Leslie Kasperowicz holds a BA in Social Sciences from the University of Winnipeg. She spent several years as a Farmers Insurance CSR, gaining a solid understanding of insurance products including home, life, auto, and commercial and working directly with insurance customers to understand their needs. She has since used that knowledge in her more than ten years as a writer, largely in the insuranc...

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Melanie Musson is the fourth generation in her family to work in the insurance industry. She grew up with insurance talk as part of her everyday conversation and has studied to gain an in-depth knowledge of state-specific car insurance laws and dynamics as well as a broad understanding of how insurance fits into every person’s life, from budgets to coverage levels. She also specializes in automa...

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Reviewed by Melanie Musson
Published Insurance Expert

UPDATED: Apr 16, 2021

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  Trupanion and Embrace are two pet insurance companies offering coverage for pet parents who don’t want to pay for vet bills alone.  Both companies offer coverage for accidents and illnesses while excluding pre-existing conditions, but that’s where the similarities end. Trupanion is one of the most expensive pet insurance providers.

Does their coverage and service make it worth it? Especially when compared to the more affordable mid-line carrier, Embrace. This review compares Trupanion vs Embrace pet insurance plans to help you decide on the best coverage options and pricing for your pet. 

Trupanion Pet Insurance vs Embrace Insurance Plans

Most pet insurance providers offer options for pet parents to choose different price points and coverage limits. Some carriers provide the choice between accident-only pet insurance and comprehensive pet insurance coverage. While accident-only pet insurance coverage is usually the most affordable, it’s very limited in what it covers. If your pet is injured in an accident, they’ll have coverage based on the limits you chose. But if they have any other health problem, there’s no coverage in the plan. For most pet parents, comprehensive pet insurance covering both accidents and illnesses is the best choice. Both Trupanion and Embrace offer comprehensive pet insurance, which covers:

With both pet insurance providers offering similar coverage, does that mean they’re the same? No, both carriers offer unique plan features that set themselves apart. Let’s take a closer look at Trupanion and Embrace’s coverage options.</p

 

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Embrace Pet Insurance vs Trupanion Insurance – Coverage Compared

Neither of the pet insurance carriers reviewed today cover pre-existing conditions. In fact, no pet insurance company provides coverage for something that happened prior to coverage being in force. It doesn’t matter if your pet was already seen or diagnosed, if they had the condition prior to the pet insurance coverage being in place, it’s not covered. Embrace’s comprehensive pet insurance plan includes a few things in their plan Trupanion does not:

  • Exam fees
  • Alternative therapies (acupuncture, chiropractor, etc.)
  • Physical therapy 
  • Rehabilitation

You can get these coverages with Trupanion, but only as an add-on coverage enhancer called Recovery and Complementary Care. And there is an additional cost for this coverage, while Embrace rolls it into one premium. Another similarity is neither carrier provides coverage for cosmetic or elective procedures. These procedures include cropping the ears, removing the dew claw (unless it’s medically necessary as the result of an accident), and docking the tail. Certain routine care visits you’d think are covered under comprehensive pet insurance are not. These items include:

  • Anal gland expression
  • Dental care
  • Fecal, urine, and blood tests
  • Flea, heartworm, and tick medication
  • Grooming
  • Medicated shampoos
  • Microchipping
  • Spay/neuter 
  • Toe nail trimming
  • Vaccines 

These procedures fall under what the pet insurance industry calls wellness plans. Some pet insurance providers offer an add-on benefit, like Embrace’s Wellness Rewards. Trupanion doesn’t offer this as an option. With Embrace, you can add on Wellness Rewards with a maximum amount the company will reimburse each year. Choose from $250, $450, or $650 towards your pet’s routine care, with the highest rewards option being the most expensive.

Trupanion vs Embrace – Benefit Limits Compared

A benefit limit or reimbursement limit is the maximum amount the pet insurance company will pay for covered expenses under your plan in a policy year.  At Trupanion, the company has set out to make pet insurance easier with fewer options. The comprehensive pet insurance with Trupanion doesn’t have any upper benefit limits. This means if your pet has a covered condition, Trupanion will continue to pay without a cap. Embrace has several options to choose from for the annual benefit limit, which is more common with pet insurance providers. You can choose from five different options, with $10,000 being the most popular:

  • $5,000
  • $8,000
  • $10,000
  • $15,000
  • $30,000

Most pet insurance plans offering limit options don’t give you as many ways to customize your reimbursement level like Embrace does.  It’s important to remember when getting quotes for pet insurance, the higher your reimbursement, the more your premium will be. That is the tradeoff for having more reimbursement potential each year.

