Nationwide Pet Insurance Review 2022 | Coverage and Cost – MarketWatch

Partner content: This content was created by a business partner of Dow Jones and researched and written independently of the MarketWatch newsroom. Links in this article may result in us earning a commission. Learn More
Nationwide is a nationally recognized pet insurance company with 40 years of experience. It’s the only provider that insures birds and exotic animals in addition to dogs and cats. Nationwide also provides a 24/7 vet helpline, a 5% multi-pet discount and 5% off your pet insurance policy if you’re already a Nationwide customer. 
Read on to learn more about Nationwide’s pet insurance options and determine if it’s the best pet insurance provider for you.
Here are Nationwide’s key pros and cons:
+ Covers birds, reptiles and other exotic animals in addition to dogs and cats
+ Offers a 5% multi-pet discount and 5% discount for existing Nationwide customers
+ Provides a free 24/7 vet helpline

Can’t add wellness coverage to all plans
Has lower reimbursement options than other providers*
*We reached out to Nationwide for comment on these cons but did not receive a response.
Nationwide Pet Insurance began under the name VPI (Veterinary Pet Insurance) and was the first pet insurance company in the United States. (Fun fact: The first pet insurance policy was issued to TV’s famous Lassie in 1982). Nationwide, an auto and home insurance company, bought VPI in 2008 and rebranded as Nationwide Pet Insurance in 2015.
Headquartered in Brea, Calif., Nationwide insures more than 1.1 million pets in the United States and is the only pet insurance provider that covers birds, rabbits, guinea pigs, reptiles and amphibians. It’s also the only provider that offers unlimited wellness care and medical coverage in its standard plan.
Nationwide offers two vastly different plans: Whole Pet and Major Medical. We’ve broken down the details of each so you can better understand how they work and which might be best for you. 
The Whole Pet plan is a more traditional pet insurance plan, providing comprehensive accident-and-illness coverage and reimbursing a percentage of your vet bill. It provides access to a 24/7 vet helpline and reimburses pet owners for the following costs:

