Pets Best Pet Insurance Review
About Pets Best Pet Insurance
Our Pets Best Pet Insurance review takes a look at the background of Pets Best, the coverage details including limits, deductibles and reimbursements, and some sample quotes to give consumers an idea of pricing.
A Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, Dr. Jack Stephens, founded Pets Best in 2005. He is highly regarded as the “father” of the pet insurance industry in North America. He started Pets Best because he saw too many owners unprepared for the financial burden of helping their pets with serious illnesses, who were faced with euthanizing their beloved pets instead.
Pets Best now offers their coverage through contracts with other insurance companies such as Farmer’s and Progressive, so you can bundle pet insurance with other types of insurance such as car and homeowner’s insurance.
Pets Best is a member of NAPHIA, considered the governing body of pet insurance companies.
Pets Best Pet Insurance Review – Coverage
Pets Best has Accident and Illness plans, as well as just Accident plans. Their Accident and Illness plans are in three levels: Essential, Plus and Elite, and the prices vary depending on the plan you choose. Prices tend to range for Pets Best depending on where you live and the breed and size of your pet.
All Pets Best Accident and Illness plans cover accidents, illnesses, cancer treatments, hereditary and congenital conditions, emergency care, surgery and hospitalization, prescription medications. The Pets Best Essential plan covers all of the above and specialist and outpatient care, medication injections, lab tests, ongoing and chronic conditions, diagnostic tests like MRI, CAT and X-ray, older pets, dental care, prosthetic devices and euthanasia. The middle plan, the Plus, also covers exam fees, while acupuncture, chiropractic and physical therapy are covered in the Elite plans, but this can be adjusted to fit your budget.
Accident Only Coverage
The Accident Plan for Pets Best covers up to $10,000 per year with a $250 deductible and 90% reimbursement. Accidents may include accidental ingestion, broken bones, or getting hit by a car. If you have a pet that is ineligible for illness coverage for some reason, or you simply want a plan with accident-only coverage, then you could opt for this option at $9/month.
Routine Care Coverage
Pets Best has two routine care plans: The Essential Wellness plan at $16/month and the Best Wellness plan at $26/month. These plans have no deductibles and cover a certain amount toward things like spay/neuter, wellness exams, deworming, teeth cleaning, Rabies, flea/tick prevention, microchip, urinalysis, and more. These plans can’t be purchased alone, they must be added on to an existing Accident and Illness package (not available with Accident Only).
Routine Care Coverage as of 2020
Pets Best offers two separate add-on pet wellness plan options, their Essential Wellness plan and their Best Wellness plan. Both plans work like a Schedule of Benefits, where they have a maximum amount they will cover per each item on the list. The wellness items are not impacted by the deductible.
The Essential Wellness plan covers a maximum of $305 in benefits per year, and the Best Wellness plan covers up to $535 in benefits per year.
|Essential Wellness||Best Wellness|
|Essential plan will pay up to this amount for services:||Best plan will pay up to this amount for services:|
|Spay/Neuter – Teeth Cleaning – $0||Spay/Neuter — Teeth Cleaning – $150|
|Heartworm Prevention – $30||Heartworm Prevention – $30|
|Vaccination/Titer – $30||Vaccination/Titer – $40|
|Flea/Tick Prevention – $50||Flea/Tick Prevention – $65|
|Rabies – $15||Rabies – $15|
|Wellness Exam – $50||Wellness Exam – $50|
|Heartworm test or FELV screen – $25||Heartworm test or FELV screen – $30|
|Microchip – $20||Microchip – $40|
|Deworming – $20||Deworming – $20|
|Blood, fecal, parasite exam – $50||Blood, fecal, parasite exam – $70|
|Urinalysis or ERD – $15||Urinalysis or ERD – $25|
|Total of annual benefits: $305||Total of annual benefits: $535|
Pets Best excludes pre-existing conditions, elective and preventive procedures, parasites, special foods and alternative care and treatments.
There are no upper age limits for your pets and your pet will not get kicked out of the plan at a certain age. Pets Best is often ranked well for older pets. since some pet insurers do have upper age limits, but they do recommend enrolling your pet as early as possible to avoid pre-existing condition exclusions.
Waiting periods are three days for accidents, next day for Routine (Wellness) Care packages, and 14 days for illnesses. There is also a 6-month waiting period for cruciate ligament injuries or conditions.
Pets Best has a variety of deductibles: $50, $100, $200, $250, $500, $1000 which is the amount you will have to pay before your reimbursement takes effect. You can choose either a $5,000 annual limit or unlimited with any of the plans. Choosing the $5,000 option only lowered our monthly payment by $5, so it may not be worth it to you to do this. It is very easy with today’s veterinary medicine capabilities to find yourself with a very large vet bill.
