Are Your Pets Covered By Your Home Insurance Policy?

November 9, 2021
Home Insurance & Pets - What you need to know.

Did you know that your pets may be covered by your home insurance? Pets are a special part of your family, so what happens if your pet damages someone else’s property, pet or a person.

For example, if your dog bites someone who enters your property like a neighbor, a delivery person, your housekeeper, your home owner’s insurance would cover the costs of any medical or legal bills up to the amount stated in your liability coverage.  However, unless your policy comes with pet-specific endorsements, your insurance coverage may deny any and all claims.

Common claims of liability in pet cases:

  • Your poodle bites a neighbor, resulting in doctors visit or hospitalization
  • Your border collie injures the neighbor‚Äôs cat - if you‚Äôre found liable for the damage, veterinary bills, your home insurance policy may cover the cost.
  • Your cat damages a neighbor's expensive ornamental garden

Some insurance companies will not cover pets that are considered high risk, ‚Äúaggressive‚ÄĚ based solely on their breed, and they usually do not cover exotic pets.

Pets that are usually excluded from coverage:

·     Akita

·     Alaskan Mal

·     Cane Corso

·     Chow Chow

·     Doberman Pinscher

·     Mastiff

·     Pit Bull Terrier

·     Presa Canario

·     Rottweiler

·     Siberian Husky

·     Wolf Hybrid

NOTE: Some insurance companies may cover Great Dane and Rhodesian Ridgeback breeds.

If your pet is considered high risk, your insurance company may require higher premiums, on average 1% higher. Some states such as Michigan, Nevada, New York and Pennsylvania prohibit insurance companies from canceling or denying coverage to owners of particular dog breeds.

In 2020, liability claims related to dog bites and dog related injuries cost insurance companies $854 million, and the number of bite claims was 16,991. The average cost per claim was on average $50,000!

Check with your Home Insurance Company today, to see if your pet is covered by your liability policy.

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