Pet Protect offers quite cheap pet insurance if you're looking for a good deal, with your choice of five Lifetime cover options ranging from £1,000 to £6,000 of vet cover. If you want Death Due to Illness cover you may want to consider Agria or PetPlan instead, or to insure an older pet, check out LV=.
Compare quotes from Pet Protect against 25 providers by clicking 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 Pet Protect
In This Review
- Overall Review
- Policy and Coverage Options
- Customer Experience Ratings
- Comparing Pet Protect to the Competition
In this review we try to clarify some features of Pet Protect's pet insurance plans, but be sure to read the policy wording before you sign up. Choosing the best policy for you and your dogs or cats will depend on your individual situation.
Pet Protect Pet Insurance Review
Pet Protect offers some of the Best Value Dog and Cat Insurance, and they expanded their range of lifetime pet insurance offerings in 2023 so you have even more choice. In addition to their Lifeline Plus and Lifeline Extra, with £4,000 and £6,000 of cover, you can now also choose a policy with £1,000, £2,000 or £3,000 of lifetime cover. Plus, they have a maximum benefit policy with £3,000 of cover per condition.
FYI, the Pet Protect website says that their £4,000 policy is their most popular.
Pet Protect helps keep prices lower by having pet owners contribute towards vet bills with both a fixed excess and a variable excess, which starts at 5% and typically increases with pet age up to 25%. While some other insurers employ the same method, the variable excess with Pet Protect could be higher by around 5 to 10% for most of your pet's life than, say, with Agria Pet Insurance.
Prices may increase if you claim. When it comes to renewal, your new premium could reflect your claims history over the past year. In their policy wording in section 6.2 Premiums and Terms and Conditions, it says that premiums may increase according to claims history (as well as pet's age, your location and other factors, of course).
Time Limit to Claim: All claims must be submitted within 6 months of the treatment start date. For ongoing treatment, interim claims can be submitted—this is a benefit over some other insurers who require you to submit a claim for each treatment.
Excess: The excess on a Pet Protect policy is composed of a fixed £ amount excess and a % copay. When you claim for a new condition, you pay the fixed £ excess and then you pay a percentage of any remaining vet bills for that condition. Each year, you'll need to pay the fixed £ excess again for each condition for which you are still claiming.
The excess will increase as your pet ages, but the amount is different for dogs vs cats and also depending on the policy. We found the following information, but please note that the company might quote you for a different excess so be sure to check this before you buy.
|"Lifetime Plus" and "Lifetime Extra" Excess/Copay||Dog||Cat||Dog||Cat|
|Under 1 year old||£95||£75||5%||5%|
|1 - 5 years old||£95||£75||15%||10%|
|5 - 10 years old||£100||£95||20%||15%|
|10 years old and older||£150||£100||25%||20%|
|"Condition Care" Excess/Copay||Dog||Cat||Dog||Cat|
|Under 5 years||£95||£60||0%||0%|
|5 -10 years||£95||£60||15%||10%|
|10 years and older||£95||£60||25%||20%|
Pet Protect Insurance for Older Pets: Pet Protect only offers new policies to younger pets. Older dogs aged 8+ and cats aged 10+ are not eligible for new Pet Protect insurance policies. Once your dog or cat is insured with Pet Protect, however, you can continue to renew regardless of age. (But you should expect your premium and excess to increase with age.) Specified breeds of dogs are further limited and must be aged 5 or less in order to get a new policy. There are dozens of breeds of the "specified breeds" list, including: Bulldogs, Basset Hounds, Dobermans, Mastiffs, Sheepdogs, etc.
Inner Limits: Within the vet fee limits of your policy, you'll notice that some conditions are subject to a maximum reimbursement amount. In some cases, these limits may not cover your vet fees:
|Condition/Treatment||Maximum per policy year (lifetime plans only)|
|Cruciate ligament tear, rupture or damage||£750|
Emergency Vet Cover: House call charges are covered so long as the vet confirms it would be life threatening to move your pet or seriously worsen their condition.
Pre-Authorisation: Pet Protect offers a pre-authorisation service for claims expected to exceed £500. Your vet must initiate the pre-authorisation (that is, you can't do it), by visiting on_current="true" url="www.petprotect.co.uk/pre-authorisation" title="Pet Protect pre authorisation" nofollow="true" and completing the form.
There is no "network"—you are free to visit the referral vet of your (and your regular vet's) choice unlike, say Tesco Pet Insurance.
Pet Protect Key Facts
- Holiday cancellation, unwell, travel, prescription food, dental cover available on lifetime plans
- Euthanasia cover
- 6 months to make claims
- No Death Due to Illness Cover
- Premium may increase according to claims history
- Vetfone to call with queries
- Upper age limit on new policies (not available to dogs 6+ or 8+, breed dependent, or cats 10+)
- % copay plus fixed £ excess
Pet Protect Quote Comparison
To try to get an idea of how pet insurance premiums may change as your pet ages, we quoted a few Lifetime Pet Protect policies for various dog ages. This is not necessarily an indication of how your premiums may rise if you renew a Pet Protect policy.
