Scratch & Patch pet insurance offers a range of cheap pet insurance options for financial protection in case your beloved dog or cat is injured or falls ill, but are they any good? Find out what features are missing and what customers have to say, as well as their new product line for pre-existing conditions.
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Compare Cheap Pet Insurance for Your Dog or Cat
Pet cover can help with vet bills. Compare quotes from up to 25 providers, including Scratch and Patch
In This Review
- Overall Review
- Scratch & Patch Policy and Coverage Options
- Comparing Scratch & Patch to Competitors
Choosing the best policy for you and your pet will depend on your individual situation. There may be other policies with better features available in the marketplace. If your priority is paying a low premium, you may want to read about other options in our article on Cheap Dog and Cat Insurance.
Scratch & Patch Pet Insurance Review
Scratch & Patch offers an array of pet insurance plans at quite competitive prices relatively. Pet owners can choose between Accident Only, Time Limited, Max Benefit and Lifetime (which provides the most comprehensive cover for accidents and illnesses with vet fee limits that renew each year).
We really like Scratch & Patch's waiting period policy, which stands out from the crowd. Treatment of an illness typically won't be covered if your pet showed any signs of during the initial 14-day waiting period. Scratch & Patch (which is also available through our pet insurance partner Compare Cover), is the only pet insurance company we know of which will waive waiting periods to give you immediate cover IF your pet was insured for veterinary fees under another policy of insurance up to the start date of insurance with them. Proof is required.
Additionally, we like that they have new Champ Products which may cover your pet's pre-existing conditions. We applaud this step, because the shortage of pre-existing cover plans in the UK makes it very difficult to switch pet insurance if you want to (e.g., if your premium rises significantly at renewal).
Prices are generally very competitive from Scratch & Patch, however there are a few terms that pet owners should be aware of before deciding if this is the right pet insurance company for them.
- You must notify Scratch & Patch of a new claim within 60 days
- There's no dental illness cover
- There are inner limits on consultation fees, etc.
Scratch & Patch Key Facts
- Choice of Accident Only Time Limited (£2,250), Time Limited (£3k), Max Benefit (£4k) or Lifetime cover (£4k or £8k)
- Dental injury only (not illness)
- Notify claims within 60 days
- Scratch & Patch Careline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year at 0333 332 1926
- Pre-existing conditions may be covered on Champ Products
- Starting excess of £75
- Higher £200 excess for older pets (dogs 8+ and cats 10+)
- Euthanasia covered on Premier and Premier Plus plans only
- Inner limits on consultation fees, out of hours fees, alternative therapies, histoloy and cystology
Scratch & Patch Insurance Customer Service Reviews and Ratings
There are very few online customer reviews Scratch & Patch, so it's hard to draw a firm conclusion of the typical customer experience. We read through the reviews left at Trustpilot (where reviews are mostly negative) and SmartMoneyPeople (where they're positive) to see if we could learn anything. Here's what we found:
Scratch and Patch Trustpilot
Just 6 Scratch & Patch customers have left a review on Trustpilot, averaging to a rating of just 2.6 out of 5 stars. 13% of these are "Excellent" 5-star ratings and 63% are "bad". Here is a sample of a few Scratch & Patch customer reviews from Trustpilot that you might find helpful:
"Great customer services and great price!"
"... I let them know of a move of address and they wanted £20. I cancelled: £30."
"... I had to claim for a few hundred pounds (that's what the insurance is for, right?) second year, the premium nearly doubled and therefore was pretty pointless in me claiming as I'm just paying it back over the next year! They claimed they had changed underwriters."
Scratch and Patch SmartMoneyPeople
Only two customers have left reviews at Customer reviews of Scratch & Patch pet insurance, with an average of 4 out of 5 stars—both praising the 24-hour nurse support helpline and the claims process. Here is one of them:
"VETERINARY NURSE support, when I called about my dog Ted. Claim Form sent by post a few days later. Submitted claim with vets report. Claim paid out in full minus policy excess. All within a few weeks. You can't get better service than that."
Scratch & Patch Price Comparison
Scratch & Patch pirces are quite competitive relative to the market. For example, the pet owner of a 5-month-old, medium-sized, crossbreed male dog would pay in the range of around £8 per month for their Accident Only plan up to £32 per month for their top-tier Premium Plus lifetime plan with £8,000 of overall vet fee cover per year.
|Scratch & Patch Sample Quotes||Type of Plan||Vet Fee Limit||Quote Estimate (5-month-old crossbreed dog)|
|Bronze||Accident Only||£2,250 per accident for 12 months||£8.01|
|Silver||Time Limited||£3,000 per injury/illness for 12 months||£12.94|
|Gold||Maximum Benefit||£4,000 per injury/illness||£19.14|
|Premier||Lifetime||£4,000 per policy year||£28.77|
|Premier Plus||Lifetime||£8,000 per policy year||£32.13|
Prices will vary from dog to dog, etc. so you may receive different quotes, but for the price, Scratch & Patch offers one of the higher overall vet fee limits. However, more expensive brands may be worth the higher price for features you want. For example, John Lewis pet insurance review has a longer notification time for claims.
