If you have a dog (or a new puppy), you already know the expenses that go along with them: food, dog accessories like a bed and leashes, training sessions, veterinary bills. While we can’t help you with most of these expenses, we can tell you about how you might be able to save on your vet bills with the aid of pet insurance. Since many dog moms and dads like to keep their furry BFFs insured, we have looked at several of the most popular pet health insurance policies for dogs and puppies out there so we can bring you the best of the best.

Top Pick

Embrace

  • Diminishing deductible (if no claim made in year)
  • Claims are processed and paid promptly
  • Extra reimbursements: grooming, training, etc.
  • Optional wellness plan

Rating 4.6

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Our top pick for insurance companies for dogs is Embrace Pet Insurance. The premiums are reasonable, and the coverage level is high (up to 90 percent). They offer a wellness benefit for dog owners who want to have things like heartworm preventative and immunizations covered. In addition, breed-specific conditions are covered, as long as they’re not pre-existing.

Our list of the top 5 pet insurance companies for dogs relies on several features. First, we looked at the premiums charged for dogs. We balanced that with how the company works deductibles and the coverage levels available. We also checked to see how dog owners who have the plans felt about them. We hope that this information helps you to make the best choice when it comes to how you should plan for your pup’s future health needs.

The Best Pet Health Insurance for Dogs and Puppies

Editor's PicksBrandRating
Best OverallEmbrace Pet Insurance4.6
Runner UpHealthy Paws Pet Insurance4.6
Best With an Annual DeductiblePets Best4.3
Best With Direct Veterinarian PaymentsTrupanion4.1
Best for Pre-existing ConditionsPet Assure
4.3

Best Overall Dog Insurance Plan: Embrace Pet Insurance

Embrace Pet Insurance Review
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on Embrace Pet Insurance's secured website

Average Customer Rating

4.6

What we like:
Optional wellness plan

Monthly PremiumAs low as $10 for cats and $16 for dogs
Deductible$200, $300, $500, $750, or $1,000
Benefits Limits70%, 80% or 90% of annual costs
Age RestrictionsAs young as 6 weeks and as old as 14 years

Visit the Embrace Pet Insurance website or get a quote for pet insurance


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Our top pick for pet insurance companies for dogs is Embrace Pet Insurance. This company accepts new enrollees that are between the ages of 6 weeks and 14 years. Premiums are on the low end, starting at $16/month for dogs. This dog insurance company covers all of the basics (illnesses, injuries, surgeries,and so on) as well as alternative therapies like chiropractic care, acupuncture, and laser therapy.

In addition to the basic plan, Embrace offers a wellness plan. This is a benefit that includes coverage for things like an annual wellness exam, heartworm and flea prevention, vaccines, dental cleaning, toenail trimming, hip dysplasia screening, and other services that are not covered under the basic plan. This is a great add-on for someone who wants to budget their dog’s routine wellness care over the course of the year by simply adding that cost to the monthly premiums.

Embrace offers several attractive discounts. One of our favorites is the diminishing deductible: For each year that you don’t make any claims, your deductible goes down $50. What this means is that if you have a $500 deductible and you don’t make any claims this year, next year’s deductible will drop to $450. If you don’t make any claims next year either, the following year, your deductible will be $400. And so on! In addition, Embrace Pet Insurance offers multiple pet discounts, military discounts, and more.

Important Features of Embrace Pet Insurance:

  • Optional wellness plan
  • Quick claim turnaround
  • No lifetime limits
  • Curable conditions policy
  • Covers alternative therapies
  • Diminishing deductible program
  • Several discounts available

For a more comprehensive look at this company, you’ll want to check out our Embrace Pet Insurance Review.

Runner-up Pet Insurance for Dogs: Healthy Paws Pet Insurance

Healthy Paws Pet Insurance Review
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on Healthy Paws Pet Insurance's secured website

Average Customer Rating

4.6

What we like:
No annual maximum

Monthly PremiumApproximately $35 for dogs and $25 for cats
Deductible$100, $200, $500, or $750
Benefits Limits70%, 80% or 90% of annual costs
Age RestrictionsAs young as 8 weeks and as old as 14 years

Visit the Healthy Paws Pet Insurance website or get a quote for pet insurance


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Next in line, coming in a close second, was Healthy Paws Pet Insurance. Healthy Paws is a well-known company with good reviews. They have annual deductibles, which is helpful for those who want to know ahead of time what their deductible will cost. They also have no annual or lifetime maximums. This means that you won’t need to worry that you’re getting close to the end of your benefits at the end of the year.

Something that many dog owners appreciate is that claims can be processed in as little as two days. This puts your funds back in your pocket much faster than many other pet insurance companies.

A couple of negatives to be aware of are that hip dysplasia is not covered in dogs over the age of 6 years old and that there are limitations to the types of policies you can purchase if your dog is older than 8 years old. If you have an older dog, be sure to look into the specifics so you can decide whether this is the right policy for you.

