Greyt Inspirations Life

A little about our life, our business and our pets.

Pet Accident Coverage

Summer is unofficially here now.  That means that more of us will be cruising the highways and we just might be taking our pets with us on a few trips.  USAToday has an interesting story this week about the increase in auto insurance companies who are offering coverage for pets injured in accidents.  This is really an idea whose time has come.


petinsurancexAccording to the article (“More insurers are going to the dogs,” by Kathleen Gray), in most cases if your pet is injured in a vehicle accident, you can file a claim under property damage, if your insurance provider doesn’t offer specialized pet coverage.  However, what an auto insurance company may consider legitimate property damage varies from company to company and from state to state.  With a traditional policy a company could deny a claim of pet injuries based on property damage liability limits.


Fortunately, things are slowly changing.


In 2007 Progressive, the third largest auto insurer in the U.S. with 10.4 million customers in all 50 states, became the first insurer to offer pet accident coverage.


Auto-Owners Insurance, which has 4.6 million policyholders in 25 states, and Farmers Insurance, with 10 million auto customers in 20 states, also offer coverage for pets injured in vehicle crashes.


These companies offer pet accident coverage at no extra cost to customers.  The coverage ranges from $500 to $1000 for pets injured or killed in an auto accident.


Auto insurance companies seem to have realized that people really care about their pets and that pet accident insurance can be an important selling point:


With 196 million licensed drivers nationwide, according to the Federal Highway Administration, “it’s very competitive,” says Lori Conarton of the Insurance Institute of Michigan. “If other companies find that people want this type of coverage, they’re going to want to start offering it, too.”


“We did it because we know how much our customers love their dogs and cats,” [Miriam Deitcher, Progressive’s director of marketing] says. “At first we provided $500 worth of coverage, but in March, we increased that to $1,000, to make sure we’re covering even more.”


…”We estimate more than 63% of our customers have pets, and caring for them after an accident can be expensive,” says Brian Dwyer, a Farmers senior vice president.


Are you interested in pet accident insurance?  I have to admit that on the two occasions when I’ve had a real car accident, I have had dogs in the car with me.  They weren’t injured either time but they were rattled (as was I!).  If I’d had pet accident insurance I might have taken them to the vet just to have them checked out.


Of course, remember that when you drive with your pets you should have them secured in your vehicle. Crates are preferable but you can also use a harness to buckle your dog in.  Whatever you do, please do not let a dog ride in the front seat with you.  It’s all too easy for a dog to distract you, bump your arm, shift the gears, or, with a small dog, even dive down toward the gas and break pedals.  Yes, I am speaking from experience.  My dogs ride in the backseat, in a crate.  That cute puppy who rides in your lap will become a 50-lb dog who thinks she can drive!  Don’t even let it get started!



May 27, 2009 - Posted by | dogs, Pets | , , , , ,

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