Types of Scratch & Patch Policies
Scratch & Patch offers four types of policies—accident only, 12 month, max benefit and lifetime. Generally speaking, Lifetime policies are best for younger pets to protect the owner against the financial strain of recurring/chronic injuries/illnesses over the course of the pet's life. Time Limited cover can be purchased for that aren't eligible for new Lifetime cover due to age.
|Time Limited (12 months), up to per accident||Time Limited (12 months), up to per injury / illness||Maximum benefit, up to per injury / illness||Reinstatement, Per policy year|
Reinstatement, Per policy year
|Veterinary Fees* up to||£2,250||£3,000||£4,000||£4,000||£8,000|
|Inner Limits (included within total vet fees) up to|
|MRI / CT Scan||£nil||£500||£1,000||£1,500||£2,000|
|Covered in UK / EU PETS Scheme Area||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Accidental Death up to||£250||£500||£1,000||£1,500||£1,500|
|Death due to Illness up to||£nil||£500||£1,000||£1,500||£1,500|
|Third Party Liability (Dogs Only)||£1,000,000||£1,000,000||£1,500,000||£1,500,000||£2,000,000|
|Loss & recovery||£250||£750||£1,000||£1,500||£1,500|
|Emergency boarding and pet minding fees||£250||£750||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000|
Champ Products for Pre-Existing Conditions
In addition, they're recently introduced a set of policies that may cover pre-existing conditions. These policies are called "Champ Products" and come with either £2.5k, £4k of £8k of Lifetime vet cover. Not all pre-existing conditions will be covered, but you can find out if your pet's will be and what it will cost by filling out a quote directly with them.
The excess is higher on the Champ Products: £250.
|Champ Cover||Champ 2.5||Champ 4.0||Champ 8.0|
|Reinstatement, Per policy year||Reinstatement, Per policy year||Reinstatement, Per policy year|
|Veterinary Fees* up to||£2,500||£4,000||£8,000|
|Cruciate Ligament (Inner Limit) - up to||£1,000||£1,500||£2,000|
|MRI / CT Scans (Inner Limit) - up to||£1,000||£1,500||£2,000|
|Alternative Medicine & Treatment - up to||£400||£750||£1,000|
|Dental Cover - Accident & Injury only - up to||£2,500||£4,000||£8,000|
|Diet Food - up to||£100||£100||£100|
|Behavioural problems - up to||£100||£250||£500|
|Excess per injury / illness||Dogs up to 8 = £75||Dogs up to 8 = £75||Dogs up to 8 = £75|
|Dogs over 8 = £200||Dogs over 8 = £200||Dogs over 8 = £200|
|Cats up to 10 = £75||Cats up to 10 = £75||Cats up to 10 = £75|
|Cats over 10 = £200||Cats over 10 = £200||Cats over 10 = £200|
|Death of Your Pet up to maximum age of 8 years for dogs and 10 years for cats|
|Accident - up to||£1,000||£1,500||£1,500|
|Illness - up to||£1,000||£1,500||£1,500|
|Euthanasia - up to||£100||£100||£150|
|Third Party Liability (Dogs Only) up to||£1,500,000||£1,500,000||£2,000,000|
|Loss and recovery (includes advertising and reward) up to||£1,000||£1,500||£1,500|
|Emergency Boarding & Pet Minding Fees - up to||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000|
|Holiday Cancellation - up to||£1,000||£1,500||£2,500|
|Accidental damage - up to||£250||£500||£750|
|Pre-Existing Conditions||These policies may be able to cover Pre-Existing conditions following a full medical screening of your pet|
What are Scratch and Patch Inner Limits?
Inner limits are a maximum amount they'll pay for certain procedures or charges, resulting in pet owners potentially getting reimbursed for less than you'd expect. This is especially true if your vet charges higher-than-average fees.
- Up to £45 towards consultation fees for each visit to the vet
- Up to £110 towards additional out of hours fees for each necessary out of hours visit
- Up to £70 towards histology fees (including any handling and interpretation fees)
- Up to £70 towards cystology fees (including any handling and interpretation fees)
- Up to £35 per session towards hydrotherapy, physiotherapy, accupunture, chiropractic, osteopathy or laser treatment
To read the full terms and conditions and features of Scratch & Patch pet insurance policies, read through the Policy Document.
How does Scratch and Patch Pet Insurance Compare to Competitors?
To better understand the value of Scratch and Patch 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.
Scratch and Patch Pet Insurance vs PetPlan
PetPlan Pet Insurance is the largest insurer of dogs and cats in the UK. Due to this, many vets are accustomed to submitting claims on behalf of pet owners, which can save you a lot of hassle. PetPlan policies include dental illness and injury but don't cover euthanasia. However, older pets (i.e., dogs aged 5 or 8 depending on breed, cats aged 10) are not eligible for new Lifetime policies and can only sign up for a Time Limited policy.
Quick Takeaway: PetPlan is the UK's largest insurer—which means most vets will submit claims on your behalf.
Scratch and Patch Pet Insurance vs Tesco Pet Insurance
Tesco offers quite comprehensive cover, but you'll have to pay up for their Premier Plan if you want dental illness cover (e.g., tooth decay or gum disease). Lifetime plans provide £7.5k or £10k of vet cover a year; there's no low-tier Lifetime offering (e.g., around £3k of vet cover each year) so Lifetime prices start around £500 for a healthy, young dog.
Quick Takeaway: According to our analysis, Scratch and Patch prices come in a touch lower than Tesco, but if dental illness cover is important to you then Tesco's Premier plan may be a better option.
Scratch and Patch Insurance vs Agria Pet Insurance
Agria Pet Insurance offers comprehensive Lifetime plans for lower-than-average prices. They're able to charge lower premiums by having the pet owner pay a 10% copay in addition to the fixed excess (of £95 or £160 for dogs, £85 or £160 for cats). We like that Agria is a specialist pet insurer with a long history. Agria plans offer some desirable features, such as dental, euthanasia and cremation/burial, plus congenital conditions are not specifically excluded from cover. 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 don't want to pay a copay, Scratch and Patch could be a better option, but beware of the inner limits.