Emergency treatments for your pet can cost $1,000–$5,000 in addition to $100–$150 in exam fees and $150–$250 for X-rays or other diagnostic procedures. These costs can add up, creating excessive out-of-pocket spending when your beloved furry friend gets sick or injured. An affordable pet insurance policy can minimize these costs and give you peace of mind that your pet will receive care.

The This Old House Reviews team researched the top pet insurance companies, reviewing their reputations, customer service, plan options, cost, and coverage. We found that many of the top pet insurance providers offer cheap but quality policies. Here are our top picks.

Top 7 Cheapest Pet Insurance Companies


Lemonade: Best Overall

We rated Lemonade Best Overall with a score of 96 out of 100. We were impressed with the company’s low prices, high coverage limits, and wellness and extra coverage add-ons. Lemonade also has a user-friendly mobile app that features AI technology and helps you get a quote, sign up for a policy, and file claims.

Lemonade Pros & Cons

Pros Offers customers a discount for paying annually Donates customers’ leftover premiums to charities Has a short waiting period of 48 hours for accidents
Cons Requires a medical report from the past 12 months before enrollment Charges higher prices for pets with a medical history

Lemonade Pet Insurance Plans

Lemonade has an accident-and-illness plan plus six add-ons for wellness and additional coverage. Like many competitors, it excludes elective procedures, behavioral treatments, and preexisting conditions from its policies. It also requires a recent medical report from the last 12 months before initiating coverage.

Accident-and-illness plan: This plan offers comprehensive coverage for injections, prescription medications, outpatient care, specialty care, emergency care, hospitalization, surgery, blood tests, urinalysis, X-rays, MRIs, labwork, CT scans, and ultrasounds related to accidents and injuries.

Coverage options include:

  • 70%, 80%, and 90% reimbursements
  • $5,000, $10,000, $20,000, $50,000, and $100,000 annual coverage limits
  • $100, $250, and $500 deductibles

Available add-ons

  • Behavioral therapy
  • Dental illness
  • End-of-life care
  • Preventive care
  • Physical therapy
  • Vet visit fees

Average Costs

Average monthly cost for puppies (6 weeks–1 year): $19.67
Average monthly cost for adult dogs (1 year–10 years): $23.22

Average monthly cost for kittens (6 weeks–1 year): $11.55
Average monthly cost for adult cats (1 year–10 years): $11.55

Learn moreLemonade Pet Insurance review



Spot: Most Customizable Plans

Spot offers customizable coverage with six coverage limit options, three reimbursement options, and five annual deductibles. These options allow you to keep your premiums very low compared to competitors. Spot scored a 91 out of 100 because of its plan options and affordability but lost points for offering limited wellness and preventive care.

Spot Pros & Cons

Pros Provides a 30-day money-back guarantee Covers exam fees and microchip implantation in standard plan Offers a 10% multi-pet discount
Cons Has higher prices on plans with the unlimited annual limit Has a 14-day waiting period for both accidents and illness

Spot Pet Insurance Plans

Spot offers two coverage plans: one for accidents only and one for accidents and illnesses. The accident-only plan is cheapest, but keep in mind that it has limited coverage and may leave your pet vulnerable to illness-related emergencies. Here’s an overview of each plan:

Accident-only plan: This plan only covers procedures related to accidents such as injuries, swallowed objects, and toxic ingestions. Here are the customizable options available with this plan:

  • 70%, 80%, and 90% reimbursements
  • $2,500, $4,000, $5,000, $7,000, $10,000, and unlimited annual coverage limits
  • $100, $250, $500, $750, and $1,000 deductibles

Accident-and-illness plan: This plan covers procedures related to accidents, excessive licking, tail chasing, destructive chewing, gingivitis, periodontitis, cancer, respiratory infection, diabetes, hip dysplasia, and heart disease. It also includes coverage for limited preventive services, such as annual exams and heartworm prevention. The customizable options for this plan are the same as the accident-only plan.

Note: Both plans exclude preexisting conditions that your pet has before your policy’s effective start date or any time during the 14-day waiting period.

