Healthy Paws Pet Insurance Review
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An emergency visit to the vet can cost you anything from $250 to $8,000. However, 40% of Americans don’t have $400 in emergency savings. These findings, from the Healthy Paws2019 Cost of Pet Health Care Report, show that, besides emptying your savings, an unexpected vet bill can leave you in debt.
It’s, therefore, important to insure your furry friend’s health, so that you’re both protected. However, with so many pet insurance providers to choose from, making a decision can be daunting.
In this article, we will review Healthy Paws Pet Insurance so that you can easily compare it to other pet insurance providers, which may simplify your decision.
Benefits and Limitations of Healthy Paws Pet Insurance
Benefits of a Healthy Paws insurance policy
Annual limits don’t exist.
Most claims are processed within two days.
Limitations of a Healthy Paws insurance policy
Hip dysplasia is excluded for pets that are enrolled after age six.
No additional or add-on options to the base insurance policy.
Maximum reimbursement rate of 60% for pets over eight years old.
What Does Healthy Paws Pet Insurance Cover?
Healthy Paws plans offer a single policy for cats and dogs that covers a range of medical conditions and emergencies, including:
1. Accidents and illnesses
There is a wide range of accidents and illnesses that your pet may encounter during its lifetime. According to Healthy Paws, the most common condition both cats and dogs face is stomach problems, which can respectively cost up to $24,402 and $29,086 to treat.
After that, cats are most susceptible to urinary tract infections, heart disease, skin allergies, eye conditions, chronic kidney disease, diabetes, and ear infections. Dogs experience similar issues with the addition of ligament ruptures and foreign growths, such as cysts or lumps.
Healthy Paws Pet Insurance will cover illnesses and injuries related to all these conditions, and many more. It takes into account:
X-rays, blood tests, ultrasounds.
2. Hereditary and congenital conditions
Hereditary conditions are passed on through genes, such as your Dalmatian being susceptible to urinary bladder stones. In contrast, congenial conditions are developed while your pet is still in utero, such as your cat being born with an extra vertebra.
Your pet may not show signs of illness until later in life, which means that–despite your best efforts–your pet may be predisposed to developing medical problems as they get older. Healthy Paws Pet Insurance will take care of pet owners' vet bills for hereditary and congenital conditions.
However, hip dysplasia, which is incredibly common among cats and dogs, will only be covered if your pet is under the age of six when you take out a policy with them, and your pet doesn’t show any signs of this condition for the first 12 months of continuous cover.
3. Emergency and specialty care
Your cat or dog’s primary vet is similar to your own primary health care physician, such as your general practitioner. However, at times your pet may require specialty or emergency care, such as from an animal hospital that offers advanced surgeries or treatments.
A Healthy Paws plan will cover this at the same rate as primary health care visits. This may include orthopedic specialists, oncologists for cancer care, internal medicine experts, ophthalmologists, neurologists, radiologists, and cardiologists.
4. Chronic conditions
Pet parents may notice that their furry friend is suffering from a chronic condition. This is when they experience ongoing symptoms from conditions such as glaucoma, arthritis, and inflammatory bowel disease. Chronic conditions cannot be cured, but the symptoms can be managed.
Since it’s an ongoing medical condition, you will have to add treatment such as prescription medication as an ongoing cost to your budget–unless your pet is insured. A Healthy Paws plan covers chronic conditions, as long as it’s not a preexisting condition or falls outside the waiting period.
Healthy Paws also covers your pet for cancer. This means that you can focus on your pet during these difficult times rather than worrying about money. Cancer treatment has come far over the years, and your pet may qualify for advanced CyberKnife Radiosurgery, which reduces the number of vet visits while offering better treatment for your pet’s cancer.
Healthy Paws Pet Insurance covers cancer diagnostics, chemotherapy, radiation therapy, lab tests, ultrasounds, X-rays, surgery, hospitalization, prescription medications, alternative therapy, and rehabilitation.
6. Alternative treatment
Lastly, your pet will be covered for nonconventional treatments, such as chiropractic therapy, acupuncture, hydrotherapy, physical therapy, laser therapy, and massage therapy.
However, this will only be considered a valid claim if it’s a treatment for a new condition that’s performed or recommended by your veterinarian. Note that herbal therapy and homeopathy are not covered by Healthy Paws Pet Insurance.
Additional Coverage or Add-Ons for Healthy Paws Pet Insurance
Unlike the majority of pet insurance providers, Healthy Paws Pet Insurance doesn’t offer additional coverage or add-ons. On their website, they explain that their focus is on unexpected injuries and illnesses rather than preventative care for potential future conditions.
You may choose to vaccinate your puppy so that they’re not susceptible to a series of illnesses later in life, such as canine hepatitis and kennel cough. Similarly, you may take them for annual vet examinations to make sure they’re in good health. However, since this is considered preventative care, it won’t be covered by your Healthy Paws policy.
They believe that pet owners should budget for expected medical expenses, rather than claim them back from insurance. They also believe that including preventative care expenses raise premiums unnecessarily and that you might end up paying more than you would if you budgeted for it yourself.
Healthy Paws Pet Insurance Coverage Levels and Customizations
When you sign up for a Healthy Paws policy, your monthly premium, as well as the degree to which your pet will be covered, will depend on your limits and customizations.
1. Annual deductible
Before you receive financial support from your pet insurance, you have to pay an annual deductible. Once this amount is settled, your insurer will pay their portion of the remaining vet bills.
