Did you know that, depending on your state, dog bites can factor into your home insurance policy? About 1/3 of all homeowners insurance claims paid out in recent years were a result of dog bites and other dog injuries. The type of dog you own matters to insurers, too. They use statistics to determine which dog breeds are considered more likely to bite, and will sometimes deny home insurance to people who own certain dog breeds. Although “breed restriction” is not legal in Pennsylvania, it is still important information to know when considering adding a new pet to your home.
Statistically speaking, there are over four million recorded dog bites every year in the United States. Out of those, about 20% become infected. Unfortunately, there are fatalities from dog bites every year in our country. From all of these recorded dog bites, the vast majority occur on private property owned by the dog’s owner, which is why insurance companies have made breed-specific stipulations or conditions in their home insurance policies.
As stated above, although PA homeowners do not have to worry about breed-specific homeowners insurance policies, you are still liable as a pet owner for how your dog acts in the presence of others. If your dog attacks another person, you can be held legally responsible. On the opposite end, if you are attacked by another person’s dog, you may be able to seek compensation for your injuries. At Attorney Doug Stoehr‘s practice, we are skilled in handling your dog bite claims. Please call our Altoona, PA area office for more information at 814-946-4100.