Healthy Paws vs. Pets Best Pet Insurance Compared
10 July, 2018
healthy paws vs. petsbest

By: Lisa Fimberg

When looking for pet insurance for your dog or cat, there are many companies to choose from and it can be hard to know where to begin.  It’s always recommended to check with at least a few providers before making a choice.  Healthy Paws and PetsBest are both excellent companies but do have their difference in coverage and benefits when compared.

healthy-paws pet insurance

Healthy Paws Overview:

Healthy Paws is one of the top pet insurance companies and a popular choice among veterinarians.  All their policies have no limit as to how much they will pay out each year, and a 15-day waiting period for injury and illness coverage.   It offers comprehensive illness and accident coverage and the unlimited benefits with no caps on the claims are a real benefit which is provided in all of their plans. Healthy Paws has an excellent customer satisfaction rating of an A+.

petsbest pet insurance

PetsBest Overview

Pets Best offers is one of the top pet insurance companies when looking for insurance plans that cover the overall wellbeing or wellness of your pet.  They offer two tiers of wellness packages that cover routine care and treatment.  PetsBest also offers standard coverage of things like prescriptions, exam fees, and alternative therapies. PetsBest has no age restrictions and will cover dogs and cats regardless of how old they are. PetsBest only offers unlimited benefits in their top-tier plans.  All the other plans have benefit limits of $5,000.

Healthy Paws coverage includes all of the following:

Medical Conditions Covered:                                                                                

Accidental, Illness, Hereditary, Congenital, Cancer, Chronic, Accidental Dental

Medical Treatments Covered:

Diagnostic Testing, Surgery, Hospitalization, Prescription Medications, Emergency Care, Specialty Care, Alternative Care

Healthy Paws also covers treatments for hip dysplasia for pets under age six if it is not a pre-existing condition.

PetsBest coverage includes all of the following:

Medical Conditions Covered:                                                                                

Accidental, Illness, Hereditary, Congenital, Cancer, Chronic, Accidental Dental

Medical Treatments Covered:

Diagnostic Testing, Surgery, Hospitalization, Prescription Medications, Emergency Care, Specialty Care, Alternative Care

Healthy Paws Coverage Details:

Healthy Paws covers cats and dogs with one of the most comprehensive coverage policies available in the industry without any limits or caps on coverage.  Their policies cover all accidents and illnesses, and there are no restrictions for hereditary or congenital conditions, including cancer. Healthy Paws also covers emergency care, hospital stays, and surgeries. All of their plans have reimbursement levels of up to 90 % of your veterinary bill and are based on actual costs.

Healthy Paws has no limit to how much they will pay out each year which is helpful if your dog or cat gets injured or needs serious treatment. There is typically has a 15-day waiting period for injury and illness coverage. Healthy Paws plans are one of the few that offer unlimited and even lifetime benefits with no caps.

Pets Best Coverage Details

Pets Best offers three levels of coverage that are differently arranged than other pet insurance companies. The company’s Essential, Plus, and Elite plans all cover accidents, illnesses, emergency care, and non -pre-existing hereditary conditions like most policies. However all plans also include prescription coverage which not all companies do.

Pets Best also offers two tiers of wellness plans that can be added to these policies at additional cost.  The coverage includes blood work, dental cleanings, spaying/neutering and all the other routine treatments in their daily life.  The Elite plan even offers an additional supplemental coverage that includes rehab therapies, chiropractic and acupuncture.

Pets Best offers Accident Only coverage for those on a limited budget that want great coverage for things like broken legs, snake bites, accidental swallowing, and more. Hereditary and congenital conditions also have coverage such as hip and elbow dysplasia, and cruciate ligament injuries. Since these plans include the widest array of coverage, they will also have higher premiums.

Accident Only plans do not cover medical issues such as illness or cancer, which are covered under our BestBenefit Accident and Illness plans.  Healthy Paws does not offer a wellness plan, but cover all accidents under their standard policies.  And there are no limits on any their plans: no per-incident, annual or lifetime caps on payouts.

Benefit Limits

Healthy Paws is one of the few insurers that offer policies with no limits or caps, including annual, lifetime, or per incident caps. With Healthy Paws, the unlimited benefit option is included in their standard plan which is an excellent option.  As mentioned above, if your dog gets in an accident and needs to see your vet multiple times, there isn’t a cap or limit level of money spent or visits.

As with other pet insurance policies, as long as the condition your dog or cat is being treated for is not a pre-existing condition, they will pay your entire bill or up to 90% of it depending on the reimbursement that you choose.  This can be very helpful if you have a very large medical bill or if your dog or cat becomes ill.

PetsBest offers unlimited benefits on its top tier Elite plan. The other two plans have an annual benefit limit of just $5,000 which can occur easily with one hospital visit.

