Online pet product retailer Chewy has expanded its pet health offerings with a suite of insurance and wellness plans for pets.
The program, known as CarePlus, is currently available in 31 states and will be offered nationwide by the later part of this year, Chewy said in a news release Thursday (Aug. 4).
The Florida-based company said CarePlus is the latest addition to its health and wellness portfolio, giving pet parents 24/7 access to its customer care team, the ability to connect instantly with vets via a telehealth service, and 100% coverage on eligible prescription medication, supplements and veterinary diet food purchases on Chewy.com.
“CarePlus also delivers a seamless end-to-end user experience for veterinary and client interactions with the option for direct payments at participating clinics via Trupanion’s patented software, reducing out-of-pocket expenses and enhancing access to care,” the release said.
“Ultimately, CarePlus is well-positioned to increase the percentage of insured pets that walk through the doors of veterinary hospitals and ensure that they receive the best care possible.”
The wellness plans start at $20 per month and cover preventative care such as yearly exams, vaccines and parasiticides, per the release. Insurance plans range from $20 to $100 per month and offer coverage against things like accidents, unexpected illnesses and surgeries, and the insurance and wellness plans can also be bundled together.
Last week, Chewy saw its stock downgraded by some analysts. As Seeking Alpha reported, Wedbush analyst Seth Basham said the company’s shares have appreciated more than 70% since late May while adding that “we see more downside risk to shares after the latest run.”
Wedbush pointed to uncertainty in active customer counts, noting, “This risk is growing with continued elevated churn rates for recently acquired customers, [and] cost-effective customer acquisition continues to prove challenging.”
This comes as pet food is outpacing the broader economy, in terms of growth and in rising prices. Pet food inflation climbed 10.3% in June, compared to the Consumer Price Index (CPI), which was up 9.1%.