In this independent review, we look at pet insurance provider Waggel*, including the types of policy available, the level of cover on offer and how much it costs. We recommend that you read the review in full, but if you wish to jump to specific sections of the article you can do so with the following links:
- What is Waggel?
- Waggel pet insurance features
- What does Waggel pet insurance cover?
- Waggel pet insurance policy exclusions
- Waggel policy types
- How much does Waggel pet insurance cost?
- Waggel policy excess
- How to make a claim with Waggel pet insurance
- Waggel membership perks
- Waggel customer reviews
- Waggel pros and cons
- Alternatives to Waggel pet insurance
What is Waggel?
Waggel* launched in 2018 and was founded by Andrew Leal and former Apprentice contestant Ross Fretten in a bid to improve pet insurance. Waggel describes itself as not just a pet insurance product but a 'Pet Members Club' with membership benefits and perks. Waggel's aim is to provide a transparent product for consumers with no jargon or confusing terms.
Waggel only offers lifetime pet insurance policies as it is the most comprehensive cover available for pets. Waggel believes that by only offering one policy type customers are not overwhelmed by choice. Waggel's pet insurance policies are underwritten by Red Sands Insurance Company (Europe) Ltd and offers policies for cats and dogs.
Waggel pet insurance features
Below is an overview of some of Waggel's pet insurance features:
- Lifetime pet insurance cover for cats and dogs
- 24/7 video call service with FirstVet
- No excess option
- Free dog behaviour consultations
- Membership perks and benefits such as discounts with certain brands
- Digital claims process
- 1 month free pet insurance for every friend you refer to Waggel
What does Waggel pet insurance cover?
Waggel offers 6 lifetime pet insurance policies* with different levels of veterinary cover. A lifetime policy offers the most comprehensive cover for your pet as it covers your pet for the duration of its life. Other popular types of cover that are not offered by Waggel (and are not as comprehensive) are time-limited pet insurance, maximum benefit pet insurance and accident-only pet insurance.
A Waggel policy covers you for the following:
Complementary treatment (such as physiotherapy, hydrotherapy etc)
Dental treatment for illness or injury
Pet loss due to theft or straying
Death from an accident/illness
Waggel pet insurance policy exclusions
A Waggel policy will not cover you for the following:
Pets under 8 weeks old
Any claim made within 14 days of the policy start date
Any claim submitted 12 months or more after treatment was first initiated
Routine treatment such as worming or vaccinations
Pets used for breeding purposes
Euthanasia (unless your vet confirms it was to prevent your pet from suffering)
Certain breeds and dogs on the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991, a full list of excluded dog and cat breeds can be found here
Waggel policy types
Waggel* has 6 different cover options for its lifetime pet insurance. Each policy is the same except for the increase in veterinary fee cover. Waggel's lifetime policies are annual limit lifetime policies. This means that you can claim for vet fees up to the total limit each year until it resets. If you wish to cancel your Waggel pet insurance policy you can do so within 14 days of taking the policy out.
Waggel pet insurance policy comparison
|Policy 1||Policy 2||Policy 3||Policy 4||Policy 5||Policy 6|
|Veterinary fee Cover||£1,000||£2,000||£4,000||£6,000||£8,000||£10,000|
|Complementary treatment cover||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000|
|Behavioural treatment cover||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000|
|Loss through theft/straying||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000|
|Death from accident/illness||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000||£1,000|
|Third-party liability (dogs only)||£2million||£2million||£2million||£2million||£2million||£2million|
*Waggel covers dental treatment as a result of illness or injury. If a vet has recommended dental treatment then Waggel requires this to be completed within 3 months to be covered and your pet must have had a dental examination in the past 12 months prior to the dental claim.
How much does Waggel pet insurance cost?
In the below table, I have gathered quotes for a 1-year-old mixed breed cat and dog. The pets are located in the South East of England and have no underlying health conditions. Waggel lets you choose your pet insurance excess and you can choose an excess between £0 - £250 in increments. Waggel refers to excess as a 'Claim Contribution' as you are paying part of the claim when you pay the excess, which makes it easier to understand exactly what you are paying for. The Claim Contribution is payable once a year per condition and resets each time the policy renews.
The cost of Waggel pet insurance for a 1-year-old dog and cat
|Policy 1||Policy 2||Policy 3||Policy 4||Policy 5||Policy 6|
|Veterinary fee cover||£1,000||£2,000||£4,000||£6,000||£8,000||£10,000|
|Mixed breed cat||£5.38||£8.49||£12.72||£13.78||£17.37||£19.36|
|Mixed breed dog||£6.93||£9.92||£16.39||£19.94||£25.46||£28.88|
*Quotes correct as of 21/02/23 and based on £250 excess
Waggel policy excess
You get to choose how much excess you pay on your Waggel pet insurance policy. Waggel refers to the excess as a claim contribution, as you are contributing to the cost of the claim amount. With a Waggel pet insurance policy you can choose a 'Claim contribution' amount of £0, £50, £100, £200 or £250. If you choose a higher contribution amount, you are likely to see a reduction in the cost of your monthly premium. Waggel says that once you have selected your excess amount this cannot be changed, but you only have to pay this once per condition per year.