Deductibles

Healthy Paws offers an annual deductible which you pay once per year.  You can choose the level of deductible, which can help you control your premium costs.  The higher the deductible, the lower the premium.

Healthy Paws allows you to choose the deductible that works the best of you and your needs.  Deductibles can be set at $100, $250, and $500).   Therefore, if you choose the $100 deductible you’ll get a higher payout per incident, but you are going to be paying a higher monthly premium as well.

Pets Best does offer more flexibility among its deductible options and range from deductibles of $50, $100, $250, $500 up to $1000. $50 is one of the lowest deductible options among the top insurance companies.

Choosing a higher deductible will lower your monthly plan price, but it means your out-of-pocket costs will be higher when your pet needs vet care. Choosing a lower deductible will increase your monthly price, but will lower your out-of-pocket costs.

The wellness plans are a nice add-on and you don’t have to meet a deductible and get reimbursed from your first visit.  Wellness plans offer routine check-ups, vaccinations, spaying and neutering and even dental cleaning which is a nice benefit but you will pay for it.

Reimbursement

Healthy Paws gives you a choice of reimbursement levels of 70%, 80%, or 90% and they reimburse you based on the actual veterinary bill after you have met your deductible (and your co-pay).  As with deductibles, the higher the monthly premium, the more you will get reimbursed for that claim.

PetsBest gives you the option of setting your reimbursement at 70%, 80%, and 90%. This is a consistent feature of the best pet insurance providers PetsBest also pays out on the actual vet bills as do the other top providers.  As with deductibles, the higher the monthly premium, the more you will get reimbursed for that claim.

Pricing

Pricing is always a big factor in anything we purchase including pet insurance for our dogs and cats.

Pets Best’s lower tiered plans are competitive, while their comprehensive Elite plan can be a bit pricey.  The all-inclusive elite plan can run $60-$70 a month. And the less expensive of the wellness add-ons is an extra $16.

Plans for dogs currently start around $30 and cat plans start around $17. You can purchase an accident only plan for less than $10 a month which is a nice addition if you have a small budget and just want an emergency fund for your pet.  In fact, the pricing for the accident only plans is $6 per month for cats, and $9 per month for dogs, for all ages and breeds if that is all you need.

When you enroll more than one pet, you can earn up to a 5% discount for each additional pet!  And there is a 5% discount for the military.

The average starting premium for dogs is $30 and for cats is $16.

Healthy Paws plans are reasonably priced plans when you take into account that they have not no limits of any kind and offer a customized payout percentage and deductible model.

There are 10% lifetime discounts offered for the following: Animal Welfare Volunteers, Association or Alumni Organizations, membership groups such as AAA, AARP, and Costco, and Military service. They offer a 15 % lifetime discount for employer sponsored plans.

The average starting premium for dogs is $32.80 and for cats is $17.19.

Enrollment and Waiting Periods

Healthy Paws starting age for pets is eight weeks and older.  They do have an upper age limit of coverage which is 13 years old for dogs and cats.  Healthy paws has a 15 day waiting period for accidents and illnesses. The waiting period for hip dysplasia is 12 months.

Accident coverage begins 5 days after enrollment, but there is a 15 day waiting period for illnesses. Medical records are not required for enrollment.

Pets Best is one of only a few companies to allow enrollment at any age. What’s more, there are no age limits for policy extensions as well. The waiting period is 14 days illnesses after effective date and 3 days for accidents and routine care can be used the day after you enroll, and 6 months for cruciate ligament events and any related conditions.

The starting age of enrollment for puppies and kittens is as young as 7 weeks old.  And there are no enrollment fees so your coverage starts almost immediately.

Claims and Service

Healthy Paws is known for reimbursing its claims fast and with as little fuss as possible compared to other pet insurance companies. Their customer support is efficient and courteous and available 7 days a week (but not after hours). Claims are generally processed within a few days.

Pets Best provides an unusually fast claims processing, often paying claims within 3 to 5 days. Customers can accelerate their claims by submitting them electronically through their online portal which allows you to see the status of your claim.  You can also set up direct deposit to get paid directly back into your banking account, or request that they pay your vet directly which is a nice option to have.

Pets Best also features a 24/7 veterinary support line for all customers. You can get the answers to all your pets health questions at any time of day with their 24/7 Pet Helpline powered by whiskerDocs®. The veterinary experts at whiskerDocs are available to help educate and provide advice and decision support to pet parents by phone, live chat, and email, from urgent care to behavioral questions.  Petplan is one of the other top providers that offers a 24/7 Pet Helpline.

Healthy Paws and PetsBest both have excellent plans at reasonable prices. If you are looking for a wellness plan, than PetsBest may be the better choice.  But, if you want standard pet insurance that will pay for all accidents and illness, Healthy Paws is the one for you.  There are other excellent companies to include in your comparison shopping and can be found in our top 7 Best Insurance Providers.

 

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