Can You Switch Dog Insurance?

by Kari Steere, Licensed Insurance Agent
Pawlicy Advisor
Pet Insurance Blog
Can You Switch Dog Insurance?
You can you switch dog insurance companies at any time, but keep these considerations in mind before changing policies.

The short answer is yes, you can switch pet insurance companies at any time in your dog's life. You may become unhappy with the policy's renewal price, want a lower deductible, or find broader coverage.

Whatever your circumstances may be, it's important to take everything into consideration before making a decision. Otherwise, you risk coverage gaps, policy exclusions, and increased costs.

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Here’s everything you need to know about switch dog insurance:

Can you switch pet insurance if your dog has a pre-existing condition?

Before you change dog insurance companies, the first thing to think about is whether your four-legged friend has developed a health condition since the last time you enrolled in a policy. If they haven't required veterinary care for an ongoing medical issue, there should be no problem. Otherwise, a previous diagnosis could be considered a pre-existing condition, which are excluded from pet insurance providers at the time of enrollment.

Unless it's considered a curable condition and no symptoms are present for a certain period of time, no pet insurance company you switch to will reimburse you for costs related to that illness or injury. This can be a real problem, especially if they have a chronic condition that requires .

If this is the case and you switch providers, you might find a policy with a cheaper monthly premium but if your dog needs further treatment for the pre-existing condition, you will have to take care of the vet bills yourself.

The good news here is that some pet insurance companies do offer coverage for curable pre-existing conditions. For instance, with Embrace Pet Insurance, curable pre-existing conditions might be covered if your dog goes 12 months symptom and treatment-free.

How soon can I file a claim after changing dog insurance companies?

Once you sign up with a new pet insurance provider, there is a mandatory waiting period during which you can’t make claims. This means if your dog needs vet treatment during this window, the medical expenses will not be covered by your new pet insurance policy.

The length of the waiting period depends on the insurance provider. Some companies like Nationwide and ASPCA have a 14-day wait for accidents before the pet insurance coverage takes effect, whereas others like PetFirst require you to wait only 24 hours. For illnesses, most providers have a waiting period of 14 to 15 days.

Waiting Period by Insurance Provider (Comparison Chart)

Can you have two pet insurance policies for your dog at the same time?

Technically, yes, you can have multiple pet insurance plans for your dog. Some owners decide to overlap insurance policies when switching providers to ensure there is no gap in coverage until the new plan kicks in.

That way, they can maintain peace of mind knowing they'll be financially protected in the tragic event their dog gets hit back a car, bit by a snake, blocked by an ingested foreign object, or any other medical pet emergency that requires expensive hospitalization before the new policy becomes effective.

You might be switching dog insurance for more coverage, and rather than canceling your current plan, you might wonder if you can take out another policy for additional reimbursement from the secondary provider. But if you have two pet insurance plans, you cannot file a claim with both providers for the same incident — doing so is considered fraud.

Most insurance policies contain fine print that states the company will not pay a claim of a policyholder who they find is enrolled in more than one policy. So, if both providers become aware of your duplicate enrollment, you might not receive a payout from either of them.

How do I cancel my dog's insurance policy?

Every pet insurance cancelation policy is different, so talk to your provider to whether yours can be terminated by phone, online, or in-writing via mail. Do not simply turn off your automatic payments and assume your policy will be canceled on your behalf; this could result in mounting late fees and, ultimately, negative credit implications.

Depending on where you live, when you cancel, and what company you're enrolled with, you may be entitled to a 30-day money-back guarantee (unless you've already filed a claim and received reimbursement).

The best way to cancel your a pet insurance policy when switching your dog to a new plan is near the end of your policy term, after the last premium has been made, and your new policy's coverage has taken effect.

Where to find better dog insurance plans

If you're dissatisdied with your current dog insurance, Pawlicy Advisor can help you find a better solution. Our platform provides personalized pet insurance recommendations based on your dog's unique information.

You can also use the search filters to narrow down results from top insurance companies by the exact features you're looking for in a plan, whether that may be low deductibles, high annual coverage limits, or affordable rates. And by switching dog insurance through Pawlicy Advisor, you're guaranteed to get the lowest possible rate.

Compare dog insurance plans to get started today.

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Key Takeaways

  • If you change your mind and no longer want the pet insurance policy you have, you should be aware that the new insurance provider might not provide coverage for pre-existing conditions, i.e. injuries or illnesses that have been diagnosed prior to enrollment.
  • Another thing to take into consideration when switching pet insurance plans is the 14-day period during which you can’t make any claims. If your canine family member needs veterinary care during this period, your new provider will not cover the vet bills.
  • Make sure to cancel any existing pet insurance policy before signing up for a new one in order to avoid paying twice.

Kari Steer, Licensed P&C Insurance Agent at Pawlicy Advisor

About the author

Kari Steere, Licensed Insurance Agent

Customer Support - Pawlicy Advisor

Kari Steere is a licensed P&C insurance agent in all 50 states and has focused entirely on pet insurance since 2019. As an animal lover with a rescued Terrier named Barry, when she's not helping pet owners find the perfect plan on Pawlicy Advisor, she runs a ranch in Oregon and rehabilitates any animals that come across her path.

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