Do I Have To Add My Dog To My Homeowners Insurance?

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Updated: 15 March 2024
Written by
Lacey Jackson-Matsushima
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As a pet owner, you want to make sure your furry friend is properly taken care of and protected. So, when it comes to your homeowners insurance, you may be wondering whether or not you should add your dog to the policy. The answer is simple: yes, you should.

While having a dog is a joy, they can also come with unexpected incidents. From accidental damage to the occasional dog bite, it’s important to have your pet covered by your homeowners insurance policy. Otherwise, you could be left paying for medical bills and lawsuits out of pocket.
Even the best-behaved pets can have a moment of unpredictability, so don’t rely on the fact that your dog has never bitten anyone before.

Unfortunately, first-time bites are common, and if you wait until after the first bite to add your dog to your policy, it’s too late. The legal expenses could end up far outweighing the cost of adding your pet to your policy in the first place.

Now, you may be wondering about the cost of adding your dog to your homeowners insurance policy. It’s true that doing so may result in an increased premium, but it’s a small price to pay for peace of mind.

And remember, even if your pet has never shown aggressive behavior, insurance companies may still consider certain breeds to be higher risk, which could lead to breed restrictions.

Key Takeaways

  • From dog bites to accidental damage, homeowners insurance may protect your dog, but it has to be added to your policy.

  • Not all dog breeds are covered by home insurance policies. Breeds in the pit bull family typically are not covered by most providers.

  • If your home insurance won’t cover your dog, then you’ll need to look for another homeowners insurance policy

Do I have To Add My Dog To My Homeowners Insurance?

Yes, you need to add your dog to your homeowners insurance policy. Unfortunately, dog bites are a large part of the home insurance claims history.

What Dog Breeds Will Homeowners Insurance Not Cover?

  • Akita
  • American pit bull terriers
  • Dobermans
  • German shepherds
  • Great Danes
  • Pit bulls
  • Rottweilers
  • Siberian huskies

So, what are the dog breeds that are commonly restricted by homeowners insurance companies?

The list varies by company and state, but some of the most common breeds include those in the pit bull family, as well as large breeds like Dobermans, Rottweilers, and wolf hybrids. Mixed breed dogs, such as a German Shepherd mix, may also be restricted.

Insurance companies often base their breed restrictions on statistics showing that certain breeds are more likely to bite. For example, the Molosser breed group, which includes pit bulls, Rottweilers, and mastiffs, are often blacklisted due to their history of aggression and their larger size.

What Can I do If My Homeowners Insurance Doesn’t Cover My Dog’s Breed?

What if your dog’s breed is excluded from your homeowners insurance coverage? Don’t worry, there are still options. You can look for a homeowners insurance company that doesn’t list your dog as a dangerous breed, or one that offers coverage if your pet has gone through a certain level of training.

There are even companies that don’t discriminate against typical restricted breeds. A good place to start your search is with a list of pit bull-friendly homeowners insurance companies.

In conclusion, adding your dog to your homeowners insurance policy is a must for pet owners. You never know when an incident may occur, and being prepared will save you time, money, and stress in the long run. So, take the time to research and find a policy that covers both you and your furry friend, and you’ll have peace of mind knowing that you’re protected.

Insurance Companies That Don’t Discriminate Dog Breeds

Have you ever had trouble getting insurance for your dog because of their breed? It can be frustrating, but not all insurance companies discriminate based on breed.

Some insurance companies are more accommodating than others when it comes to covering restricted breeds. Rather than flat-out denying coverage due to a “dangerous” breed, some companies will evaluate your situation on a case-by-case basis.

But it’s not just the insurance companies you need to keep an eye on. You also need to stay up to date with the laws in your area that could affect your dog ownership or policy coverage. These laws can vary on the state and local level.

For instance, Pennsylvania and Michigan have laws prohibiting insurers from denying coverage based on specific dog breeds. And in Ohio, if you own a dog deemed “vicious,” you’ll need to purchase at least $100,000 of liability coverage.

Over 900 cities have ordinances regulating ownership of potentially dangerous breeds. That means your city or county could have a policy that bans owning pit bulls, while your neighboring city is perfectly fine with them. If you own a banned breed and your city prohibits it, your insurance will not cover your dog.

One thing to remember is that it’s never a good idea to hide your dog from your insurance company. Doing so could invalidate your policy and make you solely responsible for medical bills and damages caused by your dog.

Thankfully, some insurance companies don’t even consider your dog’s breed when you apply for coverage. For example, State Farm doesn’t take breed into account at all. Instead, they only ask about your dog’s bite history.

Other companies that provide insurance to dog owners regardless of breed include USAA and Chubb. However, keep in mind that these companies may charge you more for having a restricted breed, so it’s still worth shopping around to get the best deal.

So if you’re having trouble getting homeowners insurance because of your dog’s breed, don’t fret! There are plenty of options out there, and with a little research, you’ll find the coverage you need to keep your furry friend protected.

Tip: A few companies have a much shorter list of restricted dog breeds than others. Farmers, for example, typically only restricts coverage for pit bull breeds, rottweilers, and wolf hybrids.

