Our pets are part of our family, and so caring for them is a priority. Financially, an emergency with a pet can be a huge burden, so making sure your finances are ready is a big part of that responsibility.

Pet insurance can offer you the peace of mind you need to ensure that your decisions are never financially driven. It’s challenging to know when emergencies will happen, but with the right insurance, your pet is covered just like a member of your family.

24 Hour Pet Watch is one option for insurance that can offset the cost of emergency and non-routine care. If your dog or cat is the right age, they could be eligible for coverage from this company, helping you plan for the future and making planning a little bit easier. Let’s take a look at what it has to offer to see if it’s the right one for you.

Brand Overview

24 Pet Watch is a subsidiary of Pet Health and has been since 2003. It has offered insurance plans since then to discerning pet owners. It’s underwritten by several insurance offerers, including North River insurance company for insurance, US Fire Insurance for emergency care, and Crum and Forster.

The North River pet insurance company has an A rating from A.M. Best. It’s not BBB accredited yet, but it is backed up by several well-known insurance underwriters. The brand offers standard insurance options along with a unique pet protection plan with microchip services.

If you’re looking for complete insurance coverage and protection with microchip services, you can also take advantage of 24 Pet Watch’s tracking services to help find and return your missing pet. The company makes it easier to plan for all kinds of emergencies, not just those involving a vet.

2019 24 Pet Watch Pet Insurance Review

24 Pet Watch offers both insurance and microchip and recovery services. The insurance plan is typical insurance, but it does have restricted ages and no option for unlimited yearly reimbursement caps. Customers tend to like that the company has some different options, but many feel limited by the policy rules.

Pros:

  • Wellness option
  • Affordable premiums
  • Large underwriters

Cons:

  • Age restrictions for both dogs and cats
  • Lower reimbursement caps than other companies

What do customers like about 24 Pet Watch?

“I am very happy with the recent changes in this company. The turn around has become much better, the customer service has improved greatly, and the customer portal gives members much more control of what is going on with claims.” Jo S (Consumer Advocate)

“This is absolutely one of “The Best” pet insurance companies that you could have. Their agent’s are friendly, informative, and professional. They make it so easy to put in a claim for your pet. I’m so happy and relieved that my pet(family member) is covered by this GREAT company.” Fran C (Yelp)

“I got 24petwatch insurance for my pug when he was 6 months old. He is now 4. This insurance company was recommended to me through my teachers union perks. 24Petwatch has always paid my claims as explained in policy” Wendy (Consumer Affairs)

What do customers dislike about 24 Pet Watch?

“I have had 24PetWatch insurance for my cats and dog for over 10 years. Since they changed underwriting to The North River Insurance Company it has gone completely down hill. My premiums nearly doubled for coverage that was not greater, and I had to re-satisfy deductibles during the year just because they changed underwriting. Customer service is inconsistent.” Sheree (Consumer Advocate)

“Do NOT!! Buy this insurance! They tell you when you adopt a pet that all you pay is a certain amount each month, and you are never charged anymore if there’s a problem. I had both my kittens taken to the vet for tests and exams totaling around $260. After a few months of playing hell trying to get them “all” the paperwork that my vet emailed to them. These people said they never got everything and tried to cancel my claim.” Regina (Consumer Affairs)

How Does 24 Pet Watch Pet Insurance Work?

24 Pet Watch offers a standard insurance type for dogs who are eight weeks to ten years old. They have several choices that allow you to balance coverage needs with the budget for your monthly premium.

Dog Insurance Plan Options

You choose an annual deductible, which runs between $100 and $1,000. Once your deductible is met, you have to pay 20% out of pocket with a yearly reimbursement cap between $1500 and $20,000 annually, depending on the plan details.

Once you’ve decided on your terms, you must have your pet examined by a veterinarian to determine health and any pre-existing conditions. For emergencies, there’s a waiting period of three days, and with illness, your pet must wait 14 to 30 days, depending on your policy. Any symptoms that happen between that period are considered a pre-existing condition and not covered.

It’s easy to set up your plan. You can go online for a quote or get on the phone with an agent. Four different plan types vary depending on how much your deductible and yearly cap are.

