Trupanion vs Pets Plus Us
When looking into medical insurance for your pet, it's very important to get the facts and read the fine print. What are the top reasons to choose Trupanion over Pets Plus Us? Check out this page for a summary:
WE CAN PAY YOUR VETERINARIAN DIRECTLY—USUALLY WITHIN 5 MINUTES
Pets Plus Us can only reimburse pet owners once they have already paid their veterinary bill. Trupanion is changing the "reimbursement" game by offering payment directly to the hospital, which means pet owners aren’t out of pocket. This also means claims can be paid in as little as 5 minutes. Read more >
WE PROCESS YOUR PAYOUTS FAIRLY
Pets Plus Us applies the coinsurance first, then applies the deductible, which always results in pet owners receiving less money when a claim is made. Read more >
WE DON'T PUNISH PETS FOR AGING & WE OFFER FINANCIAL FLEXIBILITY
Pets Plus Us has limited choices in deductibles, and in fact they force your deductible to increase based on the age of your pet. This makes it hard to ensure your coverage can fit into your budget. Read more >
WE DON'T RESTRICT COVERAGE FOR UNLUCKY PETS
Pets Plus Us restricts coverage to their Accident Only policy for pets that have been diagnosed with or shown symptoms of congestive heart failure, Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV), Feline Leukemia Virus (FELV), Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP), kidney failure, and autoimmune diseases before enrolling. Read more >
WE HAVE NO LIMITS
At most, Pets Plus Us will cover 90% of the veterinary bill up to $15,000 a year. If a pet is unlucky and has a few really big bills, a pet owner may find they are paying out of pocket pretty quickly. Read more >
WE'RE HERE FOR YOU 24/7
Pets Plus Us is only available M - F, 8 a.m. - 10 p.m., and Saturday 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. ET. That means they are open much less than half of the week. Read more >
WE DON'T COVER WELLNESS
Because we believe that we should focus on providing the coverage that gives the pet owner the most value—for costly injuries and illnesses. Pets Plus Us offers wellness coverage that’s more like a savings account, where they are the middleman managing your money, it’s not insurance. Read more >
You’re a responsible, loving pet owner interested in getting “pet insurance.” You’ve talked to your veterinarian, or maybe a friend or family member mentioned it. You have car insurance and your own health insurance… so this must work just like that, right? Well, not quite.
Trupanion is medical insurance for cats and dogs—we’re NOT pet insurance. The difference is huge, and this classification distinguishes us from other companies. Simply put, Trupanion was built by veterinarians for responsible, loving pet owners, just like you.
We’re committed to helping all pets get the best medical care. We’re committed to being the best value proposition for responsible, loving pet owners. And we’re committed to doing what we say, changing the industry for the better, and focusing on what’s best for pets, pet owners, and veterinarians.
Finally, Trupanion was built for your pet’s entire life. Not for a year. Not just until your policy becomes a burden for us. But for your pet’s entire life, through every tail wag, every kiss, every claim.
So, how does Petsecure’s “pet insurance” stack up to Trupanion’s medical insurance?
We can pay your veterinarian directly - usually within 5 minutes
Rather than the traditional insurance reimbursement model, Trupanion has changed the game and created a process that, once again, puts the needs of our members first. We can pay your veterinarian directly, before you even leave their hospital. No more filing paperwork, no more waiting for a cheque—just peace of mind that you are covered.
We don’t want you to pay out of pocket and we think you probably don’t either. We don’t want to waste your time, and we don’t want you to have to worry about what’s going to get covered. In many cases, our direct pay option requires no paperwork and no phone calls from the pet owner.
Ask your hospital if they have the ability to accept direct payment from Trupanion. If they don’t, ask them to contact us so we can work with them to help ensure you’ll have the best experience possible.
We process your payouts fairly
Like most people, you probably don’t often think about how your deductible and coinsurance is applied when you make a claim. Trupanion applies the deductible first and then the coinsurance. However, Pets Plus Us switches these and applies your coinsurance before your deductible. Seems innocent, but that little reversal can cost you big bucks over the life of your pet.
When the coinsurance is applied before the deductible, pet owners will always get less money reimbursed.
Let’s do the math:
Say you have a $250 deductible with 90% coverage (your coinsurance is 10%). You take your dog to your veterinarian and receive a bill with $1,000 of eligible costs.
- Pets Plus Us would pay you: $650
- ($1,000 - $100 coinsurance = $900 - $250 deductible = $650)
- Trupanion would pay you: $675
- ($1,000 - $250 deductible = $750 - $75 coinsurance = $675)
That $25 may not seem like a lot, but it adds up quickly, especially when you’re paying deductibles over and over again every year with Pets Plus Us.
