Find the answers to your pet insurance FAQs

The following information only applies to policies taken out on or after 1 October 2019. These policies are sold, administered and underwritten by Pinnacle Insurance plc for Sainsbury’s Bank Pet Insurance.

Your cover will start on the day you selected when you took out the policy. However, even though your policy has started, that doesn't mean that you'll be able to make a claim immediately.

After 3 days you can make a new claim if your pet has an accident or has been poisoned. Incidents within those first 3 days will not be covered.

After 14 days you can make a claim for new illnesses. However, illnesses that happened within those first 14 days will not be covered.

Exclusions relating to pre-existing conditions will apply.

Lifetime Cover means just that. Renew your policy year after year and we can help cover your pet for new illnesses or injuries for the lifetime of the condition.

With our Lifetime Cover, you can claim for multiple conditions at a time up to a maximum £ amount per year, depending on the level of cover you choose. And the limit resets each year the policy's active. This means your pet can be covered for those unexpected accidents and illnesses as well as ongoing conditions.

Exclusions relating to pre-existing conditions will apply.

If you'd like more information, click here to read our Lifetime Cover page.

Time Limited Cover means that when your pet comes down with an illness or injury, at the point of claim, that condition is covered for a limited period of time.

With our Time Limited Cover, you can claim up to a £ limit per condition for 12 months. This is 12 months from when your pet was first treated by a vet. Once your £ limit or 12 months has been reached, whichever comes first, you won't be able to claim for that condition again.

Exclusions relating to pre-existing conditions will apply.

If you'd like more information, click here to read our Time Limited Cover page.

Yes, there is a minimum and maximum age for new cover.

For most dog breeds, new cover can be taken out from 8 weeks of age up to their 8th birthday. For the following dog breeds, new cover can be taken out from 8 weeks of age up to their 5th birthday.

Beauceron, Bernese Mountain Dog, Bulldog, Bullmastiff, Deerhound, Dogue de Bordeaux, Estrela Mountain Dog, Giant Schnauzer, Great Dane, Irish Wolfhound, Leonberger, Mastiff, Neapolitan Mastiff, Newfoundland, Old English Bulldog, Old English Sheepdog, Poodle (Standard), Pyrenean Mountain Dog, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Rottweiler, Shar Pei, St Bernard, Standard Poodle, Tibetan Mastiff, Utonagan.

For cats, new cover can be taken out from 8 weeks of age up to their 10th birthday.

Of course, we'll insure your pet as it gets older and passes the ages mentioned above. As long as you renew your policy year after year, without a break, we will continue to cover them. As your pet gets older, you should expect your premium to increase with their age.

Also, at the renewal after your pet turns the maximum age for new policies, their excess will change. For most dog breeds, an overage excess will apply at the renewal after their 8th birthday (5th for some breeds, mentioned above). For cats, the overage excess will apply at the renewal after their 10th birthday. After these renewals, it will be a percentage of your claim or your standard excess, whichever is more.

Yes, of course, we'll insure your pet as it gets older. Renew your policy year after year, without a break, and we'll continue to cover them well into their senior years.

There are maximum age limits from which we'll be able to take on new policies. For cats, this is their 10th birthday. For most dog breeds, it is their 8th birthday. For the following dog breeds, it is their 5th birthday:

Beauceron, Bernese Mountain Dog, Bulldog, Bullmastiff, Deerhound, Dogue de Bordeaux, Estrela Mountain Dog, Giant Schnauzer, Great Dane, Irish Wolfhound, Leonberger, Mastiff, Neapolitan Mastiff, Newfoundland, Old English Bulldog, Old English Sheepdog, Poodle (Standard), Pyrenean Mountain Dog, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Rottweiler, Shar Pei, St Bernard, Standard Poodle, Tibetan Mastiff, Utonagan.

As your pet gets older, you should expect the cost of your premium to increase too. Also, as they get older, an overage excess will apply. For most dog breeds, this will be at the renewal after their 8th birthday (5th for some breeds, mentioned above). For cats, it will be at the renewal after their 10th birthday. After these renewals, it will be a percentage of your claim or your standard excess, whichever is more.

Our policies do not cover symptoms, illnesses or injuries that started before you took out the policy. These would be seen as pre-existing conditions. However, even if your pet has pre-existing conditions, we will still cover them for new injuries and illnesses they come down with. As long as the new condition isn't linked to a pre-existing one.

We understand that pre-existing conditions can be tricky to get your head around - especially if your pet didn't receive any treatment. To help make it a little clearer, a pre-existing condition is:

A one-off or ongoing illness, injury or symptom your pet is suffering from or has suffered from before the policy started. This includes both minor and major ailments, and even if your pet didn't receive treatment. We also consider discussions you've had with your vet or other professionals about your pet's health or behaviour.

