Horses are a big investment which is why many owners opt for equine insurance. These costs can vary from under $50 per month for younger, healthy horses to closer to $100 a month for older horses and are influenced by a variety of factors which are covered in-depth further into the article. Factors such as purchase price and what your plans are for your horse — for example trail riding, competitions, or breeding–can all influence the cost of equine insurance. Whether you hope to cover the possible loss of your animal due to an accident or illness or you want to cover any possible injury to another person because of your horse, a host of equine insurance companies are there to help you out.Here are some things to know before shopping for horse insurance.

Included in This Article:

  • Key Horse Insurance Terms (Definitions to Determine Your Coverage)

  • Factors that Affect Cost

  • A Look at an Example Horse Insurance Cost Analysis

  • Places to Apply for Horse Insurance

  • How to Find Your Own Horse Insurance

Key Horse Insurance Terms and Types of Coverage (Liability, Mortality, Etc.)

Care, Custody, and Control (CCC): If you take care of horses you do not own, this coverage covers any horse damaged in your care if the owner believes you were negligent and files a legal claim against you. It can also be used for defense fees.

Colic Surgery Coverage: Colic surgery is needed when the horse’s large intestine becomes distended or twisted and stops working properly. Both gas and food can cause this distention. Colic surgery is not covered by all policies under major medical and surgical or surgical only. If your policy exempts it, you can obtain coverage specifically for this illness through Colic Surgery Coverage.

Commercial Equine General Liability: This coverage is for horse owner’s who accept fees or barter for services that include teaching lessons, boarding, training, breeding, organizing competitions, etc. This policy provides defense costs as well as pays out claims for which you are legally liable up to your policy limits. Horse show events and riding clubs usually require an additional addendum to this policy.

Full Mortality: This coverage covers the death of your horse should there be an accident, illness, injury, or disease. It may also cover theft depending on the insurance company (this theft coverage may also be partial with some insurance companies).

Insured Value: You can prove a horse’s market value with its receipt of purchase. If the horse was born on your property, its market value is considered twice the stud fee. This means that you can generally insure the horse for that amount (or less if you so choose). An exception to this is if you have invested in the horse in a way that increases its market value, such as through professional training, winning competitions or successfully breeding the horse, and you maintained documented proof of these events, you can then apply to have the market value of the horse increased.

International Coverage: This extends coverage beyond the home country.

Limited Mortality (aka Extended Named Perils): This coverage only covers the death of a horse under a limited number of specifically named perils such as fire, lightning, flood, etc.

Loss Of Use: This type of coverage pays out if your horse has a function (like racing or competing) and loses the ability to do so, yet is not so sick or injured that it dies. This coverage provides partial compensation that is agreed upon in advance by the owner and the insurance company. It can be difficult to prove this kind of loss, so be prepared to fully document the situation. Some policies also require the horse to be then turned over to the insurance company or euthanized.

Premium: Premiums are based on the horse’s age, use, level, and value.

Private Horse Owner’s Liability: This covers you if you are sued by a third party due to property or bodily damage inflicted by your horse.

Major Medical/Surgical: This coverage reimburses for veterinary costs related to medical and surgical bills if your horse is in an accident, becomes ill or injured, or gets a disease. Be sure to check whether or not the coverage includes colic surgery.

Stallion Accident, Sickness and Disease (AS&D): This coverage provides you with a percentage of an insured stallion’s value in the event he can no longer breed due to illness, accident, disease, or injury.

Surgical Only: This coverage only covers life-saving surgeries carried out under general anesthesia. It does not cover regular veterinary costs.

Factors That Affect Equine Insurance Costs

Age: Some insurance companies will start coverage within 24 hours of birth, others require you to wait 30 days. Most companies will cover horses up to 15-16 years old with their standard coverage. Coverage for animals older than that usually costs an additional premium and they can only be covered up until age 20. Many insurance companies will not provide Full Mortality for horses between 16-20 years old.

Breed: The type of breed of horse has a bearing on its mortality coverage cost.

Coverage: The amount of coverage you select will increase or decrease your cost. Full Mortality costs more than Limited Mortality but also provides more limited coverage. The same with selecting Major Medical/Surgical versus Surgical Only.

Deductibles: Like most insurance, equine insurance comes with different levels of deductibles that vary by insurer. By selecting a higher deductible, you can pay a lower monthly fee. By selecting a lower deductible, your monthly fee will increase.

Horse Use: Privately owned horses cost less to insure than horses that are used for commercial purposes like horseback riding lessons or therapy. Dressage, trail, jumper, etc. all factor into the cost of the insurance.

Race Horses: Race horses are not covered by the majority of equine insurance companies and require a specialized insurance due to their unique risks and general higher worth.

Type: You’ll need to declare whether the horse is a mare, stallion, or gelding.

