By Dan Simms
Updated Jan 12, 2023
We recommend the best products through an independent review process, and advertisers do not influence our picks. We may receive compensation if you visit partners we recommend. Read our advertiser disclosure for more info.
Purchasing pet insurance for a pet with pre-existing conditions is more involved than shopping for a pet with a clean bill of health. Most pet insurance companies don’t offer coverage for the treatment of pre-existing conditions, and some exclude pets with long-term conditions altogether.
To help you sort through your options, we’ve comprehensively reviewed the best pet insurance. We rank companies based on the quality of the coverage they offer, cost, customer reviews, and level of support for pre-existing conditions.
These are the best pet insurance companies that cover pre-existing conditions:
The table below provides a quick look at the top companies that cover pre-existing conditions. These numbers are based on a medium-sized (around 50 pounds) mixed-breed dog and a medium-sized mixed-breed cat. All numbers are also based on taking out a policy when your pet is a puppy or kitten.
|Provider||Premiums||Deductible||Reimbursement Rates||Annual Limits||Coinsurance||BBB Rating*|
|Lemonade||$15 to $50||$100, $250, or $500||70%, 80%, or 90% (based on co-insurance)||$5,000, $10,000, $20,000, $50,000, or $100,000||90%, 80%, 70%, or 60%||Not rated|
|Spot||$15 to $50||$100, $250, $500, $750, or $1,000||70%, 80%, or 90%||$2,500, $3,000, $4,000, $5,000, $7,000, $10,000, or unlimited||30%, 20%, or 10%||A|
|Wagmo||$20 to $59||$250, $500, or $1,000||90% or 100%||$5,000, $10,000, or unlimited||10% or 0%||B-|
|Embrace||$25 to $55||$200, $300, $500, $750, or $1,000||70%, 80%, or 90%||$5,000, $8,000, $10,000, $15,000, or $30,000||30%, 20%, or 10%||A+|
|Healthy Paws||$30 to $65||$250 or $500||70% or 80%||Unlimited||30% or 20%||A|
|Figo||$15 to $74||$100 to $750||70%, 80%, 90%, or 100%||$5,000, $10,000, or unlimited||30%, 20%, 10%, or 0%||B|
|Fetch||$20 to $45||$250 to $1,000 (in $50 increments)||70%, 80%, or 90%||$5,000, $10,000, $15,000, or unlimited||30%, 20%, or 10%||A+|
|Trupanion||$47 to $175||Up to $1,000, with a high degree of customization||Up to 100%||Unlimited||10%||Not rated|
* Better Business Bureau (BBB) ratings are accurate as of December 2022.
Lemonade’s basic plan offers solid coverage with reasonable monthly premiums and lenient coverage limits. It is an excellent option if you’re looking for a solid all-around pet insurance company.
Lemonade doesn’t exclude pets with pre-existing conditions outright, unlike other pet insurers. While it doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions, this provider doesn’t consider some conditions pre-existing if your pet has been symptom-free and treatment-free for at least 12 months.
Lemonade has just one plan option, which covers most accidents and illnesses. These include:
The insurer also offers three different tiers for wellness coverage as an add-on, each of which comes with varying levels of coverage for the following wellness and preventative care:
Lemonade’s standard accident-and-illness base plan doesn’t cover most pre-existing conditions, and it also excludes alternative treatments like physical therapy, anal gland expression, dental care, grooming and cosmetic procedures, microchipping, and spaying and neutering. Some of these items, are however, available with the purchase of preventative care or elective coverage riders.
Lemonade does not cover treatment or medication for pre-existing medical conditions, but it also doesn’t reject pets with chronic pre-existing problems, making the company a good choice for protecting your pet from future illnesses and injuries.
The company also has a less restrictive definition of a pre-existing condition than many other pet insurers. Most illnesses or injuries—knee problems, cruciate ligament issues, allergies, asthma and cancer are excluded—that haven’t shown symptoms for more than 12 months can be eligible for coverage through Lemonade.
The monthly premium for a 2-month-old golden retriever puppy in New Jersey came out to $44. There was an option to add exam fee coverage for $8.50 per month, given the dog’s age. Preventative packages were $16 per month or $44 extra for complete coverage.
For a 2-month-old mixed-breed kitten in New Jersey, the monthly cost was $19. We could add vet visit fee coverage for $4 per month, full wellness coverage for $34 per month, and partial wellness coverage for $10 per month.
