24PetWatch Pet Insurance Review

High-premium coverage with some unique perks

We publish unbiased product reviews; our opinions are our own and are not influenced by payment we receive from our advertising partners. Learn more about how we review products and read our advertiser disclosure for how we make money.

24PetWatch

 24PetWatch

overall rating
4.0

Before you sign up with 24PetWatch, make sure you’re getting the best price by comparing quotes for equivalent coverage from several other providers.

Based on our review of nearly two dozen pet insurance companies, 24PetWatch was not one of the best companies we found. To see other options that may be better, visit our list of the best pet insurance companies.

  • Pros and Cons
  • Key Takeaways
  • Key Facts
Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Offers a lifetime pet protection plan

  • Discounts available

  • Covers trip cancellation and boarding fees

Cons
  • Expensive monthly premiums

  • Complicated plan structures

  • Requires a veterinary exam

  • Maximum age limit

Key Takeaways
  • 24PetWatch coverage consists of a tailored accident and illness policy and two levels of optional preventive care.
  • Policy premiums are significantly higher than most competitors.
  • Specialized services like lifetime lost pet recovery are available for additional fees.
Key Facts
  • Year Founded 2003
  • Waiting Period One to 14 days
  • Deductible $100 to $1,000
  • Customer Service Forms Phone, chat, email
  • Customer Service Telephone (866) 375-7387
  • Company Website www.24petwatch.com

Pet insurance covers unexpected costs related to veterinary care, but as every pet owner knows, there’s a lot more that can go wrong than just accidents and illnesses. 24PetWatch is a North American provider of not just pet insurance plans, but also lost pet relocation services and microchip registration. Although the policies you’ll find through 24PetWatch are costly for the level of coverage they provide, there are a few unique benefits you should know about before you write them off entirely.

Company Overview

24PetWatch was founded in 2003 as a subsidiary of Pethealth Inc., a pet technology company that offers products like RFID microchips and animal management databases. Pethealth operates in various capacities across North America and the United Kingdom, with 24PetWatch policies specifically available in the United States and Canada. By combining veterinary insurance plans with additional protection services, 24PetWatch aims to offer a complete solution to keep pets safe and healthy. There are currently 120,000 pets insured by 24PetWatch.

Pros Explained

  • Offers a lifetime pet protection plan: For a one-time fee of $94.95, you’ll get access to pet recovery specialists and additional services for your pet’s lifetime.
  • Discounts available: Get a 5% discount for microchipping your pet and save up to $30 per year for paying premiums in advance.
  • Covers trip cancellation and boarding fees: 24PetWatch will reimburse you up to $500 if your pet needs to be boarded in an emergency or if you have to cancel a planned trip due to your pet’s health.

Cons Explained

  • Expensive monthly premiums: The low end of premiums starts around $20 per month for cats and $30 for dogs.
  • Complicated plan structures: 24PetWatch markets accident and illness coverage under different plan names, but it’s all the same policy with varying annual limits.
  • Requires a veterinary exam: All newly enrolled pets must be examined by a licensed veterinarian within the first 30 days of coverage.
  • Maximum age limit: Pets can only be enrolled up to age 10 for dogs and age 12 for cats.

Available Plans

24PetWatch advertises a handful of accident and illness plans with different names like Extra Plan and Super Plan, but they’re all governed by the same policy document. In fact, the only differences are the annual limit and, in some cases, the options you can choose from for a deductible. Aside from these small discrepancies, coverage doesn’t change between plans.

The provider offers two wellness riders that cover scheduled preventive care benefits for a flat rate of $10 or $25 per month. The latter includes higher limits on some services and pays for additional treatments such as an annual dental cleaning and heartworm preventives.

Covered Treatment Accident and Illness Coverage Wellness Coverage
Exam fees  
Procedures  
Lab tests  
Medication  
Continued treatment  
Genetic conditions  
Preventive care  
Microchipping  
Spay/neuter surgery  
Vaccinations  
Dental treatment  
Behavioral treatment    
Specialists  
Alternative/holistic care  
Medical boarding  
Cremation/burial  

Plan Pricing

Compared to competitors’ plans, 24PetWatch is shockingly expensive. The cheapest policy for a three-year-old dog costs more than $450 per year in premiums for just $5,000 in annual benefits after a $500 deductible. Limits max out at $20,000 per year and come at a hefty rate that surpasses what many insurers charge for unlimited annual benefits.

Wellness riders come with an equally high price tag; the lower-end plan costs $120 per year for a maximum total benefit of $200, and the more expensive option will set you back $300 in annual premiums for just $400 in potential benefits. It’s definitely worth cross-checking the limits for each service included in this plan with your vet’s price list before purchasing since it’s entirely possible that the fees at your local clinic won’t come close to meeting 24PetWatch’s annual wellness spend.

Our Expert Lisa Says

It’s definitely worth cross-checking the limits for each service included in this plan with your vet’s price list before purchasing since it’s entirely possible that the fees at your local clinic won’t come close to meeting 24PetWatch’s annual wellness spend.

