Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
Topic Author
OldBallCoach
Posts: 183
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2018 5:22 pm

Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by OldBallCoach » Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:38 pm

So we had our insurance agent out to the house to look over coverages and be sure we are all on the same place with rising costs, ect. Really had not done this in a few years. Our agent remarked that insurance companies are getting very wary of dogs on the property. Certain breeds will either raise your rates or the company will not insure period. We have 2 dobermans that are highly trained and frankly are here for our protection as well as being companions. Both dogs are gentle around our grandkids but will turn on a dime if given the correct commands. I explained this to our agent and yet her comment was that the company will likely either raise our rates or cancel us all together. This after 30 some years with the same company...yes we have moved many times but kept the same company, just a new agent. So much for like a good neighbor.

Has anyone else ran into this? I am not going to do anything until such time as the company contacts us, but in the meantime the CEO of our family, DW is going to start getting some quotes.
Thoughts?

etherlinkage
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue May 15, 2018 1:38 pm
Location: MN

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by etherlinkage » Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:41 pm

We switched to Costco for home and auto insurance. Nobody could beat their rates.
Save early, save aggressively, and stay the course.

jebmke
Posts: 9978
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 2:44 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by jebmke » Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:44 pm

Every time we have insured a house, car (or taken out umbrella insurance) we were asked about dogs, teenage drivers, boats, airplanes and swimming pools.
When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount.

User avatar
snackdog
Posts: 836
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2014 4:57 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by snackdog » Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:08 pm

I have never heard of an insurer visiting in person. They normally interview you online or via phone about your risk profile, always including dogs. Training is not a factor since the best trained dogs can be drawn into a fight and injure someone.

tenkuky
Posts: 980
Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2014 4:28 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by tenkuky » Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:23 pm

Is this all dogs, period?
Or certain breeds?
What data do they base this on?
Is getting a new dog reportable to the insurance company?
Never been asked the question before.

jebmke
Posts: 9978
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 2:44 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by jebmke » Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:27 pm

snackdog wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:08 pm
I have never heard of an insurer visiting in person. They normally interview you online or via phone about your risk profile, always including dogs. Training is not a factor since the best trained dogs can be drawn into a fight and injure someone.
When we insured our house in Milwaukee they sent out someone to survey. But it was an older home (circa 1909) so they may have wanted to check out some of the infrastructure to make sure it was up to date (e.g. knob and tube disconnected ...).
When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount.

Spirit Rider
Posts: 12196
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 2:39 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Spirit Rider » Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:46 pm

Almost almost all insurance companies have a list of several dog breeds they will charge higher rates for and some they may not insure at all.

It is not just dangerous breeds with high incidence of maulings and death, but include such dogs as chow chows which have a high incidence of biting.

Broken Man 1999
Posts: 3704
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2015 11:31 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:48 pm

I understand the feelings about a well-known trained dog. One of my supervisors actually trained dobermans, and had one as a family pet. He had a little girl, she used the dog as a pillow, played with him constantly.

But if a new person entered their home, the dog would place himself between the stranger and the toddler. You absolutely could not get to that child. The dog wasn't vicious, didn't bark or growl, but you simply could not approach the child, he would insert himself between the child and the unknown visitor. When the dog was satisfied and commanded, he would be just as friendly as if you were a long time friend.

OTOH, a friend had a dog that was always friendly to the woman who lived next door in an apartment complex. Friend was unlocking his door, and the neighbor came out her door, and the dog bit her. Thankfully no great damage, but the friend had lied on his application. He was extremely fortunate. Had the neighbor pressed, he would have had a mess. his renters insurance would have been worthless, probably. He was so shaken he had the dog put down. To this day he can't figure what triggered the attack. Neighbor had a good relationship with the friend, and had visited many times. She was no stranger to the dog.

So, I get the reluctance for insurance companies to insure when a large breed dog is part of the family. Unfortunately the normal idea is OUR dog is friendly, he would never bite anyone....... until he does.

There are stats showing that dog bites aren't rare, all in all. Insurance companies want as little risk as they can get. I can't say I blame them.

A daughter has a goldendoodle. His only issue is he might lick you to death, or beat you with his tail wagging. Still, he is a big dog. And he has guarding instinct.

We had cats as pets. The worse they did was to hiss at people. Never bit anyone.

