A Guide on How to Choose the Right Pet Insurance Policy

We did the digging to find the top pet insurance brands, and we have a winner…

It is no secret that pet insurance is fast becoming a somewhat mandatory form of short-term insurance for any pet owner.

And here’s why…

Thanks to advancements in veterinary medicine and improved nutrition, pets are now living longer. This is beneficial for our and their health but can be expensive. Owning a pet involves expenses such as toys, food, accessories, and vet bills, which can add up over the years.

That’s where pet insurance comes in…

Having a pet healthcare plan can help you to plan for the healthcare of your pet and offset costs for routine care, unexpected injuries and illnesses.

But just how do you choose pet insurance for yourself, your budget and most importantly, your pet?

With more and more insurance providers popping up in your internet search, finding the right provider and plan may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be:

We have put together a list of the TOP 4 pet insurance companies – Medipet, Dotsure, Hollard, and Oneplan.

We list who they are, their key benefits, cover plans and prices, as well as their downfalls so that you don’t have to spend hours on the web or worse, on the phone trying to fit the role of a personal investigator when it comes to choosing pet healthcare.

At the end of all of this, we come to our verdict on who is the best overall pet insurance provider for your pet.


Who they are:

Being the only insurance broker in South Africa who deals solely in pet insurance, Medipet describes their services as being one of the only insurance providers who can offer you advice and expertise from a team of animal-loving staff, delivering veterinary expertise and the best possible service.

Basically, what Medipet is saying is that they are one of the oldest brands in per insurance (started in 2007) and therefore, the best out there in having gained the most amount of knowledge when it comes to pet care. But does the oldest really mean you are the best in a world that is so innovatively adapting and changing on a daily basis?

Plan and pricing options:

  • Medipet offer 3 cover options for your pet.
  • The first 2 consist of more comprehensive cover and include some routine care options, boarding fees, accidents, and more.
  • The first cover option is priced at R259.34 (cats) for R302.32 (dogs).
  • The second cover option is priced at R296.39 (cats) and R367.52 (dogs).
  • The third option consists of accident cover only and costs R164.48.
  • All of these plans exclude the compulsory monthly vet fee of R12 per pet and added-on routine care at R60 per pet.

Key benefits:

  •   One of the first pet insurance providers.
  •   The only insurance provider that focuses only on pet insurance.


  • Complicated claim process which entails filling in the form and having it stamped and signed by your vet and then forwarded to Medipet with the vet tax invoices – claim can only be submitted and refunded after visit to the vet.
  • The plans do not cover training.
  • No excess for behaviour, hydrotherapy, physiotherapy, acupuncture, and supplements.


Who they are:

Dotsure stands on the premise that they are a brand that genuinely cares about the things that mean the most to you and believe their key to success is listening to their customers and letting them determine Dotsure’s direction. Hence why they vow to never stop innovating and improving their customer experience.

It’s a rather generic promise, but we get where they are attempting to live in the mind of their customers.

Plan and pricing options:

  • Four insurance plans options for dogs and cats: Accidental, basic, standard, and superior (each plan covers varying specified and capped amounts for claims for procedures such as surgery, pathology, prescription medication, and hospitalisation, the amount paid back to you will be more should you choose a more comprehensive and expensive plan – this is how it works with most insurance providers).

○     Accidental – From R69pm

○     Basic – From R143pm

○     Standard – From R264pm

○     Superior – From R360pm

Key benefits:

  • Exotic pet cover – we have to give this to them, this is a pretty great benefit that not a lot of pet insurance providers offer, but Dotsure covers all sorts of exotic pets from Gerbils to Galapagos Giant Turtles
  • A large range of plans, prices, and cover options
  • Easy-to-use website for pricing structure and plan details
  • No microchipping needed


  • 30-day waiting period for claims – claim can only be submitted and refunded after a visit to the vet
  • Limited information on T&Cs available on the website


Who they are:

One of the big boys in pet insurance, Hollard has been around for more than 25 years and covers both cats and dogs in pet care. Their promise is to ease the strain of mounting vet bills on your wallet.

