Rising Cost of Vets Bills Push Up Horse Claims

Share Article

Rising vets' bills are leading to a marked increase in the cost of horse insurance claims, according to South West based insurance firm Cornish Mutual.

We are seeing a definite rise in the cost of treating a horse for illness or injury

The insurer, which has offices in Exeter and Truro, believes veterinary treatment fees are pushing up the price of horse insurance premiums, with the increase well ahead of the Retail Prices Index (RPI) at approximately 7 per cent per year.

Cornish Mutual, which has Members in Cornwall, Devon, Somerset and Dorset, also says that vets charge VAT on top, which many horse owners are not able to reclaim and is warning that treatment is likely to get even more expensive as a result.

According to the British Equestrian Trade Association (BETA), there are more than 216,000 horses in the South West. The average cost of a claim, involving vets fees for treating an ill or injured horse, is around £1,500 but often much more.

"We are seeing a definite rise in the cost of treating a horse for illness or injury," says Alan Goddard, Managing Director of Cornish Mutual. "Improved techniques and equipment mean that horses can get the very best treatment, but of course that comes at a high cost - bills often run into thousands of pounds."

Mr Goddard adds: "There are top-class referral centres, equine hospitals and universities available now for the treatment of horses. While some costs have come down because surgical procedures and equipment are becoming more common, an MRI scan of one limb, for example, can still cost between £600 and £800 and colic surgery will cost in excess of £3,000 plus aftercare and attending vet's fees before the horse gets to hospital."

Cornish Mutual says claims for upper suspensory desmitis, particularly of the hind legs in dressage and show jumping horses are becoming more common.

Alan Goddard says: "It might be that this is due to the way these horses are trained or that there is an increasing demand on these horses to perform. However, in many cases the injury responds well to surgery, but again, the overall cost of treatment will run into thousands of pounds."

Cornish Mutual offers a wide and flexible range of bespoke equestrian insurances. Various levels of cover for horses and ponies of all ages can be provided including vets fees, liability to third parties, theft, loss of tack, and disposal and loss of foal.

The company arranges cover for personal accident, death or serious injury caused by the horse or while out riding. Should a horse suffer injury or illness, loss of use can be covered to up to 100 per cent of the value of the animal (depending on the policy).

The company also provides access to a free 24-hour helpline for Members to get advice in an emergency, as well as a round-the-clock vet helpline and legal protection cover in the event that the owner is unable to contact their own vet.

For more information about Cornish Mutual's horse insurance product, visit http://www.cornishmutual.co.uk/index.php/horse-insurance or call 01872 277151.

For more information, contact:

Ryan Martinez        
Deborah Clark Associates    
01208 77900        
07887 746569        

Notes for editors:

Cornish Mutual's horse insurance is provided by subsidiary company Cornish Mutual Insurance Services Ltd (CMIS). The company is an appointed representative of South Essex Insurance Brokers Ltd, who are authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority.

Founded by a group of Westcountry farmers in 1903, Cornish Mutual is the only general insurer based in the South West. Even today, the company is still owned by its Members, and remains at the heart of rural communities throughout Cornwall, Devon, Somerset and Dorset.

Although staying true to its origins in agriculture (around two thirds of Cornwall's farmers are Members), Cornish Mutual now provides household, commercial, events and personal accident insurance to Members of all descriptions, living or working throughout the South West countryside.

# # #

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Ryan Martinez
Visit website