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AskHQ: Insurance issues

Q: Is it worthwhile to pay for insurance in case my horse needs a colic op in future?

A; Ultimately, colic surgery is not cheap. While it may seem heartless to be weighing your finances against your best friend’s life, unfortunately, that is the position that many of us have been in or will be put in at some stage.

While we sincerely hope that you will not be one of those unlucky souls asked to make an emergency call on whether or not you can afford colic surgery, it is far better to have thought about the eventuality now, rather than at 2am with your sore and exhausted horse looking on.

Colic surgery is going to cost somewhere in thew region of R60,000 to R100,000, and that assumes that all is relatively uncomplicated. Vets usually ask for a large deposit upfront, and then ask that the balance be paid on discharge from the hospital.

A good insurance plan can be a life-saver in these instances. While insurance plans are often expense that we put off for one day ‘when we have enough money’, we recommend that you seriously consider investigating what insurance options are available for you and your horse right now.

To know that your colic surgery, or at least some portion of it, will be covered by your insurer, can make surgery a possibility, even when you do not have the cash lying around (and let’s be honest, who every does?).

Having an insurance plan really means that your horse is ‘covered’ in an emergency, and that the necessary decisions can be made based on the clinical state of your horse and his best interests, not your bank balance.