What is pet business insurance?
Pet business insurance is not one policy, but a term used for a package of products that can cover you for activities relating to pet-based businesses, such as walking, sitting, grooming, training, boarding, and selling.
Whether a pet in your care is injured or killed, goes missing, or causes injury to people or damage to property, insurance can provide financial cover in the event that a claim is made against you.
The primary types of insurance in a pet business insurance policy are usually public liability insurance and care, custody and control cover.
Public liability insurance may be included as standard in a pet business insurance package and provides financial support if a claim is made against you by a member of the public, including your clients but it's always worth checking that it is. In the event that your business activity causes injury, or even death, or that it results in damage or loss of a third party’s property, public liability insurance can help to cover compensation and legal costs.
Care, custody and control insurance specifically covers you for claims resulting from injury, illness, or death of an animal in your care. For example, if a dog is injured by a sharp implement during grooming, this product could cover the vet’s fees for the dog’s treatment. You should consider making sure the amount of cover you potentially take out is enough to cover the value of the animals you’re responsible for, as well as the kinds of incidents you might encounter.
You may also consider equipment cover which could compensate you if the tools of your trade are lost, stolen or damaged. Typically, business equipment insurance can cover the cost of replacing tools, as well as potentially covering the loss of revenue you may experience for the time you can’t work.
Non-negligent cover is a product pet business owners may consider. It provides protection for you in the event that an animal is harmed through no fault of your own. For example, if a dog were to twist its leg while playing, non-negligent cover could help to cover the cost of treatment. It could even provide cover in the event that an animal is lost or killed.
Employers’ liability insurance is legally required for any business owner that employs staff who are not family members or based abroad. If you employ anyone, you will need at least £5 million worth of cover. Not having this insurance can result in a fine of £2,500 for every day you are not covered.
Key cover is another product you may consider. More likely to be relevant for sitters or walkers with access to their client’s home, this form of insurance can help to cover the costs associated with lost keys, such as the expense of replacing locks or resetting burglar alarms.