I imagine many people have just neglected to advise insurance companies they have a large breed dog. Seems risky to me.

Broken Man 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven than I shall not go. " -Mark Twain

jibantik
Posts: 221
Joined: Fri Nov 24, 2017 1:05 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by jibantik » Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:51 pm

If your dog does not have documented ancestry through a kennel club of belonging to a particular breed, then the dog is a mutt and you can truthfully say your dog is not one of the "dangerous" breeds. Good way around that since breed is not a scientific classification. Garbage in, garbage out :D.

HomeStretch
Posts: 3437
Joined: Thu Dec 27, 2018 3:06 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by HomeStretch » Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:54 pm

jebmke wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:44 pm
Every time we have insured a house, car (or taken out umbrella insurance) we were asked about dogs, teenage drivers, boats, airplanes and swimming pools.
+1 and trampolines.

Broken Man 1999
Posts: 3704
Joined: Wed Apr 08, 2015 11:31 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:02 pm

HomeStretch wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:54 pm
jebmke wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:44 pm
Every time we have insured a house, car (or taken out umbrella insurance) we were asked about dogs, teenage drivers, boats, airplanes and swimming pools.
+1 and trampolines.
Even worse, a pool with a diving board. I haven't seen a private pool in I don't know how many years that had a diving board.

The meanest, nastiest dog I have ever been around was an aunt's chihuahua. I would have loved to drop kick that wretched bag of fur, and I am not a dog hater. Awful, awful dog.

Broken Man 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven than I shall not go. " -Mark Twain

fru-gal
Posts: 1269
Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:48 pm
Location: New England

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by fru-gal » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:08 pm

snackdog wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:08 pm
I have never heard of an insurer visiting in person. They normally interview you online or via phone about your risk profile, always including dogs. Training is not a factor since the best trained dogs can be drawn into a fight and injure someone.
AMICA sent an appraiser to look at my house.

I would suggest your CEO call them. I don't know what they think about dogs, but they are good in general. If she gets a quote, she should be sure she knows if it is a non-member quote (cheaper premium) or a member quote (higher premium more than offset by later large dividend.)

vshun
Posts: 127
Joined: Fri Feb 06, 2009 10:48 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by vshun » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:09 pm

jibantik wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:51 pm
If your dog does not have documented ancestry through a kennel club of belonging to a particular breed, then the dog is a mutt and you can truthfully say your dog is not one of the "dangerous" breeds. Good way around that since breed is not a scientific classification. Garbage in, garbage out :D.
If accident with dogs happens, that might give them the grounds to deny the claim. Just as claiming your car is for pleasure while you use it to commute to work, etc.
Traditionally I have seen my company asking me what breed my dog is, and listing 6 breeds to mark if my dogs are one of them. Doberman was on that list of 6, as well as German Shephard. I recall even specifying for my mutt on the form what breeds he is crossed from.

User avatar
JMacDonald
Posts: 2276
Joined: Mon Feb 19, 2007 5:53 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by JMacDonald » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:11 pm

etherlinkage wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:41 pm
We switched to Costco for home and auto insurance. Nobody could beat their rates.
After I reading your post, I got a rough quote from Costco, It was about half what I pay now for auto insurance. On the Costco website it stated that American Family Insurance will be taking over from the other insurance company. I checked the review on AFI, and I found a lot of negative reviews. Have you had any experience with AFI? I am not going to switch insurance companies until I am sure it provides good service.
Best Wishes, | Joe

fru-gal
Posts: 1269
Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:48 pm
Location: New England

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by fru-gal » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:12 pm

https://www.mspca.org/pet_resources/hom ... -and-pets/

"Are there insurance agencies that don’t discriminate based on breed?
Yes. Insurance companies that may insure otherwise black listed dog breeds include Liberty Mutual, Nationwide, Amica, Fireman’s, State Farm, Chubb, USAA (for military members and their families) and the Massachusetts FAIR plan. Most of these companies work on a case by case basis, considering the individual dog’s behavior and history, and may require a meet and greet with the dog and/or a Canine Good Citizen certification or certain housing requirements."

I assume your current insurance is with State Farm, so dunno how accurate the above is. State Farm sucks eggs in general, based on my experience with them when I had a claim.

