plan covers all of those items, including:

  • Hereditary conditions
    • Hip dysplasia
    • Eye disorders
    • Blood disorders

The Pet Wellness plan covers:

  • Vaccinations
  • Routine blood tests
  • Wellness exams
  • Microchip implantation
  • Parasite prevention
  • Fecal tests
  • Deworming

What Does Nationwide Not Cover?

The Whole Pet plan doesn’t cover:

  • Pre-existing conditions
  • Grooming, boarding, and other non-veterinary expenses
  • Wellness, routine, and preventive care
  • Cosmetic procedures
  • Breeding costs
  • Cruciate ligament disease in the first 12 months of coverage

The Major Medical plan doesn’t cover:

  • Pre-existing conditions
  • Hereditary disorders
  • Cosmetic procedures
  • Breeding costs
  • Congenital conditions or developmental disorders
  • Grooming, boarding, and other non-veterinary expenses
  • Cruciate ligament events in the first 12 months of coverage
  • Wellness, routine, and preventive care
  • Accidents or illnesses that occur during waiting periods

How Much Does Nationwide Cost?

On average, Nationwide pet insurance costs $25-$60 for dogs and $15-$35 for cats.

Pet insurance policies with added wellness coverage will fall on the higher end of the price range; the Wellness Basic plan costs $12-$18 per month, and the Wellness Plus plan costs $17-$22 per month.

Take a look at the per-item limits for Nationwide’s basic and premium wellness plans:

Wellness Item Wellness Basic Wellness Plus
Parasite prevention $50 $75
Health certificate $40 $40
Microchip implantation $40 $40
Nail trimming $20 $20
Deworming $25 $25
Fecal test $15 $25
Heartworm or FeLV test $30 $35
Vaccinations $50 $75
Behavioral exam/treatment $30 $30
Physical exam $50 $60
One additional test $50 $75
Maximum Annual Benefit $400 $500

If you don’t select a wellness plan, your monthly premiums will vary depending on your pet’s species, age, breed, and location. If you choose the Whole Pet plan with a 70% reimbursement rate instead of 50%, your cost will also be higher.

Discounts Available

Nationwide offers the following 5% discounts to make your plan more affordable:

  • Multi-pet discount
  • Bundle discount with other Nationwide services

Sample Monthly Pricing

Here are some sample quotes for a 2-year-old pet living in Boise, Idaho.

Species/Breed Sample Price for Medium Mixed Breed Dog Sample Price for Golden Retriever (Dog) Sample Price for Domestic Shorthair Cat Sample Price for Domestic Mediumhair Cat
Accident and Illness Plan $25 $35 $12 $12
Accident and Illness Plan With Preventative Care $43 $53 $30 $30

Why Choose Nationwide?

In 2008, Nationwide acquired Veterinary Pet Insurance (VPI), the first pet health insurance company in the United States. For this reason, Nationwide is a good choice for pet parents seeking comprehensive coverage from a long-standing, trusted name in the pet health insurance industry. 

Nationwide is also one of the only top providers to cover exotic pets, so it’s an excellent choice for owners of birds and other animals.

Like all companies, Nationwide has its pros and cons. We think the best way to vet a company before purchasing its product is to read reviews from actual customers. To help you out, we’ve listed some opinions – both positive and negative – from real Nationwide pet insurance policyholders.

“I received terrific help, and our call never felt rushed. I really appreciate having pet insurance for my furry kid.” –Lisa W., TrustPilot.

“Three weeks ago, we were in for the scare of our lives when our 10-year-old beagle had to go in for emergency pyometra surgery. The previous year when we didn’t have comprehensive coverage, we had to foot a $1,500 extensive dental cleaning bill, so we’ve experienced firsthand the cons of not having insurance. I would wholeheartedly recommend Nationwide to anyone with pets.” –Kisha C., Yelp.

“We adopted a young rescue dog, Cleo, who initially was diagnosed with a heart murmur, but later was found to have a heart valve defect. Nationwide marked it a pre-existing condition and then did everything they could to avoid helping us with any and all vet bills – including those unrelated to her pre-existing condition.” –Jennifer H., Yelp.

Read more in our Nationwide pet insurance review.

Final Thoughts

We hope this comparison of Healthy Paws vs. Nationwide helps you find the best pet insurance company for your furry friend. With so many excellent options on the market, we know it can be overwhelming to select an option with affordable prices and comprehensive coverage. 

Luckily, Healthy Paws and Nationwide offer different features that make them viable options for pet owners with different needs.

If you’re still curious about either company in this article or other options on the market, check out our comprehensive pet insurance reviews to find out more.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Healthy Paws cover vet visits?

Healthy Paws does not cover office visit fees or examination fees. Healthy Paws only covers fees associated with diagnosing and treating your pet’s unexpected accidents and illnesses. 

Does Nationwide cover vet visits?

Nationwide covers veterinary exam fees for your pet’s unexpected clinic visits.

Does Healthy Paws pet insurance have a limit? 

Healthy Paws does not limit coverage on any pet insurance plan, so you’ll get unlimited payout no matter how many claims you submit.

Healthy Paws doesn’t allow enrollment for pets 14 years old and up. Depending on your pet’s age and breed, you’ll also have less plan customizability.

Does Nationwide pet insurance have a limit?

Nationwide enforces per-incident limits for its Major Medical and Pet Wellness plans. You’ll get reimbursement up to a certain dollar amount depending on the veterinary service your pet needs.

With Nationwide’s Whole Pet plan, you’ll have a $10,000 annual limit. This means Nationwide will reimburse you up to $10,000 per year for items covered under the plan.

As for age limitations, Nationwide doesn’t allow you to enroll pets that are 10 years or older.

Our Methodology

The 365 Pet Insurance research team looks at all pet insurance policies and comes up with our reviews based on coverage, plan options, cost, reputation, customer service, and species eligibility. We’ve also created a rating system to score pet insurance brands.

We’ve consulted with pet experts and dug into plans to develop what we think are the best overall plans, complete with ratings on coverage, how they handle claims, reimbursements, deductibles, limits, and more.

To make our list, pet insurance companies must have:

  • A variety of plan options
  • Affordable monthly rates

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.