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DOGS & INSURANCE: The bite is worse than the bark

You don’t have to search far to find a story about the numerous dog bite incidents that happen in the country each year. While our cuddly companions are often considered a member of the family, they may not be as friendly to strangers. That said, our furry friends should be insured for the same reasons a young driver is insured- just in case there’s an accident!

Under most homeowner policies, your dog may be covered in the event of an incident; however, there may be some exceptions, which is why it is important to speak with your Trusted Choice® Independent Insurance Agent.


Is my dog automatically covered under my homeowner’s insurance policy?

Usually. Many insurers ask whether a homeowner or renter owns a dog in the initial policy application; however, you should talk to your independent agent before bringing Fido home to discuss the best way to address this exposure if there is ever an incident. You should also keep in mind that many insurers have exclusions for “high-risk” breeds, like Pit bulls, Rottweiler or other wolf hybrids.

How much coverage should I have for my dog?

On average, most agents recommend having an umbrella liability policy in addition to their homeowner’s liability coverage. An umbrella policy will provide additional coverage beyond the limits of your homeowner’s policy should there be a covered incident.

What if my dog bites someone more than once- is there a stipulation on my dog staying on a policy?

An insurance company may charge a higher premium or decide to drop the dog from the policy altogether after the first incident. Again, because most insurers ask about dog ownership during the initial application process, obtaining a new or renewal policy could prove difficult.

Having your dog spayed or neutered, and enrolling them in behavioral classes are some of the best ways to prevent your dog from biting someone. Speak with your Trusted Choice® Independent Insurance Agent about a policy that will protect you and your dog.