More on Home Insurance
More on Home Insurance
Some dog-friendly insurers include AIG, American Family, Chubb, Hippo, Encompass, Nationwide, Plymouth Rock, Safeco, SageSure, State Auto, and USAA.
Homeowners insurance protects your property and belongings, but it also includes coverage that protects you when you’re liable for damage or injury to someone else. Dogs are responsible for a high number of liability claims, and not every home insurance company is willing to cover them. If your dog is categorized as a dangerous breed or has a history of biting, you might run into trouble finding a standard policy that will extend protection to your pup.
But this is not the case for all insurers — there are some that are more willing to cover your dog, whether it’s a Rottweiler, a pit bull, or a wolf breed. Some companies that are more likely to include your furry friend in coverage include AIG, Chubb, Hippo, Plymouth Rock, and USAA, but not all of these options are available to every homeowner. Plymouth Rock offers comprehensive coverage options but is only available in six states, and USAA, known for its great customer satisfaction ratings, is only available to homeowners affiliated with the U.S. military.
If you’re shopping around for dog-friendly homeowners insurance, you can find the best coverage for the lowest price by comparing quotes at multiple companies. An independent broker can help you sort through options and make sure you’re finding the right policy.
A dog-friendly insurance company is one that extends standard policy protections to your dog or provides additional coverage options for excluded dog breeds and dogs with a history of biting
Most standard home insurance policies cover dogs and domestic pets, but breeds on the exclusions list and dogs with a history of biting may not be covered
Some dog-friendly insurance companies include AIG, Chubb, Hippo, Nationwide, and USAA
Even if an insurance company would accept your dog, a number of other factors may make you ineligible for coverage, so it’s best to shop around and compare quotes at multiple companies to find the best coverage for the lowest price
A standard homeowners insurance policy includes personal liability coverage which covers legal fees or medical bills in the event that your dog injures someone or damages their property.
Medical payments coverage, which has lower coverage limits than liability coverage, can also cover the costs of any injuries caused by your pup, regardless of whether or not they were provoked.
Dog bites and dog-related injuries are one of the most common personal liability claims, and research shows that claims and costs have only risen from one year to the next. Certain dog breeds are responsible for a majority of these claims, and some home insurance companies exclude those breeds from standard home insurance coverage as a result. If you own one of the following breeds, you may need to look into a dog-friendly home insurance company to cover bodily injury and property damage you’re liable for as their owner:
If your dog has a history of biting, or if a liability claim has been filed against you in the past, you may also have a difficult time securing homeowners insurance coverage.
When it comes to coverage for your pup, the following insurance companies are more likely to cover so-called dangerous breeds or dogs with a history of biting:
Damage caused by your pup or any domestic pet would be covered by standard home insurance policy with AIG. But in order to get insurance with them, you’d need to bundle two or more types of policies as they do not offer standalone homeowners insurance.
➞ Learn more about AIG
American Family’s standard homeowners policy will cover any dog, as will their renters, manufactured home, and condo policies. Coverage includes expenses related to lawsuits, accidental bodily injury, and damage to someone else’s property. However, if your dog injures you or damages your home and property, a standard policy won’t pay for that.
➞ Learn more about American Family
Chubb is a premium carrier and homeowners with high-value homes should look into it. Their Masterpiece Policy Wording plan only considers a dog's biting history, not their breed, when reviewing your homeowners insurance application. If your house becomes uninhabitable after a covered event, a home insurance policy with Chubb will also provide extra boarding expenses for dogs and pet kenneling.
➞ Learn more about Chubb
Plymouth Rock’s liability provision covers dog bites and other dog-inflicted damage and injuries. On of the biggest perks of this insurance company is its guaranteed replacement cost claim settlements, but coverage with them is only available in six states: Connecticut, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania.
➞ Learn more about Plymouth Rock
Safeco’s standard insurance and umbrella insurance policies both offer coverage for dog-related liabilities. You can also enhance your policy with a variety of endorsements like pet health insurance, and when you need to file a claim, you can reach an agent through their 24/7 claims assistance hotline or via video chat.
➞ Learn more about Safeco
Some other home insurance companies that may cover your dog include:
Some companies require you to carry a certain amount of liability coverage if you own a “dangerous” dog breed, such as a pit bull. According to the Insurance Information Institute, you may also be charged more for insurance if you own a pit bull, but your exact rates will vary based on your home insurance company, your coverage limits, and where you live.
Unless you live in Michigan or Pennsylvania, it is legal for home insurance companies to deny or cancel your policy if you own a “dangerous” dog breed. In 2005, Michigan’s Insurance Department passed a law stating that insurers can “deny coverage or not renew a policy” after a dog bite, dog attack, or any paid claim for your dog under a policy. A law passed in Pennsylvania that same year also states that a dog’s breed “does not justify canceling or not renewing a policy” unless it’s proven to be dangerous.
If a home insurance company denies your application, you can shop around for coverage with more dog-friendly companies and compare quotes. Even if you’re happy with your existing insurer, you should still regularly compare rates at multiple companies since you might find better coverage for a lower price with a different provider.
Stephanie Nieves is an insurance editor at Policygenius in New York City, specializing in auto and home insurance. She's been writing about insurance, finance and financial planning since 2018, and loves helping readers get the knowledge they need to make financial decisions with confidence. Her words can also be found on PayScale, Fairygodboss, and The Muse.
Stephanie has a B.A. in writing and rhetoric from Hobart and William Smith Colleges.
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