Most dogs will never bite a person, but it is important to remember that any dog, regardless of breed or type, can bite under certain circumstances. During the last year, dog bite claims have decreased, but still, in 2018, State Farm paid 123-million dollars for more than 3,000 dog bite and injury claims.
The number of dog bite victims filing insurance claims decreased nationally, but Texas moved up in the top 5 rankings last year. According to new State Farm data, the insurer paid $5.8 million dollars on 168 dog-related injury claims in Texas in 2018. Fewer than only California, Illinois and Ohio. The average claim in Texas was $34,800.
Nationally, State Farm paid $123 million dollars for 3,280 dog bite and injury claims, a decrease in the number of claims and amount paid from 2017. “Owning a pet is a big responsibility,” State Farm Public Affairs Specialist Heather Paul said. “Dog owners are responsible not only for the health and safety of their pet, but also protecting people from injury.”
In 2017, State Farm received 175 claims in Texas and paid $6 million. The average claim was slightly lower at $34,600.
State Farm is also one of the few insurance companies in the country that does not have a breed restriction policy and does not exclude homeowner or renter insurance coverage because of the breed of dog owned. Under the right circumstances, any dog might bite.
Tips on being a responsible dog owner:
- Never leave a baby or small child alone with a dog, even if it is a family pet. Children are often bitten by dogs in their own household.
- Make sure your pet is socialized so it feels at ease around people and other animals
- Walk and exercise your dog on a leash to keep it healthy and provide mental stimulation
- Regular veterinary visits are essential to regulating the health of your dog. A sick or injured dog is more likely to bite
- Be alert. If someone approaches you and your dog, caution them to wait before petting the dog. Give your pet time to be comfortable with the stranger
- Understand and respond to changes in your dogs’ body language. Look at the eyes, ears, tail, and posture to know when your dog may be happy, fearful, or angry.
Don Tipps State Farm Insurance
2700 S Western Street