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On Tuesday, February 12th, Farmers Group, INC announced that they would no longer be covering dog bites from pit bulls, rottweilers or wolf hybrids anymore with homeowners insurance anymore. Homeowners in California will be notified of the change when their policies come up for renewal. The reason for the change is that it costs too much to cover these breeds because the number of bites have risen. “We reviewed our liability claim history and we determined that three breeds accounted for more than 25% of dog bite claims,” Erin Freeman, Farmers Group spokeswomen said.  “In addition, these three breeds caused more harm when they attacked than any other breed.”

Pit bull advocates, trainer and rescue groups have criticized the decision made by Farmers saying that it is condemning the breed, which are not vicious by inheritance, rather than punishing irresponsible owners. According to NBC, Farmers is not the only insurance company that is finding ways to limit the increasing level of liability for dog bites. U.S insurance companies have seen a rise by 50% in payments to the people who have been attacked by dogs. In trying to decrease the costs of  dog bites and attacks, Farmers and other insurance  companies around the country, are now asking their  customers to sign a waver that acknowledges that bites will not be covered. 

Some companies will be charging extra for owners who own pit bulls or other breeds with a high bite rate. Some companies are refusing to cover any dog bites at all. The majority of insurance companies have a “one bite rule” which will cover the initial bite but no other bites by the same animal, the report states. 

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