Lemonade offers several deductible and coverage limit options, so you can mix and match. Remember that a plan with higher coverage limits and a lower deductible is often the better choice for a pet with pre-existing health conditions.
Get a quote: You can get a free quote from Lemonade for pet insurance to see how it stacks up against other companies in terms of coverage and cost.
Like most pet insurance companies, Spot doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions, but it does have a lenient pre-existing condition policy. The company also offers more customization options than most other pet insurance providers, making it a good choice for pet owners who want to fine-tune their pet’s coverage.
Spot Pet Insurance has two plans: one for accidents and illnesses and another just for accidents. The accident-only plan includes coverage for the following:
The accident-and-illness plan includes everything in the accident-only plan but adds coverage for the following:
Spot’s plans exclude most pre-existing conditions and issues that begin during the waiting period.
While Spot’s coverage is excellent, it is a bit more expensive than average. Spot customers pay about $35 per month to cover a single pet. However, your monthly rate will depend on your pet’s medical history and your choice of deductible, reimbursement rate, and annual limit.
For comparison, we got a quote for our example dog and cat. For the 2-month-old golden retriever puppy, the monthly premium came to $23 per month for the accident-only plan and $44 per month for the accident-and-illness plan. For the 2-month-old kitten, coverage was $12 per month for the accident-only plan and $17 per month for the more comprehensive option.
Get a quote: Spot’s free quotes make it easy and affordable to compare this provider to others to find the right fit for you and your pet.
Wagmo’s pet insurance policies focus on providing best-in-class wellness coverage. The company is one of the only pet insurance providers that offer stand-alone wellness coverage for customers without requiring them to have accident or illness coverage. While Wagmo doesn’t deny coverage for pets with pre-existing conditions, it also doesn’t cover treatment for any condition that predates a plan’s coverage date.
Wagmo has three plan options you can choose from: one for wellness coverage, one for routine care, and one for accident and illness.
The wellness coverage plan includes things like exam fees, prescriptions, and vet visit fees. Routine care includes items like dental cleanings, vaccinations, and heartworm medication. The accident-and-illness plan includes things like orthopedic issues, hereditary conditions, surgeries, and behavioral therapy.
Wagmo excludes many pre-existing conditions but includes coverage for hereditary conditions, so it’s potentially a good option for some problems that haven’t appeared yet but are likely to. The company also has a $100,000 lifetime payout limit, which is high, but it’s not as appealing as the standard unlimited payouts from other companies.
We used our example animals to get quotes from Wagmo for comparison. The cost to insure our 2-month-old retriever was $46 per month. Our quote for our example kitten was $22 per month.
Wagmo has no lifetime limits for payout amounts.
Get a quote: Wagmo provides free quotes for pet insurance, so get one from this provider if its coverage and costs seem reasonable.
Embrace sets itself apart from the competition by offering outstanding pet insurance at very affordable prices. The company’s monthly premiums are very low given what its plans cover, making Embrace one of the best pet insurance companies regardless of your budget. Embrace treats pre-existing conditions fairly: It offers coverage for certain curable pre-existing conditions if symptoms haven’t occurred in the previous 12 months.
Like most other traditional pet insurance companies, Embrace offers an accident and illness plan and a wellness rewards plan for routine care. We’ll break down what each of these plans covers below:
Embrace’s most glaring weakness is its lack of preventative care coverage, which isn’t even available as an add-on. Pets with pre-existing conditions need routine checkups to protect their health, making Embrace a less attractive option overall. Still, its extensive ordinary coverage and impressive range of plan customization options make it a good choice for many pet owners.
Our quote from Embrace for our example golden retriever puppy came out to $47 per month. It included a $5,000 annual reimbursement limit, a $750 annual deductible, and a 70% reimbursement percentage. Our quote for our example kitten came out to $23 per month. It included a $10,000 annual reimbursement limit, a $500 deductible, and a 70% reimbursement rate.
One of the best features of Embrace pet insurance is the company’s deductible reduction promise, which lowers your deductible by $50 for every year you don’t file a claim. This policy makes Embrace’s already excellent value even better for healthy pets.
Get a quote: Embrace also provides free quotes, so you can affordably compare this provider to others in your area.
Healthy Paws doesn’t cover any conditions that present clinical signs before your plan’s effective coverage date. However, the company is one of the few pet insurance providers that offer unlimited coverage by default, making it a great choice for pet owners looking for the most peace of mind. Healthy Paws also covers a wider range of treatments than most pet insurance companies.
