Liability Insurance for Dog Trainers

For dog trainers, insurance is not only a means of preventing an accident from ruining their business, but also a way of giving dog owners a guarantee of their professionalism. Most professional association will require their members to be insured in order to meet their standards or will, at least, recommend it. Because general liability insurance, although useful, does not cover all aspects of a dog trainer's activities, as a trainer you will need to investigate the insurance options that are most suitable to your needs.

Liability Insurance for Dog Trainers

Liability insurance is meant to protect the trainer against any damage that might occur during his time working with dogs. This may mean damage to property or injury caused to another human or to the dog:

  • General liability insurance (the kind any business has) will, for example, cover the expenses resulting from a client's coming into your office, slipping on the floor, falling and breaking a leg.
  • Public liability insurance covers injury to other humans caused by the dogs you are working with. If the dog attacks someone, public liability insurance will cover the costs.
  • General liability insurance will not cover the loss of a pet or injury caused to the dog while you are in charge of him. To be safe as a dog trainer, you need to purchase a special liability for animals insurance (animal care insurance, custody/control insurance). This will protect you in case the dog gets lost or injured while you are in charge of him. These policies should cover veterinary fees, costs involved in the death of the animal, theft, the advertising needed for a reward offering and the reward itself. This kind of policy will cover you if you're doing obedience training, but will usually not include aggressive (guard dog or fight dog) training. You will need separate coverage for aggressive training.
  • There are also the professional indemnity policies, used if a client accuses you of negligence or pretends that your professional advice or your work with the pet caused financial loss.
  • If you are employing other people in your business, you must consider them a liability as well. You will need to purchase an employer's liability insurance to protect your business from the costs of accidents occurring with your employees while they are working.

Other Types of Insurance for Dog Trainers

In your line of work, accidents can occur that do not prejudice anyone else but yourself. Should you have an accident while training a dog, insurance can help you avoid the financial losses caused by your inability to work. If you work with any expensive equipment, you may consider purchasing an insurance policy for it.

Means of Reducing Liability

To be less vulnerable as a dog trainer, you can limit your liability by restricting the types of animals you work with. You can refuse to train certain dog breeds or dogs that tend to be overly aggressive. Also, you may choose to work only with owners in good health.