The short answer is that yes it does, but the long answer is that you may need to shop around. It’s more difficult to get insurance that will cover a home that includes a pit bull than it would be if you had a different breed.
Let’s take a look at why this is.
Why don’t Homeowner Insurers Like to Insure Pit Bulls?
It’s a tough one for many to get their heads around! Pit bull terriers are absolutely beautiful dogs.
They’re loyal, affectionate, great with children and highly intelligent. But they’re considered a dangerous breed, and in most states, they’re subject to BSL, or Breed-Specific Legislation.
Other dangerous breeds include the Akita, Chow, Doberman, Malamute, Rottweiler and Husky dogs.
These dogs aren’t inherently dangerous per se, but they have often been bred for unsavory purposes.
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Pit bulls in particular have a bad reputation because of their use in illegal blood sports as fighting dogs.
It’s not just their reputation, though.
Homeowner’s Insurance companies tend to stay away from insuring pit bulls not because of what they might do, but of the potential damage that they will cause if and when there is an incident.
Can My Insurance Company Refuse Me?
When you’re on the lookout for homeowner’s insurance, you might not even realize that you have to declare that you own a pit bull.
Once your dog feels like a member of the family, and not just part of the house, it can be odd to think you have to let an insurance company know about him.
And yet, plenty of companies offering homeowner’s insurance can refuse to insure an applicant who has a breed of dog that’s considered dangerous.
This is because when dog with the strength of a pit bull bites someone, the damage can be so much worse than had the person been bitten by, for example, a pug or a golden retriever.
Insurance companies are hit hard by dog bites.
It’s what costs them more than a billion dollars a year in claims.
And if you’re bitten by a pit bull, you’re more likely to need much more care and expensive medical attention than you would be if you’d be nipped by a chihuahua.
It’s important to have homeowner’s insurance.
But if your soft-hearted pitty companion is causing you sleepless, uninsured nights (probably while blissfully unaware of your turmoil and snoring happily on your bed) then rest assured that all is not lost!
Is My Pit Bull Uninsurable?
On doing a little research online, by asking do homeowners insurance cover pitbulls we found that in the states of Michigan and Pennsylvania insurers aren’t allowed to deny or cancel insurance coverage based on breed alone, which is great news.
For other states, though, it’s not always so easy, but we did find US insurance companies who are prepared to offer homeowner’s and renter’s insurance to homes where there’s a pit bull.
These include (but aren’t restricted to):
It’s important to check these companies regularly as occasionally you may find a company that has insured pit bull homes in the past now no longer does so.
You may also find that while some companies will insure your pit bull no questions asked, others will insist on a certificate from a vet or police authority stating that your dog shows no signs of aggression and has never been involved in a biting incident.
It is also the case that your insurance premiums may be raised on declaring that you own a dog considered to be on a ‘dangerous’ list, so bear this in mind, too.
What Else Can I Do?
Other than looking around for the best homeowner’s insurance, you can do your best to show to prospective insurance companies that you take ownership of your dog seriously.
Some insurance companies are more willing to insure homes where they know the dog is well-trained, so check out the Canine Good Citizen program, endorsed by the American Kennel Club Association.
By completing a training program with your pup and receiving a certificate from the CGC this can show insurers that your pit bull is obedient and trained, and shows no signs of aggression.
Remember that in almost all cases, it’s the owner that determines the dog’s temperament, and not the breed.
But even if your beloved pit bull’s kin still have a bad reputation, you will still be able to find homeowner’s insurance.