Pumpkin Pet Insurance Review

Pumpkin pet insurance has only been around since April 2022, but it has quickly gained traction with customers looking to insure cats and dogs, young and old.

Written by Andrew Pentis / July 14, 2022
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Quick Bites

  • Pumpkin pet insurance is an online-only carrier with accident-and-illness coverage for dogs and cats.
  • Perks of Pumpkin include access for older pets, multi-pet discounts and “reimburse my vet” direct payments.
  • Given the benefit of its high annual limits, the company could be best for pet owners who are wary of four and five-figure veterinarian bills.

Founded during the coronavirus pandemic in 2020, Pumpkin pet insurance offers accident-and-illness coverage for dogs and cats, plus a preventive wellness package for an extra fee. With higher-than-average monthly premiums, Pumpkin isn’t the cheapest pet insurance carrier out there, nor does it claim to be. The company stands out for its expansive coverage—and annual limits, or the amount your policy could pay out.

If you’re considering Pumpkin pet insurance, our review can help you determine whether that coverage is worth the cost and if company discounts can help, plus how Pumpkin stacks up with competitors like Lemonade and Spot.

Get Pumpkin
Sample quote for dogs:

$79.59

Sample quote for cats:

$31.37

Reimbursement amount:

90%

Reimbursement limit:

$7,000 to unlimited

Deductible options:

$100 to $500

Waiting period:

14 days (new policy, accidents, illness, other conditions), 180 days (cured, pre-existing conditions)

Pros

  • Wide range of eligible pet ages (8 weeks to 25 years)
  • Doesn’t reduce or decline coverage as your pet ages
  • 10% multi-pet discount
  • 30-day, money-back guarantee
  • Diagnostic exam fees, microchipping and prescribed food are covered
  • Pre-existing conditions can be covered if cured for 180 days
  • “Reimburse my vet” feature allows you to pay for care directly with claims
  • Licensed vets across U.S., Canada are covered

Cons

  • No accident-only coverage
  • Sample premium quotes for dogs, cats are above the median of similar insurers’ rates
  • Only a single option for reimbursement amount (90%) whereas competitors offer lower and higher options
  • $2 monthly fee (unless you pay for the whole year up front)
  • 14-day waiting period for accidents is bested by some competitors that have 2- or 3-day policies
  • Routine care reimbursement is a policy add-on
  • No 24-7 telehealth service
  • It can take a couple of minutes of automated questions and answers to get a human customer service person on the phone

Inside this article

  1. Company overview
  2. Policies that Pumpkin offers
  3. Add-ons
  4. Exclusions
  5. Cost
  6. Savings, discounts
  7. Pumpkin customer service
  8. Alternatives to Pumpkin
  9. Conclusion
  10. FAQs
  11. Methodology

Company overview

Fashioning itself as a “pet care company,” Pumpkin's main products are pet insurance plans and preventive wellness packages. The insurer was launched by animal pharmaceutical maker Zoetisin in April 2020, at a time when the coronavirus pandemic was keeping consumers indoors and causing a spike in dog and cat adoptions.[1]

Though it doesn’t have a mobile app, the company’s sleek, mobile-optimized website eases the typically complicated task of taking out insurance. It has a helpful blog flush with content for pet owners and has racked up positive customer reviews on third-party websites.

It’s worth mentioning that Pumpkin uses the same underwriter—United States Fire Insurance Company—as many other pet insurance companies, so expect a similar level of coverage to what you’d find elsewhere. Pumpkin and Spot, for example, have identical sample policies available online.[2,3]

What policies does Pumpkin offer?

Pumpkin provides a standard accident-and-illness policy for dogs and cats of various ages and breeds. For pet owners who desire preventive coverage, Pumpkin offers a supplementary option for covering wellness visits, diagnostics and vaccines.

Waiting period: You must wait 14 days after taking out your Pumpkin policy to gain coverage for accidents and illnesses, a fairly standard timespan in the industry. That said, some competing insurers have shorter waiting periods for accidents. Some pre-existing conditions are covered at Pumpkin if your pet has been cured of it and hasn’t experienced related symptoms for 180 days.

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Pet insurance can save you money if your dog, cat or exotic animal has an emergency, and it can help you plan for routine care costs, too.

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What’s covered, what’s not: Pumpkin advertises itself as covering more types of care than the competition. What really matters to you as a pet owner, however, is whether the conditions you’re concerned about are covered. Your pet’s age, breed and medical history might make having certain things covered of extreme importance.