User avatar
FrugalInvestor
Posts: 5310
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 12:20 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by FrugalInvestor » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:15 pm

When I moved to a new house/state/agent I was asked some questions about the house and other exposures since I have an umbrella policy with them. I don't recall her asking about dogs but she may have (we have no dogs). Other than that we either call the agent to pay a bill or ask a question or very occasionally stop in her office. I've been with State Farm for very close to 50 years and an agent has never come to my house. They've also always handled my very occasional claims quickly and with no hassle.
Last edited by FrugalInvestor on Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:18 pm, edited 2 times in total.
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

HomeStretch
Posts: 3437
Joined: Thu Dec 27, 2018 3:06 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by HomeStretch » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:15 pm

fru-gal wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:08 pm
snackdog wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:08 pm
I have never heard of an insurer visiting in person. They normally interview you online or via phone about your risk profile, always including dogs. Training is not a factor since the best trained dogs can be drawn into a fight and injure someone.
AMICA sent an appraiser to look at my house.
Travelers did same at my house. The visit occurred 30 days after new policy started. If the appraiser had found a roof or safety issue, I would have had to correct it to retain coverage.

User avatar
DanMahowny
Posts: 994
Joined: Sun Aug 06, 2017 8:25 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by DanMahowny » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:16 pm

I have 2 protection trained working line German Shepherds. Big, strong, fast, athletic. Both will hit like a locomotive when sent to bite. Obedience work is exceptional. Sorry, I like to brag about my dogs.

My insurance company had a guy come out to meet the dogs. It went well, although the guy they sent seemed to know absolutely nothing about dogs.
Funding secured

User avatar
DanMahowny
Posts: 994
Joined: Sun Aug 06, 2017 8:25 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by DanMahowny » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:19 pm

snackdog wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:08 pm
I have never heard of an insurer visiting in person. They normally interview you online or via phone about your risk profile, always including dogs. Training is not a factor since the best trained dogs can be drawn into a fight and injure someone.
Um, no. You are wrong.

You've never seen "the best trained dogs".
Funding secured

hicabob
Posts: 2907
Joined: Fri May 27, 2011 5:35 pm
Location: cruz

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by hicabob » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:23 pm

Here's an insurance company "bad dog list" (not mine :happy )
https://www.theinsurancealliance.com/10 ... esnt-like/

A few years back I had a sweet Ridgeback (they do look a bit scary). The insurance home inspector came around and old Zoe demanded to be petted then escorted her around the property so all was good.

jebmke
Posts: 9978
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 2:44 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by jebmke » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:24 pm

Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:02 pm
The meanest, nastiest dog I have ever been around was an aunt's chihuahua.
Chihauhuas are proof that Darwinism is not a perfect system.
When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount.

User avatar
TomatoTomahto
Posts: 9738
Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:48 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by TomatoTomahto » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:44 pm

My insurance company (Chubb) came out twice; once shortly after we purchased 18 months ago, ostensibly to set replacement cost, and once when we began renovations. Both times our two dogs were out and about. I don’t recall being asked about breed, but I would have answered honestly: the big dog is a rescue, so I don’t know precisely, but she looks to be a mix of boxer, pit, and perhaps a soupçon of Great Dane; the small dog is a rescue that we were told was a Chihuahua, but to my eye she looks and acts like there’s more Jack Russell Terrier. The large dog is on an invisible fence, and the nearest neighbor is around 1/4 mile away. The small dog is hawk bait, so she’s always leashed.

Still insured. No surcharge.
Okay, I get it; I won't be political or controversial. The Earth is flat.

tenkuky
Posts: 980
Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2014 4:28 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by tenkuky » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:46 pm

hicabob wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:23 pm
Here's an insurance company "bad dog list" (not mine :happy )
https://www.theinsurancealliance.com/10 ... esnt-like/

Each state has varying degree of protection against breed discrimination.
https://resources.bestfriends.org/artic ... tion-state

Wonder if these only apply to local ordinances or can be applied to insurance companies too.