Basically, they promise what everyone else is promising. They don’t have a clear difference in the field of pet insurance apart from the fact that they have been providing healthcare for pets for 25 years.

Plan and pricing options:

4 plan options

Plan 100

  • Covers UNFORESEEN accidents and illness
  • Pays 100% PetSure Tariff rate less excess

Plan 80

  • Covers UNFORESEEN accidents and illness
  • Pays 80% PetSure Tariff rate less excess

Accidental Injury Cover only

  • Covers accidents only
  • Pays 100% PetSure Tariff rate less excess

Routine Care (Optional add-on to Plan 80 and Plan 100)

  • This cover option covers you for routine procedures including vaccinations, deworming, flea control, and the procedure portion of dental scaling.
  • This option can be added to Plan 100 and Plan 80 but not to the Accidental Injury Cover only plan.

Key benefits:

  • No upper age limit for accidental injury – so even senior citizen pets are covered – very clever way to turn a downfall into a benefit as senior pets are not covered for other plan options.
  • Choose an add-on option to cover routine expenses such as vaccinations and tick and flea control.


  •   14 days waiting period for claims – claim can only be submitted and refunded after a visit to the vet
  •   Dental care and behaviour not covered
  •   Congenital and hereditary diseases
  •   Prices not available on the website


Who they are:

Oneplan was one of the first providers of pet insurance to hit the market. They establish their positioning on simple pet insurance that delivers quality, accessibility and adjustability.

What gives Oneplan pet insurance its competitive edge is their easy-to-use app, their adjustable plans, and, we saved the best for last here – their unique Onecard which allows for your claim amount to be made available BEFORE YOU SEE THE VET.

That’s right folks, get paid before you see the vet.

Plan and pricing options:

  • A wide variety of plans and cover options:
    • Hospital plan – From R134pm
    • Classic plan – R262pm
    • Super – R368pm
  • Plans can be adjusted and changed at any time through the app or online service portal
  • Plans can be tailored to suit your pet’s needs and your budget

Key benefits:

  • Get paid before you see the vet
  • Tech-savvy app that allows you to upload claims, view your claims and financial history and update your personal and medical information for you and your pet
  • Wider range of cover for the price you pay


  •   We were going to say that they don’t offer health insurance for people too – but they do!

Our verdict on the best pet insurance provider…

Choosing the best pet insurance provider can be tricky, as many brands offer great advice, coverage and prices. It’s tough to decide which one is best for both you and your pet.

We analyzed all the data we could find online and elsewhere and realised the most important aspects of pet insurance.

Here’s what it came down to:

  •   Simple plan structures
  •   Cover options that could be adjusted accordingly
  •   The cost of premiums compared to what they covered
  •   Claim processes

The winner when it came to simplicity when using the website was a close call between Dotsure and Oneplan, but in terms of simple plan explanation and cover details, we have to go with Oneplan.

Looking at cover options and their adjustability, this was a no-brainer, Oneplan.

A number of the insurance providers offered some great cover options, but they either came at a cost or had a list of T&Cs of what is not covered. Oneplan seemed to be the only brand that offered more value for your money!

But here’s the kicker:

Claims! The reason why we want pet insurance is so that we aren’t left with such a small amount in our bank account at the end of our month. The ONLY INSURANCE PROVIDER that didn’t have you digging in your own wallet to pay the vet at the time of the appointment was Oneplan.

This comes with using their unique Onecard, which loads the funds of your claim before you see the vet!

So, with all of this in mind, it becomes apparent as to who the best pet insurance provider is for you and your pet – Oneplan.

Give them a call today and find out just how they can make your life and your pet’s a better one when it comes to health insurance.

Yours in paws,

The petinsurance.co.za Team