Rottweiler owner has hard time getting home insurance

A farm owner in South Shore Montérégie says he wants to offer a cautionary tale for other homeowners after his application for home insurance was rejected by several companies because of his Rottweilers.

Tracy Patterson told CJAD 800 News he never had troubles with home insurance and his two Rottweilers before until he bought a hobby farm in St-Antoine-Abbé near Chateauguay where he lives with the Rottweilers as well as several other dogs.

Patterson said his headaches began when an inspector checking his new farm said he'd have to inform the insurance company about his two Rottweilers. A week later, the company cancelled his policy without giving him time to get a new one. Promutuel confirms to CJAD 800 News that they do not insure homeowners with certain breeds of dogs such as Rottweiler, Doberman, Pit Bull and Mastiff, saying they represent a risk.

Patterson said he and his broker went through a stressful time before finally finding an insurance company who knew about his dogs and agreed to insure him.

"Four companies had already refused me and I had called a couple myself and just to find out I was refused, I was starting to lose hope, saying My god, this cannot be happening, I'm going to have to get rid of my dogs, which are, like most of us, are part of our family," Patterson said.

Patterson said companies didn't even want to consider insuring him excluding the dogs.

"I live in the country, I'm far from the road, I'm far from neighbours. I could understand if I lived in downtown Montreal where certain breeds are not allowed or banned," Patterson said.

The Insurance Bureau of Canada says most companies usually don't ask about dogs and it's up to the insurance companies. It adds that it can be on a case-by-case basis and it can help find people an insurance company if all else fails.

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  1. Jamie 1 posted on 04/16/2014 09:50 AM
    I had the same problem with my ins company.. I have been married for 25 years and have always owned german shepherds. Never had a problem with the same ins company until I moved off island. As soon as we settled in we were told by ins company that we needed a certificate from a animal hospital in Montreal stating that our dogs were no threat to the community. I found this weird.I asked local hospitals if they had ever heard of such a thing, and they all said no. I ended up changing ins company, which even they said they never heard of a long story, keep looking to change companies. If your dogs are truly no threat to the community this should not be the problem.This is discrimination of the breed. Its the owners that need to be reviewed.
    1. Mr. Tracy Patterson posted on 04/17/2014 06:50 PM
      @Jamie 1 Thanks for the reply. I absolutely agree, it is the owners that need to be reviewed. So many dog owners and wanna be dog owners often choose their breed of dog based on looks and size without even thinking of their temperament and their basic needs. This is a huge problem which can lead to dogs harming people. I appreciate you sharing your experience. I was lucky enough to find another broker which found an ins company that insured my property with my dogs. Thanks for sharing.
  2. Jessica posted on 04/16/2014 11:24 AM
    What beautiful dogs... I hope that you'll be able to keep them and not give them away!! A dog (of any breed) is not born mean or agessive, its the owners that teach their dogs these behaviours.... Society had put such a negative label on so many beautiful, innocent breeds.... We must fight ignorance, abuse and neglect...not dogs.
    1. Mr. Tracy patterson posted on 04/17/2014 06:55 PM
      @Jessica Thanks for your comments and concern. We can not deny some breeds can develop more aggressive behaviors than others. The Rottweiler is one strong breed and must not end up in the hands of an inexperienced owner. They are strong willed and must be well educated and they need someone who can show them who is in charge. I was lucky enough to have found another broker who found me an ins company that has insured my property including my dogs. I can rest at ease now that I can keep my loving and loyal dogs. Thanks for sharing.
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