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      August 19, 2018

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ASPCA vs Pet First

Best Pet Insurance

To help you find the Best Pet Insurance, TopConsumerReviews.com provides you with an in-depth comparison of ASPCA and Pet First.

To see ALL of our reviews for the Best Pet Insurance, please Click Here

Who has the Best Pet Insurance? Medical care is rarely cheap - and the same goes for our four-legged friends. While pet owners are grateful for advances in technology and medicine that make it possible to keep their "fur kids" healthy, these procedures and prescriptions often come with a hefty price tag.

Without pet insurance, a simple blood test can cost well over $200. Even a standard yearly checkup can set you back by hundreds of dollars. How's your wallet feeling now? Chances are, you would do almost anything to take care of your beloved pet - but you might find yourself having to make difficult choices, especially if your dog or cat experiences a traumatic injury or life-threatening illness.

Continue reading below reviews

Best Reviews

2018

Pet Insurance Reviews

3.5 stars
ASPCA

ASPCA Visit Site

Cost:

Starting at $11.05 for cats and dogs

Unlimited annual coverage plans available

$2 per-payment fee on all plans not paid annually

No enrollment fee

Who doesn't know the ASPCA and their heartfelt please to care for animals in need? As an extension of their great care and concern for animal welfare, the ASPCA has partnered with a leading, longstanding insurance company to offer policies to cover pets, making veterinary care more affordable for owners around the nation.

ASPCA's plans start out more expensive than many of their competitors. While many other companies cover kittens and puppies for less than $10/month (even less than $5/month for kittens), ASPCA starts at over $11 per month for both kittens and puppies. When we looked at their pricing for our dog, a 7-year-old male, mixed breed dog, their rates were more competitive with other plans. On a policy that included a $5000 annual limit, 70% reimbursement, and a $500 annual deductible, we would pay $38/month. On the upper end of the spectrum - unlimited annual limit, 90% reimbursement, and $100 annual deductible - our premium would be $114.97/month.

You can customize your plan as you like. Available annual limits are $5000, $10,000, $15,000, $20,000 and unlimited. Reimbursement levels are 70%, 80%, and 90%. And, annual deductible options are $100, $250, and $500.

Once you've selected your plan, you can add preventive coverage if desired. ASPCA has two plans: Basic and Prime. For our pet, we were quoted $9.95/month for Basic and $24.95/month for Prime. Each wellness plan has annual benefits, such as $175 towards a dental cleaning (Prime only) or $20/$25 towards deworming. You'll want to add up the benefits to see if it would be worth your monthly premiums, since some benefits (such as a health certificate) may not be useful to you on a yearly basis, if ever.

ASPCA pet insurance policies all come with a $2 per-payment fee for all plans that are billed monthly, quarterly, or semi-annually. You can eliminate this fee if you opt to pay your premiums in full on a yearly basis. We like that ASPCA doesn't charge any enrollment or set-up fees.

The underwriter of ASPCA's pet insurance policies, Crum & Forster, is both accredited and "A+" rated by the Better Business Bureau. In over a thousand independently-verified customer reviews, ASPCA's average was a near-perfect five stars. We found compliments praising the ease of submitting claims through the ASPCA app and fast payments on claims.

On the other hand, we found quite a few customer reviews that said they had a very difficult time getting claims approved and paid by ASPCA. Several long-term customers observed that the service they received got worse over the years, with many more denials of "pre-existing conditions" along with much higher premiums. Some clients also said that when their policies renewed, it triggered another 6-month waiting period even though they had a continuous policy paid automatically every month. We didn't see responses from the ASPCA on those complaints, which isn't encouraging.

If you're specifically looking for an unlimited annual coverage plan, ASPCA is one of just a handful of providers that can meet your needs. However, expect that you may pay more, especially if you're covering a younger pet, than you'd spend on a competitor's policy.

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2.5 stars
Pet First

PET FIRST Visit Site

Cost:

Plans starting at $8.35/month

Per-incident deductibles of $50, $100, $250, or $500

Military and Animal Welfare Worker discounts available

Based in Indiana, Pet First has helped thousands of families to better afford their pets' veterinary costs since 2004. They partner with numerous animal shelters throughout the country, making it easier for new adoptive pet families to get insurance right away.

As you go through the quote process, you'll see several options for additional discounts. If you purchase your policy online (rather than calling their toll-free number or signing up at an animal shelter), you'll save $10 on your first payment. If you're an active/retired member of the military, you're eligible to save another 5% on your monthly premiums. Finally, if you are a veterinarian or any other kind of animal welfare worker, you're qualified for another discount - but the amount wasn't specified, and the discount didn't show up on our policy summary page. In order to get to the final policy total, we had to enter our credit card information - which we didn't particularly like. We'd like to see Pet First show the premium breakdown throughout the quote process and not make customers wait until after giving their payment information.

You're going to want any discounts you can get. Pet First consistently comes in higher than most of the competition. Kitten plans start at $8.35/month, which is double what the lowest-priced plans charge. Adding to your cost is the deductible: you'll pay that deductible on every claim, not as an annual maximum amount. In other words, if you have 10 claims in a year, you'll pay your $50, $100, or $500 deductible 10 times (if your total bill is over $500).

For our own four-legged friend - a 7-year old mixed breed, medium-sized male - we were given rates ranging from $15.55/month on the low end and $110.95 on the high end. The rate itself is comparable with other pet insurance providers, but when you figure that Pet First plans have a maximum annual limit of $10,000 and those every-time deductibles, their plans are much more spendy for the same monthly premiums.

Aside from cost, how does Pet First stack up against the competition? Every pet insurance company has people who complain about claims being denied - it's the nature of the business, whether you're dealing with pets or people. Pet First does have an A+ record as an accredited BBB company, which is encouraging. But, we found more than a few reviews from people who were encouraged to buy Pet First plans when adopting from an animal shelter; when those newly-adopted critters wound up developing problems not long thereafter, many of the claims were denied as pre-existing conditions.

At the end of the day, Pet First is just average when it comes to pet insurance, and you'll almost certainly spend more out of pocket because of their per-claim deductibles and limited annual reimbursement options. You'll probably get much more for your money with another provider of pet insurance policies.

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Continued from above

Just like their owners, pets can be protected with pet insurance plans that help ease the financial strain of medical care. Pet insurance has become very popular in the last few years, with dozens of companies offering to help you keep your pet healthy for a long time. But, every pet insurance plan is different with respect to deductibles and fees, covered services, and claims processing.

As you decide which pet insurance company is the best fit for you and your pet, keep in mind the following criteria:

  • Cost. What will you pay for your coverage? Is there a deductible, and is it annual or per incident? Will you pay any enrollment fees?
  • Coverage. What services and procedures are covered in the plan you have selected? Does it cover preventative measures like annual checkups? Are there any noteworthy exclusions? Does the company offer a variety of plans to meet your needs?
  • Reputation. Is the pet insurance provider rated by the Better Business Bureau? What do other customers say about their experience? Are claims paid quickly, or do you have to jump through a lot of hoops to file paperwork? Do many claims get denied? Are the company's customer service representatives knowledgeable and friendly?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best Pet Insurance companies available today. We hope this information helps you find the best pet insurance plan for you and your animal companion!

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