“I have been with AF for over nine years for my two large breed dogs. Having taken the Prestige insurance as been stung in the past, my premiums have increased year on year due to both dogs having congenital arthritis. As they are both getting on now, this last year there has been a lot of medication and trips to the vets. Note my surprise this morning to receive a renewal which for one dog is increasing by no less than £1063.32 a year. That and the 20% I pay on each claim anyway as over 8 years old and the excess too! I am horrified but am stuck as cannot get insurance with anyone else for pre-existing conditions. I would advise all to shop around and not go with a company who is underwritten by Red Sands based in Gibraltar. This company is not nice to deal with - particularly when you need them during a stressful time when your beloved pets are unwell.”
“This company is a disgrace. Keep well clear. They will do anything NOT to pay out. They do not care a fig about animals - they are definitely NOT animal friends. Complete waste of money on the premiums and definitely NO peace of mind.”
“Received an email this morning for pre Authorisation for a Patella operation booked in for Monday.
They are using a clause exclusions 1.3 1.31 Bilateral where it can happen on either side of the body.
Well I shall be taking this further as some others have done so starting with the Financial Ombudsman.
They have agreed a lump removal. Think everyone should see where I am coming from. They don't want to pay out. Even the referral team agree it is incorrect.”
“I would like to agree with most of the comments relating to Animal Friends, their very shabby treatment of customers and their refusal to pay out for genuine claims.
I would also point out that they will refuse to pay for any overweight pet if they can relate the illness/condition in any way to its weight. Exclusions as below :-
Section 1: Vet Fees 1.3 Exclusions The following are excluded from cover: 1.3.18 Costs for treatment or conditions arising from your pet being overweight, except weight gain as a result of a diagnosed illness;
I did write to the company several times asking just what value I was getting for my premium so long as my dog was classified as overweight and they refused to give me this information.
There are many alternative insurance providers out there and I would strongly advise anyone to consider these ahead of Animal Friends.”
“Don't bother with this company, hidden charges I found "co payment " cost me an extra £136 on top of the £99 excess charge,bloody rip off. Total cost my dogs treatment £750 approx. Animal friends only paid £500 towards the bill,be aware ,look at the small print!!!!”
I am just coming in to the end of my 2nd year with my 2 year old St Bernard and his monthly premium renewal for August has more than trebled to over £180.
He was diagnosed with bilateral hip and elbow dysplasia’s before he was 1 year old, having full lifetime cover (£6000 per condition) through the diagnosis process and physio treatments we have used less than £3000 in total over the two years.
They will not give me an explanation why my monthly payment has more than trebled and obviously now I am going to be extremely nervous of putting any claim in and definitely terrified of putting a claim in if he ever needs hip surgery in the future.
When I read my renewal I was devastated and sick to my stomach, what the hell would they increase it to if he needed serious medical care, £1000 per month, £1500 per month? To have my Saint I don’t have holidays, I don’t go out and spend and now I am going to struggle every month to live with the rate of their increases.
This is the worse mistake I have EVER made in 20 years of owning Saint & giants, getting insurance with Animal Friends.
I went off their reviews but I now I am extremely suspicious of the reviews as I can’t be the only policy holder who has been completely ripped off by them by their extortionate increases in monthly premiums when you have only claimed a very small percentage of the limit you have.
I have also repeatedly had to give permission to deal with my vet directly and they constantly asked my vet for information for the claims that they already had.
I rang over the increase and 48hrs later I am still waiting for someone to email me that day with all his claims I have submitted and for a senior manager to back to me, after they also included a claim that was not even for my 2yr old Saint, on my policy and when I realised this had happened I was assured multiple times this would be removed from his history as I knew it would affect every claim in the future and surprise surprise 6 months later they have not removed it.
While they have paid out for all his claims the result for me has been an absolute financial nightmare and I am terrified what the future holds for me financially if and when my boy ever needs further treatment.
I even stopped his hydro treatment after a few months as I was worried about the cost and I was taught a physio routine to do with him at home with the agreement of his specialist.
From FB St Bernard UK dog groups with 1000’s of members not one member has anything good to say about animal friends but it is now too late for us to leave, I am stuck here or my boy won’t be covered for his dysplasia’s as they are pre-existing conditions.”
“If i could leave 0 stars i would. DO NOT insure your pet with this company. They will find every reason under the sun to not pay a claim, absolutley shocking service. You would be better off just keeping some money aside for your pet. AVOID LIKE THE PLAGUE”
“This company is no friend of ANY animal, let alone a loved pet.
They only operate at certain hours. Their policy's are not worth the paper they are printed on , as they will look to NOT paying out given ANY slight excuse.
Pay more for a better policy with another insurer.
I pity the people who work for them, and the lengths that they will go to not pay out !”
