Healthy Paws Pet Insurance Review

Benzinga Money is a reader-supported publication. We may earn a commission when you click on links in this article. Learn more.
Contributor, Benzinga
see how Healthy Paws compares

Give Your 1 Minute Opinion!

1 Minute Review

Healthy Paws actively insures over half a million pets in the United States, growing rapidly since 2009, the year they were founded. Healthy Paws stated mission  is to put an end to financially driven euthanasia, saving pet parents from having to make a devastating decision due to financial constraints.

Healthy Paws accomplishes this not only by offering policies with no maximum reimbursement amounts. They also strive to reach their goals through the Healthy Paws Foundation. In the next few months, Healthy Paws will surpass the $1.5 million threshold for total donations made to hundreds of animal rescue shelters across all 50 states to help homeless pets find forever homes.

Healthy Paws has consistently received rave reviews from policyholders for its customer service, making it a top rated provider from 2009 until current day. Signing on for coverage is easy and often takes just a few minutes.

Healthy Paws reimburses up to 90% of your veterinary bills for emergencies, hereditary conditions and chronic conditions. Its easy-to-understand plan provides coverage without any maximum limits on claims payout – no annual, per-incident or lifetime caps. There are no costly add-ons and 99% of claims are processed within 2 days.

 

Best For

  • Cats and dogs of all ages and breeds
  • Easily a claim by uploading a photo from your smartphone in the Healthy Paws app
  • No maximum limit on payouts

Pros

  • Speedy claims process
  • 1 simple plan that covers new illnesses and accidents
  • No maximum limits on claim payouts
  • 99% of claims are processed within 2 days
  • Helps homeless pets

Cons

  • 15-day waiting period for new illnesses and accidents
  • 12-month waiting period for hip dysplasia
see how Healthy Paws compares

Pet insurance is for the unexpected illnesses and accidents that you can’t always budget for – like when your dog is diagnosed with diabetes or cat swallows something she shouldn’t. Pet insurance differs from human healthcare plans in that it is reimbursement based. A Healthy Paws pet insurance plan gives your pet the best care and reimburses up to 90% of your covered vet bills. Take a look at Benzinga’s guide to understand why Healthy Paws is trusted with the health of over 550,000 pets by pet parents for the best pet insurance plan.

Healthy Paws Coverage Options

Your pet needs to undergo a complete nose to tail physical exam to qualify for coverage through the Healthy Paws Pet Insurance program. The exam is conducted by a licensed veterinarian and its timeline will depend on your pet’s age at enrollment time and your specific policy details.

Healthy Paws offers an all-inclusive plan whose coverage starts as low as $15 for cats and $20 for dogs. Rates vary depending on the location, breed and age of your pet.

You can enroll your precious puppy for coverage as early as 8-weeks old. Enroll your dog before it’s 6 years old and you’ll have coverage for hip dysplasia included at no extra cost. Healthy Paws also lets you enroll your cat up until its 14th birthday.

What is Covered:

  • Illnesses: Your plan extends coverage to both major and minor illnesses. Common dog illnesses include skin conditions, stomach issues, ear infections, allergies and eye conditions that can result in vision loss. Common cat illnesses covered include stomach issues, urinary tract infections, cancer and growths.
  • Accidents: Pet accidents are covered and may include incidents like foreign body obstruction, poisoning and animal bites.
  • Hereditary conditions: Your plan covers any conditions passed down to your pet from its parents, including elbow dysplasia, cherry eye and intervertebral disc disease.
  • Congenital conditions: Your pet is also covered for any health conditions that may develop when it’s still in utero. These may include liver disease, nervous system and congenital heart disease.
  • Chronic conditions: According to Healthy Paws, chronic conditions can be ongoing – or even permanent – and usually need long-term, expensive prescription medications. Chronic conditions covered in the plan include diabetes, glaucoma, arthritis, asthma and kidney disease – as long as they are not pre-existing conditions.
  • Cancer: Coverage for this condition is built into every policy without caps on payouts. The plan covers cancer diagnostics, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, surgery, ultrasounds and hospitalization.
  • Diagnostic tests and treatment: Procedures like ultrasounds, blood tests and X-rays conducted by a vet are covered.
  • Hospitalization, surgery prescription medication
  • Emergency care: Your plan will cover any life-saving medical care on your pet.
  • Specialty veterinary care: Any specialty vet care that calls for advanced treatment or surgery is covered. You can also visit any specialist without referrals, including orthopedic specialists, internal medicine experts and ophthalmologists.
  • Alternative care: Alternative therapy to help cruciate ligament injuries and degenerative spine issues as well as increase the rate of post-surgery recoveries is covered. Common procedures available for your pet include acupuncture, chiropractic and hydrotherapy.  

Which Pets and Breeds Does Healthy Paws Cover?

Healthy Paws covers most cat and dog breeds irrespective of their age, sex and size. This carrier follows a reimbursement approach, repaying up to 90% for all covered vet services. Its affordable plan starts as low as $15 for cats and $20 for dogs. Healthy Paws also lets you customize a plan with its different deductible and reimbursement options.