User avatar
G12
Posts: 1526
Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2007 2:35 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by G12 » Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:55 pm

OldBallCoach wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:38 pm
So we had our insurance agent out to the house to look over coverages and be sure we are all on the same place with rising costs, ect. Really had not done this in a few years. Our agent remarked that insurance companies are getting very wary of dogs on the property. Certain breeds will either raise your rates or the company will not insure period. We have 2 dobermans that are highly trained and frankly are here for our protection as well as being companions. Both dogs are gentle around our grandkids but will turn on a dime if given the correct commands. I explained this to our agent and yet her comment was that the company will likely either raise our rates or cancel us all together. This after 30 some years with the same company...yes we have moved many times but kept the same company, just a new agent. So much for like a good neighbor.

Has anyone else ran into this? I am not going to do anything until such time as the company contacts us, but in the meantime the CEO of our family, DW is going to start getting some quotes.
Thoughts?
Being a dog owner is getting more risky. If one lives in an area with breed specific legislation, ie "BSL", some breeds can be "outlawed" due to beliefs of what breeds are supposedly more aggressive, etc. We have had 3 rescue Dobes, very nice temperaments, yet very protective of the interior of the house when new people arrived. Out in public, no guarding issues. I have seen lists of prohibited breeds in rental properties in the ATL area, primarily apartments, and it is much easier for the property owners just to say no as opposed to taking on unknown risk. I have real issues with some organizations that are out to eliminate certain breeds via online propaganda with little accuracy. One such organization is similar to hogbites.org, you can figure that out quickly changing one letter. Most BSL regs I have seen need to be re-drafted as they are unduly restrictive or greatly overreaching. I have been to a lot of dog trials, one of which was in Aurora, CO which has strongly enforced BSL. A local Aurora guy I know runs German Shepherds (which are not prohibited under that BSL) and said an animal control officer took one of his dogs stating it was a wolf mix, it took him 3-weeks to get his dog back after a DNA test results indicated it was a GSD. That is ridiculous, and I contacted the testing firm and the person I spoke with said that usage attempting to determine breed fits to BSL regs are prohibited. Aurora considers a dog with greater than 50% "Pitbull" DNA to be banned, if they took one of my current dogs I don't have 3-weeks to wait on results so I travel with DNA test results on both. I find that people who know their dogs can be human aggressive either go the extra mile to keep people safe or they don't. Unfortunately those that don't give all breeds a negative public perception that may not be deserved, and perception seems to carry the day with many folks who write public policy.

User avatar
Watty
Posts: 18032
Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2007 3:55 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Watty » Sun Jul 21, 2019 4:00 pm

If you are getting home insurance quotes you should also get quotes for a new umbrella policy.

jibantik
Posts: 221
Joined: Fri Nov 24, 2017 1:05 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by jibantik » Sun Jul 21, 2019 4:01 pm

vshun wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:09 pm
jibantik wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:51 pm
If your dog does not have documented ancestry through a kennel club of belonging to a particular breed, then the dog is a mutt and you can truthfully say your dog is not one of the "dangerous" breeds. Good way around that since breed is not a scientific classification. Garbage in, garbage out :D.
If accident with dogs happens, that might give them the grounds to deny the claim. Just as claiming your car is for pleasure while you use it to commute to work, etc.
Traditionally I have seen my company asking me what breed my dog is, and listing 6 breeds to mark if my dogs are one of them. Doberman was on that list of 6, as well as German Shephard. I recall even specifying for my mutt on the form what breeds he is crossed from.
Not if it is true. If your dog doesn't have documented ancestry in with a stud from which the breed is derived, the dog is literally not of that breed. There is nothing untruthful about it. Many people think their dog is some breed but they don't actually know what breed means, which could be the case here. The OP may have a dog that looks like a doberman, but is not actually of that breed.

User avatar
LadyGeek
Site Admin
Posts: 58627
Joined: Sat Dec 20, 2008 5:34 pm
Location: Philadelphia
Contact:

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by LadyGeek » Sun Jul 21, 2019 4:09 pm

This thread is now in the Personal Finance (Not Investing) forum (insurance).
Wiki To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.

