PDSA Pet Insurance Review 2023

PDSA Pet Insurance Review 2023

PDSA has recently improved their pet insurance offering quite a bit: is it right for you?

Good for

  • Dental injury and illness
  • 12 months to submit claims
  • Euthanasia cover
  • Prescription food cover

Bad for

  • 20% copay in addition to fixed excess for older pets
  • Out-of-hours cover only for very serious problems

Editor's Rating

3.5/5.0

The guidance on this site is based on our own analysis and is meant to help you identify options and narrow down your choices. We do not advise or tell you which product to buy; undertake your own due diligence before entering into any agreement. Read our full disclosure here.

Is PDSA pet insurance any good? Find out if they offer good value for money and read about what PDSA could do better before you sign up.

If you want quotes now from PDSA, Animal Friends and Scratch & Patch, click the blue "Get Quotes" button below to see how much you can save:

Compare Cheap Pet Insurance for Your Dog or Cat

Pet cover can help with vet bills. Compare quotes from 25 providers, including PDSA

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In This Review

Choosing the right cat or dog insurance policy for you will depend upon the individual needs of you and your pet. Use the information in this guide to help you understand which features are important to you in order to make the best buying decision. We also advise reading through the policy wording before you buy.

PDSA Pet Insurance Review

We like PDSA as an organization, and we have to say they've improved their pet insurance recently. Bravo! (We weren't big fans before, when they didn't cover dental illness, they had a short period of time to submit claims, and they used to charge everyone a fixed and variable excess, regardless of pet age). Now, they've fixed those problems so their pet insurance offering is better than it was.

Limitations

There are a few specific exclusions that you should be aware of as they may limit your ability to claim successfully. For instance, in order for your policy to remain valid and for your claims to be reimbursed, pets must have a regular annual check-up with the vet, including vaccinations as advised by your vet.

This includes evidence that advice regarding dental health was followed within 6 months, to be eligible for dental illness claims.

PDSA Key Points

  • Choice of Time Limited or Lifetime
  • Dental cover for accidents and illnesses
  • 12 months to submit claims for reimbursement
  • Time Limited policies: 12-month clock starts when treatment starts
  • Out-of-hours and house call charges not covered unless life threatening or risk of significantly worsen the condition
  • Excess increases for older pets with addition of 20% copay
  • Prescription food covered up to a limit
  • Euthanasia cover

Customer Reviews and Ratings

There are not many online customer reviews for PDSA pet insurance. PDSA the organisation is rated with just 1.9 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot, but this rating mostly reflects reviews left for PDSA the organisation, not pet insurance specifically.

We've read through the reviews and pulled out PDSA pet insurance complaints. Unfortunately, most of them are just 1-star ratings. Complaints range from rising premiums to slow processing to claims not being approved. But, there are only a handful of complaints so they're not really statistically significant.

Note: it's common in the industry for pet insurance to go up each year because your dog or cat is more likely to have health problems as they age. But not all pet insurance puts up prices if you've claimed (you can read more about how different companies respond to previous claims, and see the company that says they don't do this here.) Here's what we found:

"I have pet insurance from PDSA for my cat. Her premiums have gone up 23% each year over 4 years so far which represents a renewal quote at an 87% increase on my first year!"

"I had pet insurance through them at £22 a month my pet developed arthritis and had to put a small claim in. I had to pay the first 100 they paid the rest. All was good until it came to my renewal, they think it is quite OK to put my payments up to £48 a month."

"We have had PDSA pet insurance in place for our dog for eight years now. The quote for its renewal has just come through, and the annual premium has all but doubled, to over £1000!! Rang PDSA to discuss, but was told that the quote was 'computer generated' and because we had made one minor one-off claim on the policy, for £116 after excess, in the past year (the first ever) there could be no 'good will' gesture and no referral for review to either underwriter or their 'retention' team."

PDSA Pet Insurance Costs

PDSA Discount Code: PSDA occasionally offers online discounts; most recently "SAVE10" could save you 10% on your pet insurance with PSDA.