Covered by PumpkinNot covered
Alternative therapies Breeding
Behavioral issuesCosmetic, elective procedures
Bite woundsNeutering, spaying
Broken bonesNon-illness related dental cleanings
Cancer, related treatmentsSee “Exclusions” below, for additional items
Dental, gum disease
Diabetes
Digestive Illnesses
Emergencies, hospitalization
Eye, Ear & Skin Infections
Hereditary conditions
Hip dysplasia
Kidney disease
Microchip implantation
Prescription medicine, food (for covered conditions)
Radiology, diagnostic tests
Sick visit exam fees
Surgery, specialized care
Swallowed objects
Toxic ingestion
Urinary infections

Learn more: ​​What Does Pet Insurance Cover—And Not Cover?

Add-ons

Many pet insurers allow you to expand your coverage with policy add-ons. Below is what Pumpkin makes available.

Preventive care

Pumpkin’s “Preventive Essentials” isn’t an insurance policy per se, but it does allow you to budget for routine care for your dog or cat. In June 2022, the company charged $11.95 (for our sample customer cat) and $18.95 (dog) per month to cover the following:

DogCat
1 Blood test for heartworm, tick diseases 1 vaccines
1 annual wellness exam fee1 annual wellness exam fee
2 vaccines1 fecal test for intestinal worms
1 fecal test for intestinal worms

You might see more expansive coverage on a wellness plan with another insurer. It’s not uncommon for competing companies to offer dental cleanings as part of this add-on, for example.

Exclusions

Exclusions are conditions that are literally excluded from your pet insurance coverage. If they happen to your pet, you would have to pay out-of-pocket because your insurer wouldn’t contribute.

Here are additional exclusions outlined in Pumpkin’s sample policy:[3]

  • Aesthetic, cosmetic, endodontic or orthodontic dental services

  • Anal sac (gland) expression, treatment and/or resection when no infection is present

  • Boarding

  • Breeding, pregnancy, whelping or nursing

  • Cosmetic and elective prostheses or procedures

  • Dental cleanings unless used to treat a covered illness

  • Experimental or investigational treatment or medication (including clinical trials)

  • Funeral services, memorial items, urns, caskets or burial plots/fees

  • Grooming or grooming supplies

  • Herbal and herbal-like products (including Cannabis or CBD)

  • House call fees

  • Illness or injury that results from intentional, malicious or grossly negligent activities

  • Non-medical supplies (such as toys)

  • Non-veterinary services (like administrative fees)

  • Organ or heart valve transplants

  • Prescription pet food

  • Preventive care

  • Supplements and vitamins

  • Training or training devices

Cost

With Pumpkin and other pet insurers, your premium—the amount you pay to access your coverage—is affected by your policy’s annual limit, reimbursement amount and deductible.

Pumpkin gives you the chance to set your annual limit and deductible. All customers are handed a 90% reimbursement amount.

FactorDefinitionPumpkin's options
Annual limitThe most amount of money Pumpkin would shell out per year for your policy Dogs: $10,000, $20,000, unlimited; cats: $7,000, $15,000, unlimited
Reimbursement amountThe percentage of costs that Pumpkin will cover 90%
DeductibleThe amount you’re responsible for paying before Pumpkin’s coverage starts $100, $250, $500

Your selections for annual limit and deductible can significantly impact your monthly Pumpkin premium. For example, below are sample Pumpkin premiums for a 5-year-old, female, mixed-breed, medium-sized dog, as of June 16, 2022:

Annual limitReimbursement amountDeductibleMonthly premium
$10,00090%$500$79.59
$20,00090%$250$109.68
Unlimited90%$100$155.69

Savings, discounts

Fortunately, you can decrease Pumpkin’s quoted premiums, particularly if you have multiple dogs or cats to insure. There’s a multiple-pet discount: 10% off on all additional pets—the first animal is full price.

You can skip a monthly installment fee of $2 if you pay your premium in one lump sum, for the whole year. Also, Pumpkin’s money-back guarantee allows you to get a full refund if you cancel your policy within 30 days.

Pumpkin customer service

Pumpkin makes its phone line—1-866-273-6369—available 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET, Monday to Friday. We called on a Thursday afternoon EST and, after selecting an automated option for current customers resolving claims, were connected with a human customer service representative after four minutes of light jazz “hold” music.

Pumpkin allows you to opt into SMS text messaging support. You can also contact its general email—help@pumpkin.care—and, according to Pumpkin, expect a response in a "day or less."

