Trupanion Review

Protect your pets with insurance that doesn’t make you pay out of pocket first

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Trupanion

Trupanion

overall rating
3.6

Our Take

Trupanion offers simple and semi-customizable accident and illness insurance for cats and dogs. By offering policies with no annual limits and a set reimbursement rate of 90%, the company helps you get the best coverage for your money. 

  • Pros and Cons
  • Key Takeaways
  • Specifications
Pros and Cons
What We Like
  • Zero deductibles available

  • Fixed 90% reimbursement

  • No annual coverage limits

  • 24/7 customer support

What We Don't Like
  • Limited policy customization

  • No wellness plan available

  • No discounts or flexible payment options

Key Takeaways
  • Trupanion offers pet insurance with no annual limits and fixed reimbursements.  
  • Premiums are set for the age of your pet and won’t increase as they get older.
  • Policies are available with no deductible.
  • Two affordable add-on riders extend your coverage for other emergencies.
Specifications
  • Year Founded 2000
  • Deductible $0 to $1,000
  • Types of Services Available Accident and illness insurance
  • Additional Features Direct vet pay, complementary care and pet owner riders
  • Official Website https://trupanion.com/

Trupanion offers reasonably-priced pet insurance focused on helping dog and cat owners save more when they need it rather than providing them with the lowest rates. The company offers fixed 90% reimbursement for covered services, an optional $0 deductible, and unlimited lifetime coverage per condition.          

We review Trupanion’s coverage details and exclusions, add-on services, pricing, customer service, ratings, and more to help you decide if its plans are right for you.

Company Overview: Comprehensive, Value-Based Pet Insurance 

Trupanion was founded in 2000 to provide emergency pet insurance that could reimburse vets first instead of making pet owners pay for their bills upfront. The company expanded its coverage to provide accident and illness insurance and works with a network of participating veterinary practices in the U.S., Canada, Puerto Rico, and Australia.

To offer the best coverage possible, Trupanion automatically reimburses customers for 90% of their vet bills for covered services. Although a 70% or 80% reimbursement may result in a lower monthly premium, the company recognizes that the extra 10% to 20% you’ll pay out of pocket may stop people from getting their pet the care they need in an emergency.      

Trupanion has an Excellent rating on Trustpilot and an Average rating on Yelp. Trustpilot reviewers praise the company for its top-notch customer service and speedy claims resolution. Disappointed Yelp reviewers, however, fault Trupanion for denying claims repeatedly, an issue that frequently appears in pet insurance reviews when customers are unclear on their policy exclusions.

Although Trupanion’s underwriter, American Pet Insurance Company, is not rated by AM Best, it has an A rating for financial stability from Demotech, a similar agency that evaluates property and casualty insurers. 

Policies Available: Accident and Illness

Trupanion offers a unique take on its accident and illness insurance. All policies include a fixed 90% reimbursement for covered services and a choice of either no deductible or a range from $50 to $1,000 selectable in increments of $5. 

You also get unlimited lifetime coverage per condition rather than an annual coverage limit. For example, the first time your pet is diagnosed with a condition, you will need to pay your deductible plus 10% of any remaining fees. The next time your pet is diagnosed with the same condition, you will only have to pay 10% of the total vet fee.     

Trupanion has a waiting period of five days for injuries and 30 days for illnesses. Any claims filed before the waiting periods are up will automatically be denied.

Trupanion’s accident and illness insurance cover the following services:

  • Diagnostic tests
  • Surgeries
  • Hospital stays
  • Medications
  • Prescription food (up to 50% reimbursement for two months)
  • Dental illness or injuries
  • Veterinary supplements
  • Herbal therapy
  • Prosthetic devices and carts

Note that in order to get dental accident and illness coverage, you are required to have your pet’s teeth checked by a vet every 12 months.

Important

Trupanion doesn’t offer coverage for exams and office visits, so you’ll have to pay those costs out of pocket.

Other Add-ons: Complementary Care and Pet Owner Riders 

Although Trupanion doesn’t offer a preventive care plan, you can choose from two paid riders to extend your emergency coverage.   

Recovery and Complementary Care Rider

Trupanion does not cover alternative and holistic treatments in its basic policy. By adding the Recovery and Complementary Care Rider, your pet will be covered for the following treatments and services:

  • Acupuncture
  • Behavioral modification
  • Chiropractic
  • Homeopathy
  • Hydrotherapy
  • Naturopathy
  • Physical therapy
  • Rehabilitative therapy

Pet Owner Assistance Package 

Trupanion also offers a rider that will help reimburse you for fees associated with a variety of situations that fall outside of its accident and illness policy.  

Third-Party Property Damage Liability Coverage

Trupanion will pay up to $25,000 for unintentional property damage caused by your insured pet and that you are deemed liable for.

Advertising and Reward

If your pet is lost or stolen, Trupanion will reimburse you for up to $500 in local newspaper advertising as well as any reward you offer to assist in the recovery of your pet.

Boarding Fees

Trupanion will pay up to $500 to board your pet at a licensed facility in the event you are hospitalized for more than four days after suffering an accident or illness. This coverage is available 30 days after enrollment and covers up to a maximum of $25 per day.

Holiday Vacation Cancellation Costs

Trupanion will reimburse you for up to $1,000 for travel and accommodation expenses you can’t otherwise recover if your pet becomes sick or injured during or up to seven days before your trip.

Cremation or Burial

In the event your pet dies as the result of an accident, Trupanion will pay up to $100 for your pet’s cremation or burial expenses.

