Today is the day! You and your family head over to the local shelter and start looking around at all the puppies. You and your kids pet and play with a few different pups, but it’s Moose, a 100 lb. Rottweiler puppy with a big personality and soft spot for cuddles, which finally wins you over. Although he’s gentle and well-behaved, you soon learn that your insurance policy won’t cover poor Moose since he’s on their list of risky dog breeds. This is never news that you want to hear.
When adding a furry friend to your family, the last thing you’re probably thinking about is “how will this animal affect my insurance policy?” You’d actually be surprised how many dog oriented questions we get, especially from property and renter’s insurance applications. Unfortunately a dog’s breed and bite can ruin your chance at the best insurance coverage.
How Does My Dog’s Breed Affect My Insurance Policy?
It’s common for insurance companies to adhere to strict coverage regulations when it comes to ownership of risky dog breeds. When getting a quote for a new home insurance policy you’ll often be asked “Do you have any dogs?”, “What breed(s)?” and “Does your dog have a bite history?” These are the questions that will determine if you will be eligible for their policy and if your dog will be covered. Each insurance company has a list of dogs that they consider to be risky breeds. These lists can vary, but normally they include:
- German Shepherds
- Pit Bulls
- Doberman Pinschers
- Alaskan Malamutes
- and any other wolf hybrids
Why Won’t Insurance Companies Cover Risky Dog Breeds?
About one third of all home insurance claims are dog-related. This is why most companies have decided to stop covering certain dog breeds. The breeds listed above are chosen due to their aggressive nature and frequency of attack. Insurance companies will often raise your premium once they find out you own a certain breed of dog. They’re also known to:
- Allow you to have any dog you want, but not cover the dog. Some of these carriers will make you sign a dog exclusion.
- Not insure you at all if you have a certain breed.
- Not cover your home and your dog.
How Can I Make Sure My Dog is Covered?
At this point, things may be looking fairly grim when it comes to insurance coverage for little Moose. Luckily, there’s another option for owners of risky breeds. You can purchase a separate canine liability policy or switch providers. Just because you’ve been with one provider forever, doesn’t mean they’ll always be your best option. You may be able to find an insurance company that is more lenient towards risky dog breeds.
Also, even though a canine liability policy will cost you extra, it will be a lot less than what you could be paying from a potential lawsuit due to a dog bite. For more information on this topic, contact one of our independent insurance agents. They can help you find the right policy and help you and your Moose live happily ever after.