Also remember that the excess increases at certain age milestones as well.
Pet Protect Notable Features
|Pet Protect Pet Insurance Features|
|Dental||Non-cosmetic and non-preventable dental problems that are related to a covered illness/disease or medical condition are covered (e.g., tooth decay, gum/tooth disease) up to £500 Lifetime Plus and £1,000 on Lifetime Extra. Your pet must have had a dental exam in the 12-months prior to injury/illness, as well as every year prior. (Accidental injury claims covered on lifetime and maximum benefit policies.)|
|Prescription Food||Up to £100 as prescribed by your vet to treat conditions like heart disease, liver disease, joint problems, arthritis, digestive problems, bladder stones and skin diseases (but not for weight loss). Pet Protect will pay up to half of the cost of a clinical diet your dog is prescribed, for life. Lifetime plans only.|
|Congenital & Hereditary Conditions||Congenital/hereditary conditions (e.g. heart murmur, hip dysplasia) are covered so long as the condition was not present or apparent at the start of the policy, except that cruciate ligament ruptures are not covered under the maximum benefit Condition Care plan.|
|Euthanasia Cover||If your pet is put to sleep as recommended by your vet for humane reasons.|
|Travel Cover||Up to £1,000 a year in emergency vet bills abroad, for up to 31 days a year on lifetime plans only.|
|Cover for Holiday Cut Short||Cover if you have to cancel (less than 7 days before you were due to leave) or curtail your holiday because your pet needs emergency life-saving surgery. Trips booked last minute, within 28 days of departure, are excluded. Lifetime plans only.|
|Boarding Cover When You're Unwell||Cover for boarding fees when you're an inpatient at hospital for at least 48 hours (cover starts after 48 hours). Lifetime plans only.|
|Death due to Accident||Reimbursement of purchase price of your pet (up to policy limits), if he/she dies due to accident. Death due to illness is not covered. You must provide the purchase receipt and pedigree certificate (if applicable) within 6 months—without these, the max payout is £70 (dog) or £35 (cat). Lifetime plans only.|
|Complementary Therapy||Acupuncture, homeopathy, herbal medicine, Chiropractic manipulation, physiotherapy, osteopathy and hydrotherapy (max £450). Lifetime plans only.|
Types of Pet Protect Dog and Cat Insurance Policies
Pet Protect offers two levels of Lifetime pet insurance cover, which provide cover for both accidents and illnesses over the course of your pet's life, and a maximum benefit plan that covers up to a fixed amount per condition. There is no time limit on treatment cover, so long as you keep up with payments and keep the policy active. Ongoing and recurring conditions are reimbursable, so long as the policy remains in force.
For more information on pet insurance cover in general, please see our article on What Does Pet Insurance Cover in the UK.
Pet Protect's Condition Care plan is a "maximum benefit" type of policy, so it covers a maximum amount for each new accident or illness up to the benefit limit of £3,000. There is no time limit—for example, a dog or cat with recurring ear infections could keep claiming over the years (while policy is still in force, of course) for ear infections and Pet Protect would pay up until the £3,000 limit, then they wouldn't pay any more for ear infections. (But they would pay for other, different conditions as each condition has the £3,000 limit.)
This plan doesn't include a lot of extras like holiday cover, or certain treatments like CT/MRI scans or cruciate ligament rupture. So be sure to have a look through what's covered in the table below to see if it is suitable for you or not.
A new product, Pet Protect's Lifetime Essential product is their lowest lifetime coverage, with £1,000 of vet bill cover that renews every year. This will have the most affordable premium, but offers a bare minimum of coverage.
Another new product, Lifetime Saver has £2,000 of renewing lifetime vet bill protection.
Pet Protect's Lifelong Plus insurance plan provides up to £4,000 of Lifetime vet cover per year. Each year when you renew, the limits reset. According to the Pet Protect website, Lifelong Plus is their most popular product—in Jan – Oct 2020, 70% of customers chose Lifetime Plus.
Pet Protect's Lifelong Extra insurance plan provides up to £6,000 of Lifetime vet cover per year. Each year when you renew, the limits reset. Additionally, cover limits for Recovery Costs, Kennel/Cattery Fees, Holiday Cancellation, Loss by Theft/Straying, Death due to Accident and Travel Cover are higher with the Extra plan than with the Plus plan, as you can see in the table below.