Unique Features: Direct Vet Payment

Although Trupanion requires you to pay for your vet fees upfront and submit a claim for reimbursement, it can also reimburse participating vets directly so all you need to do is pay your deductible and/or 10% of your bill at the time of checkout. You can use Trupanion’s online vet finder to locate participating vets in your area.  

Plan Exclusions: Pre-Existing Conditions 

As with all pet insurers, Trupanion offers no coverage for pre-existing conditions, defined as any condition diagnosed or that showed signs of manifesting 18 months before the start of your policy. 

The following conditions and services are also excluded from coverage:    

  • Examinations
  • Illnesses or Injuries that arise from intentional or reckless activity
  • Breeding, whelping, and queening
  • Elective, cosmetic, or preventive procedures
  • Boarding
  • Transportation expenses
  • Anal gland expression
  • Bedding, housing, crates, and other pet supplies
  • Non-prescribed special diets or pet foods
  • Non-medicated shampoo
  • Grooming or nail trims
  • Injury resulting from training for or participating in racing
  • Spaying or neutering
  • Parasitic infection
  • Cremation, burial, and other post-mortem costs

Cost: Reasonable Rates That Don’t Increase With Age

Trupanion’s premiums are about average compared to most of the other pet insurers we reviewed. Whereas most companies will raise your premiums as your pet ages, however, Trupanion sets your premium price based on the age of your pet at the time of enrollment. The company will only raise its premiums to compensate for any rising costs in vet services.       

We used Trupanion’s online quote builder to create the following two policies. Note that prices might vary by your location or the age and breed of your pet.

Accident and illness insurance for a mixed breed, medium (20–55 lbs.), three-year-old female dog with unlimited coverage, a $500 deductible, and 90% reimbursement came to $43.63 per month. Recovery and Complementary Care Rider coverage added an extra $7.50 per month for a total of $51.13 per month. Pet Owner Assistance Package coverage added $4.95 per month for a total of $56.08 per month.

Accident and illness insurance for a domestic longhair, one-year-old, male cat with unlimited coverage, a $500 deductible, and 90% reimbursement came to $24.59 per month. Recovery and Complementary Care Rider coverage added an extra $2.41 per month for a total of $27.00 per month. Pet Owner Assistance Package coverage added $4.95 per month for a total of $31.95 per month.  

Trupanion charges a one-time administration fee of $35 to start your policy and doesn’t offer any healthy pet or multiple-pet discounts. You can also request a 100% refund on your paid premiums if you cancel your policy in the first 30 days and haven’t been paid for any claims. 

Tip

Participating vets can get reimbursed directly from Trupanion so all you’ll have to pay is your deductible and/or 10% of the remaining bill at the time of checkout.

Customer Service: 24/7 Live Chat and Phone Support

Trupanion offers some of the most robust customer support of any pet insurer we’ve seen. You can access a customer care specialist by phone, email, and live chat 24 hours a day, seven days a week, whether it’s about a claim or a pet emergency.

Submitting claims is easy, too. You can either log in to your account on Trupanion’s website and fill out the online form, or print a claim form and return it by email, fax, or mail.    

Competition: Trupanion vs. Figo 

We compared Trupanion to Figo which offers similar accident and illness insurance in most of the same regions, no wellness plans, and additional riders that extend your coverage.

Unlike Trupanion, Figo allows you to customize the deductible, reimbursement, and annual coverage limit for your policy. And although neither Trupanion nor Figo covers vet exam fees in their basic policy, Figo lets you add that coverage for a few extra dollars per month.

In terms of value for the dollar, Figo pulls ahead by covering for acupuncture and chiropractic care as well as cremation in its standard policy. Trupanion makes you pay extra to be reimbursed for these services. On the other hand, Trupanion offers add-on coverage for lost pets, boarding fees, and trip cancellation that you can’t get with Figo.

We recommend you carefully compare the services each offers side-by-side to see which provider is best for your needs. While Figo can save you more each month, Trupanion is likely to save you more when you’re actually at the vet facing that big bill.

  Trupanion Figo
Animals covered Dogs and cats Dogs and cats
Example cost $40.36 to insure a two-year-old dog with 90% coverage, no annual limit, and a $500 deductible $35.79 to insure a two-year-old dog with 90% coverage, no annual limit, a $500 deductible, and veterinary and exam fee coverage
Coverage type Accident and illness Accident and illness
Waiting period Accidents: Five days
Illnesses: 30 days
Accidents: Three days
Illnesses: 14 days
Network size Any licensed vet in the U.S.,  Puerto Rico, Canada, and Australia Any licensed vet in the U.S., Puerto Rico, and Canada
Final Verdict: Pet Insurance Simplified

Trupanion is one of a few companies that have actually succeeded in making pet insurance simple. It knows that while a policy with a high annual deductible and 70% reimbursement may cost less monthly, what you’ll pay when you actually need your insurance will be much less with a fixed 90% reimbursement and unlimited lifetime coverage.

Although Trupanion is very thoughtful about why it doesn’t offer a wellness rider, it would be nice to give their customers that option. It was also disappointing to see that the company offers no healthy pet or multi-pet discounts or the option to pay annually instead of monthly.

Based on our methodology, if you’re looking for a pet insurance company that will help you with routine pet care, you’ll want to shop around. However, Trupanion’s intelligently-crafted policies will help you protect your pet in an emergency without emptying your bank account.