Alternatives: Pumpkin vs. Lemonade vs. Spot

Even if there’s a lot to like in our Pumpkin pet insurance review, shopping around can help you get the best possible policy for your dog or cat.

You might be comparing Pumpkin versus Lemonade or Spot, among other reputable pet insurance providers. For a fair comparison, consider the following:

PumpkinLemonadeSpot
Sample premium for dog*$79.59$39.42$39.25
Sample premium for cat**$31.37$26.08$20.02
Annual limit options358
Reimbursement amount options133
Deductible options335
Waiting periods14 days for all conditions2 days for injury, 14 days for illness and 180 days for ligaments 14 days for all conditions
Note on claims“Reimburse my vet” direct payment possible in some cases Complete the entire process within the company’s intuitive mobile app You have 270 days after treatment to file claims

*5-year-old, female, medium-sized, mixed-breed, northern California-based dog without major medical history, as of May 23, 2022

**5-year-old, male, mixed breed, medium hair, northern California-based cat without major medical history, as of May 24, 2022

***Quotes were product of selecting a $750 deductible, 80% reimbursement amount and $5,000 reimbursement limit, or the closest available options

****Quotes do not include supplementary coverage for wellness, preventive care

Just keep in mind that the best pet insurance for you might not have the lowest quoted premiums. Pumpkin, for instance, stands out for its higher coverage limits, so it could be a better choice if you’re concerned about major operations your dog or cat might need in the future.

Conclusion

Overall, Pumpkin is a good option for pet owners for whom one or more of the following applies…

  • Want higher pet insurance payout limits than average

  • Have an older dog or cat (under 25 years)

  • Have multiple pets

  • Have a dog or cat with a pre-existing condition that has completely subsided for six months

  • Don’t need a comprehensive wellness add-on

As mentioned, however, requesting quotes and reviewing coverages from multiple providers can help you get the right policy for your dog or cat. Our best pet insurance rankings for 2022 might be a good place to continue your research.

FAQs

Is pet insurance worth it?

This is a personal question that only you can answer after considering factors including your finances and your pet’s health history.

If your finances are in good shape, and you don’t need to protect your budget from a surprise pet healthcare expense, for example, you might skip coverage. If you can see the value of having insurance cover as much as 70% to 90% of veterinarian bills in the case of an emergency, however, you might prioritize pet insurance.

Fortunately, it doesn’t hurt to browse around. You can request quotes from pet insurers and compare coverages to see if there are affordable policies that will keep your dog or cat healthy and give you peace of mind.

Learn more: Is Pet Insurance Worth It?

How much is Pumpkin pet insurance?

Premiums for Pumpkin pet insurance vary depending on your selected annual benefit limit and deductible—all Pumpkin policies come with a 90% reimbursement amount. That said, the company advertises among the higher-priced pet insurance policies, according to a May 2022 Sound Dollar analysis. This is at least partly due to the fact that Pumpkin also has among the highest annual benefit limits.

Does Pumpkin pet insurance cover neutering, spaying?

Pumpkin’s standard pet insurance policy doesn’t cover neutering or spaying your dog or cat. Its preventive care product also doesn’t cover neutering or spaying. Competitors sometimes cover this elective operation through add-on policies for wellness.

Methodology

Sound Dollar’s goal with pet insurance reviews is the same as with all product reviews: to give you the information you need to make informed financial decisions.

For Pumpkin pet insurance, we collected 23 pieces of data from the company’s public-facing website; tested out its customer service features; pulled rate quotes based on sample customer profiles; and reviewed third-party information.

We used all this information to judge Pumpkin across four key categories: eligibility, cost, coverage and customer experience.

Article Sources
  1. Josh Kosman, “New pet insurance offers preventive care amid spike in adoptions,” New York Post, April 30, 2020, https://nypost.com/2020/04/30/zoetis-to-launch-pumpkin-pet-insurance-offering-preventive-coverage/.
  2. “Accident and Illness Coverage,” United State Fire Insurance Company, May 22, 2022, https://spotpetins.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/05/AccidentIllness_V4.3_Sample-Policies-Spot_rev_5.2.22.pdf.
  3. “Accident and Illness Coverage,” United State Fire Insurance Company, https://pumpkin-assets.s3.amazonaws.com/pdfs/Sample_Policy_AccidentIllness.pdf.

About the Author

Staff editor Andrew Pentis headshot

Andrew Pentis

Andrew Pentis has used his journalism background to write about personal finance topics since 2015. His work has appeared in over 40 publications, including LifeHacker, U.S. News & World Report and Marketwatch.

Full bio

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