Important Features of Healthy Paws Pet Insurance:

  • Annual deductible
  • Can be used anywhere in the USA or Canada
  • Quick claim processing
  • No annual or lifetime caps
  • Easy to use app
  • Covers prescription medications
  • Limitations for older dogs

Are you interested in this pet insurance company for your dog? Take a look at our Healthy Paws Pet Insurance Review for more information.

Best Pet Insurance Company for Dogs with an Annual Deductible: Pets Best

Pets Best Pet Insurance
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on Pets Best Pet Insurance secured website

Average Customer Rating

4.3

What we like:
No maximum age restrictions


Monthly PremiumAs low as $13 for dogs and $8 for cats
Deductible$50-1,000
Coverage70 to 90 percent
Age RestrictionsMinimum: 8 weeks
Maximum: none

Visit the Pets Best Pet Insurance website or get a quote for pet insurance


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Pets Best came in as our top pick of pet insurance companies with an annual deductible. This means that you will only pay the deductible once each year. Deductible amounts range from $50 to $1,000; the lower the deductible, the higher your monthly premiums. Premiums for dogs start at $13 per month, but they will be higher if you choose a low deductible, no annual maximum, and/or 90 percent coverage.

Another great feature of Pets Best Pet Insurance is that they pay their set percentage of the veterinarian’s actual bill. Many pet insurance plans will pay a percentage of the amount that they feel is usual, customary and reasonable for a given procedure. Pets Best will pay based on what the vet charges. This means that if you have met your deductible and you receive a $1,000 bill, a plan covering 80 percent of eligible bills will pay the full $800.

In addition to the basic plan, you have the option of purchasing tiered wellness benefits. These might cover things like routine and preventative care, spay/neuter surgery, prescription medications, and some alternative treatments. There is also the option to purchase only accident coverage for your dog; this is inexpensive but it would not cover any illnesses.

Important Features of Pets Best Pet Insurance:

  • One annual deductible
  • Pays based on actual vet bill
  • No maximum age limits
  • Lots of options to choose from
  • Optional wellness coverage options
  • Accident-only plan available
  • 24-hour veterinary hotline
  • Possibility for direct vet payments
  • Multiple-pet and military discounts available

Learn more about Pets Best Pet Insurance by reading our full review.

Best Pet Insurance for Dogs That Pays Vets Directly: Trupanion

Trupanion Pet Insurance Review
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on Trupanion's secured website

Average Customer Rating

4.1

What we like:
Direct vet payments

Monthly PremiumAs low as $22 for cats and $36 for dogs
DeductibleCustomizable between $0 and $1,000
Benefits Limits90%
Age RestrictionsAs old as 14 years

Visit the Trupanion website or get a quote for pet insurance


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If you are looking for a pet insurance for your dog that will pay your veterinarian directly, you’ll want to consider Trupanion. With most pet insurance companies, you will need to pay your veterinarian at the time that he or she sees and treats your dog, then submit the bill for reimbursement. With Trupanion, if you choose to see a vet who participates in their direct-pay program, you will not have to pay the portion that the insurance policy will cover. This can greatly reduce your immediate out-of-pocket spending for vet care, which is reassuring during an emergency or urgent situation. (You can see any vet you want, but only those participating in the program will have the option of being paid directly.)

Trupanion has various deductible amounts available, but all enrollees get 90 percent of their eligible vet bills covered. They pay based on the veterinarian’s actual fee. Note that the deductibles are per condition, not per year. The amount you pay will depend on how many unique conditions your pet develops over the course of a year. If he has a condition this year that extends into next year, however, you will not need to pay another deductible for continued treatments.

Some other perks of Trupanion Pet Insurance include 24/7 customer service and no maximum payout limits. There is also a 30-day money-back guarantee, so if you decide that you don’t like the plan within the first month, you can request a refund of the premium paid (assuming you haven’t made any claims).

Important Features of Trupanion Pet Insurance:

  • Option for direct payments to veterinarians
  • Per-condition deductible
  • 24/7 customer service
  • Pays based on actual vet bill
  • No maximum payout limits
  • All dogs have 90 percent coverage
  • Customizable deductible amounts
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

If you are interested in Trupanion, you won’t want to miss our more comprehensive review here.

Best Pet Insurance Alternative for Dogs With Pre-Existing Conditions: Pet Assure

Pet Assure Pet Insurance Alternative Review
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on Pet Assure's secured website

Average Customer Rating

4.3

What we like:
No pre-existing condition limitations

Monthly PremiumFrom $8 for cats and $10 for dogs. A multiple pet discount applies.
DeductibleNone
Discount25% of covered services
Age RestrictionsNone

Visit the Pet Assure website or get a quote for their pet insurance alternative


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Pet Assure is not a typical pet insurance company, but it is a good alternative for dogs who have pre-existing conditions. The way that it works is you go to a participating veterinarian and you receive 25 percent off of their regular prices. While the percentage written off is not equivalent to what you would have covered by traditional pet insurance, there are no deductibles, no waiting for reimbursement, and, best of all, no exclusions due to pre-existing conditions.

