Dog Ownership and Home Insurance

Dog Ownership and Your Homeowner’s Insurance: What You Need to Know

A dog is known as man’s best friend for a reason, but as dog owners know, owning a dog is accompanied by many expenses and responsibilities. When people pick out their perfect companion they might not have homeowner’s insurance on the mind, but if you own a home, having coverage and being proactive about your liabilities is a priority.

The type of breed you have, your dog’s personal history, and the insurance company who covers you are all factors in what type of coverage you can have, but some dog owners may not be eligible for coverage at all.

Dogs do bite and can cause bodily injury

An average of $32,000 was paid for dog bite claims in 2015 in the US.

In some states the average is higher, like in California where the average dog bite claim is $43,000.

What owning specific breeds means for your homeowner’s policy 

Many policies do not cover specific breeds, like Akitas, Chows, wolves (and wolf mixes), Pit Bulls, Staffordshire Terriers, and Pit Bull mixes.

If you have a dog on that list you need to pay more attention to your policy. This list can vary state by state and by insurance company, so it’s best to consult with your agent and pay attention to the language in your policy.

It’s important to stress that if you have one of those breeds and don’t report it to your agent, your insurance will be dropped.

If you have a dog on that list, you may still be insured by some companies, but those incidents aren’t covered, yet some companies may not insure you at all. It’s best to consult with your agent and review the language in your policy.

 Key Points for Dog Owners:

  • When signing up for homeowner’s insurance, your insurance agent has to ask if you have a dog and document the breed. Be honest.
  • When adding a new dog to your household, keep your agent abreast of what kind of breed it is.
  • The insurance agency will send out an inspector to your property to verify the breed.
  • Make sure your policy provides coverage for that dog breed.
  • Pay attention to the language in the policy.
  • If your dog has a personal history of biting and/or a bite claim, then no company will insure you.

In terms of dog ownership and pet ownership, honesty is the best policy. Also is being proactive about your pet ownership.

  • Be aware of the dog that you’re buying and/or adopting.
  • Take your dog to training and make sure it is well behaved

August 26th is National Dog Day, so we hope you celebrate with your pooch!

To review your existing policy or to create a new one contact Cappuccino Insurance Agency for a consultation.