time icon 6 min read update icon Sept. 20, 2019
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Nationwide Pet is the largest and oldest pet insurance company and covers cats, dogs, birds and exotic pets. Wellness, emergency, and illness-related services are covered.

Nationwide Pet Insurance is part of Nationwide Insurance. Originally known as Veterinary Pet Insurance, it is the oldest and largest pet insurance company in the United States. The company seeks to reduce the often burdensome cost of pet health care. Nationwide is a good option for seniors who prefer to be reimbursed as a percent of their medical bills and do not wish to pay a deductible. Seniors who own multiple pets including birds will prefer Nationwide over other options due to the prolific coverage of this insurance company and the multiple-pet discount. Some concerns have been expressed on online review sites regarding the denial of coverage, premium hikes and level of customer service, so these issues should be examined carefully before enrolling.

Grandfolk Scoring
Price 7/10
Reimbursement 7/10
Deductible 10/10
Illness waiting period 7/10
Accident waiting period 7/10
Warranty 8/10
Age limits 5/10
Eligibility 10/10
Accident coverage 10/10
Preventive coverage 10/10
Multiple pet discount 10/10
Monthly cost
Amount reimbursed?
Up to 90% of covered costs
Type of deductible?
Incident deductible or Percent-of-Invoice (non-deductible plan)
Illness waiting period
Delay before coverage?
14 days
Accident waiting period
Delay before coverage?
14 days
Risk-free period?
Ten day trial offer
Age limits
Age limits for enrollment?
Yes, up to 10 years old to enroll, but will not be dropped due to age
Are all pets eligible?
Accident coverage
Is it available?
Preventive coverage
Is it available?
Multiple pet discount
Is it available?
Age Score:
50-64 Years
65-74 Years
75-84 Years

Nationwide Pet Insurance coverage provides health coverage for a senior’s pet, so advancing age does not affect the quality of the service itself as long as the senior can take the pet to wellness check-ups and veterinarian visits as needed. As the senior advances in age, it may become more difficult to file claims due to health problems such as limited mobility, or declining cognition or eyesight. For healthy seniors looking for a comprehensive insurance policy to cover their pet’s health bills, Nationwide Pet Insurance could be a great option.

Health Score:
Poor Health
Fair Health
Good Health
Great Health

A senior’s health does not have much impact on the value of Nationwide Pet Insurance. Of course, seniors who suffer from serious health conditions may find that decreased mobility and an increased absence due to hospitalization can prevent them from owning a pet. In that case, Nationwide Pet Insurance ceases to be of use. However, Nationwide will transfer the policy (except for Wellness Basics) to a new owner through a form and new payment details within a 7-business-day period. Nationwide Pet Insurance offers the greatest value to a healthy senior looking to decrease the cost of veterinarian bills.


  • Customers can be reimbursed either as a percent of their veterinarian bill or as an incident (per-condition) deductible.
  • Nationwide provides comprehensive wellness, accident and injury insurance for many different types of pets, and offers a multiple-pet discount.
  • Nationwide at least partially reimburses customers for veterinary exams on all levels of its insurance plan.
  • Nationwide is one of the only pet health insurance companies to provide a plan for exotic pets.
  • Claims can be submitted on a smartphone and tracked online.


  • Nationwide’s coverage for cruciate ligament injuries has a 12-month waiting period, and the illness and accident waiting periods are 14 days. Any injury or accident that occurs before the waiting period is over will be classified as a pre-existing condition, which is not covered by Nationwide.
  • Not all pets are eligible for health insurance. Only pets between the ages of six weeks and ten years can enroll (although they will not be removed from a plan due to age).
  • Some customers reviewing Nationwide Pet Insurance online have had concerns about its refusal to honor claims, denial of coverage and unfair increases in monthly rates. These issues must be made very clear before enrolling.

Bottom Line:

Nationwide Pet Insurance was originally founded in 1982 by Dr. Jack Stephens, making it the oldest pet insurance provider in the United States. Lassie, the first pet insured in the U.S., was covered by Nationwide. This provider is the rare company that provides insurance for exotic animals and birds, in addition to cats and dogs. Nationwide is more expensive than other providers, but offers more comprehensive coverage: services including wellness, prescription, accident and dental coverage. Nationwide Pet Insurance has been featured on FOX 5 NY and has been endorsed by the Whole Dog Journal, a monthly newsletter about dog care and training. About one-third of all Fortune 500 companies also offer Nationwide Pet Insurance as an employee benefit. Nationwide is a good pet insurance option for a senior who is looking for a comprehensive plan that covers most procedures and pet health visits.

Frequently Asked Questions:

  • How does the deductible work, and how will I receive my reimbursements? Nationwide Pet Insurance can either reimburse as a percentage of the total invoice (with no deductible) or as an incident deductible, where one deductible must be met for a specific condition before the insurance company will reimburse the customer.  
  • Can I have more than one pet on my account? Yes, and there is a 5% discount for the second and third pet added. There is a 10% discount for the fourth and subsequent pets added to the policy.
  • Where is my insurance accepted? Nationwide insurance is accepted at all veterinarians, emergency clinics and specialists.

More Information:

Product Details

Overview: Nationwide Pet Insurance offers three types of coverage which reimburse customers differently and provide different insurance offerings.

Package Details:
In the Major Medical package, reimbursement is limited to a set amount for each condition, regardless of how much the treatment costs. The Major Medical plan covers exams, lab tests, x-rays, medications, surgeries, chronic diseases and some hereditary conditions.

The Whole Pet with Wellness package is a percentage-of-invoice package which reimburses customers as a percentage of the total veterinarian bill. The Whole Pet with Wellness package covers a comprehensive range of services including exams, lab tests, x-rays, medications, surgeries, chronic diseases, hereditary conditions, and disease prevention such as vaccinations.

The Pet Wellness package covers wellness exams and tests, flea and heartworm prevention, and immunizations.

Optional Accessories or Add-on Services

Wellness coverage can be added to either of the accident and illness plans for $12-22/month.  There are two wellness plans, the Basic Plan and the Plus Plan.  Both plans cover vaccinations, deworming/flea control and preventive exams. The Plus Plan is more expensive than the Basic Plan because it provides more routine care coverage.  

Additional Company Details

Contract Details: Nationwide charges a $20/year fee if the customer pays monthly, but the fee is waived if the annual fee is paid up front.

Canceling Nationwide Pet Insurance can be done by visiting or contacting the company in writing.  

Warranty: Nationwide has a 10-day risk-free cancellation period.

Accreditations: Nationwide Pet Insurance is accredited by the Better Business Bureau and has a rating of A+.

Company Details: Nationwide Insurance has been providing plans since 1925. Today, Nationwide has more than $158 billion in assets. Nationwide’s company philosophy is “helping members protect what’s important to them.”  Nationwide Pet Insurance is accredited by the Better Business Bureau and has an A+ rating.


Nationwide Pet Insurance
P.O. Box 2344
Brea, CA 92822-2344
Phone: (800) 540-2016

Sheeva Azma - Senior Advisor

Sheeva is senior researcher with Grandfolk® providing in-depth product and service reviews to empower senior buying decisions.