Once you’ve decided on the insurance options, you can add on a wellness rider to help cover routine veterinary care. You cannot purchase the wellness plan separately from the insurance plan.

Cat Insurance Plan Options

Cats are also covered under 24 Pet Watch. Your cat must be eight weeks to 12 years old to enroll. It’s unclear if the plan stops coverage after that age, so it’s best to talk to the agent or discuss it as you’re getting your quote.

Cats are eligible for the wellness rider as well, but it isn’t a separate plan than the insurance. You must be enrolled in one of their four plans to purchase the wellness rider. You must add the wellness option during your initial enrollment, or you won’t be eligible to enroll until your open enrolment period the next year.

Pet Recovery

One unique feature of 24 Pet Watch is that they also offer reimbursements towards your pet’s safe recovery during a disaster or instance where your pet is lost. If your dog or cat frequently escapes or you live in a disaster prone area, this could be a good option for safety.

24 Pet Watch Pricing Details

24 Pet Watch has a lot of moving components, so let’s take a look at what it might cost for different parts of the plan. As with most insurance options, your quote may vary depending on your circumstances.

How much does it cost per month for their best plan?

The top plan can easily cost you more than $100, especially if you decide to add the wellness rider to it. With the highest yearly cap and the most types of coverage, it isn’t going to be the cheapest monthly cost.

Are there any coupons, deals, or incentives to sign up?

There aren’t any coupons or deals to sign up at this time, but you should speak with an agent about deals in your local area if you need an incentive. They may be able to offer something locally, depending on a variety of factors.

What’s the deductible? Is it annual or per visit?

Deductibles are calculated annually and vary depending on your plan. Some plans only have a lower deductible option, while others offer more types of deductible choices. Make sure you check out the terms online.

Do you have to pay a co-pay, or are claims covered 100%?

All reimbursements are handled at 80% of your out of pocket cost once the deductible is met. For example, if your deductible is $250, 24 Pet Watch will cover 80% of your out of pocket cost minus the $250 deductible.

Will the rates go up over time?

Some customers reported increased rates, but 24 Pet Watch should notify you if this is going to happen. Most customers don’t see rate increases according to reports.

24 Pet Watch Coverage Details

Let’s go over what you can expect once you’ve signed up with a plan for 24 Pet Watch. They offer basic plans to elite plans and have wellness riders that can be purchased with regular insurance.

Does it cover regular vet office visits and routine check-ups or only unexpected emergencies?

The classic insurance plans cover only emergency and non-routine procedures. If you decide to add on a wellness rider to your monthly premium, that will cover the cost of regular office visits and routine procedures.

Does it cover dental and teeth cleaning?

For emergency dental conditions that aren’t pre-existing, the plan does reimburse you. The wellness plan does cover routine dental procedures, including cleanings.

Does it cover hip dysplasia?

The plan doesn’t exempt hereditary conditions like hip dysplasia, but it must not be a pre-existing condition, and there’s a longer waiting period for signs to show up. If those signs happen during the waiting period, or your dog is already showing symptoms, the condition is considered pre-existing, and it won’t be reimbursed.

There is a bilateral exclusion for hip dysplasia as well. Your pet must be entirely symptom-free for the vet check-up and for 14 days (Classic, Super, Champion plans) or 30 days (Extra plan) on both sides to be eligible.

Does it cover spaying and neutering?

Under the insurance plan, spaying and neutering are considered elective procedures and not covered. However, some wellness options do have reimbursement plans for things like spaying and neutering. If you don’t want to purchase the wellness rider, you could look into local programs or your local vet for options.

Does it cover pre-existing conditions?

No pet insurance company covers pre-existing conditions, and 24 Pet Watch is the same. It requires a vet check-up before proceeding with the plan to catalog any symptoms associated with pre-existing conditions. For emergency care, the waiting period is just a few days, but for larger, hereditary, and chronic diseases, the waiting period is 14 to 30 days.

If the condition is curable, your pet must be symptom-free for a year before coverage can begin again for the same situation so that it’s clear the two occurrences aren’t related. Your pet will not be denied for hereditary conditions, but they cannot fall under the pre-existing category for coverage in the future.

