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      February 26, 2020

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Embrace vs Healthy Paws

Best Pet Insurance

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

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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.

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Best Reviews

2020

Pet Insurance Reviews

4.5 stars
Embrace

EMBRACE

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Cost:

$25 enrollment fees

Plans starting at $6.94/month (plus $1/month billing fee on all policies)

Deductible is reduced every year no claims are made

Since 2006, Embrace has ensured more than 100,000 dogs and cats throughout the United States. At the time of our review, they had a strong reputation with the Better Business Bureau as an accredited, "A+" rated company.

Embrace's rates are fairly competitive with most providers of pet insurance. You can customize your pet insurance policy according to your desired annual deductible ($200 to $1000), annual reimbursement limit ($5000 to $30,000), and reimbursement percentage (70% to 90%). For our 7-year-old dog, the three main packages recommended by Embrace were a little higher than some of their competitors', but we were able to tweak our preferences for deductible and reimbursement to get a monthly premium we liked.

Wellness/routine care options exist, but they are a "supplementary, non-insurance benefit". It works similarly to an HSA (Health Savings Account), where you pay every month towards your account and those funds can be used to reimburse you for vaccinations, routine visits, grooming, and so forth. You can choose annual limits of $250, $450, or $650. With each of these plans, you get $25 free. In other words, a $250 plan costs $225 over the course of a year, a $450 plan costs $425, and so on.

A few other features we liked about Embrace pet insurance:

  • Embrace follows a "deductible then copay" reimbursement model in contrast to some other pet insurance companies that use a "copay then deductible" model. Embrace's reimbursement could mean saving an additional $50 on a $1,000 claim.
  • Embrace uses an annual deductible, while some competitors use a per-condition deductible. An annual deductible only needs to be met once per year, regardless of how many claims you make. Plans with a per-condition deductible require you to pay a new deductible every time you go to the vet for a new condition. If your pet has an unlucky year, your out-of-pocket costs could be higher by a few hundred dollars with a per-condition deductible.
  • Embrace offers a 24/7 pet help line. This provides you with instant, real-time access to veterinary experts and decision support for any questions you might have about your pet's behavioral changes, possible poisoning, emergencies, and more. This policyholder benefit is valued over $99 a year and is included with every policy at no extra cost.

Another way to save is through Embrace's Healthy Pet Deductible. With this feature, your annual deductible will automatically decrease by $50 after every year that you don't make a claim on your policy. So, if you start out with a deductible of $200 per year, it would drop to $150 in year 2, $100 in year 3, and so on. Once you make a claim, however, your deductible for the following year is reset to your original amount. This is included with every Embrace policy at no extra charge.

We were surprised to see a $1/month "Billing Fee", evidently to cover the cost of monthly payment processing. We're not aware of any other pet insurance company that charges for that. There was also an enrollment fee of $25. Neither of these charges amount to very much money, but are still something you should be aware of.

As with many pet insurance providers, Embrace gets its fair share of complaints about claims being denied as pre-existing conditions. If you have a good medical history for your pet - and possibly a clean orthopedic exam - you shouldn't have any issues. The happy customers we found said that they were treated with the utmost respect and care, and that their claims were approved and paid very quickly.

Embrace does a lot of things right. Starting with an excellent reputation and comprehensive pet insurance plans, they add features such as their 24 hour help line, wellness coverage, and a Healthy Pet Deductible that few competitors can match. For all these reasons, Embrace is an outstanding option when it comes to pet insurance plans.

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4 stars
Healthy Paws

HEALTHY PAWS

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Cost:

Starting at $25.19/month

Reimbursement options from 60-90%

Annual deductibles from $100 to $500

Enrollment fee: $25

Healthy Paws is a pet insurance company with heart. Founded in 2009 by two professionals who met at a no-kill animal shelter, Healthy Paws Pet Insurance and Foundation set the goal of helping all pets, homeless and adopted, to live their best, healthiest lives.

Where Healthy Paws really stands out is their personalized attention to their clients. Imagine getting a personal email after your Golden Retriever gets out of the hospital, just to see how she's doing. (Insurance companies for humans don't even do that, most of the time!) Time and again, we found customers praising this company for their friendly, concerned approach whenever claims are made.

Another plus with Healthy Paws is their convenient app. Claims can be submitted with photos/scans of documents right from your phone, which makes the reimbursement process happen even more quickly. Some people get paid back for claims in a week or less, which we think is amazing.

Compared with some pet insurance plans, this company also wins paws-down on deductibles: theirs are annual, not per-claim. This could save you a ton of money if you have multiple visits within a year for different reasons. You also get annual coverage with no limits, whether your bills total $500 or $50,000.

As with most pet insurance plans, your costs will depend on where you live, your pet's age/breed/gender, and the type of coverage you select. For reference, here were some of our options for a 7-year-old male mixed breed dog:

  • Lowest-priced option: 60% reimbursement, $500 annual deductible: $33.53/month
  • Middle-tier option: 70% reimbursement, $200 annual deductible: $44.15/month
  • Highest-priced option: 80% reimbursement, $200 annual deductible: $48.58/month

When we checked Healthy Paws' prices for covering a puppy, we found more options for reimbursement (up to 90%) and deductible (from $100 to $400). Most pet insurance plans are more expensive as animals age, so this is in line with other providers' plans.

You should also plan on paying a one-time fee of $25 to set up your account and cover your monthly billing costs.

Healthy Paws' reputation is one of the best. In addition to consistently positive reviews from their clients, they also have an excellent "A+" rating with the BBB as an accredited business. We love everything Healthy Paws gives to their pet insurance customers, and we're confident that they can help keep your pets' tails wagging for a long time.

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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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