Katietsu
Posts: 2710
Joined: Sun Sep 22, 2013 1:48 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Katietsu » Sun Jul 21, 2019 4:09 pm

From the Insurance Information Institute:
Dog bites and other dog-related injuries accounted for more than one third of all homeowners liability claim dollars paid out in 2017, costing almost $700 million.
So, the risk for the insurance companies seems to be real. Unfortunately, there is not an easy way for an insurance company to distinguish between well trained dogs with responsible owners from untrained animals with no sense owners. I have always made a point of at least getting a Canine Good Citizen certificate for my dogs and those belonging to family members. Have never needed to bring it up with respect to insurance. But it has helped in other circumstances.

etherlinkage
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue May 15, 2018 1:38 pm
Location: MN

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by etherlinkage » Sun Jul 21, 2019 4:54 pm

JMacDonald wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:11 pm
etherlinkage wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 1:41 pm
We switched to Costco for home and auto insurance. Nobody could beat their rates.
After I reading your post, I got a rough quote from Costco, It was about half what I pay now for auto insurance. On the Costco website it stated that American Family Insurance will be taking over from the other insurance company. I checked the review on AFI, and I found a lot of negative reviews. Have you had any experience with AFI? I am not going to switch insurance companies until I am sure it provides good service.
We aren’t too concerned with service. If they try to weasel out of a claim, we will involve our lawyer, and if necessary, the insurance commission in our state. Ymmv.
Save early, save aggressively, and stay the course.

Shallowpockets
Posts: 1501
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2015 10:26 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Shallowpockets » Sun Jul 21, 2019 5:00 pm

For me I would like to see the homeowners insurance be enough of a premium, per dog, that it would discourage dog ownership. My neighborhood would be so much quieter.

User avatar
DanMahowny
Posts: 994
Joined: Sun Aug 06, 2017 8:25 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by DanMahowny » Sun Jul 21, 2019 5:44 pm

Shallowpockets wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 5:00 pm
For me I would like to see the homeowners insurance be enough of a premium, per dog, that it would discourage dog ownership. My neighborhood would be so much quieter.
At present, I consider myself very fortunate- seems every home on my street has a dog, some as many as four dogs. Never a problem in any way. Says a lot about the owners, I guess.
Funding secured

Topic Author
OldBallCoach
Posts: 183
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2018 5:22 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by OldBallCoach » Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:34 pm

DanMahowny wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:19 pm
snackdog wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:08 pm
I have never heard of an insurer visiting in person. They normally interview you online or via phone about your risk profile, always including dogs. Training is not a factor since the best trained dogs can be drawn into a fight and injure someone.
Um, no. You are wrong.

You've never seen "the best trained dogs".
Could not agree more. It may sound arrogant but my dogs are highly trained and I would take them in a pinch all day long. 50K may seem like a lot for a dog but its cheap when it matters the most. To each their own.

miamivice
Posts: 2197
Joined: Tue Jun 11, 2013 11:46 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by miamivice » Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:42 pm

snackdog wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:08 pm
I have never heard of an insurer visiting in person. They normally interview you online or via phone about your risk profile, always including dogs. Training is not a factor since the best trained dogs can be drawn into a fight and injure someone.
When I lived in a rental, the landlord's insurance company came to stop by and do a look see.

TropikThunder
Posts: 1948
Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2016 5:41 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by TropikThunder » Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:58 pm

Bottom line, insurance rates are based on risk. If you don’t have a dog, the risk to the insurer from dog bites is zero. If you do have a dog, the risk to the insurer is not zero - no matter how over-confident you are in your dog’s training. We can argue more dangerous vs less dangerous based on breed, but the risk is not zero.

Spirit Rider
Posts: 12196
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 2:39 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Spirit Rider » Sun Jul 21, 2019 9:12 pm

OldBallCoach wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 8:34 pm
DanMahowny wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:19 pm
snackdog wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:08 pm
I have never heard of an insurer visiting in person. They normally interview you online or via phone about your risk profile, always including dogs. Training is not a factor since the best trained dogs can be drawn into a fight and injure someone.
Um, no. You are wrong.

You've never seen "the best trained dogs".
Could not agree more. It may sound arrogant but my dogs are highly trained and I would take them in a pinch all day long. 50K may seem like a lot for a dog but its cheap when it matters the most. To each their own.
It is the delusion of Man to think that any amount of training can override a million years of evolution. Even the most highly trained police dogs with continual remedial and additional training have turned on their handlers and had to be shot to stop the attack. There is no such thing as an absolutely safe large dog. Even St. Bernards and Great Danes have gone to instinct, mauled and killed.