PDSA Notable Features

Here is a brief overview of the notable features of PDSA dog and cat insurance. For a complete rundown of the details and exclusions, please refer to the policy documents.

PDSA Pet Insurance Features
ExcessPDSA imposes both a fixed of £75 - £120 and a variable copay for older pets of 20%.
ClaimingYou must call (0333 234 0599) for a claims form. All claims must be submitted within 12 months.
Cover for Holiday Cut ShortCover if you have to cancel or curtail your holiday because your pet needs emergency life-saving surgery within 7 days of departure
Boarding Cover When You're UnwellBoarding fees when you're at hospital for more than 96 hours
DentalCover for dental treatment resulting from accidents and illnesses (so long as pet has had check ups and recommended preventative care)
TravelCover for up to 90 days in each policy year for travel in EU PETS scheme countries
EuthanasiaCovered
Cremation/burialUp to £200 on Lifetime plans only

Types of PDSA Policies

PDSA offers pet owners the choice between two 12-month Time Limited plans and five Lifetime pet insurance plans. Generally speaking, Lifetime policies are the most comprehensive type of pet insurance. If you'd like to learn more about what's covered by pet insurance in general, please read our article cover.

Time Limited Cover

PDSA's Time Limited pet insurance products cover up to £2,000 or £5,000 per incident (illness or accident), for treatment expenses lasting up to 12 months from first date of treatment.

You may claim for many treatments related to any one incident until you've reached £2,000 or £5,000 of reimbursement or 12 months have passed (whichever comes first). After that time, you can never claim for that incident again (even if the same thing happens on another side of your pet's body, like an ear infection).

One of the largest drawbacks of time-limited policies is that bilateral conditions are counted as one condition—conditions that affect one part of your pet's body of which it has more (e.g., ears or eyes). For example, an infection in one ear would start the 12-month clock ticking for BOTH ears.

You are able to claim on multiple, unrelated incidents at the same time, however.

You will pay the excess once per condition (even if it spans multiple policy years).

Lifetime Cover

PDSA offers five levels of Lifetime insurance, ranging from £2,000 to £8,000 of vet bill cover per year. As lifetime policies, the level of cover resets each year when you renew. Also, there is no time limit on how long you can claim (in contrast to the Time Limited policy), which is useful for treatment costs associated with recurring or chronic conditions.

PDSA Pet Insurance Coverage Amounts

Product TypeTime LimitedTime LimitedLifetimeLifetimeLifetimeLifetimeLifetime
Veterinary Fees£2,000 per condition£5,000 per condition£2,000 per year£3,000 per year£4,000 per year£5,000 per year£8,000 per year
Fixed excess£75-£120 (per condition)£75 (per condition)£75-£120 (per condition per year)£75-£120 (per condition per year)£75 (per condition per year)£75-£120 (per condition per year)£75-£120 (per condition per year)
Overage excess20% co-insurance
MRI costIncluded up to vet fees cover limit
CT scan costIncluded up to vet fees cover limit
Complementary therapyPhysiotherapy£500£750£500£750£750£1,500
Physiotherapy£500£750£500£750£1,000£1,000£1,500
Overseas veterinary treatmentIncluded up to vet fees cover limit
Third party liability (dogs only)£1million
Third party liability excess£250
Death from illness (cost of pet, up to age limits)£250£1,500
Death from accident/injury (cost of pet, up to age limits)£250£1,500
Cremation and burial costsNot included£200
Finding your Pet - Advertising & RewardNot included£1,500
Theft or straying£500£1,500
Boarding kennel/cattery feesNot included£1,500
Holiday cancellationNot included£1,000£1,000£1,500£1,500£1,500£3,000
Overseas Extension of Vet Fees Cover90 days
Quarantine costs£150
Loss of pet travel documents£250
Emergency expenses cover abroad£500£500£500£500£700£700£1,000
PDSA Petcall (vet helpline)yesyesyesyesyesyesyes

