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Some dog owners can face home insurance difficulties

Posted On Wed, August 12, 2009

People in the market for home insurance may find themselves having a more difficult search if they own certain types of dog breeds.

A recent report in the Los Angeles Times notes that insurance companies are increasingly skittish about some breeds of dogs, ranging from wolf hybrids to akitas, chow-chows and rottweilers, among others. This is because some breeds are considered more likely to bite people, resulting in liability claims against homeowners in the process.

One attorney for the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals was quoted in the article as calling the trend "just wrong," since bad dog behavior is often considered more traceable to irresponsible owners than to specific breeds.

The newspaper also noted that 70 percent of all dog bite cases involve unsterilized male dogs.

Meanwhile, the Insurance Information Institute notes that dog bites cost insurers $356.2 million in 2007, which marked a 10.5 percent increase over 2006. The average cost of a dog bite claim was said to be $24,511 at that point, illustrating why some home insurance companies have taken such positions when it comes these breeds.

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