Swansea
Posts: 787
Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2016 5:16 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Swansea » Mon Jul 22, 2019 5:18 am

I have had State Farm for years and german shepherds for 20 years or so...never been asked whether or not I have dogs.
I've ready that the average claim for a dog bite is 33K...seems quite high to me.
A local military base has a ban on two breed specific dogs. Go to the CDC website and you will find data on fatal dog bites by breed. I suspect insurance companies may rely upon that.

Swansea
Posts: 787
Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2016 5:16 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Swansea » Mon Jul 22, 2019 6:43 am

Spirit Rider wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:46 pm
Almost almost all insurance companies have a list of several dog breeds they will charge higher rates for and some they may not insure at all.

It is not just dangerous breeds with high incidence of maulings and death, but include such dogs as chow chows which have a high incidence of biting.
I once figured the number of fatal dog bites by breed, per capita (best estimate). Chow chows were the highest.

SovereignInvestor
Posts: 504
Joined: Mon Aug 20, 2018 4:41 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by SovereignInvestor » Mon Jul 22, 2019 6:55 am

Dog bites were causing the largest amount of liability coverage losses to insurers recently so.many have tightened underwriting guidelines to exclude certain breeds. The guidelines often aren't flexible enough to differentiate within a breed.

For breeds not on list to exclude most insurers have rating plan debits that lead to greater rates for the dog.

aristotelian
Posts: 6657
Joined: Wed Jan 11, 2017 8:05 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by aristotelian » Mon Jul 22, 2019 7:27 am

jebmke wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:24 pm
Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:02 pm
The meanest, nastiest dog I have ever been around was an aunt's chihuahua.
Chihauhuas are proof that Darwinism is not a perfect system.
Sure it is. Their comparative advantage is cuteness and they have evolved to exploit humans to provide food and ahelter.

User avatar
JoeRetire
Posts: 4411
Joined: Tue Jan 16, 2018 2:44 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by JoeRetire » Mon Jul 22, 2019 7:41 am

jibantik wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:51 pm
If your dog does not have documented ancestry through a kennel club of belonging to a particular breed, then the dog is a mutt and you can truthfully say your dog is not one of the "dangerous" breeds. Good way around that since breed is not a scientific classification. Garbage in, garbage out :D.
I'm sure insurance companies will go along with that.
Very Stable Genius

User avatar
TomatoTomahto
Posts: 9738
Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:48 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by TomatoTomahto » Mon Jul 22, 2019 8:01 am

aristotelian wrote:
Mon Jul 22, 2019 7:27 am
jebmke wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:24 pm
Broken Man 1999 wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 3:02 pm
The meanest, nastiest dog I have ever been around was an aunt's chihuahua.
Chihauhuas are proof that Darwinism is not a perfect system.
Sure it is. Their comparative advantage is cuteness and they have evolved to exploit humans to provide food and ahelter.
It's not a perfect system, but you could make a better case for its imperfections with the example of a platypus or the human eye.
Okay, I get it; I won't be political or controversial. The Earth is flat.

User avatar
DanMahowny
Posts: 994
Joined: Sun Aug 06, 2017 8:25 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by DanMahowny » Mon Jul 22, 2019 10:02 am

Spirit Rider wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 9:12 pm
It is the delusion of Man to think that any amount of training can override a million years of evolution. Even the most highly trained police dogs with continual remedial and additional training have turned on their handlers and had to be shot to stop the attack. There is no such thing as an absolutely safe large dog. Even St. Bernards and Great Danes have gone to instinct, mauled and killed.
Here's a secret.

The "highly trained police dogs" are actually rather poorly trained. These dogs are taught to bite on command, which is pretty easy based on breed. After that, training is basically done.

I've seen countless police dogs bite (this is easy), and the officer is powerless to stop the dog, call the dog off (this is hard).

We work on control, under any condition.
Funding secured

DaftInvestor
Posts: 4842
Joined: Wed Feb 19, 2014 10:11 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by DaftInvestor » Mon Jul 22, 2019 10:05 am

Unfortunately you have to pay the price for having chosen an aggressive dog breed. Insurers use statistics - regardless of how well trained your dogs are they are still considered an aggressive breed (google "Insurance Aggressive Dog Breeds" - lots out there on this - your breed is on the list). Unfortunately all dog owners are lumped together - responsible and irresponsible dog owners are viewed alike.

