Last Updated: February 23, 2024, 8:54 am by TRUiC Team

Petting Zoo Insurance

Getting business insurance for your petting zoo is essential.

For example, a visitor to your petting zoo could initiate legal action after being injured by one of the animals.

For such a predicament, there is insurance that will pay legal defense fees, as well as compensation, if the need arises.  

We’ll help you find the most personalized and affordable coverage for your unique business.

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Recommended: Next Insurance is dedicated to matching small businesses with the right policy at the best price.

Best Insurance for a Petting Zoo

General liability insurance is — generally speaking — one of the most important insurance policies for petting zoos. 

Some of the risks general liability insurance covers are:

  • Bodily injury
  • Property damage
  • Medical payments
  • Legal defense and judgment
  • Personal and advertising injury

While general liability insurance provides coverage for a variety of risks, it may not be sufficient to cover all the risks that your business may face. For instance, some risks may require coverage from specialized policies, such as those that offer: 

  • Commercial property coverage: Petting zoos usually have a lot of equipment and infrastructure, such as fences, barns, and feeders, which are necessary for the safety and comfort of the animals. Property insurance protects the petting zoo from any damages or losses to this equipment.
  • Animal liability insurance: This policy provides coverage for any injuries or damages caused by the animals at the petting zoo. Since petting zoos usually have animals that are not typically found in a domestic setting, such as goats, llamas, or alpacas, this type of insurance is important to protect the petting zoo from any legal claims.
  • Business income coverage: If a petting zoo is forced to close temporarily due to unforeseen circumstances such as severe weather, it can result in a loss of income. Business interruption insurance provides coverage for lost income and any additional expenses incurred during the period of closure.

Let's Find the Coverage You Need

The best insurers design exactly the coverage you need at the most affordable price.

Cost of General Liability Insurance

The average petting zoo in America spends between $300 - $800 per year for $1 million in general liability coverage.

Compare the average cost of general liability insurance for a petting zoo to other professional industries using the graph below.

Several factors will determine the price of your policy. These include your:

  • Location
  • Deductible
  • Number of employees
  • Per-occurrence limit
  • General aggregate limit

You may be able to acquire general liability insurance at a discounted rate by purchasing it as part of a business owner’s policy (BOP) rather than as a standalone policy.

A BOP is a more comprehensive solution that includes multiple forms of coverage, such as business interruption and property insurance.

Graph showing average price of general liability insurance prices per industry

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Find the Best Rate

Discover the best coverage at the lowest rate in our cheapest business insurance review.

Common Situations That General Liability Insurance May Cover for a Petting Zoo

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Example 1: An animal bites a customer, breaking the skin and fracturing several fingers. General liability insurance would cover the customer’s medical bills.

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Example 2: A child sustains several injuries when they fall during a horse ride. General liability insurance would cover the child’s medical bills and your legal fees in the event of a lawsuit.

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Example 3: A large animal escapes and damages a customer’s car. General liability insurance would cover the customer’s vehicle repair costs.

Other Types of Coverage Petting Zoos Need

While general liability is the most important type of insurance to have, there are several other forms of coverage you should be aware of. Below are some of the most common types of coverage:

Business Personal Property Insurance

Safeguard your valuable equipment, animal enclosures, feed, and other essential assets with business personal property insurance. This coverage can help in the event of theft, vandalism, fire, or other unforeseen incidents that may result in financial losses.

Workers’ Compensation Insurance

Most states require businesses to carry workers’ compensation insurance for their part-time and full-time employees. This coverage protects your employees if they become injured at work or fall ill after a work-related accident. It not only covers an employee’s medical bills and lost wages if they need time to recover but also any disability benefits stemming from a work-related accident.

When purchasing a policy, you must classify each employee according to their responsibilities to ensure the proper level of coverage (e.g., employees who work directly with animals and those who run your ticket office fall into different classifications).

Commercial Umbrella Insurance

While your general liability insurance policy covers most claims, some accidents or lawsuits may be so catastrophic that they threaten to exhaust the limits of your primary coverage. Commercial umbrella insurance protects you from paying out-of-pocket for any legal fees and awarded damages that exceed your primary policy.

Business Interruption Insurance

If a fire, tornado, or other major disaster forces you to temporarily close, business interruption insurance would help cover your bills and financial losses until you can reopen. You can usually purchase business interruption insurance as part of a business owner policy or BOP.

Commercial Auto Insurance

If your petting zoo operates any vehicles on public roads, you need commercial auto insurance to protect those vehicles, your drivers and others on the road in the event of an accident. Be sure to select a policy that covers not only accident-related vehicle repair costs and medical treatment for anyone injured but also sufficient protection for any special equipment your vehicles may contain.

Additional Steps To Protect Your Business

Although it’s easy (and essential) to invest in business insurance, it shouldn’t be your only defense.

Here are several things you can do to better protect your petting zoo:

  • Use legally robust contracts and other business documents. (We offer free templates for some of the most common legal forms.)
  • Set up an LLC or corporation to protect your personal assets. (Visit our step-by-step guides to learn how to form an LLC or corporation in your state.)
  • Stay up to date with business licensing.
  • Maintain your corporate veil.

Petting Zoo Insurance FAQ

Yes, absolutely. You will need to first get a quote from an online business insurance provider like Next Insurance. Next allows you to then purchase a policy immediately and your coverage will be active within 48 hours.

A typical business owner’s policy includes general liability, business interruption, and commercial property insurance. However, BOPs are often customizable, so your agent may recommend adding professional liability, commercial auto, or other types of coverage to your package depending on your company’s needs.

"Business insurance" is a generic term used to describe many different types of coverage a business may need. General liability insurance, on the other hand, is a specific type of coverage that business owners need to protect their assets.

The answer is yes. From the very beginning, it's probable that a petting zoo will require business insurance coverage. Insurance can provide protection to your business against various risks, such as financial losses, bodily harm, and harm to property. Furthermore, specific types of insurance are needed to adhere to state regulations. 

Not necessarily. Certain exceptions may be written directly into your petting zoo insurance policy, and some perils may be entirely uninsurable.

Yes, an LLC is meant to create a legal barrier between your business and your personal assets and credit. If you haven’t formed an LLC yet, use our Form an LLC guide to get started.

An LLC doesn’t protect your business assets from lawsuits and liability– that’s where business insurance comes in. Business insurance helps protect your business from liability and risk.