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Horse Insurance Guide (Costs & Tips)

Owning a horse is a big responsibility. In addition to the cost of buying your horse, you will have likely invested lots of money into horse insurance, training, boarding, lesson, vet bills, farrier bills, tack, and shows among other things.

With how much time and money you dedicate to your equine partner, it makes sense to insure them. Depending on the type of horse insurance you get, your horse can be covered for morality, medical expenses, injury, and even theft.

Many people who show their horses will have some sort of form of equine insurance to protect them. Having your equine insured will help you rest assured that they are well protected.

What is Horse Insurance?

Many equestrians may choose to insure their horses to know that they will be covered in a time of emergency. Insurance can give you peace of mind that your beloved equine will be kept safe.

When it comes to insuring your equine, there are several different policies you can choose from. Types of horse insurance can vary based on the different needs of horse owners. They can range anywhere from medical, surgical, transportation, liability, and morality.

The most common types of horse insurance you will see are: morality, loss of use, liability, major medical, and surgical. Insurance policies are also available for breeding, foals, and air transit.

Does Horse Insurance Cover a Horse’s Death?

Morality coverage is similar to life insurance that people have. It is the most common form of horse insurance and it covers your equine in the case of death or theft. It typically also covers euthanasia performed by your veterinarian.

Close up of a brown horse equine

Loss of Use

Loss of use covers your horse when it is no longer able to perform due to injury or illness. There are two types of loss if use policies, external injury or full, both which typically reimburse you for up to 60% of your horse’s value.

External injury covers equines that have received permanent damages from an accident caused by something external like a trailer or fence. Full loss covers horses that have become unable to work because of external injuries, illnesses and accidents.

Liability

Liability covers damage your horse may cause to property or people. Though many people don’t get liability coverage with their horse insurance, it can be a good option if your horse interacts with people regularly or is often in public areas.

Major Medical

Major medical is typically the equivalent of your own health insurance. It covers treatments from your veterinarian for illness, injury, and accident.

A major medical horse insurance policy includes coverage for both surgery and some diagnostics. It generally will not include coverage for preventative or routine care. Major medical coverage can save you from being stuck with expensive veterinarian bills.

Surgical

Surgical covers procedures done under general anesthetic for illness, injury or accident. It will not cover surgeries that are performed for cosmetic reasons.

What is the Cost of Horse Insurance

In addition to the type of policy you choose, there are other factors that play into the role of how much you pay for horse insurance. A horse’s age, worth, where you live and what you do with your equine partner will influence how much you pay.

Many policies have add-ons you can include for additional coverage at an extra price. You can generally expect to pay upwards of $150 a year for horse insurance.

Horse Insurance Tips

Like any form of insurance, picking the right horse insurance policy for your horse can be stressful. However, with these helpful tips you can rest assured your companion will have the right coverage.

1. Age Will Play a Factor in Coverage

Though most equines are still active at age 15 or older, some insurance companies will not cover those past the age of 15 for policies such as loss of use. Some companies will charge additional for older horses, but will still cover them. If you have a horse older than 18, you can expect your rate to go up drastically.

If you purchased an older horse or have one that is over 15, horse insurance may not be ideal for you. In addition to loss of use, morality and sometimes surgical and major medical policies will not be available for older horses. Though some companies may still offer policies for older equines, you will be expected to pay more and often have less coverage.

2. If You Show, Insurance is a Good Idea

Most high-performance show horses are worth $10,000-$40,000, or even more. In addition to the purchase cost, lots of money is spent on training, boarding, lessons, tack, showing, vet bills, and farrier bills.

With how much money you have invested in your show horse, it is a good idea to get a policy to protect them in case something happens. Many people will recommend morality, loss of use, and major medical coverage for show horses. A coverage plan with these policies will typically cover an equine in the case of death, theft, illness, injury, accident, and loss of ability to perform.

Foal running to his stable

3. Insurance is a Good Idea if Your Horse is Prone to Colic

Colic is a thing every equestrian dreads. In some serious cases, surgery is required and can leave you with a hefty bill.

Colic surgery can often cost more than $5,000 dollars, which is a large sum to pay for many. Having an insurance policy that includes colic surgery will give you peace of mind that you will not be left with a large bill on top of the stress of your horse having colic.

4. If You Are Looking For Basic Coverage, Morality is The Way to Go

Morality is a base coverage when it comes to horse insurance. Anywhere from elite show horses to recreational riding ponies can benefit from morality coverage.

A horse insurance policy that includes morality will cover your horse in the case of death, theft and in some cases euthanasia. It is a good idea to have morality coverage as an equestrian no matter what you do with your horse. If your horse dies or is stolen under your ownership, you will be reimbursed for its insured value.

5. Do Your Research

Before deciding on a policy or horse insurance company, do your research. As every company varies on what policies they offer, find one that has everything you are looking for.

If possible, request quotes to see where you can get the best deal possible based on your needs. Once you find a good company to work, be sure to talk with your agent so they know exactly what coverage you need.

Insurance policies can be confusing, so be sure to thoroughly read yours over and ask your agent if you have any questions. It is important that you have a good understanding of everything your policy covers.

FAQs

Can You Insure a Horse That Isn’t Registered?

If your horse isn’t registered, you can still insure them. A microchip or photos from all sides of your horse can work for identification for most insurance companies.

Do I Need Horse Insurance?

Though you aren’t required to have insurance on your horse it is often a good idea. If you show or ride on a regular basis, an insurance policy is a good idea to keep your horse covered. Most people invest a lot of money into their equines, so it is a good idea to keep them protected.

Does Horse Insurance Cover Colic?

Many insurance companies offer policies that will cover colic. Most types of policies can have colic coverage added to them, just be sure to ask your agent. Some companies even offer colic-only policies.

Will an Insurance Policy on a Horse Transfer When it is Sold?

Most of the time an insurance policy will not transfer over on a horse that has sold. Most policies are only good under the owner who bought the coverage.

What Other Types of Equestrian Insurance Should I Get?

Although it’s not a must, we do recommend personal riding insurance. Also, if you have a trailer or horsebox, we recommend having horse trailer insurance and horsebox insurance. Lastly, insurance for you equestrian belongings such as barn insurance is recommended.

Although it’s not a must, we do recommend personal riding insurance. Also, if you have a trailer or horsebox, we recommend having horse trailer insurance and horsebox insurance. Lastly, insurance for you equestrian belongings such as barn insurance is recommended.


Whether you compete at high levels or just enjoy leisurely riding, having insurance for your equine partner is often a good idea. There are different policies available to meet the needs of your horse. Since horses are often expensive, having horse insurance coverage will let you rest assured they are well protected.

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