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Pet insurance reviews

Last updated: 22 March 2016

When your pet is a valued family member, you want what's best for them and their health. We review dog and cat health insurance to help find the best policy for you. Our buying guide explains the features, and how we review explains how we find the best range of features and value for money.

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Insurers include Bupa, Woolworths, RSPCA, Petplan and HCF.

Our comparison report will help you:

  • decide which insurance is right for you and your pet
  • check how much of the vet bill an insurer will pay
  • check what excess payment options each policy has
  • check which policies have the highest annual benefits and range of features
  • match a policy's features against its "bang for buck" score.

Look at each policy's feature score alongside its value rating to make sure you're getting the best product for you at the best price.

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List of brands we tested in this review.

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Animals
Insurer
Maximum benefit limit
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Total cover per year for accidental injury, illness and routine care (where relevant). NB: figure for puppy policies is an average over a 15 year lifespan, due to lower benefit levels in earlier years.

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 3000 and 21900

Co-payment
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The percentage of vet's bills paid by the insurer.

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 65 and 100

Routine benefit
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The total amount claimable for routine care.

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 80 and 400

Cat value
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Value for money (i.e. maximum benefit level per dollar spent on premiums) compared to other cat policies.

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 0 and 0

Dog value
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Value for money (i.e. maximum benefit level per dollar spent on premiums) compared to other dog policies.

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Scores

Benefits (out of 25)
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25 points. Covers items such as the annual benefit limit and other sublimits for tick paralysis, dental illness, etc.

enter value/s in increments of 1 between 0 and 0

Events (out of 25)
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25 points. Policies scored on specific items they provide cover for (e.g. allergic reactions, bone fractures, etc).

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Conditions (out of 20)
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20 points. Policies scored on details of waiting periods and how they deal with pre-existing conditions

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Purchasing details (out of 20)
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20 points. Policies scored on excess options, co-payments, and other issues of concern when actually purchasing the policy.

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Routine care (out of 10)
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10 points. Policies scored on the maximum benefit available for routine care, and the range of treatments available to customers.

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Features

Dental illness
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May not include dental checkups, confirm with the insurer.

Hereditary conditions
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Is cover provided for breed-specific, hereditary or genetic conditions?

Vaccinations
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Are routine vaccinations covered?

Chronic conditions
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Is cover provided for conditions that recur over multiple policy years (e.g. diabetes)?

Patellar luxation and elbow dysplasia
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Common conditions affecting leg joints.

Multiple pet discount

Included in this review

Members-only access
  • worth considering
  • Good points
  • Bad points
  • Overall score
  • Recommended
  • Value rating
  • Benefits (out of 25)
  • Events (out of 25)
  • Conditions (out of 20)
  • Purchasing details (out of 20)
  • Routine care (out of 10)
  • Cat value
  • Dog value
  • Multiple pet discount
  • Hereditary conditions
  • Chronic conditions
  • Policy
  • Brand
  • Insurer
  • Underwriter
  • Phone
  • Website
  • Type
  • Animals
  • Routine benefit
  • Routine cost
  • Routine discount
  • Minimum age
  • Maximum age
  • Co-payment
  • Excess options
  • Premiums increase with age
  • Age when co-pay changes
  • Reduced co-pay for older pets
  • Maximum benefit limit
  • Max benefit per $1 premium (cat)
  • Max benefit per $1 premium (dog)
  • Tick paralysis sublimit ($)
  • Dental illness sublimit ($)
  • Alternative treatment sublimit ($)
  • Skin condition sublimit ($)
  • Holiday cancellation sublimit ($)
  • Public liability cover ($)
  • Emergency boarding
  • Rewards
  • Theft/straying
  • Death by illness
  • Death by injury
  • Monthly payment fee
  • Death refund
  • Overseas travel
  • Travel restriction (days)
  • No location charge
  • Claim time limit (days)
  • Multiple pet discount
  • Premiums for young animals
  • Other discounts
  • Accident waiting period (days)
  • Illness waiting period (days)
  • Vaccination benefit
  • Flea/tick/worm control
  • FeLV/FIV test
  • Heartworm treatment
  • Benefits with individual sublimits
  • Combined sublimit
  • Benefits with combined sublimits
  • Tick paralysis waiting period (days)
  • Cruciate ligament waiting period (months)
  • Dental waiting period
  • Other waiting periods
  • Pre-existing condtions excluded
  • Apply to have exclusions on pre-existing conditions lifted
  • Pre-existing condition waiting period (months)
  • Hereditary condition exclusions
  • Bilateral exclusions
  • Exclusions on renewal
  • Chronic conditions
  • Maximum lifetime benefit for chronic conditions
  • Donations
  • Vehicle injury
  • Tick paralysis
  • Swallowing foreign object
  • Swallowing foreign object (recurring)
  • Burns
  • Electrocution
  • Snake bite
  • Allergies
  • Bone fractures
  • Cruciate ligament damage
  • Skin lacerations
  • Injuries sustained guarding family home
  • Endoparasites
  • Patellar luxation and elbow dysplasia
  • Patellar luxation and elbow dysplasia
  • Pandemics
  • Prosthetics
  • Organ transplants
  • Dental illness
  • Alternative treatments
  • Breeding-related illnesses
  • Essential euthanasia (pet value)
  • Essential euthanasia (vet fees)
  • Voluntary euthanasia
  • Illnesses with known vaccination
  • Tick paralysis
  • Dental illness
  • Alternative treatments
  • Vaccinations
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