Make sure you’re cared for if you care for horses

You’re providing a service to your customers by caring for their horses. You likely make “house calls” to the horses you treat in Ontario. Your treatments could include horse massage therapy and other alternative therapies such as acupressure, aqua therapy, dry or wet heat and cold applications, electrical stimulation and magnetic therapy.

By providing these services, you open yourself to being held responsible for any bodily injury or property damage that occurs while you’re providing the therapy.

What you’ll discover in this report:

  • Common claims that people make against horse massage services and therapies
  • How you can plan ahead
  • The coverage offered by a Commercial General Liability Policy
  • Other types of insurance you should consider

What are the most common claim incidents?

  • During therapy you lose control of the horse and it injures someone nearby or causes damage to the property.
  • After treatment, you’re accused of improper treatment that further injures the horse. The owners feel that it’s no longer as useful or highly valued.

How can I plan ahead?

We know that you care about the horses and the people whose horses you care for. There are steps to take to make sure that an accident never happens in the first place.

1. Enforce barn rules.
Look around and develop rules for your environment for both horses and people. Also write procedures. Then train every staff member to make sure they understand your rules and procedures.

2. Plan for emergencies.
Emergencies happen, but the better prepared you are, the better chance you have of providing the proper care to all the horses. If you’re prepared, you can minimize the severity of any accident.

3. Develop semi-annual inspections of your property.
By inspecting your premises for potential hazards, you can take care of them before an incident occurs.

4. Prepare a written waiver and review Ontario’s Occupiers’ Liability Act.
Anyone who participates in any horse activities on your premises needs to complete and sign the waiver. Make sure that you keep the signed forms on file and safely stored. The Occupiers’ Liability Act states that the stable owner/operator owes a duty of care to the people who enter their premises. This assures that any property they bring on your premises with them is also reasonably safe. You are free to restrict, modify or exclude this duty of care through your written waiver.

5. Purchase an Equine Liability Insurance Policy.
Protect you and your business with an insurance company that knows horses and your business. You want to make sure that any legal feels are covered, claim costs and settlements to ensure that in the case of an accident, your business doesn’t suffer a financial loss.

What’s included in the Commercial General Liability Policy?

The policy gives you maximum limits or amounts of liability insurance for:

  • Medical expenses:  You can be sure a claimant’s low cost medical expenses are covered without a lot of questions about liability or responsibility.
  • Legal defense costs: You can save your business the financial burden of court costs if you’re sued, whether the case has merit or not.
  • Claims or settlement costs: Without this policy you could be held responsible for bodily injury and property damage claims.

Are there other coverages I should consider?


At Henry Equestrian Insurance Brokers Ltd., we respect the care you give horses. WE can help protect you and your business. Contact us today to learn more or click on Get a Free Quote to get a quote within 1 business day.