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Is your pet covered?

Published on August 3, 2017

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We’ve all heard stories of people being attacked by dogs. Do you have a pet at home? Even if you consider your loyal companion a member of your family, it's nonetheless an animal and can be unpredictable. If your pet causes damage or bodily injury to a third party, are you covered by your insurance? The team at L’Unique General Insurance would like to update you on this issue!

Your home insurance may cover certain damages caused by your pet

Risks related to owning a pet are normally covered under the civil liability included in home insurance policies. Therefore, insuring cats and most dog breeds is usually a simple procedure and doesn’t require an increase in premiums. But that’s not the case for all pets.

What is taken into consideration when reviewing a file?

When assessing your insurance file, the risk of the animal causing damage to a third party is evaluated.

To do so, your broker will probably ask you a few questions. For example, if you own a dog, you will be asked if it ever bit someone or was trained to attack.  These questions help to assess the risks of the animal biting someone and causing serious injuries for the victim to take legal action against you.

Other risks are involved when it comes to exotic animals. Suppose you are a tenant in a multi-unit building and you own a snake. If the snake somehow got into the ventilation system or the pipes, other tenants would likely want to live elsewhere until it was found and the building owner would likely want it to be found. All of which would entail potentially significant costs. Not to mention the panic that the snake would set in and the potential accidents it could cause. And even worse, the snake could attack someone. The reputation of the animal’s breed is therefore also taken into account during the assessment.

The results of the assessment will determine if the home insurance coverage can be maintained or offered.

Why are pitbulls usually excluded from insurance coverage?

Because pitbull attacks are usually more violent and the injuries caused by their bites much more severe than attacks caused by other breeds. The attacks almost always entail lawsuits against the dog owners. Therefore, given the significant risks involved with owning this breed of dogs, most insurance companies refuse to cover them.

Your insurance broker is there to help you prevent losses. Feel free to contact him or her!

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