When Will Homeowners Insurance Not Cover Your Dog?

When it comes to your dog and your homeowners insurance policy, it’s important to understand what is and isn’t covered. Unfortunately, if your dog causes damage to the structure of your home, such as chewing through drywall or damaging a fence, you’ll likely have to pay for the repairs out of pocket.

Similarly, if your dog destroys any of your personal property, such as furniture or shoes, your insurance policy won’t cover the cost of replacement.

However, there is one scenario where your policy might provide coverage: if your dog causes bodily injury to someone else. In that case, your policy may cover medical payments necessary for the injured party.

To avoid any unexpected expenses related to your dog, it’s a good idea to review your homeowners insurance policy and consider additional liability insurance. By doing so, you can help ensure that you and your furry friend are adequately protected.

When Will Homeowners Insurance Cover Your Dog?

Once you’ve added your dog and paid the additional fee, your homeowners insurance policy will typically cover two key areas related to your furry friend.

First, if someone files a lawsuit against you due to a dog bite, you can file a claim under the personal liability portion of your policy. This coverage typically includes all expenses related to the lawsuit, including any damages awarded to the plaintiff, up to the policy’s limit.

Second, if your dog does bite someone and cause injury, your policy may cover their medical expenses. Generally, the maximum amount covered for medical bills is $10,000.

It’s important to review your homeowners insurance policy to fully understand what is and isn’t covered related to your dog. If you have any concerns or questions about your coverage, consider reaching out to your insurance agent for guidance. By doing so, you can help ensure that you and your furry friend are adequately protected in the event of an unexpected incident.

Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Dog Bites?

In most cases, a dog bite is covered by your homeowners insurance under your personal liability coverage, even if it occurs off your property.

This type of coverage includes a set amount of money to pay for medical expenses and lawsuits arising from accidents that occur on your property or damages caused by you or your family, including a dog bite.

The minimum amount of personal liability coverage is typically $100,000, but if the claim costs more than that, you’ll be responsible for paying the excess charges yourself.

While the average dog bite claim in 2019 was just over $44,000, a serious injury and lawsuit could easily exceed the $100,000 mark. Therefore, it’s essential to have sufficient coverage for your furry friend.

Even if you think your dog is well-behaved and would never bite anyone, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Over four million people are bitten by dogs each year, and many dog bite claims are from first-time offenders.

It’s also important to note that different areas of the United States have different ways of determining who is at fault in a dog-bite incident. Some areas automatically deem the owner responsible in a bite case, while others require the victim to prove that the owner knew the dog was dangerous. Reviewing your area’s dog statutes and negligence laws can help you understand which laws apply to you.

If you don’t have your dog on your policy and an unfortunate incident occurs, your homeowners insurance won’t cover the claim, and you’ll be responsible for paying the medical bills and legal expenses yourself. So, make sure to add your furry friend to your policy and pay the additional fee to ensure that you’re protected in case of a dog bite.

Do I need To Tell My Insurance Company My Dog’s Breed?

It’s important to be honest about your dog’s breed and bite history when applying for or updating your homeowners insurance policy. Failing to do so could result in your insurer denying any future claims, potentially leaving you with expensive bills to cover on your own.

In addition, misrepresenting your dog’s information could be considered fraud, which could result in your policy being canceled altogether. Being truthful from the outset can save you a lot of headaches and financial stress down the line. Remember, honesty is the best policy.

Why do home insurance companies have breed restrictions?

When it comes to getting home insurance, you might not think that your furry friend would have an impact on your policy. But did you know that your dog’s breed could affect your rates? It’s true! Insurance companies often ask for your pup’s breed and use it to determine how likely you are to make a liability claim for a dog bite.

This might seem unfair, but it’s a reality for many pet owners. Don’t worry though, with a little research and some shopping around, you can still find a policy that works for you and your four-legged friend.

Dog breeds restricted by city laws

Are you a dog lover considering adopting a furry friend? Before you do, it’s important to know whether your city has any breed-specific legislation in place.

Unfortunately, many cities in the U.S. still have restrictions or outright bans on owning certain breeds, with pit bulls and wolf hybrids being among the most commonly targeted.

If your city has one of these laws, it’s crucial to understand that owning a banned breed could not only put you in legal trouble, but also affect your ability to obtain home insurance coverage. Your insurance company may deny you coverage or cancel your policy altogether, leaving you vulnerable in case of an incident.

So, before you bring home that lovable pit bull or wolf hybrid, make sure you’re aware of any breed-specific legislation in your area and its potential impact on your insurance coverage.

Will my premium go up?

If you’re a dog owner, you already know how much joy and love they bring to your life. But did you know that adding your furry friend to your homeowners insurance could also lead to an increase in your premium?

That’s right. Insurance providers have a list of dog breeds that they consider risky, and if your pup falls under that list, your premium may go up. These breeds are often associated with higher liability claims, which means higher premiums for you. So before you add your furry friend to your policy, make sure you’re aware of any potential premium increases.

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