When looking to welcome a new dog into your home, or caring for someone else's dog on your property, be aware there are some breeds of dogs which may be excluded under your home insurance policy.
Most Common Breeds
These animals listed below are the most common breeds documented for a biting history to other animals, adults, and children. Under your home insurance policy, liability protection for injuries and property damage could be declined if you own, have custody of, or are caring for any of these pure or mixed breeds of these types. Or if you own a dog with a prior biting or aggressive behavior history.
- Akita (Also known as a Japanese Akita or an Akita Inu)
- American Bulldog or American Bully (Pit Bull Type)
- American Staffordshire Terriers (Commonly known as Pit Bulls)
- American Pit Bull Terriers (Commonly known as Pit Bulls)
- Bull Terrier (Pt Bull type)
- Chow Chows
- Staffordshire Bull Terriers (Commonly known as Pit Bulls)
- Doberman Pinschers
- Dogo Argentino or Alpha Blue Bulldog (Pit Bull Type)
- German Shepherds
- Miniature Bull Terrier (Pit Bull Type)
- Presa Canario or Perro de Presa Canario (Commonly known as Canary Dogs)
- South African Boerboels
- Wolf Hybrids
Other large breeds which may be included are:
- Extra-large breed versions of the above
- Alaskan Malamute
- Cane Corso
- Great Dane
- Siberian Husky
All dogs have the potential
Realize that any dog, regardless of breed, can bite or be aggressive toward another dog, animal or person during feeding time, free time or when they have possession of their toys. Not all dogs are cordial, have received obedience training or are socialized.
If you are in the market for a new puppy or dog, review the liability exclusions section of your home insurance, mobile home insurance, condo insurance, townhome insurance, or renter insurance policy first to determine what breeds or mix breeds should be off limits.
Before you get your heart set on a dog, always ask what the mix breed is -- particularly at pet shelters.
Do your homework and learn about the breed(s):
- What obedience training is necessary for you and the dog?
- Does your pet have a high-prey drive?
- What is the energy level of the dog?
- What group is your dog from -- are they a working dog group?
- Are they aggressive? What is their behavior toward litter mates, and/or people?
- What is their history?
- How large is the dog going to be?
- What type of kennel/crate will they need?
- How much socialization will be required?
- What will the average cost for regular scheduled veterinarian visits?
If you decide to take the risk, know that if a biting/attack claim occurs involving your pet, there may be no coverage on your home insurance policy to protect you.
You may be personally responsible for:
- Victim's pain and suffering (mental aggravation, therapy)
- Medical care (doctor's visits, hospital bills, reconstructive surgery)
- Lost wages
- Court costs
- Attorney fees
- Amount owned to victim as deemed by court
- Loss of personal assets
Depending on the severity, settlements awarded in dog bite cases vary between $500 to $500,000+.
Know what breed or breed mixes your insurance policy allows.
If you are not sure, visit or call your agent for clarification before you bring the cute puppy or dog into your home.
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