Average Costs

Average monthly cost for puppies (6 weeks–1 year): $22.02
Average monthly cost for adult dogs (1 year–10 years): $24.50

Average monthly cost for kittens (6 weeks–1 year): $22.45
Average monthly cost for adult cats (1 year–10 years): $25.23

Learn moreSpot Pet Insurance review



Embrace: Best Deductibles

Embrace offers multiple deductibles to customize your premium. It also offers a benefit called the Healthy Pet Deductible, which credits you $50 toward lowering your deductible each year that you don’t file a claim. We scored Embrace 93.5 out of 100 for its affordability and plan options. It lost points for its lower coverage limits.

Embrace Pros & Cons

Pros Offers a 10% multi-pet discount and 5% military discount Reimburses 100% of wellness plan costs up to the chosen amount Offers a free medical history review
Cons Doesn’t offer a high coverage maximum option Covers only up to $650 per year for wellness plan, which is lower than other providers

Embrace Pet Insurance Plans

Embrace has one standard plan for accident-and-illness coverage plus a wellness add-on that offers annual reward amounts for certain routine vet bills. Here’s what’s included in each coverage option.

Accident-and-illness plan: This plan covers procedures such as lab tests, CT scans, surgery, hospitalizations related to cancer, chronic conditions, congenital conditions, dental trauma, genetic conditions, and emergency accidents or illnesses. These are the coverage options when choosing your premium:

  • 70%, 80%, and 90% reimbursements
  • $5,000, $8,000, $10,000, $15,000, and $30,000 annual coverage limits
  • $200, $300, $500, $750, and $1,000 deductibles

Optional wellness rewards for routine care: This add-on covers $250, $450, or $650 of preventive care per year. Preventive care includes routine veterinarian visits, microchipping, heartworm medications, spay or neuter surgery, acupuncture, vaccinations, prescription diet food, and grooming.

Note: The optional wellness rewards plan is not available in Rhode Island.

Average Costs

Average monthly cost for puppies (6 weeks–1 year): $36.02
Average monthly cost for adult dogs (1 year–10 years): $57.19

Average monthly cost for kittens (6 weeks–1 year): $25.28
Average monthly cost for adult cats (1 year–10 years): $33.81

Learn moreEmbrace Pet Insurance review



Healthy Paws: Best Coverage Limit

Healthy Paws sets itself apart from competitors by offering an unlimited coverage limit at affordable rates with no per-incident, annual, or lifetime maximum payout. It will pay the amount you need no matter what. It also recommends other pet insurance providers if your quoted premium is higher than usual. For these reasons, we rated the provider 93.5 out of 100.

Healthy Paws Pros & Cons

Pros Features a 30-day money-back guarantee Has a mobile app for policy management and claims Is the best value for mixed breeds
Cons Doesn’t have a wellness or preventative care plan Offers only one coverage limit option

Healthy Paws Pet Insurance Plans

Healthy Paws has one plan that covers procedures related to illnesses, accidents, hereditary conditions, chronic conditions, congenital conditions, and cancer. Procedures can include diagnostic treatments, X-rays, blood tests, ultrasounds, surgery, hospitalization, prescription medications, specialty care, and alternative treatments.

Healthy Paws only has one unlimited maximum payout option, but here are the choices for reimbursement percentages and deductibles to help customize your premium:

  • 70% or 80% reimbursements (90% option available for pets under 3)
  • $250 or $500 deductibles ($100 option available for pets under 3)

Average Costs

Average monthly cost for puppies (6 weeks–1 year): $38.22
Average monthly cost for adult dogs (1 year–10 years): $48.65

Average monthly cost for kittens (6 weeks–1 year): $17.41
Average monthly cost for adult cats (1 year–10 years): $22.73

Learn moreHealthy Paws Pet Insurance review



ASPCA Pet Health Insurance: Best for New Pet Owners

ASPCA Pet Health Insurance is one of the cheapest pet insurance providers available, offering customizable standard plans and wellness add-ons. We found it to be the best provider for new pet parents, due to its many online resources with information about each pet breed and common health conditions. It scored an 89 out of 100 in our review.

