A pet is like a member of the family, but one with the ability to do destructive damage. In some situations, this damage becomes costly.
Home insurance may help cover some of your losses. However, these policies typically do not extend to most common situations. Here are a few examples of when you may wish to contact your agent.
Does Home Insurance Cover Damage Your Dog Causes At Home?
Most often, home insurance does not cover any damage your dog does to your home — from those shredded pillows to that important piece of art he or she knocked to the ground.
If your pet damages your personal property, there is not much insurance can do for you. Your policy generally does not cover damage to your personal belongings by your own pet. However, it may help cover damage from a visiting neighbor’s pet.
Will Home Insurance Cover Damage To Other Structures Caused By Your Pet?
Did the dog break through your fence, causing significant damage to it? Perhaps the dog tore the siding off the shed. While this can be expensive, your policy is not likely to cover this damage either. Remember, your policy does not cover damage caused by your pet to your personal assets.
When Will Your Policy Cover The Dog’s Damage?
Let’s say your pet got out of the fence and did damage to a neighbor’s home. Perhaps it got away from you on a walk and destroyed a piece of furniture from a neighbor down the road. These are instances in which the liability component of your home insurance policy goes into effect. If the pet does damage to someone else’s property, your policy usually kicks in to cover those losses to a point.
What About Your Pig?
Today, people have other pets aside from dogs and cats. If you have a pet goat, pig, chicken, or cow – or other domestic animals – your policy often applies to them, too. It covers damage these animals cause to another person’s property.
However, this only applies to pets. It does not apply to animals you have on your farm. In other words, if you raise pigs for a hobby and they are pets, not meant for the sale, this coverage applies. Therefore, clearly distinguish your pet's purpose to your insurer.
Home insurance coverage for dog damage is important to understand. If your dog is destructive, speak to your agent about options for extending your coverage. And be sure to contact your agent if your pet damages anyone else’s property.
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