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Understanding your pet's monthly cost

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Every year you’ll receive updated policy documents for the next year before your enrollment anniversary. With those documents includes your monthly cost for the upcoming year. Sometimes this number changes from year to year, other times it stays the same.

Every year we evaluate rates to make sure you’re neither over- or under-paying for your pet’s coverage. Rates are set to make sure your pet can get the best care possible when they need it, while making sure we can afford to pay claims. 

Adjustments typically happen due to changes to the average cost of veterinary care where you live. This does not necessarily mean the same procedures cost more—the same antibiotic still costs roughly the same as it did 2 years ago. What that typically means is that there are more modern veterinary care options available than before. 

Some companies choose to account for these changes by compromising their coverage— adding exclusions, limiting payouts, and reducing or dropping coverage.  We don’t think that’s fair. 

While we don’t enjoy raising costs for our members, it’s something we have to do so we can keep offering superior coverage, rather than keeping your cost the same by reducing coverage.

Not necessarily. Rates are evaluated every year to make sure you’re neither over- nor under-paying, but changes are not guaranteed every year, nor are they guaranteed to go up.

That said, rates typically increase slightly most years. Fortunately, we’re one of the only companies that does not have automatic rate increases as your pet ages—instead we reward your loyalty by pricing your monthly cost based on your pet’s age at enrollment.

Prices are set to provide maximum value to our policyholders, while making sure we can pay claims.

Your monthly cost is determined based on:

  1. Where you live (average cost of care, treatments available)
  2. Your pet (species, breed, age at enrollment, gender)
  3. The deductible you select

That’s correct, Trupanion is one of the only pet health insurance plans that does not have automatic rate increases as your pet ages—some companies have guaranteed annual increases of up to 18%! However, that doesn’t mean your rate won’t ever increase—there are many factors that make up our monthly premiums that can cause your rate to increase. 

Instead, we believe in rewarding responsible pet owners for their loyalty. Which is why your rate is significantly lower than it’d be if you enrolled today. That’s because if you enrolled your pet today, their price would be based on their current age, instead of how old they were when you originally enrolled them.

We get that this can be a little confusing to understand, so here’s an example: Let’s say you have a 6-year-old Lab who you enrolled as a puppy. If you adopted another Lab puppy today and enrolled them with the same deductible, your 6-year-old and your puppy would have the same premium.

No, the claims you’ve filed have no impact on your premium. Unlike others in the industry, we promise to never raise your monthly rate or decrease your coverage as a result of filing claims. Unexpected vet bills are why you have pet medical insurance in the first place!

When we say the average cost of veterinary care affects your monthly cost, you’re probably not going to see a dramatic change in costs at your vet.

Instead, we consider how many emergency, specialty, and teaching hospitals are in your area, as well as the availability of modern treatments and diagnostics—like MRIs, laser surgery, and CT scans—that simply did not exist in vet medicine until recently.

These advancements are great because they help pets live longer, healthier lives—but they do come at a higher cost. Your pet’s policy was built so you can give your pet the best care possible, and that includes these newer treatments.

In short, your cost is priced specifically for your pet based on the information collected in our database from over 1 million claims for Trupanion pets. This data allows us to price premiums with precision, catering to each pet’s unique needs while providing the most value to our members.

To do this, we look at the number and size of paid claims as well as what our members pay for their coverage, and compare it to what we expected to see based on breed, location, age, gender, etc. When these numbers aren’t what we expected, we have to adjust our prices accordingly.

Our goal is to help remove the financial burden of unexpected vet bills. However, we can’t do that if pet owners can’t afford coverage in the first place. 

This is why we let you pick your monthly cost by adjusting your deductible. Afterall, when faced with the decision between the care your pet needs and what you can afford, insurance can really help.

We want to make sure coverage works with your budget—so if you’d like to change your monthly cost, please give us a call anytime at 855.648.0088.