Stop Breed Profiling for Homeowners Insurance!
Final signature count: 30,960
Sponsor: The Animal Rescue Site
Homeowners insurance companies are raising premiums based upon dog breed. Help ban this harmful breed profiling!
Homeowners across the United States are being targeted by insurance companies solely based on the breed of dog they own1. Insurance companies label some dog breeds as "dangerous," resulting in higher premiums, inferior policies, or denial of coverage altogether. This practice needs to stop, and it needs to stop now.
U.S. insurance companies can question homeowners on whether they own a certain breed of dog, and can charge more for a policy or require additional paperwork depending on the answer. This practice, known as "breed profiling2," is outlawed in some states, like Michigan and Pennsylvania, but in most states the insurance companies can outright preclude policy holders for owning certain dog breeds.
The higher premiums and lower coverage make those breeds less likely to be adopted, leaving them to languish in shelters3. Meanwhile, owners of these dogs are faced with staggering insurance costs that may hold them back from home ownership. In many cases, the roots of these rules can be traced back to racial discrimination, as well4.
Policy standards when it comes to dog breeds vary from company to company and differ by state. Some companies simply charge more in premiums for owners of a "dangerous" dog breed, while others deny coverage outright.
Breed bans have been proven to be extremely ineffective, and are not based on scientific data2. Dogs should be evaluated based on individual temperament, not only on their breeds. Insurance companies shouldn't be allowed to discriminate against home owners who have a specific breed of dog. That's why a nationwide ban on breed profiling needs to be put into effect by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners.
Sign below to stop breed profiling for homeowner's insurance!
- Animal Farm Foundation, The dogs, people, and housing insurance project, "Family Pets Belong with Their Families."
- American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (2021), "Breed Profiling by Insurance Companies."
- American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (2021), "What Is Breed-Specific Legislation?"
- Ann Linder, Race, Racism and the Law (22 October 2018), "The Black Man's Dog: The Social Context of Breed Specific Legislation."
To the National Association of Insurance Commissioners,
Homeowners should not be discriminated against and punished simply for owning any particular breed of dog, regardless of the dog's temperament, sociability, and personal history. Breed profiling is an irrational practice that only hurts homeowners and dogs all across the United States.
Recognizing that standards and policies differ between companies, and state regulations differing as well, I ask you put into effect a nationwide ban on breed specific policies, or "breed profiling," in relation to dog ownership and homeowners insurance.
I join with organizations including the American Bar Association, American Kennel Club, American Veterinary Medical Association, National Canine Research Council, and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, among others, who recognize that any housing or insurance policy regarding a dog should look at the dog's behavior instead of breed.
Well-trained, socialized pets of all breeds should be allowed to be owned without the threat of penalty from insurance companies in the United States.
National Association of Insurance Commissioners, you can end breed profiling in homeowners insurance policies and create breed-neutral standards that are based on evidence, not fear. Homeowners and all breeds of dogs deserve better than what is currently taking place.