Healthy Paws doesn’t cover treatments for any pre-existing conditions, even for curable conditions. However, the company’s plans cover many injuries, congenital disorders, hereditary conditions, and most cancers. Healthy Paws also covers less-common treatments like acupuncture and animal chiropractic medicine, giving policyholders more options for pursuing treatment for their pets.
Unfortunately, Healthy Paws doesn’t offer any add-ons, and its plans don’t include compensation for vet exams. The accident and illness plan includes injuries, broken bones, hereditary conditions, cancer treatments, acupuncture, and chiropractic treatments.
On the bright side, the company’s other coverage is extensive, and its monthly premiums are more than fair for what you get. The company also offers several choices for deductibles and coinsurance rates, so you should be able to find a policy structure that works for you.
Our quote for coverage for our 2-month-old golden retriever was $63 per month. It includes an 80% reimbursement rate, a $250 annual deductible, and no payout limits. Our quote for our 2-month-old mixed-breed cat was $29 per month, which includes a $250 deductible, an 80% reimbursement rate, and no annual payout limit.
Get a quote: If these terms seem good, you can always get a free estimate from Healthy Paws to see if the price makes sense.
We recommend using Pawp to supplement more traditional pet insurance, especially for pet parents who have animals with pre-existing conditions. Pawp’s emergency fund includes coverage for emergency visits, even if they’re related to a pre-existing condition.
Pawp is not a traditional pet insurance company. Instead, Pawp charges customers a flat monthly fee for access to its in-house veterinarians for up to six pets. The company also offers prescription medications through Pawp Pharmacy.
You don’t get traditional coverage for hospital visits, but Pawp’s emergency fund covers emergency treatments up to $3,000 once per year, even if the emergency is related to a pre-existing condition. Pawp is a great supplement to traditional pet insurance for people who own pets with pre-existing conditions since it can help pay for ongoing treatment that isn’t covered by most pet insurance policies.
Pawp charges $24 per month for vet visits for up to six pets. There are no deductibles or reimbursement rates, making Pawp’s coverage much simpler to understand than other kinds of pet insurance. The downside is that Pawp’s coverage doesn’t include any wellness coverage in its base plan and has limited emergency visits coverage. Wellness coverage is available as an optional add-on.
Get a quote: Pawp offers free quotes for pet insurance, making it easy to compare coverage to other providers.
Figo offers speedy claims processing and a short, one-day waiting period before coverage kicks in, making it a great choice for pet owners who value fast turnarounds and want coverage for their pets ASAP. The company offers traditional accident-and-illness coverage and covers pet theft and boarding costs. You get more for your money than most other pet insurance providers.
Figo covers some curable pre-existing conditions as long as they happened more than 12 months before your coverage’s start date. The company also considers claims on a case-by-case basis and may cover certain treatments that other companies won’t.
Figo Pet Insurance offers three plans for coverage, but all options include traditional emergency and accident coverage. Coverage includes emergency care, cancer treatments, hospitalization, and more.
The differences lie in the annual coverage limits and specifics. We’ll break down what’s included in each below:
Figo also has wellness packages you can add to any of the above plans. The add-on options include vet exam fees, boarding fees, property damage caused by your pet, pet theft, and more.
Like most pet insurance providers, Figo doesn’t cover pre-existing conditions. However, the company assesses each claim case-by-case, using your pet’s medical history to evaluate whether or not the company will cover treatment. In general, any curable illness or condition that hasn’t shown symptoms in the last 12 months has a good chance of being covered by Figo.
Our example quote from Figo for our 2-month-old golden retriever was $61 per month, including a $10,000 annual coverage limit, a $250 deductible, and an 80% reimbursement rate. The wellness coverage and additional add-on plans were $9.50 and $16.50 more per month, respectively. Exam fee coverage was an additional $13 per month, and the extra care pack for boarding and pet theft was $6 more per month.
The quote for our example kitten came out to $23 per month for the $10,000 annual payout limit. It included a $250 annual deductible and an 80% reimbursement rate. Wellness coverage was available for $9.50 or $16.50 more per month based on coverage. The add-on care packages were $5 or $7 per month more based on the additional coverages.
Get a quote: Figo provides free quotes, so you can easily compare this company’s value and cost to others you’re interested in pursuing.
Fetch pet insurance offers a comprehensive policy that covers most accidents and illnesses, reducing the need for add-on coverage and extras. This makes it extremely easy to purchase pet insurance from Fetch since you don’t need to compare different plans and options.