When you take out your policy, we'll ask if your pet has ever shown any sign of injury or illness or been unwell? Or if you've had discussions with a professional about their health. Depending on your answer and your pet's breed, we'll ask for your vet's details so we can review your pet's medical records. Doing this upfront means you'll know exactly what you are and are not covered for.

If we don't ask for this information up front, we'll review your pet's medical records at the point of claim. We do this to see if you've seen a vet for a condition that was not disclosed when you took out your policy.

When we review your pet's medical records, if there are any conditions we can't cover, we'll let you know.

It's worth knowing that an exclusion placed on a condition may not necessarily be permanent. Yes, some conditions are non-reviewable but some exclusions are for 2 years and some are less than a year. At the point of renewal, you can request that we review any exclusions. If your pet has shown no symptoms of the condition, been treated for the condition since or if no claims have been made for the condition, we may lift the exclusion.

Unfortunately, there are some dog breeds that we're unable to provide dog insurance for. The breeds, and crossbreeds of, we're unable to cover are:

American Bull Dog, American Indian Dog, American Pit Bull, American Staffordshire Terrier, Bandogs, Boerboel, Bully Kutta, Canary Dog, Cane Corso, Czechoslovakian Wolfdog, Dingo, Dogo Argentino, Dogue Brasileros, Fila Brasilerio, Gull Dong, Husky Wolf Hybrid, Irish Blue Staffordshire Terrier, Irish Staffordshire Terrier, Saarlooswolfhound, Japanese Tosa, Tosa Inu, Pit Bull Crosses, Pit Bull Terrier, Wolfdog, Wolf Hybrid.

Third Party Liability for dog insurance covers your legal responsibilities, legal costs and compensation if your dog injures another person or damages another person's property. Our Third Party Liability covers you up to £2 million.

For Akitas and Neapolitan Mastiffs, and crossbreeds of, and for dogs who you've told us have a history of aggressive or destructive behaviour, we're unable to cover them for Third Party Liability.

Click here to read more information on our Third Party Liability cover.

Yes, you can get multi-pet discount. For every pet policy you take out, you'll receive a discount of £1 per pet per month. So if you have three pets, you'll get a £36 discount.†

There are no limits on the number of pet's you can have. And you can choose to have different cover types and cover levels for your pets too.

Once your policies and payments have been set up, we'll send you individual confirmations for each pet. As your pets will now have their own policy, this means that separate payments will be taken for each policy.

†Multi-pet discount is a minimum of £24 when insuring more than one pet as this is worked out at £1 per pet per month for each pet on a policy. Pets can have different cover levels and optional extras. Discount deducted separately from any other offer.

An excess is an amount of money you need to pay when you make a pet insurance claim. For Sainsbury's Bank dog and cat insurance policies, the standard excess is £99.

  • For Time Limited cover, this is payable per condition.
  • For Lifetime Cover this is payable per condition, per year. This means that if your claim runs over your renewal date, you will need to pay two excesses. One payable before renewal and one after renewal.

When your pet reaches a certain age, their excess will change. The excess payable will then be either the £99 excess fee or 20% of the claim, whichever is more.

For most dog breeds, the excess change happens at the renewal after their 8th birthday. For some dog breeds (listed below), it will be their 5th birthday. And for cats, it will be their 10th birthday.

Beauceron, Bernese Mountain Dog, Bulldog, Bullmastiff, Deerhound, Dogue de Bordeaux, Estrela Mountain Dog, Giant Schnauzer, Great Dane, Irish Wolfhound, Leonberger, Mastiff, Neapolitan Mastiff, Newfoundland, Old English Bulldog, Old English Sheepdog, Poodle (Standard), Pyrenean Mountain Dog, Rhodesian Ridgeback, Rottweiler, Shar Pei, St Bernard, Standard Poodle, Tibetan Mastiff, Utonagan.

Several factors are considered when it comes to your premium. For example, the price of your pet insurance may have gone up due to rising vet fees, the age of your pet or a change to your circumstances or home address.

As your pet gets older, you should expect your premium to go up too. This is because as your pet ages, they're more likely to be afflicted by age-related illnesses which can result in more claims.

If you find a quote cheaper elsewhere, before you look to cancel your policy, we would ask that you contact us. We might be able to work with you to find a premium that suits you and still looks after your pet's needs.

Just give us a call on 0344 543 1032.

We’re open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm. Saturday 9am-1pm. Calls may be recorded.