ASPCA Pros & Cons

Pros Covers the cost of vet visit and exam fees, which are often excluded by competitors Includes microchip implantation coverage in its standard policies Offers an accident-only plan option for inexpensive pet insurance coverage
Cons Doesn’t offer coverage annual limit options above $10,000 per year Has a 14-day waiting period for accidents

ASPCA Pet Health Insurance Plans

Similar to Spot, ASPCA Pet Health Insurance offers a cheap accident-only plan for those who just want coverage for accidents or injuries and don’t want to pay for a more comprehensive option. None of its plans cover preexisting conditions, elective surgeries, cosmetic procedures, or issues related to breeding or pregnancy.

You can lower your monthly premium by choosing lower reimbursement rates, higher deductibles, and lower annual coverage limits. Here are your options:

  • 70%, 80%, and 90% reimbursement rates
  • $100, $250, and $500 annual deductibles
  • $3,000, $4,000, $5,000, $7,000, and $10,000 annual coverage limits

Here’s more information about each coverage plan and wellness add-on and what they include.

  • Accident-only coverage: The accident-only plan is the most affordable coverage option and covers costs related to accidents, such as lacerations, broken bones, torn ligaments, and harmful ingestions. You’ll be reimbursed for vet bills related to procedures, treatments, exam fees, and diagnostics for covered accidents.
  • Complete coverage: This is the most comprehensive choice, covering everything in the accident-only plan plus illnesses. This includes conditions such as cancer, arthritis, hip dysplasia, UTIs, heart disease, behavior disorders, and more.
  • Basic preventive plan: You can add the basic preventive add-on for $9.95 per month to cover basic preventive care. This provides reimbursement for dental cleanings, wellness exams, deworming, certain vaccines, fecal tests, and heartworm tests.
  • Prime preventive plan: You can opt for more comprehensive preventive care coverage with the Prime preventive add-on at $24.95 per month. The add-on includes all of the Basic preventive plan’s coverage plus flea and heartworm prevention, the Bordetella vaccine, urinalysis, and blood tests.

Average Costs

Average monthly cost for puppies (6 weeks–1 year): $41.46
Average monthly cost for adult dogs (1 year–10 years): $43.29

Average monthly cost for kittens (6 weeks–1 year): $21.12
Average monthly cost for adult cats (1 year–10 years): $23.73

Learn moreASPCA Pet Health Insurance review



Fetch by The Dodo: Best Holistic Coverage

Fetch offers affordable pet insurance policies and comprehensive accident-and-illness coverage, including holistic care such as homeotherapy, hydrotherapy, stem cell therapy, laser therapy, acupuncture, chiropractic care, and behavioral therapies up to $1,000. We scored it 91.5 out of 100.

Fetch Pros & Cons

Pros Offers a 15% credit for policy renewals after a year of not filing a claim Has customizable pricing options with three coverage limits, deductibles, and reimbursement rates Features an online chat
Cons Doesn’t offer wellness or preventative care coverage plans Doesn’t feature a multi-pet discount

Fetch Plans

Fetch covers procedures and treatments related to covered accidents and illnesses. It also pays for a few items that other providers don’t typically cover, such as reward money for recovering a lost pet, exam fees, sick visit fees, and boarding fees when you’re hospitalized for more than four days. Fetch doesn’t cover preexisting conditions, elective procedures, or preventive care.

You can choose from the following options to customize your Fetch coverage:

  • 70%, 80%, and 90% reimbursement rates
  • $250, $300, and $500 annual deductibles
  • $5,000, $15,000, and unlimited annual coverage caps

Average Costs

Average monthly cost for puppies (6 weeks–1 year): $32.11
Average monthly cost for adult dogs (1 year–10 years): $46.48

Average monthly cost for kittens (6 weeks–1 year): $20.16
Average monthly cost for adult cats (1 year–10 years): $21.51

Learn moreFetch Pet Insurance review



Figo: Best Extra Coverage Add-On

We scored Figo 90 out of 100. It stands out for its Extra Care add-on, which covers special circumstances such as lost pet advertising and third-party property damage caused by your pet. The company also offers a 100% reimbursement option, something most providers don’t offer.

Figo Pros & Cons

Pros Offers a Pet Cloud app to manage your policy, submit claims, and connect with local pet parents Has a one-day waiting period for injuries Provides 24/7 access to a live vet
Cons Doesn’t cover pets under 8 weeks old Has a six month waiting period for hip dysplasia and other orthopedic conditions

Figo Plans

Figo offers three accident-and-illness plans. The only difference between them is the coverage limit. Each plan covers veterinary care for injuries, illnesses, and other health conditions that may affect your pet. This includes cancer, chronic conditions, hereditary conditions, and emergency services. Figo doesn’t cover preexisting conditions, cosmetic surgeries, or illnesses that could have been prevented with vaccination.

