Mortality insurance on horses is one of those things you never want to have pay off. And we are so thankful that we very very rarely lose a foal. But it has happened and it is heartbreaking. And there is nothing we can do about that heartbreak except assure you we feel the same.
To compound the heartbreak, losing a foal is also a financial burden for everyone. For decades, our sale contact has made it clear that the buyer should obtain insurance because the foal is now the buyer’s responsibility. Can you see where this is going?
It’s just too easy to forget that you should get that insurance. (Yes, it took me a while to decide to phrase it that way.) And when the unthinkable happens, we end up in a conflict at an emotional time because the buyer, who didn’t get the insurance, wants their deposit back. I can assure you that deposit has already been sent to the vet’s or the feed store or the hay people. Especially, those hay people. And yes, I could raise the prices on my foals significantly to have a bigger cushion. I’d like to avoid that. Seriously, it is a conflict I can’t endure. I’m in this business to produce people’s dream horses – not financial conflict. Thankfully the dream horse is usually the result.
The solution, albeit not a great one, is insurance. Going forward, our horses will be priced with an added fee for six months’ insurance on foals over 30 days old. If you buy one (many do) younger than that we will apply deposits/payments to another horse rather than return your deposit.
Why isn’t this a great solution? It is expensive – you’ll be charged an extra 3%. And it is mortality insurance so if the foal is just crippled but not killed it will not cover anything.
That said, it is a solution to a problem that, as I said, I can’t endure even once a decade.