We don't punish pets for aging & we offer financial flexibility
With Trupanion you can pick what you pay, because you can choose your deductible, including no deductible at $0, or anywhere from $50 to $1,000, in increments of $5. And you can change your deductible at any time quickly and easily. Pretty neat, huh? Medical insurance doesn’t have to hurt your budget!
However, Pets Plus Us has limited choices in deductibles, and in fact they force your deductible to increase based on the age of your pet. This makes it hard to ensure your coverage can fit into your budget.
See this in Pets Plus Us’ policy wording:
With Trupanion, your deductible is your choice for the entire life of your pet, regardless of their age, you can choose a deductible from $0 - $1,000.
And let’s talk about types of deductibles for a minute. Trupanion has a lifetime per condition deductible—so there’s no need to pay your deductible over and over again every year when you’ve already met it for that condition or a related condition.
A lifetime per condition deductible does not mean you must pay a deductible every time you file a claim, instead your chosen deductible only applies when your pet is diagnosed with a NEW condition. This is great when your pet suffers from allergies, or develops a chronic ailment. So, if your pet is diagnosed with diabetes, for instance, and you have a $250 deductible, once you meet the $250 deductible with Trupanion, you’ll never have to pay a deductible for claims relating to your pet’s diabetes ever again. And that lifetime per condition deductible also applies to any conditions that may pop up later that are diagnosed as related to the diabetes (cataracts or a kidney infection, for instance). These conditions will also be covered under that original deductible related to the diabetes.
Now, for a very unlucky pet that experiences several different, unrelated conditions in a single year, say diabetes and a broken leg and a foreign body ingestion, the lifetime per condition deductible may prove to be a bit less effective. But we’ve found that most pets only suffer a few different, unrelated conditions in their whole lifetime. And pet owners that are concerned about paying a lifetime per condition deductible can choose to not have a deductible at all by opting for the $0 deductible when they enroll with Trupanion, which is not an option with Pets Plus Us. A $0 deductible means you’ll only ever pay your portion of the veterinary bill.
In this example, with a lifetime per condition deductible, if your pet suffered from both allergies and diabetes, you would need to pay your $250 deductible twice, once for each condition, or a total of $500. With annual deductible plans you would have to pay the $250 every year, here we are estimating your pet maintains their insurance for 10 years so you would pay $250 ten times, or a total of $2,500. If you purchase a policy with an annual per condition deductible, you would have even higher deductible payments as shown.
We don't restrict coverage for unlucky pets
There’s an interesting restriction that Pets Plus Us has in their coverage, and many pet owners might not realize it’s an issue prior to enrollment. If your pet has been diagnosed with, tentatively diagnosed, or shown symptoms of certain critical illnesses before enrolling with Pets Plus Us, you will not receive full coverage for any new illnesses and injuries, instead you are only entitled to their Accident Only plan, that just covers future injuries. That means no new illnesses your pet may need treatment for will be covered. The uninsurable illnesses include, but are not limited to, congestive heart failure, Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV), Feline Leukemia Virus (FELV), Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP), kidney failure, and autoimmune diseases.
The importance of this restriction is paramount. If your pet has congestive heart failure, that doesn’t mean that they can’t be treated and that they may not be diagnosed with another completely unrelated illness, like allergies or arthritis. And unfortunately, you won’t have any coverage for those new illnesses if they do pop up. Why should your pet be penalized with restricted coverage just because they are unlucky?
Now, Trupanion doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions, no insurance company offers coverage for them, but we do not completely restrict coverage for ANY new illnesses because of a pre-existing condition. As long as your dog or cat is older than 8 weeks and under 14 years of age, you can enroll and be covered for all new illnesses and injuries. Simple and fair.
See this in Pets Plus Us’ policy wording:
We have no limits
You never want your cat or dog to get sick or injured, but sometimes unexpected things happen—that’s where medical insurance can help. But if you’re limited by the caps on your coverage, you may find yourself in a tough situation. With Trupanion, we have no payout limits, meaning no matter how high the bill or how many claims we have to pay for your pet, you never have to worry about running out of coverage.
Other companies often have annual limits, so if your pet is unlucky and has a few really big bills, you may find yourself paying out of pocket pretty quickly. If your pet is experiencing a health issue, the last thing you want to worry about is if your pet’s medical insurance policy will actually be able to cover what you need it to cover.
At most, Pets Plus Us will cover 90% of the veterinary bill up to $15,000 a year. That might seem like enough, but just in the past year, Trupanion paid out over $2.3 million in single claims of $10,000 or more, including a payout for a single claim of over $49,000. We know those large payouts aren’t the norm, but it does happen. Having unlimited coverage is pure peace of mind.
