Pets covered under auto insurance policy

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Progressive Group of Insurance Companies, an auto insurer based in Mayfield Village, Ohio, recently announced its collision coverage now covers customers' dogs and cats.

"Pets are part of your family," the company stated when explaining the reasoning of the coverage.

The new coverage is included on Progressive's policies with collision coverage at no additional cost. It will pay up to $500 if a customer's dog or cat is hurt or dies as a result of a car accident. There are no provisions that the pet must be restrained.

Progressive is not aware of any other car insurance company that provides this type of first-party coverage for pets. Typically, if a person causes an accident, his or her car insurance policy provides benefits for pets in the other person's car, but the person's own pets are not covered.

Progressive's pet injury coverage is available in 46 states and the District of Columbia. The company is working on offering the coverage in North Carolina, New Hampshire, New York, and Virginia.