One way in which you can look to reduce your premium is to step down your level of cover - that is depending on the cover you already have. For example, if you had our Lifetime £5,000 cover, you'd be able to step down to Lifetime £2,500. If you have Time Limited Cover or Lifetime £2,500, you would not be able to step down. Please be aware, if you were to step your cover down, you wouldn't be able to step up again. If you wanted to step back up again, you would need to take out a brand new policy, subject to new policy upper age limits.

Finding a cheaper quote elsewhere may sound good on paper, but it may not necessarily be the best option to switch provider. Especially if you've ever made a claim or if your pet's had an illness or injury. To a new provider, these would be considered pre-existing conditions. If your pet suffered from the condition again, you could find the condition excluded when you made a claim. Meaning you would be liable for the vet bills and any ongoing treatment.

When you take out your policy, if your pet has had any pre-existing conditions, we may underwrite your policy upfront. We'll ask for your vet's details so we can review your pet's medical records. From this, if there are any conditions we're unable to cover, we'll let you know.

If we don't perform this upfront, we'll do this at the point of claim to see if any conditions should have been disclosed when you took out the policy. Again, if we're unable to cover a condition, we'll let you know.

We'll only place exclusions in line with our underwriting guidelines and based on any pre-existing conditions your pet has/had before you took out the policy. Our underwriting guidelines have been developed with the help of an experienced veterinary surgeon.

Any exclusions placed on your pet's policy may not necessarily be permanent. There are non-reviewable conditions, but there are some exclusions that are for 2 years and some are less than a year. At the point of renewal, you can request that we review any exclusions. If your pet has shown no symptoms of the condition, been treated for the condition since or if no claims have been made for the condition, we may lift the exclusion.

Yes, dental cover is included under the vet fees part of your policy.

We'll cover your pet's dental treatment if it's a result of an illness or injury up to your policy limit. You will need to make sure that your pet has dental check-ups as advised by your vet. And you must follow up any advice from your vet within 6 months. If you don't follow your vet's advice, dental treatment will not be covered.

We don't cover dental crowns, root canals, fillings. Also, we don't cover treatment for deciduous teeth if your pet is over 16 weeks of age at the start of your policy.

You won't be able to make a claim for an illness within 14 days of your policy start date nor for a pre-existing condition. After 3 days, however, if your pet has an accident and needs dental treatment, you will be able to make a claim subject to policy terms.

If you'd like more information, click here to read our dental cover page.

If your pet goes missing, it can be a worrying time. So it's best to be prepared and know what you can do if they do ever get lost.

Firstly, search the area where they went missing and places you know they're familiar with. Also, report your lost pet to the nearest vets and vets in the area where it went missing. It's worth reporting to any local rescue centres and local authority wardens. If they're aware and your pet gets handed in, it can help speed up being reunited with them.

One of the easiest ways to help you be reunited with your pet is to make sure they've been microchipped. A microchip holds important information about your pet as well as your contact details. If someone finds your dog or cat and hands them into a vet or an animal warden, they'll be able to scan the chip and help reunite you with your pet.

It's important to make sure your pet's chip details are kept up to date - especially if you change phone numbers or move house.

It's the law that all dogs must be microchipped. While it isn't the law for cats, yet, it is recommended that you microchip your cat too - just in case they do go missing.

Sainsbury's Bank Pet Insurance cover can also help you be reunited with your pet. You can claim for local advertising costs as well as a reward for a returned pet - policy limit dependent.

As a Sainsbury's Bank Pet Insurance customer, we'll cover your pet for any treatment they need while on holiday abroad. This only applies to countries included in the Pet Travel Scheme (PETS), up to 90 days per year and your pet must have a Healthcare Certificate for any travel abroad.

Your pet would be covered for the same treatment they would receive at home, and all treatment would need to be carried out by a registered vet. We appreciate it may be difficult for the vet to complete a claim form, so we'll need receipts for the treatment endorsed with the vet's details, supporting notes from the treating vet and a copy of your pet's passport.

All treatment your pet receives abroad will be covered up to your policy limits. Exclusions relating to pre-existing conditions will apply.

We can also cover emergency expenses while abroad up to your policy limits. This can include extra accommodation and travel expenses if your pet is too ill to travel home or if your return home is delayed.

If while on holiday you lose your pet's Healthcare Certificate we can cover the cost of a replacement up to your policy limit.

Also, If your pet needs to be quarantined due to illness or their microchip fails, we can cover the cost of quarantine up to your policy limit.