And what seems like a reasonable limit today may be very limiting in a few years’ time—you’re purchasing medical insurance for the life of your pet, you have to think about what your coverage may be like three, five, ten years from now, not just what it will cover this year.
You just never know what might happen, that’s why you have medical insurance for your cat or dog. Coverage with caps does protect some unlucky pets, just not those that are very unlucky. What are those pet owners supposed to do when their coverage runs out?
We're here for you 24/7
Our call center is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, even on holidays. We know that pets can get sick or hurt at any time, and if you need us at 3 a.m. on a Sunday because you have a question about the policy or want to check in on a claim—we’re just a phone call away.
Pets Plus Us is only available M - F, 8 a.m. - 10 p.m., and Saturday 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. ET. That means they are open less than 50% of the week, as opposed to Trupanion being open 100% of the week. Try calling them at 3 a.m. on a Sunday and all you’ll get is an automated robot. Trupanion remains committed to our members whenever they need us.
We don't cover wellness
Some pet medical insurance companies offer wellness coverage, but Trupanion does not. Why? Because we believe that we should focus on providing the coverage that gives you, the pet owner, the most value—and that lies in covering those conditions that are often the most costly to treat, injuries and illnesses.
We also believe that insurance companies should never manage or dictate the pet owner’s relationship with their veterinarian. Your veterinarian is the expert on your pet’s health, and they can and should choose which preventive care programs or what treatments are best for your pet. Trupanion believes that the best treatment plan for your pet is the one decided upon by you and your veterinarian, not an insurance company.
Plus, it just makes more sense for pet owners to pay their veterinarian directly for expected costs than to pay through an insurance company “middleman.” What’s more, the insurance company most likely has a one-size-fits-all “bundle” of preventive care services that may or may not include the best care options for a specific pet. Why pay year after year for spay and neuter services, when a pet will only need this one time?
Pets Plus Us offers what is essentially a flexible spending account for their wellness coverage. Where a pet owner puts in a set amount of money every month (as part of their monthly premium), and will get that money “paid back” when the pet receives routine veterinary care. This is not insurance coverage.
Pets Plus Us also requires you to choose which treatments you want to include in the wellness care program before you enroll. The addition of each treatment to your chosen coverage is reflected in your monthly cost. The interesting thing is no matter what treatments you choose, the annual total of your monthly payments always matches the total cost of the maximum annual benefits Pets Plus Us offers for the treatments you choose.
So, for instance, if you choose to have your pet’s annual exam and vaccinations, dental care, and flea treatments/prevention covered, you will be paying $73.16 per month, in addition to your monthly premium for your pet’s actual insurance. In total, you will pay $877.92 for the entire 12 months of Wellness Care coverage. For your payment of $877.92, the total annual benefits you will receive is $877.80.
See this on Pets Plus Us’ website:
In essence, you aren’t getting any benefit from paying Pets Plus Us to “cover” your pet’s wellness care, not even a small discount. You could just as easily pay that money to your veterinarian at the time when your pet actually needs the wellness treatments and in the amount that they actually cost, rather than using Pets Plus Us as some sort of “middleman” between you and your veterinarian.
And if you’re not getting any “extra coverage” or benefit, why waste your time filling out claims paperwork for these treatments? It’s just an extra unneeded step in this instance. Plus, you may also be creating extra stress because you will need to ensure you are getting your full money’s worth out of this coverage by utilizing the full limit of each treatment. What you’ve paid in to Pets Plus Us does not roll over at the end of the year, nor can you get a refund. If you don’t use it, you lose it.
When you adopt a pet from a shelter or breeder, you already know there will be some expenses—regular checkups, vaccines, pet food, a leash, and toys. Lots of toys.
Medical insurance should not be purchased to cover these things, just as you don’t use insurance to buy new furniture for your home or an oil change for your car. Medical insurance is to here for you to help if you must face the unexpected with your pet. Let us do what we do best, protect you and protect your dog or cat.
Our commitment We are Trupanion. We’re medical insurance for pets and we’re committed to helping all pets be able to get the best medical care. We’re committed to being the best value proposition for responsible, loving pet owners. And we’re committed to doing what we say, to changing the industry for the better, and to focusing on what’s best for pets, pet owners, and veterinarians.
We urge all pet owners to really look at the coverage Pets Plus Us is offering and make the decision that is best for their pet, for their entire life—think about the restrictions, limits, and lack of time they make available for their customer’s needs.
Trupanion is different. Our commitment to getting this right has remained as steadfast and strong as when we first entered this industry—and it will remain that way for as long as we’re here.