FAQs

You're covered for 25% of the cost of a clinical diet for your pet for a maximum period of 6 months per condition, provided it is recommended by your vet for a treatable condition other than for obesity/weight loss.
The excess consists of a £75 - £120 fixed excess. There is an 'overage excess' of 20% for pets over 8 years old (5 years for some breeds). In that case, the fixed payment is payable then, after paying the fixed excess, the pet owner is then responsible for 20% of all remaining vet bills associated with that condition/time period. A higher excess including a copay can reduce your premium, but you'll end up paying more of your pet's vet bills.
You must submit the claim form, invoices and a full clinical history to the PDSA within 12 months of the treatment. Claims information can be found here. Or you can call (0333 234 0599) for a claim form. PDSA can pay your claim settlement directly to you vet, if your vet agrees.
Once your pet transitions into the "older" category—8 years for dogs (5 years for some breeds) and 10 years old for cats—you are not longer able to claim under Death Due to Accident or Illness. Also, at the same time there is an introduction of a 20% copay excess. These are the only changes to policy cover for older pets. A new PDSA policy can be taken out up to those same ages.
PDSA Petsurance is underwritten by Pinnacle Insurance plc under policy number 02632 (5th January 2022).

How does PDSA Pet Insurance Compare to Competitors?

To better understand the value of PDSA Pet Insurance you need to look at it in the context of other available options. We compared this insurer to other similar insurers so you can see which may be more suitable for you.

PDSA Pet Insurance vs Agria Pet Insurance

Agria Pet Insurance offers comprehensive Lifetime plans for lower-than-average prices and is one of our favourite pet insurers. Many features are offered as extras, which means that you don't need to pay for certain features if you don't want to—if you never take your pet abroad to Europe, then you don't need to buy the Travel cover. Another way that Agria keeps prices lower is through a 10% copay/variable excess so pet owners contribute more towards vet fees—the pet owner is responsible for the fixed excess (£95 or £160 for dogs, £85 or £160 for cats) than another 10% of vet bills. We like that Agria is a specialist pet insurer with a long history, offering some desirable features such as dental, euthanasia and cremation/burial, sensible out-of-hours reimbursement and cover for congenital conditions.

Bottom Line: If you want better out-of-hours reimbursement and to pay a variable excess (this can reduce premiums), Agria can be a good option to consider.

PDSA Pet Insurance vs Animal Friends Pet Insurance

Animal Friends Pet Insurance is a specialist pet insurer, whose plans stand out for lower-than-average premiums (partially achieved through per condition limits, even on Lifetime plans). Those with older pets can insure their dogs and cats with Animal Friends, as there is no upper age limit for new policies, even Lifetime cover—but there is a 20% copay (in addition to the £99 fixed excess) for dogs aged 8+ and cats aged 10+. Animal Friends doesn't have dental cover or a vet line to call with queries, however, plus claims need to be submitted within 90 days. Our price check showed a range of £130 to £390 for Lifetime cover for a healthy, young crossbreed dog, significantly lower than average.

Bottom Line: If you're very price conscious, you might find more options and a lower premium and better value with some Animal Friends plans.

PDSA Pet Insurance vs Asda Pet Insurance

Asda Pet Insurance can be a good option for those with older pets as they're eligible for Lifetime cover with Asda, regardless of age. The excess increases with a 10% copay when dogs turn 5/cats turn 7 (but this is lower than the 20% copay imposed by many insurers). There's a 24/7 vet helpline but no vet cover for tooth decay or tooth/gum disease. Our price check for a young, healthy dog showed a range of £275 for £2,000 of Lifetime cover with a £135 copay up to £490 for £7,500 of cover with a lower £85 excess.

Bottom Line: If you're attracted to PDSA for a new Lifetime policy for your older pet, Asda plans can be another good option.

Other Useful Information

Erin Yurday

Erin Yurday is the Founder and Editor of NimbleFins. Prior to NimbleFins, she worked as an investment professional and as the finance expert in Stanford University's Graduate School of Business case writing team. Read more on LinkedIn.

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The guidance on this site is based on our own analysis and is meant to help you identify options and narrow down your choices. We do not advise or tell you which product to buy; undertake your own due diligence before entering into any agreement. Read our full disclosure here.