YOU ASK:

Can you get insurance for a dog classified as vicious who has bitten before?

WE ANSWER:

You may, but it may be hard to get the coverage.

Dogs that have a history of biting and who are classified as vicious may be denied coverage. Most insurance companies nowadays even automatically deny homeowners or renters insurance coverage to households with dogs, as dog bites and dog attacks account for a considerable percentage of claims. What you can do is try to get supplementary coverage for your dog.

There is no guarantee, however, that you will be given insurance. It is important to note that insurance companies are on the process of revising their products and coverages, and protection for households. Vicious dogs may not be included in the new products that are currently out in the market.

Still, there are other insurance companies (especially the bigger ones) that are willing to provide insurance for your dog, even if he is classified as vicious and has bitten before.

When is a dog considered vicious?

The definition of "vicious" actually varies from state to state. A dog may be considered vicious based on its actions and (in some cases and states) its breed and size. It can also take into account the owner's actions. The actions that may cause him to be considered vicious include not just biting, but also grabbing, jumping, being overly friendly and having the tendency to fight with other animals.

In sum, the dog presents the tendency to do something that may harm people or other dogs.

There are also states that automatically consider specific breeds vicious not because of its behavior or temperament but just because he is a specific breed. There are insurance companies that exclude breeds like:

  • Chow-chows,
  • German shepherds,
  • Siberian huskies,
  • Doberman pinschers,
  • Akitas,
  • Pit bulls and
  • Rottweilers.

Getting Insurance for Vicious Dogs

You can get insurance against your dog's actions through a homeowners or renters insurance with personal liability coverage. If the incident is related with your dog attacking a person while he is riding the car, the personal liability component of the car insurance will cover this. This insurance will pay for damages and compensation due to the actions of the dog, except for the most severe actions of the dog. This coverage is usually provided through an umbrella policy.

Be sure to check that injuries caused by dogs or animals are not excluded in the cover. Or else, you should buy a supplemental policy that provides the cover that you need.

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