  Accident and Illness Coverage Wellness Coverage
Dog: 1 year $33.30 to $69.27 $10.00 to $25.00
Dog: 3 year $37.30 to $77.40 $10.00 to $25.00
Dog: 6 year $43.30 to $89.59 $10.00 to $25.00
Dog: 12 year N/A N/A
Cat: 1 year $19.76 to $39.25 $10.00 to $25.00
Cat: 3 year $22.12 to $43.84 $10.00 to $25.00
Cat: 6 year $27.12 to $52.60 $10.00 to $25.00
Cat: 12 year $45.36 to $87.06 $10.00 to $25.00

Waiting Periods

Unlike most pet insurers, 24PetWatch begins coverage for injuries on the day that the policy goes into effect without requiring any waiting period. Illness benefits become valid on day 14, which is more in line with industry standards.

There are a few exceptions that can become eligible for treatment after only two days, which include ear and eye infections and certain diseases related to parasites. Musculoskeletal conditions such as hip dysplasia are covered as illnesses and don’t require the six-month to one-year waiting period imposed by many competitors.

Pre-Existing Conditions

If your pet shows signs of an injury or illness before your policy start date or during a waiting period, the underlying condition will be considered pre-existing and 24PetWatch will likely refuse to pay for any related veterinary expenses. This is why the provider requires an exam within the first 30 days of coverage; if any conditions are detected, they’ll be written off as pre-existing for the lifetime of the policy.

Conditions that are successfully treated and remain undetectable for at least 24 months may no longer be considered pre-existing with 24PetWatch. This is a nice perk that isn’t offered by all pet insurers, although those that do follow a similar program typically shorten the curable exclusionary period to six or 12 months.

Coverage Limits

The annual limits available through 24PetWatch start at $3,000 and go up to $20,000. While most competing providers with high-premium policies offer a plan with unlimited annual benefits, 24PetWatch isn’t one of them.

An upper limit of $20,000 is as good as unlimited for the vast majority of pets, but with such premium pricing, we’d still hope for more from 24PetWatch. If you’re comparing quotes for equivalent coverage among providers, don’t be afraid to look at 24PetWatch alongside a policy with no annual limit.

Plan Exclusions

There isn’t much that 24PetWatch excludes from its plans in terms of coverage. However, there are severe limitations related to pet age upon enrollment. Dogs over the age of 10 and cats older than 12 aren’t eligible to sign up for a policy, even under the most basic types of coverage. This is far older than most pet parents choose to purchase insurance, but since most comparable companies allow signups at any age, we don’t see why 24PetWatch can’t join them.

Claims

24PetWatch prefers that customers submit claims through the MyPethealth portal, an online platform that also shows you the status of your claim and lets you browse your claim history. The provider has done away with paper claim forms entirely, although PDF forms can be sent by email or fax.

Customer Service

Service related to insurance claims is available from 24PetWatch Monday through Friday by phone, email, and chat, although we should note that our attempt to contact the company via live chat during business hours went unanswered. If you need to get in touch with 24PetWatch regarding recovery services for your missing pet, a separate 24/7 hotline is available for this purpose.

Third-Party Ratings

24PetWatch gets an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. With that said, several dozen complaints have been registered within the past three years, and there is a noticeable trend related to the provider’s free trial practices. According to complaints, 24PetWatch issues 30-day trials to individuals who adopt from certain shelters across the United States, but has a history of continuing to bill these customers for coverage without providing adequate notice. If you acquire 24PetWatch through a local shelter, make sure you’re aware of the deadline for canceling your free trial.

Our Expert Lisa Says

If you acquire 24PetWatch through a local shelter, make sure you’re aware of the deadline for canceling your free trial.

Policies are underwritten by Crum & Forster, a property and casualty insurer with an A rating from AM Best. Crum & Forster also backs policies from other pet insurance companies like Hartville.

Competition: 24PetWatch vs. Pet Partners

Comparing 24Petwatch to competitor Pet Partners is a perfect illustration of how vastly insurance premiums can vary across providers for comparable coverage. When we compared quotes for comparable mid-tier plans for a two-year-old dog, 24PetWatch returned a monthly price of $41.79, while Pet Partners came in just over half this rate at $23.12. 24PetWatch may offer a few types of bonus coverage like trip cancellation and boarding fees, but we don’t see enough of a difference to justify paying twice the amount in premiums every year.

  24PetWatch Pet Partners
Animals Covered Dogs and cats Dogs and cats
Example Cost $41.79 to insure a two-year-old dog with 80% coverage, a $10,000 annual limit, and a $500 deductible $23.12 to insure a two-year-old dog with 80% coverage, a $10,000 annual limit, and a $500 deductible
Coverage Type Accident and illness Accident and illness
Waiting Period

Injuries: Same day;

Illnesses: 14 days

Injuries: Two days;

Illnesses: 14 days

Network Size Unlimited Unlimited
Final Verdict

24PetWatch is one of the pricier pet insurers in the industry, but aside from a handful of unique benefits, there isn’t much that explains these sky-high premiums. The provider also puts heavy restrictions on new signups, requiring all pets to submit to a veterinary exam within 30 days of the policy’s effective date and barring older pets from enrolling at all. There’s no harm in getting a quote from 24PetWatch, but we wouldn’t hold our breath that the company will be able to match pricing for comparable coverage from competitors.

Methodology

We rate pet insurance carriers like 24PetWatch using our methodology for reviewing pet insurance companies that compares insurers based on quantitative data. Our model prioritizes information that we know matters most to pet owners, such as policy benefits, exclusions and limitations, and the cost of monthly premiums. We also analyze companies using customer service and financial strength data from third parties like the BBB and AM Best.