“BEWARE don not use animal friends to insure your pets your as good as not insured as they do not pay out for anything unless your pet dies. This company should be closed down and stop taking money from people knowing they will never payout. SCUM..................”
Used every excuse in the book to wriggle out of an insurance claim.
Used my pets previous history when I was not even insured by animal friends at the time. Then they stated that cover was invalid on any out of hours claims... does this mean people should let there animal suffer until they can make an appointment with there vets??? Being weekends, nights or bank holidays. Always been sceptical to use insurance companies and this confirms why.
I will be cancelling my policy with immediate effect and would not recommend this company to anyone hoping to claim any fees back on a claim”
“I never ever write reviews but I felt compelled to on this occasion. I've had insurance with this company for the last 3 years and it included lifetime cover. I recently submitted a claim as our basset hound has an ongoing skin condition and I thought this would help towards the ongoing cost of his treatment (shampoo, occasionally medication) The claim was rejected on the basis of a single visit to the vet when our dog was less than 12 weeks old which took place while he was still covered by temporary insurance taken out by the breeder. No condition had been determined at that stage. I then took out the Animal Friends cover and it was only a year or so later as the dog got bigger that it was diagnosed as a yeast condition. I feel really let down and wonder now what the point of the insurance was. Furthermore, when I rang up to cancel the policy, the person at the other end of the phone did not seem remotely concerned or too bothered about the cancellation. I would not recommend this company to anyone.”
“Watch out for the gradual, but significant erosion of policy cover after a claim. There is now so little covered by my policy that it is pointless. For example, a bout of sickness lead to "the (whole) digestive system" being removed from cover; and accidental injury lead to anything relating to "sticks" being removed from cover; a heart murmur at a check up (no treatment needed) lead to "heart conditions" being removed from the policy cover. This latter situation was most disappointing as this did not appear in my pet schedule and only came to light when my (now elderly) dog actually needed medication for heart failure.
I have found the fiscal attitude is completely inconsistent with the Animal Friends advertising (friendly and charitable).
I felt extremely let down by Animal Friends Insurance at a time when I needed most help with my pet's healthcare costs.
I do not recommend them as an insurer.
I just hope some of my money has made it to animal charities.”
Unfortunately the option of leaving 0 stars is not available or that would have been the score I'd have given them.
This company should be avoided at all costs. Please actually speak to this outfit rather than purchase online before parting with your money to see exactly what is covered (I promise you it wont be much).
Like others have said, if you are already a customer and need to make a claim I feel for you already. You will speak to a half wit who doesn't know one end of an animal to the other but is still quite happy to impart their knowledge/argue with you (delete as appropriate) with regard to pre-existing conditions and associated ailments until you start losing the will to live.
Good luck if you go with them, you'll need it, along with a large bank balance.”
“Avoid avoid avoid.... Today have refused to pay out for x rays and bloods for my dog when taken to vet after uncharacteristic behaviour. After examination vet suspected hip pain... All of above done and then another test due to high sodium levels to rule out addison's disease. Tests came back negative vet then suggested attendance at behaviourist so animal friends now sayi g nothing is covered. They made diagnosis themselves. Something vet is still trying to do now over 800 poun ds in debt event hough paying one of premium policies.... Shop ariun folks they are cowboys”
“My daughter is a responsible dog owner who researched pet insurance companies thoroughly before choosing Animal Friends.
I am deeply shocked by the dreadful uncaring customer service she has received from you. You are happy and quick enough to take her money but have made her claiming on her insurance an extremely difficult and stressful time.
Higher premiums are factored in for certain breeds of dogs but you seem to have completely ignored this and have continued to argue that her dog had a Pre resisting condition, at no time before the claim was her dog diagnosed with the problem you are refusing to pay out on. The vet has contacted you to confirm this and you still refuse to pay.
The condition her dog has been diagnosed with could be fatal and I will hold you personally responsible for any suffering you attribute to.
Policies are taken out by responsible, caring, loving pet owners and you are not fulfilling your obligation.
I would advise anyone considering Animal Friends to check out Pet Plan who only have your pets best interest at heart, your claim will be dealt with promptly to ensure the best possible outcome for your pet.”
“I have taken my dog to the vets and had injections and tablets due to rat poisoning and because bleeding through the mouth Animal Friends will not pay my vet as replied dental is excluded. Vet is appalled with their decision and confirmed how on earth the insurance can apply dental to poisoning.”
“Go elsewhere, they are absolutely shocking and will do anything not to pay out. I've been with this company for 3 years, never made a claim and when needed yesterday they declined on some nebulous excuse. I wish I had never gone with them and can only advise others to look elsewhere. Animal Friends, should be renamed "Robbing Gits' who cause distress to animals and owners alike. Avoid like the plague.”