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Embrace Insurance vs Trupanion Pet Insurance – Deductibles Compared

A pet insurance deductible works just like it does on human health insurance. The deductible amount is how much you have to pay out of pocket before the carrier will reimburse for any covered condition. With Embrace pet insurance, you get five options, just like the benefit limit amount, with $500 its  most popular option. Choose from:

  • $200
  • $300
  • $500
  • $750
  • $1,000

The higher you go, the less you have to pay in premium, but the more you pay out of pocket before you’ll start getting benefits refunded. This is an annual deductible amount, so it resets each year back to $0.  Embrace sets itself apart in the pet insurance industry with its diminishing deductible feature called the Healthy Pet Deductible. Each year you don’t file a claim for reimbursement, your deductible amount goes down by $50, at no extra cost.  Trupanion pet insurance works a bit differently. The $200 deductible is the most popular choice with Trupanion. The difference is, you can choose any dollar amount between $0 and $1,000 as your deductible. Not to be outdone in an industry-only feature, Trupanion has a per-condition deductible rather than an annual deductible. Whichever deductible amount you choose, you must hit that for each condition your pet gets seen for. Once you do, Trupanion reimburses according to the policy for the life of the pet.

Trupanion Pet Insurance vs Embrace Insurance – Reimbursement Compared

After you’ve hit your chosen deductible, the pet insurance company will reimburse covered expenses up to a certain amount. This is called the reimbursement percentage. To streamline its policy offerings, Trupanion pet insurance only has one option, which is 90% reimbursement. This means whatever you pay the vet for covered expenses, Trupanion will refund you 90% of the vet costs so you’re only out of pocket for 10%. Embrace Insurance offers the percentages most commonly found in the pet insurance industry:

  • 70%
  • 80%
  • 90%

According to the Embrace website, 80% is the most popular option chosen by pet parents. When getting a quote with Embrace, the more you want reimbursed, the more you’ll pay in premium.

Embrace vs Trupanion – Pricing Compared

When comparing pet insurance companies, price is always a big factor to consider before making a decision. How does Embrace compare to Trupanion? We got a few sample quotes to compare so you can see prices without entering your information. Getting a quote is easy, but you will have to provide some information on your pet:

  • What is the pet’s name
  • Is it a dog or cat?
  • Male or female?
  • Spayed or neutered?
  • How old are they?
  • What ZIP code do you live in?

If you have an exotic pet or something other than a dog or cat, Embrace and Trupanion aren’t the right carriers for you. Nationwide Pet Insurance is the only provider we’ve reviewed offering insurance for exotic pets. Now, let’s compare some numbers. We got quotes for Embrace’s 70% reimbursement with a $500 deductible to compare to Trupanion’s 90% deductible.  For a medium mixed breed female spayed dog, Embrace’s monthly premium is $34.31 compared to Trupanion’s $67.53 per month We also compared a Beagle for coverage, with common health issues like hypothyroidism and progressive retinal atrophy. Coverage with Embrace would be $48.51 while Trupanion would be $91.51 each month. If you have a Poodle which can have health conditions like cataracts, glaucoma, and hip dysplasia, rates with Embrace are $59.75 per month and Trupanion is $82.62 monthly. When signing up for Embrace pet insurance, there is no enrollment fee. However, the first month’s premium will include a $35 enrollment fee with Trupanion. If you’re looking to pay less out of pocket when checking out at the vet’s office, Trupanion works with select veterinary offices to pay their portion automatically.

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This is only an option at participating vet’s using its software, so you might have to check to see if your vet’s office offers this service. Another thing to mention about pricing is Embrace uses the industry standard “birthday pricing.” Every year when your plan renews, the rates will increase as your pet ages. This is to keep in line with the thought that the older your pet gets, the more health concerns there are, and vet care is more costly. Trupanion hasn’t adopted birthday pricing, instead opting to use a more universal approach. This makes your monthly rate a variable rather than a fixed rate, which means the premium could change once per year depending on changes in the cost of vet care.

Sample Quotes For Trupanion VS Embrace Pet Insurance

All of these quotes when possible used the following factors in calculating the estimated pet insurance premium cost for your dog in 2021. 

When possible the data we entered for these prices was as follows; a female, puppy under the age of 12 months, with unlimited coverage (or max offered when unlimited not an option), a $500 deductible, and 70% reimbursement. We did not include the wellness checkup add-on when available. 

Keep in mind that insurance rates are ever-changing and what seems like minor changes such as, your zip code or breed can actually make a major impact on the cost of pet insurance. 

