Yes, its true – Rover could cost you money. Some insurance companies have a list of “high risk” dogs. The insurance companies believe that certain breeds of dog are more likely to bite than other breeds. They do not take things like training into consideration.
The insurance companies have several methods of dealing with people who have these high risk dogs. First, some insurance companies will not insure you if you own these types of dogs. I have received several phone calls from people who have not been able to get insurance. Unfortunately, the insurance companies have the right to do this. Second, some insurance companies will increase your rates if you have one of these dogs. Again, as long as the rates were approved by the Department of Insurance, this is legal. Third, some insurance companies will not pay claims for dog bites. I have handled two cases recently where my clients were bit by dogs and the insurance company has denied coverage to the dog owner. We are then left suing the dog owner, who will have to pay us out of his/her own assets. Finally, some insurance companies will cancel you the first time your dog bites someone.
So, how do you deal with this? You could, I guess, just not get one of these dogs. Of course, each insurance company has its own list of biters. Here is one such list, but do not consider this to be the only list. You can get the dog, find an insurance company that will cover you, and pay the rates that they charge. Or you can get a mixed breed dog that avoids the issue.
Whatever you do, make sure your insurance company will cover you if your dog bites someone!