Figo offers the following options to customize your coverage:

  • 70%, 80%, 90%, and 100% reimbursement rates
  • $100, $250, $500, $750, $1,000 and $1,500 annual deductibles (options vary according to your pet’s age)
  • $5,000, $15,000, and unlimited annual coverage 

Figo also offers three powerups that you can add to your base policy:

  • Extra Care: This powerup covers unique situations such as vacation cancellation costs due to a pet emergency, lost pet advertising and reward, boarding fees, cremation and burial costs, and third-party property damage caused by your pet.
  • Vet Visits: This add-on covers vet exams related to diagnosing or treating a covered illness or injury. It doesn’t cover wellness or routine care visits.
  • Wellness: The Wellness powerup is offered at a basic and premium level. It covers routine services such as vaccinations, dental cleanings, and spay/neuter surgery.  The premium option has higher annual limits per treatment.

Average Costs

Average monthly cost for puppies (6 weeks–1 year): $29.71
Average monthly cost for adult dogs (1 year–10 years): $26.48

Average monthly cost for kittens (6 weeks–1 year): $15.19
Average monthly cost for adult cats (1 year–10 years): $13.53

Learn more: Figo Pet Insurance review



Cheapest Overall Pet Insurance Plans

ProviderOur Rating (Out of 100)Monthly Price for DogsMonthly Price for Cats
Healthy Paws93.5$37.59$17.57

*Based on sample pet insurance quotes for a mixed 4-year-old dog, and a mixed 4-year old cat in Charlotte, North Carolina, with an 80% reimbursement rate, $500 deductible, and $5,000 annual limit.



How To Find Cheap Pet Insurance

According to our 2021 survey of 1,000 pet owners, 45% of pet parents expected pet insurance to cost less than $25 per month. It may be tricky to find a policy this cheap—at least for dogs—but there are a few ways to keep costs down.

Start by talking with your veterinarian about your pet’s needs, including conditions its breed may be susceptible to or any specific care it will require. There’s no need to pay for coverage your vet doesn’t foresee your pet needing. After that, consider the following ways to get the lowest pet insurance rate.

Compare the Cheapest Pet Insurance Plans

Pet insurance prices can vary drastically from one provider to the next, so do your research and get multiple quotes. Review how similar plans compare across companies to identify what’s being offered for the price. Look at what’s covered in some standard plans that isn’t in others, as well as how much add-ons cost. You can save a good deal of money by spotting where some providers upcharge for coverage that’s standard in other plans. Also, don’t hesitate to call providers to ask how they compare to their competition.

Though it’s ideal to get a low monthly rate, remember that cost isn’t everything. The point of getting pet insurance is to provide good care to your pet and help your wallet in the long run. Focus on getting the best pet insurance plan for your pet’s needs.

Purchase an Accident-only Policy

If you’re comfortable foregoing illness coverage, you can save money by choosing an accident-only policy. Not all providers offer this option, but it may work for you if your pet is healthy and not susceptible to breed-specific illnesses. Keep in mind that while your monthly premium will be lower, you’ll have to pay out of pocket for any veterinary care needed if your pet becomes ill.

Adjust Your Deductibles and Reimbursements

Most providers allow you to adjust your pet insurance deductible, reimbursement rate, and coverage limit to customize your cost. Selecting a high deductible and a low coverage limit and reimbursement rate will keep your monthly premium low. Your monthly premium will be higher if you choose a low deductible and higher coverage limit and reimbursement rate.

Take Advantage of Pet Insurance Discounts

Some providers offer discounts, typically ranging from 5%–15%.

Employer-Provided Discounts

Some employers include pet insurance in their benefits. If your employer offers insurance through a certain pet insurer, you may be able to get a discounted rate. 

Military Discounts

Military discounts of 5%–10% are common across pet insurance providers. 

Multipet Discounts

Discounts for insuring multiple pets with the same provider are also common. 

