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Be A Good Pet Neighbor

Take this free online course for pet owners from State Farm® and dog behavior expert Victoria Stilwell

There are now more U.S. households with pets than there are U.S. households with children. In fact, there are now more dogs in this country than children!

Victoria Stilwell and her dogsWhile dogs may be man’s best friend, there are steps you can take to help your dog be a better neighbor.

Being a Good Pet Neighbor is a free online course. It is a collaborative effort between world-renowned animal behavior expert Victoria Stilwell and State Farm.

State Farm believes responsible pet ownership is key to reducing dog-related injuries. This new course is the company's latest effort to educate people about dog body language and safely interacting with dogs.

The three-lesson, 35-minute course is designed for both new and experienced dog owners. It is available online through the Victoria Stilwell Academy for Dog Training & Behavior. Lessons teach and reinforce what it means to be a good pet neighbor in the home, yard, and community.

“I founded the Victoria Stilwell Academy to teach both dog owners and aspiring dog trainers how to provide their dogs with very best," said Stilwell from her Atlanta headquarters. "Partnering with State Farm to deliver a course specifically aimed at promoting responsible pet ownership through training, awareness and education was obvious win-win."

What's Included in the Free Online Course?

You will learn immediate and long-term solutions in the course. This include how to:

  • Manage barking

  • Secure pets in the yard properly

  • Play safely and enrich your dog's life

  • Introduce your dog to other people and animals

  • Understand your insurance policy coverage

As a bonus, you can access a second, online course called Building Your Dog's Confidence. This course helps you understand how confidence shapes a dog's behavior and ways to build your dog's confidence.

It’s Not the Breed

Dog ownership does not come without risks. State Farm is one of the few insurance companies that does not have a breed restriction list. It does not exclude homeowner or renter insurance coverage because of the breed of dog owned.

In 2018, State Farm paid $123 million dollars for 3,280 dog bite and injury claims. Many dog-related injuries occur in the home and involve family members. Most dogs will never bite but it is important to remember that any dog can.

Just like humans, dogs are individuals. Every dog has a unique personality. While a dog's breed may dictate what the dog looks like, how it reacts to people or situations isn’t guaranteed by breed or type. Many factors may result in a dog biting or injuring a person. These include heredity, health, pain, training, fear and aggression.

Most bites are a perfect storm of situation and circumstance. Often a dog's physical and vocal language is misunderstood or missed. Avoid putting your dog into situations that could result in a fearful, anxious, or aggressive response.




About State Farm®:

For over 100 years, the mission of State Farm has been to help people manage the risks of everyday life, recover from the unexpected and realize their dreams. State Farm and its affiliates are the largest providers of auto and home insurance in the United States. Its more than 19,400 agents and 67,000 employees serve over 91 million policies and accounts – including auto, fire, lifehealth, commercial policies and financial services accounts. Commercial auto insurance, along with coverage for rentersbusiness ownersboats and motorcycles, is also available. State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company is the parent of the State Farm family of companies. State Farm is ranked No. 44 on the 2023 Fortune 500 list of largest companies. For more information, please visit

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