Deciding whether or not to insure your horse can be a difficult decision. You may not think your horse is very valuable, or that insurance will be too much of an added cost on top of the other expenses that come with horse ownership. However, when it comes to protecting your assets (and a horse is an asset), there’s more to consider than just the market value of your horse, or whether or not you want to pay it. Whether your horse is a top competitor at the Tryon International Equestrian Center or your kids’ favorite pet to ride in the yard, you may find after careful research that you can’t afford to NOT insure.
The Value of Your Horse’s Replacement
You may think that equestrian insurance is something only those with very expensive horses ($50K+) would consider. However, replacing a horse that costs only $10,000 can seem insurmountable if you’re also working to pay your mortgage and fund your kids’ college. The important question to ask yourself is, “If I lost my horse tomorrow, could I afford to replace it?” If the answer is “no,” then you may be putting yourself at risk by not purchasing protection.
How Much Insurance Do You Need?
If you do decide to buy insurance, how much do you need? To get the best answer, we recommend seeking out an experienced equine insurance underwriter, to determine the correct value for your horse. While a horse an seem priceless in the eyes of its owner, an underwriter will take into account a variety of factors to determine a fair replacement value, which will ensure that you have just the right amount of insurance necessary.
Mortality Insurance – Read the Fine Print
The greatest fear for a horse owner is facing a tragic loss of their animal, but sometimes the worst does happen, and it’s best to be prepared for it. However, be sure when purchasing mortality insurance that you understand any clauses or stipulations in the contract. Some insurance policies will cover the death of the animal whether it be from injury, illness, or natural causes, and no matter where it dies. Some will stipulate that an animal is covered when put down ONLY if a veterinarian recommended it. If you’re unsure, ask your insurance agent to review the policy in detail, so you won’t be surprised down the road.
Should You Add Loss of Use?
A loss of use policy can be purchased to supplement a mortality policy. Generally, this policy is used when a horse becomes ill or injured and cannot perform at its full value. Again, we highly recommend you go over the fine print with your insurance agent so you understand the policy completely, as what is considered “loss of use” can vary.
Medical Insurance – How Much Do You Need?
It’s easy for vet bills to rack up to thousands of dollars, and an equine medical insurance policy ensures you won’t have to cut care in the event of an emergency. There are two common types: one policy covers surgery for common ailments such as colic or ligament damage, while a major medical policy will cover not only surgery, but general veterinary care if a horse can be saved outside of surgery. Talk to your local insurance agent to find out which policy could be right for you.
Think you need more info? Contact Penny Insurance Agency for a full review of your options.