Policy-Bundling Discounts

Insurers that offer other other insurance types, such as homeowners or auto, may provide a discount for bundling pet insurance with one of these other categories. Lemonade is one provider on this list that does this.

Vet Employee Discounts

Some veterinarian offices offer discounts for pet insurance to qualifying employees. 

Wholesale Retailer Membership Discounts

Large retailers, such as Costco, often partner with insurers to provide savings to members.

It doesn’t hurt to ask about additional discounts that may not be listed on the provider’s website. See below for some of the more common pet insurance discounts.

Buy Coverage Now Instead of Waiting

Most providers don’t cover preexisting conditions, so it’s important to get a pet insurance policy while your pet is still healthy. Most providers also have a waiting period, often 14 days, from the day you enroll to the day coverage begins. This means that if your pet gets into an accident or shows signs of illness the day after you enroll, you may not be able to get coverage. Buying pet insurance sooner rather than later will ensure the majority of issues your pet faces are covered.



What Is Pet Insurance?

Pet insurance is a health insurance policy that protects your pet during accidents and unexpected illnesses and prevents you from paying for expensive vet costs. Since it operates very differently than a typical health insurance policy for humans, we created this short video that further defines and explains pet insurance coverage.



What Does Pet Insurance Cover?

What’s covered under your pet insurance policy depends on your plan. There are three main coverage types:

  • Accident-only: This covers accidental injuries such as lacerations, broken bones, and torn ligaments.
  • Accident-and-illness: This covers accident-related treatments as well as illnesses such as cancer, diabetes, glaucoma, congenital issues, and hereditary illnesses.
  • Add-ons: Many standard plans don’t cover routine wellness care, such as vaccinations, dental cleanings, and flea/tick prevention. You’ll need to purchase a preventive care add-on to get this coverage. Certain providers have other exclusions in their standard accident-and-illness plans that you may be able to get covered through add-ons.



How to Pay Less for Pet Insurance

The primary way to save money on pet insurance is by comparing providers’ pricing and taking advantage of discounts, but there are a few other things you can do to lower your premium. 

Keep Your Pet Healthy

Prevention is cheaper than treatment. Investing in your dog’s health before issues arise or worsen will keep you from racking up expensive vet bills that need coverage. Get your pet all the recommended vaccinations, keep up with heartworm and other parasite prevention, and take your pet for its annual wellness checkup.

Many providers also reward you for keeping your pet healthy by lowering your premium the longer you go without filing a claim, or through a credit if your pet is healthy for a certain length of time.

Pay Annually

Most pet insurance providers give you the option to pay your premium monthly or annually. You’ll save money paying annually, and the provider may give you a discount for doing so. Plus, you’ll have peace of mind that your pet is covered for the full year and can take that off your plate.

Choose a Higher Deductible

This can be a gamble, but choosing a higher deductible means your premium will be lower. The drawback is that if your pet does need an expensive intervention, you’ll have to pay the vet bill out of pocket up to your deductible amount. While it’s not much of a burden to pay small bills here and there until you reach your deductible, one or two large bills could overextend your budget, so keep that in mind if you go this route. 

Insure Your Pet Early

Pet insurers don’t reimburse you for preexisting conditions, so the earlier you get a pet insurance plan, the less likely your pet will develop conditions that won’t be covered. Insure your pet when it’s just a puppy or kitten, or as soon as you get it, to ensure you’ll be covered for any problems that arise after getting a policy.



How Are Pet Insurance Costs Determined?

There are a few variables that determine your pet insurance premium.

  • Age: The older your pet is, the more likely it is to develop an illness or have an accident requiring treatment, making it more expensive to insure.
  • Breed: Insurers charge more for breeds that are predisposed to illnesses and issues because their vet bills are likely to be higher, costing more for the insurer.
  • Deductible, coverage, and reimbursement levels: The lower your deductible and higher your coverage limit and reimbursement rate, the higher your premium will be.
  • Location: Veterinary costs are higher in areas where cost of living is high, so your rate will reflect that.



Is Pet Insurance Cheaper for Cats or Dogs?

Cat insurance is typically cheaper than dog insurance, though it can vary by breed. Some dog and cat breeds, such as Maine coon cats and French bulldogs, are more costly to insure because they’re genetically predisposed to certain medical conditions. On the contrary, premiums for mixed cat and dog breeds tend to be much cheaper. 