The Value of the Horse: Generally, the price paid for the horse is its insurable value. If it was born in your care, then it’s price is two to three times the stud fee. However, if you pay for professional training or your horse wins competitions or is a successful breeder, this can increase the value of the horse if you have it properly documented.

Typical Horse Insurance Cost Example

Let’s pretend we have two trail horses that are both stallions. Both are healthy and located in New Jersey.  Both were purchased for $15,000. The only real difference in the horses is that one is five years old and the other is 15 years old.

We contacted Star H Equine Insurance to receive a quote on these hypothetical horses for full mortality coverage at $15,000. The annual premium for the five-year-old would be $488 a year or $40.67 a month. The annual premium for a 15-year-old would be $855 a year or $71.25 a month.

Unfortunately, because of all the variables, it’s difficult to provide an average assessment of what horse insurance may cost you. Dressage rates are lower. Eventing rates are higher. You can also see how the cost slides higher at the horse ages. Star H Equine Insurance also confirmed that rates are very similar across all 50 states, so while the price may not be exactly the same, it wouldn’t vary wildly from New Jersey to another state.

Predominant Horse Insurance Companies

American Equine Insurance Group

  • Applicable Horses: Healthy horses from the ages of 24 hours to any age
  • Coverage Area: The United States and Canada. You can add international coverage for an extra charge.
  • Contact: Call 847-836-7787 or email [email protected]
  • Medical/Surgical Limits: $7,500-$15,000 depending on premium
  • Race Horse Coverage: No.
  • Cost:[email protected] to get a free quote.
  • Website: For more information, visit American Equine Insurance Group’s website.

Broadstone Equine Insurance Company

  • Applicable Horses: Healthy horses between the ages of 24 hours and 20 years old
  • Coverage Area: The United States and Canada. You can add international coverage for an extra charge.
  • Contact: Call 888-687-8555 or email [email protected]
  • Medical/Surgical Limits: $5,000-$15,000 depending on premium
  • Race Horse Coverage: No.
  • Cost: Get a free quote.
  • Website: For more information, visit Broadstone Equine Insurance Company’s website.

Equine Insurance Center

  • Applicable Horses: Healthy horses between the ages of 24 hours and 20 years old
  • Coverage Area: The United States and Canada. You can add international coverage for an extra charge (Trip Transit).
  • Contact: Call 336-252-3950.
  • Medical/Surgical Limits: $5,000-$15,000 depending on premium
  • Race Horse Coverage: Yes.
  • Cost: Get a free quote.
  • Website: For more information, visit Equine Insurance Center’s website.

Equisure

  • Applicable Horses: Healthy horses up to 15 years old. Horses over 15 can be insured for an additional premium.
  • Coverage Area: The United States, but can be extended globally for an additional premium
  • Contact: Call 1-800-752-2472
  • Medical/Surgical Limits: $5,000-$15,000 depending on premium
  • Race Horse Coverage: Yes.
  • Cost: Get a free quote.
  • Website: For more information, visit Equisure’s website.

Hallmark Equine Insurance Agency

  • Applicable Horses: Healthy horses between the ages of 24 hours and 20 years old. Horses over 20 can be insured for an additional premium.
  • Coverage Area: The United States and Canada
  • Contact: Call 1-800-734-0598 or email [email protected]
  • Medical/Surgical Limits: $7,500-$12,500 depending on premium
  • Race Horse Coverage: No.
  • Cost: Email for a free quote.
  • Website: For more information, visit Hallmark Equine Insurance Agency’s website.

Star H Equine Insurance

  • Applicable Horses: Healthy horses between the ages of 30 days and 16 years old
  • Coverage Area: The United States
  • Contact: Call 877-321-4210 or email [email protected]
  • Medical/Surgical Limits: $5,000-$12,500 depending on premium
  • Race Horse Coverage: No.
  • Cost: Email [email protected] for a free quote.
  • Website: For more information, visit Star H Equine Insurance’s website.

How to Find a Local Horse Insurance Company

You may be more comfortable finding a local horse insurance agency. You can use some of these techniques to find a good agency near your home.

  • Google horse insurers near your hometown (for example: “horse insurers near Dallas, Texas”)
  • Ask at your veterinarian’s office.
  • Ask at your local horse boarding stables.
  • Ask at your local riding school.
  • Join an online group like The Horse Forum and ask other members where they get their equine insurance.

Horse Insurance Cost: Conclusion

Horse ownership is an expensive undertaking and your assets need to be protected. When you go to apply for your coverage, make sure you have documentation for the purchase price, age, type of horse, gender, and the purpose to which you have the horse. Additionally, keep in mind that you need liability insurance to cover what your horse may do to another person or property. Accidents can happen with even the best-trained horses; fortunately, the horse insurance companies listed above will have you covered no matter what.

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