Pets Best will reimburse 70%, 80% or 90% of your total bill, depending on the plan you choose, after you meet the deductible you select.
You can get your claims processed in as little as five days, and even have your funds direct deposited. Pets Best makes it easy to submit claims through their online portal or their mobile app. Everything can be done digitally, and they get funds back to you quickly. You must include your proof of payment, signed claim form, and original paid invoice.
You can even snap a picture of your paid invoice and upload it into the mobile app, making this process super easy.
Pets Best also prides itself in its charity work and works with many rescues and other organizations to help change the lives of as many animals as they can.
We love the Pets Best quote engine – it is super user friendly, and it is very clear what you get – and what you don’t get – when you get this insurance. We did a sample quote (we use the same variables across all providers) just to see what we could get. We used a Seattle-area zip code (admittedly a pricier place to own an animal) a mid-sized, mixed-breed dog and came up with $39.29 per month for the Essential plan, $45.84 per month for the Plus plan and $47.97 for the Elite plan.
We did another sample quote to give you an idea of what you can expect when it comes to monthly cost. We used a French Bulldog in a Seattle area code. Prices for a Frenchie tend to run a little higher due to their propensity for illnesses such as IVDD and breathing problems.
We chose the unlimited annual limit, $500 deductible, and 80% reimbursement level.
If you choose a pet with fewer known health issues, then your costs go down.
For example, take a look at this quote from a mixed-breed, three-year-old dog. We used all of the same variables, but the monthly rates are much lower:
Pets Best Cancellation Policy
You may cancel your Pets Best policy at any time, and you can also downgrade or upgrade to a different level of coverage.
Communication – 4.9/5
Pets Best gets a high score for communication, a new category we are adding to our reviews. Like you, we learn about pet insurance companies from the internet, but we like to have a personal connection to the companies we highly recommend. Pets Best is always there to answer questions about the specifics of their policies, and we have not heard of issues where calls or claims go unanswered.
Pets Best Frequently Asked Questions
Does Pets Best Cover Hip Dysplasia?
Pets Best does cover hereditary conditions including elbow and hip dysplasia, luxating patella, IVDD, cherry eye, epilepsy, Wobbler Syndrome, and glaucoma, after a 14-day waiting period from time of enrollment, so long as it is not a pre-existing condition.
Does Pets Best Cover Dental?
Pets Best will cover periodontal disease if you can confirm that your pet had a teeth cleaning in the 13 months prior to enrollment under anesthesia. There is no teeth cleaning requirement for a pet under 2 years of age. Pets Best Accident and Illness does not cover teeth cleanings, or any other preventive tooth care for your cat or dog, but you can get $150 toward teeth cleaning if you choose the Best Wellness option.
Does Pets Best Cover Spaying?
Pets Best offers $150 toward spay and neuter if you select the Best Wellness option as an add-on for your pet insurance policy.
Does Pets Best Cover Pre-Existing Conditions?
Pets Best, like all other pet insurers, does not cover pre-existing conditions. A pre-existing condition is anything diagnosed or deemed to be existing by your veterinarian prior to signing up for a policy and during the waiting period.
Does Pets Best Cover IVDD?
Pets Best does cover IVDD, so long as it doesn’t occur prior to signing up for a plan. This condition is covered as part of the Genetic and Hereditary diseases section of your Pets Best policy.
Does Pets Best Cover Boarding?
Pets Best does not cover boarding or transport, including ambulance transport.
Does Pets Best Pay Vet Directly?
In some cases, Pets Best can pay your vet directly, meaning that you won’t have to pay out of pocket for the majority of your bill, so long as your claim is approved. Your vet will need to sign a release form, saying they agree to the terms and to not receive payment until your claim is processed. You are still responsible to pay your vet for any difference between what Pets Best covers and the actual bill.
You can also get a claim preauthorization for any amount over $1,000, so you and your vet know what will be covered in advance.
This allows you to get your pet the best care possible, even if you can’t wait for a reimbursement, by allowing your veterinarian to shoulder the cost burden. They can do this knowing that you have a valid pet insurance policy, and with the pre-authorization, they will know in advance what will be covered.
You are still responsible for the deductible, any co-pay and costs above the amount covered by the claim, and those may be due at the time of veterinary care. You still have to submit your claim online, just as you would do typically.
This review was completed by Sarah Gilbert, licensed insurance broker. Updated November 2020.
You can read more about our review process here.