You can also choose to have a co-payment on your policy which could see a further reduction in your monthly premiums. A co-payment is a percentage contribution towards the costs of your veterinary bills and is usually payable after you have paid the excess amount. Unlike with most pet insurance policies, this is not compulsory once your pet reaches a certain age. If you choose to add a co-payment to your policy, this will be 20% of any claims on top of your claim contribution amount. The co-payment is payable each time you make a claim in addition to the policy excess.
How to make a claim with Waggel pet insurance
Waggel* has an online claims process and keeps you informed every step of the way via your personal Consumer Champion. Your personal Consumer Champion is there to answer any questions you have, not just about the claims process but about the policy too. You can track the real-time progress of your claim by logging in to your Waggel account and you will be instantly notified once your claim has been paid. Waggel also provides an itemised breakdown of your claim and what you have been paid.
Waggel can pay your vet directly if your vet accepts payments directly from the insurer or alternatively, Waggel can pay the claim into your chosen bank account.
Steps to making a claim with Waggel
To make a claim with Waggel via its online claims process you need to do the following:
Get in touch with Waggel online or via your smartphone to let them know what you are claiming for.
Let Waggel know the Veterinary practice that is treating your pet by completing the online form.
Provide Waggel with your preferred bank account so that they can pay the claim once it is accepted.
Waggel membership perks
As a Waggel policyholder, you automatically qualify for Waggel membership giving you the chance to earn exclusive perks each month, although the offers don't seem to change that frequently. The rewards on offer for September 2023 are:
- 60% off 6 wines with Virgin Wines
- Free basic owner membership for TrustedHousesitters
- 50% off the first 2 dog meal boxes with Butternut Box
Waggel customer reviews
Waggel has a rating of 'Excellent' on Trustpilot with 4.7 out of 5 stars from just over 2,500 reviews. 85% rated Waggel as 'Excellent' citing a quick and easy process, simple-to-understand website and fast claims. 8% rated it as 'Bad' citing problems with claims being paid quickly, discrepancies around claims and an increase in the monthly premium at renewal.
Waggel pros and cons
- Simple to use website with no jargon
- Comprehensive lifetime pet insurance
- Get a quote in a few minutes
- Digital claims process
- Membership perks
- Does not cover pre-existing conditions
- Not much difference between levels of cover except the amount of veterinary fee cover
- No cover for cremation
- No smartphone app
Alternatives to Waggel pet insurance
In this section of the review we compare Waggel* to Petplan and ManyPets*. We have compared the most comprehensive pet insurance policies from all three pet insurance providers. The quotes are based on a 1-year-old dog with no underlying health conditions and living at an address in the South East. Waggel has the option to increase or decrease its excess however for the purpose of the quotes the excess was £100. For more information on Petplan and ManyPets (formally known as Bought by Many) you may wish to read our reviews:
You can also compare pet insurance policies via comparison sites such as Quotezone*, Compare the Market* and MoneySuperMarket*. Comparison sites allow you to compare multiple providers at once to find the best deal. They are not always whole of market though, so you may not always be getting the best deal. You can also compare some of the best pet insurance providers in our article, 'Best pet insurance in the UK'.
Waggel vs Petplan vs ManyPets
|Vet fee cover||£10,000 per year||£12,000 per year||
£15,000 per year
|Loss & theft||£1,000||£3,000||£6,000|
|Death of pet cover (if pet dies through illness or injury)||£1,000||£3,000||£6,000|
Vet video calls
Waggel* provides a comprehensive pet insurance product and I like the fact it has been created with pet owners in mind. Waggel's transparent and jargon-free approach makes the policies easy to understand so you know exactly what your pet is insured for. I do find the website a little misleading, however, as at first I thought you could control your pet insurance via an app but this is not the case. Waggel does however say this is something it is working on in the future.
The membership perks also make a nice addition to a pet insurance policy, particularly the free video calls with First Vet and the free behavioural consultations. Overall, Waggel offers a good level of cover for your pet and a lifetime pet insurance policy is definitely the best choice if you want to ensure your pet is covered for any condition it may suffer from throughout its life.
If a link has an * beside it this means that it is an affiliated link. If you go via the link, Money to the Masses may receive a small fee which helps keep Money to the Masses free to use. The following link can be used if you do not wish to help Money to the Masses or take advantage of any exclusive offers - ManyPets, Waggel, MoneySuperMarket, Compare the Market, Quotezone