Its like if I supervise my kids really well when they are on a backyard trampoline with spotters on 4 sides. I might even have a ground covered in spongy injury free material around the trampoline. I can explain this all to the insurance agent but they don't care - at the end of the day - I still have a trampoline and will be lumped in with everyone else that doesn't practice safety.

(If you have a backyard pool make sure you understand the difference between a "Diving Board" and a "Spring Board". Many people have Spring Boards but make the mistake of telling their insurer they have a Diving Board).

DaftInvestor
Posts: 4842
Joined: Wed Feb 19, 2014 10:11 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by DaftInvestor » Mon Jul 22, 2019 10:07 am

JoeRetire wrote:
Mon Jul 22, 2019 7:41 am
jibantik wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 2:51 pm
If your dog does not have documented ancestry through a kennel club of belonging to a particular breed, then the dog is a mutt and you can truthfully say your dog is not one of the "dangerous" breeds. Good way around that since breed is not a scientific classification. Garbage in, garbage out :D.
I'm sure insurance companies will go along with that.
Especially if something does actually happen. The insurance company will say your on your own since you misrepresented the kind of dogs you had.

User avatar
Sheepdog
Posts: 5414
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 3:05 pm
Location: Indiana, retired 1998 at age 65

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Sheepdog » Mon Jul 22, 2019 10:24 am

See quote wizard from Lending Tree at https://quotewizard.com/home-insurance/ ... nst-breeds.
Quotes from that:
Why Homeowners Insurance Companies Blacklist Dog Breeds

The CDC estimates that dogs bite an average of 4.5 million people every year. One-fifth of these attacks are serious enough to need medical attention. An III study found:

Insurers paid out $675 million in dog bite-related claims in 2018.
The average insurance payout for dog bite claims increased 103 percent between 2003 and 2018.

Loretta Worters, III’s VP of communications, says these spikes were spurred by “increased medical costs as well as the size of settlements, judgments, and jury awards given to plaintiffs, which are still on the upswing.”

These stats show you why home insurers would see dogs as a dangerous risk. And their risk models show that claims involve certain breeds at a higher rate than other breeds. That’s why some home insurers may charge higher premiums to cover a high-risk breed. However, denial of home insurance coverage is more likely to happen.
Home Insurance Banned Dog Breeds

Insurers have a list of dog breeds that have a history of aggression or bites. If you have a dog breed known for being vicious, home insurers can consider them high-risk, regardless of how nice yours is. The list below shows the breeds insurers tend to see as a restrictive rate factor:
Akita
Chows
Doberman Pinscher
Dobermans
German Shepherds
Great Dane
Pit Bull
Rottweiler
Siberian Husky
Wolf Hybrids

Insurers Who Do Not Discriminate by Dog Breed

Some insurers have much broader criteria for high-risk dogs than others. Following are some home insurers who have a more open view on dogs:

State Farm
USAA
Amica
Chubb
Fireman’s

Most of these insurers will look at the individual history of the dog when considering coverage. State Farm follows a “It’s the bite, not the breed” policy regarding dog bite liability, including pit bulls. They work on the basis that any dog can bite under certain conditions. State Farm may have restrictions if the dog in question has bitten anyone in the past.
My Old English Sheepdogs aren't on the list as you see. They are gentle creatures, BUT when I was very active in OES Rescue. occasionally we would see aggressive ones....rare, but poor ownership can create aggressive ones.
Just because it isn't your fault doesn't mean it isn't your responsibility....Josh Reid Jones

Spirit Rider
Posts: 12196
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 2:39 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Spirit Rider » Mon Jul 22, 2019 12:24 pm

DanMahowny wrote:
Mon Jul 22, 2019 10:02 am
Spirit Rider wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 9:12 pm
It is the delusion of Man to think that any amount of training can override a million years of evolution. Even the most highly trained police dogs with continual remedial and additional training have turned on their handlers and had to be shot to stop the attack. There is no such thing as an absolutely safe large dog. Even St. Bernards and Great Danes have gone to instinct, mauled and killed.
Here's a secret.

The "highly trained police dogs" are actually rather poorly trained. These dogs are taught to bite on command, which is pretty easy based on breed. After that, training is basically done.