Fetch takes a fairly strict approach to covering pre-existing conditions, treating curable and incurable conditions the same. This means that you won’t be able to get coverage for certain pre-existing conditions—like some infections or injuries—even if your pet hasn’t shown symptoms for years. The bright side is that Fetch doesn’t limit its other coverage based on your pet’s medical history, and the company’s customer satisfaction rate is very high.
Fetch only provides access to one coverage plan, which includes accidents and illnesses. Some of the covered items include:
Fetch excludes many pre-existing conditions, although it does cover some genetic issues. It has a six-month waiting period followed by full coverage for hip and elbow issues. Luckily, you can get the six-month waiting period waived if you have your pet examined by a qualifying vet within your plan’s first 30 days of coverage. Additionally, Fetch doesn’t offer a wellness plan or add-on coverage for wellness visits.
Fetch has an average monthly premium of about $35. Your coverage will vary based on your pets’ information. Our sample golden retriever would cost $43 per month, including a $5,000 maximum annual payout, a $300 annual deductible, and an 80% reimbursement rate. The price for our sample kitten would be $24 per month, including a $10,000 maximum annual payout, a $300 deductible, and an 80% reimbursement rate.
While these monthly rates might seem a bit high, Fetch’s policies cover many conditions, including chronic conditions like cancer, asthma, and arthritis, as well as dental diseases and orthopedic injuries.
Get a quote: You can get more information on your premium by requesting a free quote for coverage from Fetch.
Trupanion pet insurance plans are highly customizable, offering tons of deductible options, unlimited coverage, and an impressive 90% reimbursement rate. The company’s monthly premiums cost well above average, but the coverage you receive and control of your plan’s pricing structure is unmatched.
Trupanion doesn’t cover treatments for pre-existing conditions and has a fairly strict interpretation of what constitutes a pre-existing condition. Unlike Spot or Lemonade, any condition with clinical symptoms before your insurance plan’s enrollment date qualifies as a pre-existing condition. While this is more restrictive than some providers on our list, Trupanion’s outstanding coverage, customer service, and willingness to cover pets with chronic illnesses make up for it.
Trupanion has just one plan available, which covers accidents and illnesses. The plan includes congenital and breed-specific problems, which can sometimes fall under the umbrella of pre-existing conditions.
The plan includes nearly any accident and illness, including cancer treatments, broken bones, torn ligaments, accidental ingestion, poisonings, emergency visits, and more.
The company also has two add-on plans, which cover the following:
Even though Trupanion has a relatively strict definition of a pre-existing condition, it offers coverage for more illnesses and injuries, including many congenital disorders, than most providers. The company also won’t deny your pet coverage if they’re older or have pre-existing conditions, making it a solid choice for people who didn’t get their pets covered when they were young.
Trupanion’s average monthly premium is $70, well above the average monthly premium for most pet insurance providers of $20 to $40.
The company quoted us $155 per month for our 2-month-old golden retriever sample dog. That included a $200 deductible, and the add-on coverages were $5 per month for the first plan mentioned above and $20 extra per month for the second one.
Trupanion quoted us $76 per month for our sample cat with the same $200 deductible. The add-on options were $5 and $10, respectively. These sample premiums included a 90% reimbursement rate and unlimited annual coverage.
While the insurance from Trupanion is costly, the company offers more deductible choices than most providers, and all its plans come with unlimited coverage. Trupanion’s reimbursement rate is higher than average, meaning the high premium may be worth it in the long run.
Get a quote: Trupanion provides estimates at no cost, so you can easily get a quote and compare it to others to see which suits you best.
Finding the right pet insurance for a pet with existing health issues can be tricky. Like any pet owner, you will have to compare plans from different companies based on their coverage, deductible, and monthly premiums—but you’ll also have to make sure the plans you’re interested in cover your pet’s specific condition.
Keep these factors in mind when shopping for pet insurance that covers pre-existing conditions.
Most pet insurance policies have a maximum amount they’ll pay toward care each year or over the life of your pet. Make sure you understand a plan’s annual and lifetime coverage limits before you make a decision. If your pet has a pre-existing condition, you already know that there will be many vet visits and treatments in the future, so try to choose a plan with generous limits.
If you know you’ll be spending a lot of time at the vet due to a pre-existing condition, you should choose a pet insurance plan with a lower deductible. You’ll pay less out of pocket before your insurance coverage kicks in.
