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For the Love of the Dog

Insurance Company Cancels Homeowner’s Insurance for Deputy, K-9 Deemed “Dangerous”

UPDATE – 10/29/12 

Meet Douglas County Sheriff’s Deputy Andy Woodward, with Diezel, a Belgian Malinois and certified K-9 Officer.  Woodward recently had his homeowner’s insurance policy cancelled by American Family Insurance company after they deemed his police dog a danger.  Is a new and dangerous precedent being set?

Based on American Family’s own criteria, prohibited breeds are Akitas, American pit bull terriers, Chows, Rottweilers and wolf mixes, none of which K-9 Diezel is but American Family decided otherwise.  They class him as a wolf-mix and claim that gives them reason to drop him.

The issue arose after an insurance company worker, while conducting an on-site review of the deputy’s home, spotted Woodward’s marked K-9 cruiser in the driveway. American Family subsequently learned that Diezel, the deputy’s Belgian Malinois canine partner, lives at the house.

American Family notified Woodward by letter Oct. 15 that his homeowners insurance coverage would be terminated.

“Due to the additional liability exposure of your police dog, we are unable to continue your homeowner coverage,” the letter said. (Omaha.com)

Oh, and by the way, K-9 Diezel actually has his own insurance, he’s covered by the county but as a deputy, Woodward is required to keep his dog at home like all other K-9 officers.

Initially there was some discussion over the county covering liability for the K-9 since they are actually the owner of record for Diezel.

For his part, Woodward said the insurance company asked if the county would sign a letter verifying that it provides liability insurance for Diezel, and he said the county would.

“I was told that they were going to send a letter and have the county sign it,” Woodward said.

Instead, he said, another letter arrived — a cancellation notice.

Seems insurance companies can cancel for just about any reason or come up with a reason if they choose. It’s not bad enough most companies discriminate against the average citizen and their canine companion(s) based on their own breed restrictions, now they’re going to be doing the same to our law officers and their K-9 partners who protect everyone, including those who choose not to offer prtection to them, via insurance.   Sad… sad…

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