Dog owners often find themselves facing a particular dilemma when trying to secure homeowner's insurance. While insurance is a must for anyone wanting to own their own house, many home owners face higher premiums, inferior policies, or even blacklisting by insurance agencies -- simply because they own a dog.
Homeowner's insurance doesn't just protect against natural disasters, theft and other mishaps. It also shields policy holders against lawsuits arising from injuries or damages, even those related to pets. However, thanks to the increasing cost of litigation -- especially those surrounding dog bites and other dog-related incidents -- many insurance companies refuse to write coverage for homeowners who also own certain breeds of dog.
If you're a homeowner and a dog lover, this guide is for you. Here, you'll find facts on the relationship between dog ownership and home insurance, which breeds create the most problems for homeowners, and how to find the cheapest and most affordable homeowner's insurance possible.
Home Insurance and Dogs: The Facts
Here are some basic facts about dog ownership and homeowner's insurance:
· According to the American Veterinary Association, almost 40 percent of American households have a dog.
· That's over 43 million households, with an average of 1.6 dogs per household. The Humane Society estimates the numbers at over 83 million.
· The CDC estimates that about 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year. One in five of these require serious medical attention.
· The average cost of an insurance claim related to a dog bite is over $29,000. Dog bite insurance claims can cost insurers over $470 million a year.
· While the number of dog bite claims has fallen, the cost of such claims continues to rise.
· While a few states outlaw "breed profiling," many insurance companies allow the denial or cancellation of coverage if a homeowner owns a certain breed of dog.
The following types of dog are some of the dogs that are most often considered "bad breeds" by many insurance companies:
· German Shepherd
· Pit Bull
· Siberian Husky
· Wolf Hybrid