You should expect to pay more for a pet insurance policy with coverage for pre-existing conditions, but that doesn’t automatically mean you’ll have high monthly premiums. Comparing pet insurance quotes can help you find the right policy for you and your pet at the right price.
Will your pet’s health condition be covered? The answer is likely to be no, but familiarize yourself with each company’s policies on pre-existing conditions to be sure.
Most pet insurance companies won’t cover treatment for a pre-existing condition, but some go further and exclude coverage for related issues. A select few will refuse to cover a pet with certain conditions altogether.
Most pet insurance companies have waiting periods before coverage kicks in. If your pet develops an issue during the waiting period, it may be considered a pre-existing condition. All else being equal, a shorter waiting period means a better policy.
Finding the right pet insurance can be challenging if your pet already has health issues. Here are the main factors you need to consider when shopping for pet insurance for a pet with pre-existing conditions.
You’re not likely to find a pet insurance company that will cover treatments for pre-existing conditions. Pet insurance protects you and your pet from future maladies, not helping you pay for things that have already happened.
However, pet insurance can still be worth it even if your pet has several pre-existing conditions and isn’t in the best health. Your policy may be able to help you afford treatments for new conditions that crop up in the future. Even if you have to pay out-of-pocket to treat pre-existing conditions, pet insurance can make your vet bills more affordable, especially if you purchase a wellness and prescription coverage plan.
Your insurance provider will request a copy of your pet’s medical records before you sign up to look for signs of hereditary conditions, congenital conditions, and signs of other pre-existing conditions like hyperthyroidism, kidney disease, limping, epilepsy, ear infections, and any other conditions common among your pet’s breed. Your pet’s pre-existing conditions will increase the average cost of veterinary care over its lifetime since your insurance won’t cover them.
Not all pet insurance companies treat pre-existing conditions the same way. Some companies won’t cover any treatments or medications related to pre-existing conditions. In contrast, others may cover certain treatments if the pre-existing condition happened more than a year before enrollment.
Make sure you understand how a pet insurance policy covers pre-existing conditions before signing up. If your pet’s medical history might preclude you from receiving coverage for certain conditions, ask your agent about it directly. It’s extremely common for people to purchase a policy without realizing that it doesn’t cover everything they expect, leading to unanticipated costs.
Consider your plan’s monthly premium, annual deductible, and annual coverage limits if you’re purchasing a policy for a pet with pre-existing conditions. Unfortunately, pets with pre-existing conditions often have more health problems as they age, so consider paying a higher monthly premium to get a policy with a lower deductible and higher coverage limit.
Virtually no pet insurance company will cover treatment for pre-existing conditions, but some offer more attractive options for people who own pets with health issues. Lemonade‘s affordable monthly premiums, combined with its customizable plans and distinction between curable and incurable pre-existing conditions, make it the best choice for pets with ongoing health issues.
Spot is also an excellent choice for pets with pre-existing conditions since the company has a relaxed policy that covers pre-existing conditions as long as they haven’t shown symptoms in the previous six months.
Generally, any pet insurance provider on this list is a solid choice for covering a pet with one or more pre-existing conditions. These providers offer coverage for pets with pre-existing conditions, although how they determine coverage varies. Honorable mentions go to Nationwide and ASPCA pet insurance, which offer decent insurance for pets with pre-existing conditions but weren’t competitive enough to include in this guide.
Most pet insurance companies don’t cover treatment for pre-existing conditions, but how they define the term differs. Companies like Lemonade and Spot distinguish curable pre-existing conditions, such as short-term infections, from incurable conditions, like diabetes. Make sure you know how the provider you’re considering determines what qualifies as a pre-existing condition before you sign up.
Most pet insurance covers pets with pre-existing conditions, though they won’t cover claims related to that condition. Purchasing pet insurance for an older pet with pre-existing conditions is still a good idea because it can save you money on future treatments and new illnesses.
Pawp covers emergency visits even if they’re related to a pre-existing condition, but its coverage is not a traditional insurance policy. We recommend it as a backup to your primary insurance policy.
Pet insurance prices average between $20 and $40 per month. However, pet insurance can cost anywhere from $10 a month for basic coverage for a cat up to $70 a month for top-of-the-line coverage for an at-risk dog breed. Your monthly premium depends on what kind of pet you have, your pet’s health, and your policy’s details like your annual deductible, reimbursement rate, and annual coverage limit.
Other Pet Insurance Resources