Nationwide’s Major Medical plan is an accident-and-illness plan that can be purchased alone or with an added wellness benefit (Major Medical with Wellness). It works differently than a traditional pet insurance policy. Reimbursements are capped at a set amount per condition regardless of the treatment cost, but customers are reimbursed 100% of their costs until that amount is reached. Like the Whole Pet plan, Major Medical includes access to a 24/7 vet helpline. It covers cancer, some hereditary conditions, infectious diseases and more. Typically, the Major Medical plan is more affordable than Nationwide’s other offerings.
Major Medical with Wellness offers the same coverage, deductible and per-condition benefits as the Major Medical policy, but also covers wellness exams, vaccinations, bloodwork, urinalysis, and flea and heartworm prevention. However, wellness plans are not available in all states. 
Nationwide is the only pet insurance provider to offer policies for birds and exotic pets. Below are the pets Nationwide covers besides dogs and cats:
Pricing and coverage varies by species and the pet’s medical history. Pet owners must call Nationwide directly to get a quote or enroll in a policy (888-899-4874).
Nationwide has similar exclusions to its competitors, including the following:
Additionally, the Major Medical plan excludes the following:
Pets enrolled in the Major Medical plan must be under 10 years old.
Nationwide’s Whole Pet and Major Medical policies have a 14-day waiting period with or without the optional wellness plan. There’s also a 12-month waiting period for cruciate ligament injuries.
Nationwide doesn’t offer many customization options. The Whole Pet plan offers a choice between 50% or 70% reimbursement. Outside of that, it has a $250 deductible and a $10,000 maximum annual payout. 
The Major Medical plan has no customization features. The deductible is $250 and each condition has a set annual limit. The Avian and Exotic plan is specific to each pet.
Nationwide’s monthly premiums vary depending on a few factors, such as your pet’s species, age, gender, and breed as well as your location and selected deductible.
Here’s a sample of Nationwide’s monthly pricing based on quotes we received for various cat and dog breeds in Raleigh, N.C. We used a 70% reimbursement rate for the Whole Pet plan to gather data. You’ll need to reach out directly for an Avian and Exotic Pet Plan quote.
Fill out Nationwide’s online form to get a free, personalized quote.
We at the Home Media reviews team analyzed more than 100 customer reviews for Nationwide pet insurance. Customers widely praised its customer service team but criticized its lengthy claim processing time, expensive premiums and denied claims. We reached out to Nationwide for a comment on the negative reviews but did not receive a response. 
Below, we’ve included a range of customer reviews from Trustpilot and Yelp:
“Nationwide Pet Insurance has probably been the ONLY Insurance that has been a pleasant experience for me. We’ve utilized them for 5 years for both my cat and dog, and I’ve never had any major concerns. I’d honestly say they continue to improve. My dog was relatively healthy for the first 4 years on this insurance, but this year her health has declined, and Nationwide has made sure claims were paid within a few days. Their customer service is always pleasant and helpful. I’m honestly grateful for them in those dire times with my pets. I truly hope this continues to be my experience and the experience of others.”  — Maria P. on Yelp
“I adopted my kitty in August 2020, and she’s had several major illnesses since then. Fortunately, I have Nationwide’s awesome pet insurance. The monthly premium is quite reasonable, submitting claims is very easy, and they reimburse really quickly. The customer service representatives are extremely friendly and very helpful and patient. I can’t recommend Nationwide pet insurance highly enough!”  — Amy F. on Trustpilot
“Nationwide has great employees, and the employees that you speak to really seem to care. As far as that is concerned, they earn 5 stars. What knocks them down a notch is the silliness in decision-making. When I bought the policy, I obliged their request to list any and all vets and it was either me or the previous vets who submitted all of my dogs office visits. I brought her for various things, but she has no specific ailments. One time, I brought her to the vet for an upset stomach after eating something off the street. Nationwide called her upset tummy a preexisting condition. I had to wait several months and submit a review request to have that restriction removed from the policy. Recently a claim was denied because something was prescribed on a follow up visit that was not related to the initial visit. There is room for improvement. Other than that, no complaints.”  — Bob L. on Trustpilot
“They state that claims will be completed in a maximum of 30 days. I’ve found that this isn’t their ‘maximum,’ but more of a standard. Nearly every claim I’ve submitted has taken the full 30 days for review, with little to no communication in the meantime. One claim has taken much longer, as they keep returning it, requesting documentation from unrelated vet visits, which I’ve provided multiple times only to have the claim closed, reopened, and stuck in pending. I don’t have experience with their other plans, but my experience with customer service and timeliness issues alone makes me inclined to move to another insurer vs. increasing my coverage at the end of the year.”  — Evan S. on Yelp
See how Nationwide compares to other top pet health insurance providers.
Waiting Period for Accidents
14 days
5 days
2 days
14 days
2 days
5 days
Waiting Period for Illnesses
14 days
30 days
14 days
14 days
14 days
14 days
Multi-pet Discount

Mobile App

Wellness Add-on

Online Chat

Unlimited Coverage

We’ve analyzed hundreds of pet insurance providers based on policies, pricing, add-ons, exclusions and more. Nationwide stands out for its customer service and 40 years of experience in the insurance industry. Its low reimbursement levels, limited customization options, and per-condition and age limits may not appeal to some pet owners.
Consider Lemonade or Spot if you want higher annual coverage limits and 70% to 90% reimbursement rates. We recommend comparing policies and rates from at least three pet insurance providers before enrolling your pet.
Visit, select your state and download a claim form. Once completed, you can submit your form and any other necessary bills and paperwork through your online account on Nationwide’s website, via email (, via fax (714-989-5600), or by mail (Nationwide Claims Department, P.O. Box 2344, Brea, CA 92822).
Nationwide’s waiting period is 14 days for accidents, illnesses, wellness and orthopedic coverage. The Major Medical Plan also has a 12-month waiting period for hereditary condition coverage. 
You can contact Nationwide’s customer service via phone (800-540-2016) or email through its website. Representatives are not available 24/7, so check the website for the most current customer service hours.
Yes, Nationwide customers can visit any licensed vet, specialist or emergency provider in the United States. 
Our review of pet insurance companies is based on in-depth industry research that includes reading hundreds of customer reviews, simulating the quote and purchasing process, speaking to representatives on the phone to assess the customer service experience and surveying 1,000 dog and cat owners nationwide to determine the most important elements of pet insurance coverage. We have scored each provider on a 100-point scale based on those elements.
Here are more details about each factor and how they’re weighted:
We use our rating system to compare and contrast each company against key factors to help us determine the best pet insurance companies in the industry. Additionally, we keep our research up to date and revisit our reviews on a regular basis.
Copyright © 2022 MarketWatch, Inc. All rights reserved.
By using this site you agree to the
Subscriber Agreement & Terms of Use, Privacy Notice, and Cookie Notice.
Find the best [category]