If you’ve received an offer from us, we’ll add your Nectar points to your account within 60 days of your policy start date. Double check your Nectar statement at nectar.com or on the Nectar app to see whether you're collecting points – they're paid into your account around the 10th of the month. If not, call us – you may need to tell us your Nectar card number to start collecting.

My Pet Portal has been created to help you manage your pet insurance policy that little bit easier.

It's a personalised online hub where you can keep an eye on everything to do with your pet’s insurance policy or policies.

Once your policy has been set up, we'll send you instructions on how to register. Once you're set-up, you can start monitoring your polices and making use of its features.

Click here to log in to My Pet Portal.

Once your policy has been set up, we'll send you instructions on how to register. It's not complicated, you can register with the information you gave us when you took out your policy.

To register for the portal, you'll need:

  • Either the email address you took your policy out with or your policy number
  • The postcode associated with your policy
  • Your date of birth

We use this information to verify your policy and to set up My Pet Portal for you.

We'll ask you to set a password and to verify your registration. Once that's been done, you'll be able to log in and start using all the features of My Pet Portal.

If you haven't registered already, click here to log in to My Pet Portal.

Once your policy has been set up and you've registered for My Pet Portal, you can start using all its features.

To log in, all you need to do is enter the email address you took out your policy with and the password you set when you registered. It's that easy.

Click here to log in to My Pet Portal.

So you don't have to try and find the login page again, it may be worth bookmarking the page in your browser.

In My Pet Portal, you can manage your policy by being able to:

  • Check your cover
  • Download your documents, including your Certificate of Insurance via the Welcome Pack
  • Change personal details
  • Call vet nurses with Vet Assistance
  • Get claims forms
  • Contact us

Click here to log in to My Pet Portal.

There are a couple of things you won't be able to set up or change in the portal though. You won't be able to set someone up for Third Party Authority, this allows them to discuss your policies on your behalf. You also won’t be able to change details that may affect your premium, such as a change of address.

To set up someone up for Third Party Authority or to change your details, give us a call on 0344 543 1032. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm. Saturday 9am-1pm. Calls may be recorded.

Once your policy has been set up and you've registered for My Pet Portal, you'll be able to find all of your documents in the 'Documents' section of the portal.

Here's where you'll be able to find your Welcome Pack including your Certificate of Insurance and read all your policy documents.

Click here to log in to My Pet Portal.

If you've chosen to receive your documents by post, you'll receive them through your door shortly after your policy has been set up.

We recommend that you read through everything carefully, so you fully understand your policy, and just in case there's anything wrong.

If you do notice something wrong with your pet's details, give us a call on 0344 543 1032. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm. Saturday 9am-1pm. Calls may be recorded.

Once you've taken out your policy and checked through all the details. If you notice there's anything wrong with your pet's details, we need to know.

Just give us a call on 0344 543 1032. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm. Saturday 9am-1pm. Calls may be recorded.

The quickest way for you to update your contact details is to log in to My Pet Portal. Head to the 'Account details' section and just click 'Edit details'.

Here you'll be able to update your phone numbers, email address, and if you've changed your last name, you can update that too.

Click here to log in to My Pet Portal.

If you need to change your address, please call 0344 543 1032. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm. Saturday 9am-1pm. Calls may be recorded.

Please be aware that changing address may affect your premium.

If you need to change your payment details including changing your Direct Debit or your payment date, give us a call on 0344 543 1032.

We’re open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm. Saturday 9am-1pm. Calls may be recorded.

Coming soon to My Pet Portal is the ability to update your payment details online. You'll be able to select your payment type and set your preferred payment date.

The quickest way for you to update how we communicate with you is to log in to My Pet Portal. Head to the 'Account details' section where you can update your preferences under 'Communication preferences'.

Here you can choose how you receive your policy communications, service communications and if you'd like us to keep you up to date with SMS messages.

For policy communications, you can receive these via the email and My Pet Portal or by post. If you've changed your mind as to how you receive them, all you need to do is tick the box for by post. Or have it unticked for email and the portal.

For any service related messages or SMS messages, you can opt-in or out by selecting the 'Yes' or 'No' buttons.

Click here to log in to My Pet Portal.

Alternatively, please call on 0344 543 1032. We’re open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm. Saturday 9am-1pm. Calls may be recorded.

Vet Assistance is our 24/7 hotline where you can speak to a qualified vet nurse about your pet’s health issues and care. Whether your pet is showing symptoms of an illness or you need advice on training or care, our vet nurses are there for you.

We recommend you use it whenever you need to - that's why it's available 24/7 365 days a year. Don't wait and see if your pet gets better or worse, just get in touch.

You can call them on 0303 334 0796.