Pet Assure will cover your dog(s) and it will also cover your cat, turtle, hamster, rooster, alpaca, iguana, and so on. If you are a multi-pet household, you can simply purchase the plan for multiple pets and apply the savings to every visit you have with your participating vet.

Anything done in-house is covered. That means vaccines, wellness visits, dental work, spay/neuter surgery, and so on. If your dog has to go see a specialist, it will only cover the services if the specialist is participating. And if your pup needs lab work, it won’t be covered if it has to be sent out.

While this isn’t pet insurance, it is a good alternative for those with certain needs, such as dogs with pre-existing conditions and dog owners who also have more exotic pets as well.

Important Features of Pet Assure:

  • Pet insurance alternative
  • No deductibles
  • No exam fees
  • No waiting periods
  • No submitting paperwork or expenses
  • No annual or lifetime maximums
  • Can be used on any type of pet
  • Can be used for pre-existing conditions
  • Will cover routine care, dental services, and anything else done in-house
  • Must use participating veterinarians

Interested in learning more? Be sure to read our Pet Assure review.

How We Found the Best Pet Insurance Plans for Dogs and Puppies

With so much information out there, you might be wondering how we managed to filter it all when looking for the best pet insurance policies for dogs. Here’s some of the criteria we used.

The Cost of Premiums

Our first consideration was how much premiums would be each month (or each year). In general, you do get what you pay for. Still, some companies tend to charge more than others even if the coverage is not particularly high. So while the monthly premium is not the only consideration, it is an important one, in our opinion.

Type of Deductible

There are two types of deductibles that pet health insurance use. The first is the annual deductible. Like your health insurance annual deductible, this is a set amount that you pay once per year. If you sign up for pet insurance for your dog in January, then you will pay your deductible the first time (or the first few times, depending on the amount of the deductible) that you see your veterinarian. Then you will pay it again the following year during the first visit(s).

The other type that some companies use is a per-condition deductible. This means that you will pay the deductible each time your dog has a new health condition or injury. For example, if he hurts his paw in January, you’ll pay the deductible for that. If he later develops a stomach issue, you’ll pay the deductible again, even if it is the same calendar year. The benefit is that if the stomach issue persists into the next year (or even for several years), you will not pay the deductible again for that particular issue.

We tend to favor the annual deductible model, simply because you will know ahead of time how much you will pay each year. Some dog owners prefer the per-condition model because chronic illnesses and conditions tend to stretch out over several years.

Maximum Benefits Paid

Some pet insurance companies have a schedule of fees that they will pay for various treatments. These fees might or might line up with what your veterinarian charges. Other companies will pay based on the actual treatment fees. This means that even if your vet charges more than other vets in the area, the insurance company will make their payments based on the actual bill. We tend to favor payments based on actual treatment fees in our assessments.

Waiting Periods and Exclusions

Finally, we took a look at the waiting periods and exclusions list for each company. Almost every pet insurance company will have some type of waiting period; this may range from days to months, depending on the condition. Also, while every pet insurance company excludes pre-existing conditions, some have other exclusions as well. The fewer exclusions, the better, as far as our evaluations went.

Choosing the Best Health Insurance for Your Dog

So, now that you have all of this information, how can you choose the best pet insurance for Rover or Fido? Read on for some tips.

Learn About What’s Covered

To find the best pet insurance for your dog, make sure you understand what is covered and, just as importantly, what is not covered. Do you want routine wellness care covered? Be sure to find a plan that covers it as part of its basic plan or that offers a rider. Also note whether certain conditions that might apply to your dog (such as hip dysplasia and breed-specific conditions) will be covered.

Decide What Type of Deductible You Prefer

Do you like the idea of an annual or per-condition deductible? Each dog owner needs to decide this on their own, so think about what makes more sense in your particular situation.

Pay Attention to Benefits and Coverage Amounts

Be aware that coverage amounts will vary depending on the plan. In most cases, they range from 70 to 90 percent covered (after the deductible has been met), though a few companies go up to 100 percent and some have lower coverage amounts, too. Also, keep in mind that some companies pay based on a schedule and others pay based on the vet’s actual bill. If you are unsure which way the pet insurance company you are considering does it, call them up and ask.

Read Customer Reviews

Finally, check out customer reviews for any pet insurance companies you are considering for your dog. Look at both positive and negative reviews. We compiled a few of each in our in-depth reviews to get you started, but don’t stop there.

The Final Verdict

We feel that pet insurance is important, and we hope that you will consider it for your dog. Our top pick is Embrace Pet Insurance. Our best recommendation for you is to look into the various options available using the criteria we have listed above, and make your choices with the information you can gather.

Learn more about pet insurance by checking out Is Pet Insurance Worth the Cost? and Compare Pet Insurance for Every Breed.

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