Tips on Finding Homeowners' Insurance


  • Shop around. Ask your dog-owning friends which company they use and if they have had problems. Your dog's national breed club may also have suggestions.

  • Contact the insurance commissioner in your state. The phone number can also be found in the state government section of the blue pages of your phone book. The commissioner can provide you with a list of all insurance companies doing business in your state. Work your way down the list to find out who can provide you with coverage that best suits your needs. When you speak to the commissioner, share your frustration over companies' discriminatory practices. Specifically ask him or her to review a cancellation or refusal to renew your policy. Existing law may already prohibit insurance companies from discriminating by breed, particularly if you live in Pennsylvania or Michigan.

  • Agents within the same company may have different policies. Talk to more than one representative for a particular carrier before giving up.

  • Show that the dog has completed some type of obedience training program, such as AKC's Canine Good Citizen® program.

  • Contact your state senator or representative. Discuss your insurance problems and suggest that he or she introduce legislation prohibiting insurance companies from discriminating against homeowners based on the breed of dog they own. The Government Relations department (doglaw@akc.org) has materials to assist you in these efforts.

  • As a last resort, consider buying a separate liability policy or separate rider to your existing policy that is specifically directed towards your dogs.