Healthy Paws Pet Insurance determines deductibles based on your pet’s age. For example, if your cat is eight years or older, you can choose between a deductible of $750 or $1,000. The table below outlines the different deductibles:
|Pet Age||Healthy Paws Deductible Options|
|Dogs and cats aged 5 and under||$100|
|Dogs and cats aged 6-7||$250|
|Dogs and cats aged 8 and older||$750|
2. Reimbursement percentage
The reimbursement percentage, or reimbursement rate, is the portion of the vet bill that your insurer will cover after you’ve paid your deductible.
For example, imagine your five-year-old cat falls from your balcony and fractures its jaw. After your injured friend has received the care it needs, you receive a bill of $1,000.
If your deductible is $250, and it hasn’t been settled that year, you will first need to pay this amount before your insurance steps in. Thereafter, if your reimbursement rate is 90%, your insurer will step in and pay 90% of the remaining amount, which is $675, and you will pay the last 10%, which is $75.
Through Healthy Paws coverage, you have to choose a reimbursement percentage based on the age of your pet. Here’s a full list of your choices:
|Pet Age||Healthy Paws Deductible Options|
|Dogs and cats aged 5 and under||70%|
|Dogs and cats aged 6-7||60%|
|Dogs and cats aged 8 and older||50%|
3. Annual limits
Healthy Paws is one of the few pet insurance providers that doesn’t have annual limits. This means that, regardless of how large your vet bills are, they will continue to cover you.
Other pet insurance companies will have a maximum amount that you will be reimbursed for per year. For example, if your annual limit is $5,000 and you claim $5,500 from them in a year, then you will be responsible for paying the additional $500. However, without any limits, you will be covered for any amount.
Healthy Paws Pet Insurance Exclusions
While Healthy Paws covers a long list of items, they also have a list of exclusions that they won’t offer financial support for. This includes:
Waiting periods before cover kicks in: Following the effective date of your policy, you will not be able to make a claim for accidents or illnesses until 15 days have passed. For example, if your dog walks into a sharp branch and injures its eye 14 days after your insurance policy kicked in, then the cost thereof won’t be covered.
Full clinical exam required to be insured: If your pet is six years or older, you need to take them to the vet for a full examination before your insurance policy is considered valid. This exam would either have had to take place during the 12 months before your effective date, or 15 days after it.
Hip dysplasia excluded: If your pet is six years or older, then they will not qualify for cover if they develop hip dysplasia, and you will have to pay these bills out of pocket.
Working pets are disqualified: If your pet performs a job, such as assisting law enforcement, starring in advertisements, or participating in races, then they won’t be covered for any injury that occurs during their “work”.
Preexisting conditions aren’t covered: If your pet has already started showing evidence of a health condition prior to the end of your waiting period, then it won’t be covered by Paws Health Insurance. For example, if a vet determines that your cat must have shown symptoms of cancer before your policy kicked in, then it won’t be covered.
Preexisting cruciate ligament injury has a partial exclusion: If your pet has this injury on one leg prior to your policy being effective, then the other leg will not be covered.
Preventative care is excluded: This includes vaccinations, grooming, deworming, parasite control, anal gland expression, neutering, and dental health care that’s not related to an accident or illness.
Factors That Impact Your Premium
Your premium is impacted by several facts about your pet, such as their breed, age, location, and gender. Pet insurers have found that certain pets are more susceptible to health conditions than others, which makes them a higher insurance risk and, therefore, raises your premium.
For example, imagine you have a one-year-old male pug that’s based in the city. This breed is generally considered high risk and, since vet bills in the city are more expensive, this will also count against you when calculating your premium. However, since your pug is a young male, which has statistically been shown to be a lower insurance risk than a female, it would be favorable for your premium.
On top of this, if you choose a higher deductible and a lower reimbursement percentage, then you will be able to negotiate a lower monthly premium.
Healthy Paws Pet Insurance Reviews and Ratings
|Healthy Paws||Figo||Pets Best||Spot||Embrace|
|State availability||Available in all 50 states||Available in all 50 states||Available in all 50 states||Available in all 50 states||Available in all 50 states|
|Waiting period for injuries||15 days||1 day||3 days||14 days||2 days|
|Waiting period for illness||15 days||14 days||14 days||14 days||14 days|
|Reimbursement level||Varies by pet age||70%|
|Deductible choices||Varies by pet age||Varies by pet age||$50|
Since you’re unable to choose your annual limit, you won’t be able to use this as a factor to help lower your monthly premium. However, if you know that you have a high-risk dog or cat breed, then you can rest assured that they will be covered for any amount of medical attention they need.
There are many exclusions for pets that are six years or older, which means that this may not be the best insurer for you if your cat or dog has been with you for a while. On top of this, if your pet's age is over six years old, you don’t qualify for a reimbursement rate of over 60% or a deductible of less than $750. Therefore, this may not be the best pet insurance for older cats and dogs.
However, if your pet is still youthful, then you can benefit from a reimbursement rate of up to 90% and a deductible as low as $100. Healthy Paws also boasts that most of their claims are processed within two days, and they have an app that you can use to easily submit and monitor claims.
Frequently Asked Questions about Healthy Paws Pet Insurance
How do you file a claim with Healthy Paws Pet Insurance?
You can either submit your vet’s invoice on the Healthy Paws website, or through their mobile app. They also accept claims that are submitted via email.
How do you cancel your policy with Healthy Paws Pet Insurance?
Contact them directly by sending an email, giving them a call, or speaking to them in person about canceling your policy.
Will you receive a bonus if you refer a friend to Healthy Paws Pet Insurance?
You will not receive anything directly. However, they will donate $25 to assist homeless pets that aren’t fortunate enough to have pet insurance.
You can reach us at 1-888-912-2132 or send an email to Help@PolicyScout.com to get assistance from one of our trained consultants about your options.