Dog breeds covered by Healthy Paws include:

  • Alaskan Husky
  • American Bulldog
  • Basset Hound
  • Irish Terrier
  • PitBull Mix

Some of the cat breeds covered include:

  • Mixed Breed Cat
  • Bengal
  • Chausie
  • Maine Coon
  • Ragdoll

Healthy Paws Coverage Exclusions

Understanding what’s not covered in your plan is just as important – and Healthy Paws has nothing to hide. Its pet insurance plan doesn’t cover the following:

  • Veterinary examination fees
  • Pre-existing conditions
  • Behavioral treatment
  • Illness or injury from an accident that occurs within the15-day waiting period.
  • Illness related to hip dysplasia that recurs or occurs within the first 12 months following the policy effective date.
  • Preventive care procedures like spaying and neutering, vaccinations, parasite control, dental health care and anal gland expression.
  • Illness or injury due to any neglectful, intentional or preventable act
  • Elective and cosmetic procedures including tail docking, ear cropping, de-clawing, micro-chipping and ear cleaning.
  • Diseases preventable by prophylactic medications and vaccines
  • Special diets, vitamins, foods, nail trims, grooming and bathing
  • Investigational or experimental medicine or treatment
  • Breeding or conditions relating to breeding, queening and whelping

Healthy Paws Pricing

According to Healthy Paws claims data, pet parents spent over $270 million on veterinary care in 2019. However, the unexpected visits to a veterinary emergency room can really hit your pocketbook – considering an emergency pet visit can range from $250 to $8,000. 

The cost of vet care varies depending on where you live, the level of care you seek for your pet and what medical condition is being treated. Healthy Paws also offers ways for you to save some money as you protect your 4-legged family member. 

You’re eligible for a policy discount if Healthy Paws is part of your employer’s voluntary benefits program. The carrier also offers various special discounts on its plan through membership organizations like AMAC and AAA.

Here’s a comparison of premiums for different pet breeds:

PetPlanPrice
Dog: American Bulldog – 4 yearsHealthy Paws Insurance Policy$114.37 per month
Dog: American Bulldog – Less than 1 year oldHealthy Paws Insurance Policy$87.63 per month
Dog: Small Mixed Breed (11-30 pounds) – 2 yearsHealthy Paws Insurance Policy$21.89 per month
Dog: Small Mixed Breed (11-30 pounds) – 4 yearsHealthy Paws Insurance Policy$27.25 per month
Cat: Bengal – Less than 1 year oldHealthy Paws Insurance Policy$18 per month
Cat: Bengal – 4 years oldHealthy Paws Insurance Policy$23.49 per month
Cat: Maine Coon – 4 years oldHealthy Paws Insurance Policy$31.60 per month

Quotes were obtained for a male pet living in Colorado with unlimited maximum payouts, a $500 deductible and 80% reimbursement. Get your custom quote.

Healthy Paws Claims and Reimbursements Process

Healthy Paws pet insurance follows a reimbursement model and reimbursements are typically based on your actual vet bill. The carrier computed the total of all covered treatments, multiplies it by your reimbursement rate and then subtracts your remaining annual deductible as follows:

$1,800 (Covered treatments) x 80% (Your reimbursement level) = $1,440

$1,440 – $300 (Remaining annual deductible) = $1,140 (Reimbursement amount

A pet’s deductible is annual, so it must be satisfied once per policy year before resetting on the anniversary of your enrollment.

Filing a claim with Healthy Paws is quite unique – you don’t need a claims form for claim processing. Here’s how to file your claim:

1. Submit a Claim

Simply submit your claim by taking a photo of your veterinary paid invoice and upload it through the company’s customer center or mobile app. You can also submit your claim through email, mail or fax (888-228-4129).

If you’re filing your first claim, the insurer will need to review your pet’s complete medical records, including laboratory results, doctor’s notes and other documentation regarding any of your visits to the vet. To maximize your annual deductible, Healthy Paws recommends you send all claims regarding new injuries, illnesses and accidents.

2. Claim Processing

99% of claims are processed in 2 business days.

3. Get Reimbursed

Once your claim is finalized, a reimbursement is issued within 24 business hours. A reimbursement through mailed check may take up to 10 days to reach you, based on your location. Reimbursement through direct deposit may take up to 10 days to process depending on your bank.

For covered claims, Healthy Paws will apply any discounts to the non-covered items in your invoice.

Healthy Paws Customer Service

Healthy Paws’ customer service is one of the best rated in the space, consistently receiving top-notch reviews from policyholders since its inception in 2009.

Here are a few ways to get in touch with a Healthy Paws animal lover:

  • Live chat on their website or through their app
  • Using their social media channels
  • Fill the online form to contact them by email
  • Call 855-898-8991 on weekdays, from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. PST and weekends from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST.

Healthy Paws Overall Rating

You may never know how high the cost of treatment could get until your pet is taken in for an emergency treatment. Luckily you can avoid out-of-pocket payments for vet visits with a Healthy Paws pet insurance plan. Benzinga gives Healthy Paws 5 stars for its dedication to helping pets everywhere (including homeless pets), its no maximum limit reimbursement policy and its wide range of breed coverage. While it is slightly pricier than other providers for certain breeds, Healthy Paws has no breed or age restrictions, which makes it worth the proice.

Get in touch with Healthy Paws to learn more today.