Pet Protect Coverage Amounts
|Policy Name||Condition Care||Lifetime Essential||Lifetime Saver||Lifetime Standard||Lifetime Plus||Lifetime Extra|
|Vet fee cover||£3,000||£1,000||£2,000||£3,000||£4,000||£6,000|
|CT/MRI Scans||-||£750 ppy||£750 ppy||£750 ppy||£750 ppy||£750 ppy|
|Cruciate Ligament Rupture||-||£750 ppy||£750 ppy||£750 ppy||£750 ppy||£750 ppy|
|Euthanasia||£50||Up to Vet Fee Limit||Up to Vet Fee limit||Up to Vet Fee limit||Up to Vet Fee limit||Up to Vet Fee limit|
|Third party liability||£1 million||£1 million||£1 million||£1 million||£1 million||£1 million|
|Loss by theft of straying||-||£750||£750||£750||£750||£1,000|
|Advertising & reward||-||£250||£250||£250||£250||£500|
|Kennel or cattery fees||-||£250||£250||£250||£250||£500|
|Death by accident||-||£500||£500||£500||£500||£750|
Pet Protect Pet Insurance Customer Experience Ratings
According to trustpilot.com, over 3321 customers ranked Pet Protect pet insurance at 4.4 out of 5, which is considered "Excellent". And their rating has risen in the past year, which is great. Here are some comments to give you a feel for the Pet Protect experience from other customers:
"Excellent service. Our giant newfoundland dog unfortunately got bronchitis so you can imagine the vets bills!. Luckily he was insured with pet protect, they paid out every penny we claimed for quickly & efficiently with no questions or hassle. Our last 2 very large dogs were insured by them too, they were very good with them as they both had a lot of health issues, 1 of them requiring 11 very expensive operations but they paid out all that we were entitled to without any questions asked. Would recommend pet protect to anyone buying pet insurance."
"I contacted Pet Protect as my vet needed to know how much insurance cover I had left on my dogs insurance. The guy who answered my call was so helpful, kind and friendly. I had the information sent to me within a couple of minutes. Fantastic service."
"Wanted to ask about taking my pet abroad. Used the oline chat function, so easy and quick. Information obtained and actioned by email, with a fast response. Really pleased."
"We’ve had our policy for the lifetime of our dog. He accidentally poked his eyeball and needed emergency surgery for stitches. We’ve never had to claim before and I wasn’t sure on the procedure but I was able to chat to someone online. Our dog got all the treatment and aftercare he needed and the claim was paid with no issues. For our renewal since the claim the excess has increased slightly and the percentage contribution too but we could not easily have afforded the emergency surgery so we are still grateful."
"This company is not a good choice if your dog is likely to need behavioural/anxiety support. I tried to claim for a separation anxiety programme, after being told by their customer services it was likely to be covered. However it was rejected. I queried this with customer services (as the policy document referred to "re-training programmes", which was not what I was claiming for). Customer services were helpful and it was sent back to the claims team. It was then rejected again, and remained rejected after an email from our dog behaviourist explaining that all the major pet insurers cover the programme we received (she works about 50 cases per year)."
"Excellent service. Claimed online, agreed within a few days and settled. No hassle."
How does Pet Protect Pet Insurance Compare to Competitors?
To better understand the value of Pet Protect 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.
Pet Protect Pet Insurance vs Argos Pet Insurance
Argos Pet Insurance is a good option for those with older pets. Not only are older pets eligible for Lifetime cover regardless of age, but there’s no change to excess when your pet ages. You’ll get euthanasia cover and there’s a 24/7 vet helpline to call with questions, but you don’t get vet cover for the treatment of tooth decay or tooth/gum disease. To get an idea of price, our sample quote for a young, healthy dog showed a cost of £360 for £7,000 of Lifetime cover with a £135 fixed excess.
Bottom Line: If you're attracted to Pet Protect for a new Lifetime policy for your older pet, Argos plans can be another good option as there's no change to the excess as your pet ages.
Pet Protect Insurance vs Agria Pet Insurance
Agria Pet Insurance offers 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. The cost for a young, healthy crossbreed dog is around £350 per year for a plan with £6,500 of vet cover and a £95 fixed excess + 10% copay; a British Shorthair with an £85 excess + 10% copay would cost around £325 for the same level of cover.
Bottom Line: If you're after a good, value plan, Agria can be a solid option—but you'll have to pay a larger share of any vet bills that arise due to the 10% copay.
Pet Protect Pet Insurance vs Animal Friends Pet Insurance
Animal Friends Pet Insurance is another specialist pet insurer, whose plans stand out for lower-than-average premiums (partially achieved through per condition limits, even on Lifetime plans) and they publicly state on their website that they don't penalize for claims by increasing premiums upon renewal. 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'll probably find a lower premium with an Animal Friends plan, plus you may prefer Animal Friends' approach to how claims affect premiums.