Renters Pet Insurance: Here's Everything You Need To Know

by Kari Steere, Licensed Insurance Agent
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Renters Pet Insurance: Here's Everything You Need To Know
Does renters insurance cover pets? Learn more about coverage details and claim eligibility in Pawlicy Advisor's guide to renters insurance for dog owners.

If you’re a tenant and own a pet, you might want to consider purchasing renters insurance with pet coverage. According to AVMA1, 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year. If your dog ever injures someone and you’re found liable, then renters insurance can help prevent you from being personally responsible for their medical bills and legal fees.

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Even if you own a sweet, well-behaved pup, you still may want to consider pet liability coverage through renters insurance. Accidents can always happen — you never know when your growing puppy might get overwhelmed by a guest at the door, and accidentally knock them down in all their excitement.

There are many types of dog insurance plans that offer financial protection against the monetary risks you may face in your journey through pet ownership. Today’s post is all about pets and renters insurance, including why you might need one of these policies for your dog.

Use the links to learn more about renters insurance for dogs:

Does renters insurance cover dogs?

Renters insurance covers dogs, but only for certain claims and up to a specific limit. A standard renters insurance policy has four main types of coverage:

  • Your liability, or the financial obligation you’re found to be responsible for
  • Your property, such as a laptop, engagement ring, or bicycle
  • Additional living expenses, including hotel rates and commuting costs incurred because the rental unit is uninhabitable
  • A person’s medical treatments for injuries you’re found liable for

Pet’s are considered your personal property, so you may be held liable for any damage they cause to others’ property (like chewing up a neighbor’s couch) or injuries they inflict from a bite wound. If your dog attacks another person or pet, it’s likely you’ll be held financially liable — whether or not criminal files are charged.

How does renters pet insurance work?

Renters insurance protects you from personally having to pay for someone's damaged property, medical bills, or veterinary care. It may also cover legal fees often associated with small claims court in case you are sued by the injured party.

Most renters insurance policies include pet liability coverage up to $100,000, after which point the policyholder will be responsible for paying themselves. There may be limits on certain types of liability claims, such as dog-related accidents, that cap how much the insurance provider will payout for those types of incidents.

Specific dog breed insurance restrictions may also apply. The list of dog breeds insurance won't cover often includes:

Additionally, exotic pets like wolves, ferrets, amphibians, reptiles, and other wild animals are usually not covered by renter's pet insurance. If you are not sure if your renters insurance covers your animal companion, make sure to check with your provider.

Does renters insurance cover pet damage?

No, renters insurance does not cover any damage your dog or cat causes in the property you’re leasing.

What’s not covered by renters pet insurance?

Renters liability insurance will not pay for injuries your dog causes to you, your property, or the property which you are renting. For example, renters insurance for dog owners cannot be claimed for scratches to the wood floor, torn screen windows, chewed up TV cables, or any personal medical attention you may require due to your pup injuring you.

Additionally, renters insurance does not cover any injury your pet sustains on the property (such as falling down stairs) or off the property (like a torn ligament at the dog park). That would be covered by a pet health insurance policy.

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Health insurance vs renters insurance for pets

Pet insurance is similar to human health insurance and can help you save a significant amount of money on veterinary bills. Coverage options vary, but the most comprehensive plans can reimburse you for out-of-pocket costs spent to treat dogs’ illnesses or injuries.

Some owners question whether renters insurance is worth getting for well-behaved dogs who don’t present liability risks. However, most agree that pet insurance is worth the cost. Considering that every six seconds in the United States, a pet owner is faced with a veterinary bill that costs $1,000 or more — more than the cost of many people’s monthly rent — pet insurance could prevent owners from experiencing financial hardship during an already stressful situation.

Is Dog Insurance Worth It?

In general, pet insurance is offered to cats and dogs, although some providers like Nationwideand VPI Pet Insurance, offer coverage for other types of pets.

Renters insurance, on the other hand, offers coverage for your liability and property when you are renting a home or apartment. Landlords commonly require tenants with pets to carry this type of insurance to ensure that you will be able to afford the financial consequence of your pet injuring someone.

However, renters insurance doesn’t cover any of your pet’s medical expenses they might incur during a dog fight whether it’s on or off the property.

How much is renters pet insurance per month?

The cost of renters insurance for dog and cat owners depnds on several factors, including:

  • Your location (and the likelihood of filing an insurance theft claim)
  • Type of property (and its security features)
  • Credit score (and the perceived insurance risk)

Renters insurance costs between $10 and $23 per month, according to rates published by Progressive2 — but you could save money by bundling a Progressive pet insurance plan with their renters policies. Several other companies also offer pet insurance discounts for policy bundles, including, but not limited to:

If you choose to bundle your policies, you could save as much as 25% off premiums. Be sure to check with your insurer for available insurance discounts if you decide to invest in both renters and insurance.

Make sure to shop around and compare different providers to find the best deal possible.

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Key Takeaways

  • Renters insurance policies cover liability costs, making it a worthwhile investment for pet owners in case their pet family member hurts someone or personal property damage when renting a home.
  • Pet insurance, on the other hand, helps pay for vet bills should your pet become sick or injured.
  • Depending on the insurance company, renters insurance liability coverage might not cover exotic pets like reptiles, as well as some dog breeds like German Shepherds and Pit Bulls, that are considered to be more aggressive than other breeds.

References

  1. AVMA, “Dog Bite Prevention” Accessed Feb. 9, 2022.
  2. Progressive, “How Much Does Renters Insurance Cost?” Accessed Feb. 24, 2022.
Kari Steer, Licensed P&C Insurance Agent at Pawlicy Advisor

About the author

Kari Steere, Licensed Insurance Agent

Customer Support - Pawlicy Advisor

Kari Steere is a licensed P&C insurance agent in all 50 states and has focused entirely on pet insurance since 2019. As an animal lover with a rescued Terrier named Barry, when she's not helping pet owners find the perfect plan on Pawlicy Advisor, she runs a ranch in Oregon and rehabilitates any animals that come across her path.

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