If you'd like more information, click here to read our Vet Assistance page.

Please be aware that this service is only available to Sainsbury's Bank Pet Insurance customers.

If you need to make a claim, the easiest way is to do this through My Pet Portal.

All you need to do is log in and click the 'Make a claim' button on the homepage. There you can download a vet fees claim form. Just fill in the form including details of your pet's condition and pass it on to the treating vet to complete their section. Once the vet has completed their part, post it back to us and we'll confirm with you once we've received it.

At every step of your claim, we'll keep you updated.

Click here to log in to My Pet Portal.

If you need to make another type of claim, you'll also be able to download the following claim forms from the 'My claims' section of My Pet Portal:

  • Holiday cancellation
  • Hospitalisation
  • Loss, Theft and Straying
  • Purchase price
  • Third Party Liability
  • Travel benefits

Alternatively, you can give us a call on 0344 543 1032. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm. Saturday 9am-1pm. Calls may be recorded.

Yes, if the treating vet is happy for your claim to be paid directly to them, we can do that.

When you come to complete your claim form, we'll ask you who we should pay. Select the treating vet and we'll do the rest.

Once you've submitted your claim, it will go through five steps:

  1. Submitting your claim
  2. Awaiting vet completion
  3. Claim received
  4. Pending Approval
  5. Claim completed

To help you keep track of your claim, you'll receive updates as to your claim's progress. You'll be able to find these in your messages in the 'Documents' section of My Pet Portal. If you've signed up for SMS, we'll also send you text messages to help keep you updated.

If you've chosen to receive your documents by post, we'll keep you updated via letter.

Coming soon to My Pet Portal will be another handy way to track your claims online. On the 'My claims' homepage, you'll be able to see your claim progress through the process.

If you've submitted a claim and it's been rejected, and you wish to appeal, you can give us a call on 0344 543 1032. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm. Saturday 9am-1pm. Calls may be recorded.

Alternatively, you can write to us at:
Sainsbury's Bank Pet Insurance,
Customer Relations Department,
Pinnacle House,
A1 Barnet Way,
Borehamwood,
WD6 2XX

If you need to make a complaint, you can give us a call on 0344 543 1032. Lines are open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm. Saturday 9am-1pm. Calls may be recorded.

Alternatively, you can write to us at:
Sainsbury's Bank Pet Insurance,
Customer Relations Department,
Pinnacle House,
A1 Barnet Way,
Borehamwood,
WD6 2XX

We aim to turn all complaints around within 4 days. Once we do, we'll send you a summary resolution communication to confirm we believe the complaint has been resolved. If we're unable to resolve your complaint within 4 days, we'll send you a letter acknowledging your complaint. And we'll keep you updated as the process moves forward or if we need any further information. As required by the Financial Conduct Authority, we aim to have everything resolved within 8 weeks.

If you're unhappy with our decision, you have the right to take up your complaint with the Financial Ombudsman Service. This must be done within 6 months of our summary resolution communication or final decision letter.


You can contact the Financial Ombudsman Service by:

Phone:

0800 023 4567 / 0300 123 9123

Post:

Financial Ombudsman Service,
Exchange Tower,
London,
E14 9SR

Website:

www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk

We always try to resolve any complaint to put things right. However, if you’ve already contacted us and we haven’t resolved your complaint to your satisfaction, you might want to use the European Commission's Online Dispute Resolution service. This is an online portal designed to help consumers who’ve bought goods or services online to conduct dispute resolution.

If you wish to cancel your policy, please call 0344 543 1032.

We’re open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm. Saturday 9am-1pm. Calls may be recorded.

Or you can write to us at:
Sainsbury's Bank Pet Insurance,
Customer Relations Department,
Pinnacle House,
A1 Barnet Way,
Borehamwood,
WD6 2XX

If you cancel your policy within 14 days of the start date or renewal date, we’ll make a full refund of any payment you made in that policy year. If you cancel after 14 days, you’ll still be eligible for a refund, subject to the terms and conditions of your policy. If you have made a claim on your policy before cancelling, you won't be eligible for a refund.


Important information


Sainsbury's Bank plc, Registered Office, 33 Holborn, London EC1N 2HT (registered in England and Wales, no. 3279730) is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority (register no. 184514). Sainsbury's Supermarkets Ltd is an appointed representative of Sainsbury's Bank plc.
Sainsbury's Bank plc acts as an introducer to Pinnacle Insurance plc who is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority (register number 110866). Registered Office: Pinnacle House, A1 Barnet Way, Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, WD6 2XX. Sainsbury’s Bank plc and Pinnacle Insurance plc are not part of the same corporate group.