These Pet Insurance Company Price charts are a good tool, not a guarantee of rates, do your own research before you buy. 

Embrace Insurance vs Trupanion – Small Mixed Breed Costs Compared

CompanyMonthly Premium
Embrace Pet Insurance$29.58
Trupanion Pet Insurance$57.02
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Medium Crossbred Dogs Price Differences For Trupanion Insurance vs Embrace Insurance

CompanyMonthly Premium
Embrace Pet Insurance$34.31
Trupanion Pet Insurance$67.53
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Comparison Of Cost For Large Mixed Breed Dogs – Trupanion vs Embrace

CompanyMonthly Premium
Embrace Pet Insurance$40.23
Trupanion Pet Insurance$87.58
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Labrador Retriever Costs Trupanion Insurance vs Embrace Insurance

CompanyMonthly Premium
Embrace Pet Insurance$51.47
Trupanion Pet Insurance$98.50
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German Shepherd Costs Embrace vs Trupanion

CompanyMonthly Premium
Embrace Pet Insurance$51.47
Trupanion Pet Insurance$99.97
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Poodle Costs Embrace Insurance vs Trupanion Pet Insurance

CompanyMonthly Premium
Trupanion Pet Insurance$82.62
Embrace Pet Insurance$59.75
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Beagle Costs Embrace Pet Insurance vs Trupanion

CompanyMonthly Premium
Embrace Pet Insurance$48.51
Trupanion Pet Insurance$91.51
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Dachshund Costs Embrace vs Trupanion Pet Insurance

CompanyMonthly Premium
Embrace Pet Insurance$41.71
Trupanion Pet Insurance$72.54
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**Trupanion only offers 90% reimbursement, all other companies’ sample quotes are based on a 70% reimbursement policy which is why Trupanion may appear to cost more. 

 

 

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Trupanion Pet Insurance vs Embrace Insurance- Service Compared

When you pay every month for a certain level of coverage, you also expect a certain level of customer service. We looked at online reviews and ratings to compare Trupanion and Embrace pet insurance to see how they handle customer service and complaints. Trupanion has a 1.8 star rating with Consumer Affairs after 49 votes compared to Embrace pet with 3.9 stars from 72 votes. At Trustpilot, Trupanion has 4.3 stars with 2,194 reviews, while Embrace has a slightly lower rating at 4.2 stars with only 347 reviews. Consumers Advocate gives Embrace pet insurance a rating of 4.4 but Trupanion has a higher rating at 4.8. Canine Journal rates Embrace at 7.8 out of 10, which is the same as 4 out of 5 stars. Trupanion got 6 out of 10, which equates to 3 out of 5 stars.

The Better Business Bureau provides financial ratings and a place for consumers to lodge complaints. Embrace has stronger financials with an A+ compared to Trupanion’s A. While slightly better, both pet insurance providers are healthy so you won’t have to worry about not getting claims paid on time. As for complaints to the BBB, Trupanion has had 94 in the last three years, with 52 closed in the last year. Embrace’s complaints are lower at 66 in the last three years and 24 closed in the last year. If you’re looking for a company available 24/7, Trupanion has a call center open all the time for customer service and claims help, even holidays. Embrace has a more standard timeframe, with agents available from 8:30am to 8:00pm Monday through Friday and 9:00am to 1:00pm on Saturdays EST.

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Embrace Pet Insurance vs Trupanion Insurance – Waiting Periods Compared

You might think that once you pay for a policy, you have coverage for your pet. However, pet insurance has waiting periods, where for a certain amount of time after the policy is active, coverage isn’t available. This is common in the pet insurance industry, just like with some human health insurance. With Embrace, there’s a small waiting period of just 2 days for accidents, with 14 days to wait for any illnesses. For orthopedic conditions, there is a 6 month waiting period:

However, if you see your vet after enrollment and have them fill out Embrace’s form confirming your pet’s health for these specific conditions, the waiting period can be waived if there are no pre-existing conditions. At Trupanion, the initial waiting periods are longer. Five days for accidents and 30 days for illnesses Luckily, the waiting period is only at the start of the policy and doesn’t have to be met each year.

Summary

It can be easy to get bogged down in the details when comparing pet insurance companies. Embrace and Trupanion are two well-respected carriers offering comprehensive pet coverage for your dog or cat. Embrace offers different options for deductibles, benefit limits, and reimbursement amounts to provide affordable coverage. Trupanion lets you choose your own deductible with a 90% reimbursement amount, though rates are comparatively higher. Ultimately, either company can offer quality coverage, but it’s up to you to decide which works best for your pet’s health coverage.    Is Exotic Pet Insurance Necessary? 

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