Does it cover cancer?

The plan does cover cancer treatments and maintenance, but if the cancer was present before the policy was in place, it’s considered pre-existing and not included. Your vet check-up will determine if cancerous symptoms are present, and during the waiting period, if your dog’s symptoms show up, the treatments won’t be covered.

Does it cover prescription medications?

The plan doesn’t cover any routine medications and prescriptions, such as flea and tick treatments. Still, for non-routine medications (that are not associated with any pre-existing conditions), the plan does offer coverage.

What else does it cover?

  • Emergency care
  • Hospitalization
  • Prescription medications and foods
  • Lab tests
  • X-rays
  • Diagnostic tests
  • Euthanasia
  • Cremation
  • Lost pet recovery costs
  • Accidental death

What else does it NOT cover?

  • Routine vet visits
  • Routine dental
  • Spay and neuter services
  • Pre-existing conditions
  • Bilateral conditions
  • Elective procedures
  • Injuries from fighting or guarding

Are there any restrictions on breed-specific conditions or age?

There are no breed restrictions, but you cannot sign your dog up for a new policy after the age of ten or your cat after the age of 12. All pets must be at least eight weeks before they are eligible for a policy.

Is there a waiting period? How soon can I start using the insurance after I sign up?

You must take your pet for a routine vet check to determine any pre-existing conditions. Once that paperwork is in place, and you’ve paid your first premium, your pet must submit to a waiting period for coverage.

At 12:01 the first day after the first enrollment, your pet is eligible for accident reimbursements. For illnesses, you must wait two days. Diseases include ear issues, UTI, parvo, heartworms, and other chronic conditions.

For hereditary conditions such as hip dysplasia and cruciate ligament events, the waiting period is 14 to 30 days after the first enrollment depending on your specific policy coverage. This assumes that no pre-existing or diagnosed symptoms have already occurred. If they occur during the waiting period, the condition is considered pre-existing.

Is it easy to cancel if I change my mind?

It isn’t challenging to cancel once you’ve changed your mind. Check with your state’s statutes for returns, and speak with an agent if you’ve decided to cancel. You may be eligible for prorated money back on premiums. The plan may require you to submit cancellations in writing, so read the fine print on your agreement.

How does 24 Pet Watch compare to other pet insurance companies?

It has a lower coverage limit than other plans, and age exclusions aren’t good news for those with senior pets. If your pet is younger and tends to escape, their microchip and recovery services could be an excellent way to get your money out of your premiums each month.

Otherwise, they do offer wellness riders and a range of options to make sure your premium is affordable while still covering what you need to cover. They’re average for the world of pet insurance.

Would you recommend this pet insurance company for dogs?

This particular insurance is excellent for younger animals whose owners also want to take advantage of 24 Pet Watch’s coverage for pet recovery services. They’re great for those types of emergency services plus recovery.

What about coverage for other animals?

They don’t offer coverage for any exotic animals. All their services are focused on the coverage and recovery of cats and dogs. If you’re looking for another type of pet coverage, it’s best to look elsewhere.

Do they offer coverage for cats?

Cats are eligible for new coverage between the ages of eight weeks and 12 years of age. Their cat policies follow their dog policies very closely with multiple options for deductibles, coverage caps, and waiting periods. You can even add a wellness rider to your cat’s policy.

It can be tough to find cat coverage. Sometimes we aren’t sure what kind of coverage our cat needs, but cats are also subject to injuries and other emergencies. Make sure you understand what the risk is for your cat and that you’re prepared.

Do they offer coverage for horses, birds, reptiles, and other exotic animals?

Currently, they don’t offer any coverage for pets other than dogs and cats. Their recovery services extend to their insurance, but you’ll have to find something else if you’ve got different types of pets in your house.

Choosing pet insurance can be challenging, but it could be an essential peace of mind for planning your pet’s care. If your pet often escapes and you may need recovery services in the future, this plan does offer reimbursements for that kind of thing with some of their plans. There are age restrictions, but for your escape artist, this could be a good option.

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