On average, cat insurance costs about half as much as dog insurance per month.

How Much Are Dog Owners Spending?

Even with the cheapest insurance, pets are still an investment. You’ll need to buy a long list of items including food, toys, vaccinations, and crates, so you’ll need to factor in these expenses when considering if your budget allows for pet ownership. Also, keep in mind that some breeds have higher vet costs than others due to their tendency toward certain conditions and needs. See some of the financial expectations pet parents should be aware of below.

How Much Dog Owners Spend Per Year on Common Pet Needs

ExpenseAverage Cost for One Year
Dental cleaning$400–$550
Dog walking$20 per walk
Food and treats$250–$700
Leashes and collars$15–$75
Potty training pads$20–$200
Preventive medications and supplements$50–$400
Routine vet visits$100–$450
Shampoo and brushes$20–$80
Spaying and neutering$35–$500
Stain and odor removers$10–$30

Dog Breeds With the Highest Vet Bills

BreedAverage Vet Bill Cost*
American bulldog$376
Cane corso$386
Dogue de Bordeaux$395
Greater Swiss mountain dog$425

*Based on the average pet insurance claim amount for each breed.

Cat Breeds With the Highest Vet Bills

BreedAverage Vet Bill Cost*
Mixed-breed long hair$397
Mixed-breed medium-hair$403
Siberian forest cat$457

*Based on the average pet insurance claim amount for each breed.

Cheapest Pet Insurance for Dogs

While price shouldn’t be the only deciding factor when choosing a pet insurance provider, it’s understandable to want to save as much money as you can. We got sample quotes from each provider on this list to determine the top three cheapest providers. We used the same pet type across all providers, which was a 4-year-old, mixed-breed, male dog in Charlotte, North Carolina. We also used the same deductible, reimbursement rate, and annual limit. 

The top three cheapest providers all cost $20–$30 range per month for an accident-and-illness plan. 

Note that prices vary based on location, age, breed, and gender. 

Cheapest Pet Insurance for Cats

We used the same process to get sample quotes for 4-year-old cats and found that the following providers are the cheapest for cats:



Is Pet Insurance Worth It?

It’s understandable to wonder if adding pet insurance to your list of monthly bills is worth it. You can find several providers with plans less than $50 per month, so if that’s in your budget, it’s wise to have some level of coverage. You never know what could happen to your pet. It could fall and break a bone, get a nasty cut while playing in the yard, or show signs of illness at any point. The costs of examinations, procedures, medication, and other needed medical care to treat these issues can quickly rack up. Just one surgery can cost thousands of dollars.

“As a person working in the veterinary field, it’s always challenging having to see owners [who aren’t] able to afford treatment for their pet,” says licensed veterinarian Megan Conrad, BVMS. “Pet insurance allows pet parents to feel more confident knowing [their pets] are protected so they don’t have to worry about putting a price limit on their pet’s care.”

If you’re prepared to shell out a big lump sum if and when an issue arises, you may be comfortable taking the risk and skipping pet insurance. However, we recommend getting pet insurance for peace of mind and financial protection.



Our Conclusion

Based on the cheap pet insurance companies we reviewed, Lemonade, Embrace, Healthy Paws, Spot, Figo, and ASPCA Pet Health Insurance offer the most affordable plans. Consider requesting a free pet insurance quote from Lemonade if you’re looking for the best overall coverage or Spot if you want the most customization options.

We recommend getting quotes from a few different providers to compare plan pricing and coverage.

Frequently Asked Questions About Cheap Pet Insurance

Our Rating Methodology

The This Old House Reviews team is dedicated to thorough, in-depth reviews of each product or service that we detail in our content. Determined to build trust with our readers through transparency, accuracy, and accountability, we’ve built a detailed rating system to score pet insurance brands. Included in this methodology are the following six factors with their respective scoring weights:

  • Coverage (25)
  • Plan options (20)
  • Monthly cost (20)
  • Company reputation (15)
  • Customer service (10)
  • Species eligibility (10)

Our researchers keep all data in each company’s score up to date, making any changes to our content when necessary to provide our readers with the most accurate information on relevant metrics, such as plan options, customer service, reputation, and monthly cost.

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews team at reviews@thisoldhousereviews.com.