I've seen countless police dogs bite (this is easy), and the officer is powerless to stop the dog, call the dog off (this is hard).

We work on control, under any condition.
There is no such thing as total control over any dog. You can argue the degree of risk, but there will always be risk. To insist you can absolutely eliminate risk mauls your credibility.

adamthesmythe
Posts: 3078
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2014 4:47 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by adamthesmythe » Mon Jul 22, 2019 12:32 pm

Katietsu wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 4:09 pm
From the Insurance Information Institute:
Dog bites and other dog-related injuries accounted for more than one third of all homeowners liability claim dollars paid out in 2017, costing almost $700 million.
So, the risk for the insurance companies seems to be real. Unfortunately, there is not an easy way for an insurance company to distinguish between well trained dogs with responsible owners from untrained animals with no sense owners. I have always made a point of at least getting a Canine Good Citizen certificate for my dogs and those belonging to family members. Have never needed to bring it up with respect to insurance. But it has helped in other circumstances.
Given the difficulty of assessing breed and aggressiveness, it would seem to be more fair to consider only the number of dogs in a household, not their characteristics.

sheepla
Posts: 22
Joined: Wed Aug 02, 2017 10:10 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by sheepla » Mon Jul 22, 2019 12:43 pm

German Shepherd owner here.

I haven't run into this problem with homeowners insurance but was initially denied an umbrella policy because I own two german shepherds. I wrote a scathing review on the USAA website since most MWDs are GSDs, for heavens sake. Someone from USAA called me immediately and within a month the policy was changed to no longer restrict certain breeds (or so I was told). I don't think the policy change was a result of my review but instead was something that was already in process. Don't know if it was built into our rates or not but rates seemed reasonable so all turned out okay.

Swansea
Posts: 787
Joined: Sat Feb 13, 2016 5:16 am

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by Swansea » Mon Jul 22, 2019 1:55 pm

adamthesmythe wrote:
Mon Jul 22, 2019 12:32 pm
Katietsu wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 4:09 pm
From the Insurance Information Institute:
Dog bites and other dog-related injuries accounted for more than one third of all homeowners liability claim dollars paid out in 2017, costing almost $700 million.
So, the risk for the insurance companies seems to be real. Unfortunately, there is not an easy way for an insurance company to distinguish between well trained dogs with responsible owners from untrained animals with no sense owners. I have always made a point of at least getting a Canine Good Citizen certificate for my dogs and those belonging to family members. Have never needed to bring it up with respect to insurance. But it has helped in other circumstances.
Given the difficulty of assessing breed and aggressiveness, it would seem to be more fair to consider only the number of dogs in a household, not their characteristics.
I will differ re breed type. I'd enter any household with an unlimited number of newfoundlands without any fear, for example.

Topic Author
OldBallCoach
Posts: 183
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2018 5:22 pm

Re: Dogs and homeowners insurance company

Post by OldBallCoach » Mon Jul 22, 2019 3:27 pm

Swansea wrote:
Mon Jul 22, 2019 1:55 pm
adamthesmythe wrote:
Mon Jul 22, 2019 12:32 pm
Katietsu wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 4:09 pm
From the Insurance Information Institute:
Dog bites and other dog-related injuries accounted for more than one third of all homeowners liability claim dollars paid out in 2017, costing almost $700 million.
So, the risk for the insurance companies seems to be real. Unfortunately, there is not an easy way for an insurance company to distinguish between well trained dogs with responsible owners from untrained animals with no sense owners. I have always made a point of at least getting a Canine Good Citizen certificate for my dogs and those belonging to family members. Have never needed to bring it up with respect to insurance. But it has helped in other circumstances.
Given the difficulty of assessing breed and aggressiveness, it would seem to be more fair to consider only the number of dogs in a household, not their characteristics.
I will differ re breed type. I'd enter any household with an unlimited number of newfoundlands without any fear, for example.
My DD has three Newfs and these large hairy creatures are without a doubt the most gentle, kind and slobbery dog on the planet. Beyond amazing with my grandkids and they get along well with our Dobermans as well. They do shed...ALOT...but the family loves em and I can certainly see why. I asked her once if she has every heard one even growl and she said she had not...they will bark...LOUD but they seem about as gentle as can be.

Post Reply