Should I pay the vet bill? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 15 Old 05-26-2012, 10:51 AM Thread Starter
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Should I pay the vet bill?

I board at a local stable, and travel quite a bit for work, but the first day i got back from my last trip, as I had just arrived and pulled one of my horses out to groom, I was confronted by another boarder regarding an issue with my other horse.

Evidently my horse was turned out in with a large group of mares. Another mare, newly returned to the barn from training was also turned out with this group and there was a scuffle between the two. My mare has some scratches on her hind leg, but the other boarder's horse required stitches.

She didn't ask me to pay for this, but fully informed me how much it cost and that she missed a show this weekend due to it. I feel terrible about the situation, but am I responsible and should I offer to pay the bill?

Also, the BM never even told me this happened or that my horse had been hurt too. Not that I wouldn't have found it when I got her out next to groom her, but some heads up or explanation would be nice. None of her cuts were deep enough for stitches, but could use salve. I could have had my husband come out and apply it while I was gone.

I don't know why my mare was turned out with this group. She's always had a smaller private pasture when I've been out before. The BM knows she has sliders on, and prior to putting them on, I voiced my concern over what could happen if she was turned out in a group due to stories I've heard of other horses getting kicked by one with sliders on. So the consequences weren't unknown and there had been a discussion with BM around the safety of sliders prior to purchasing & boarding the horse.

What would be the appropriate thing to do? Should I pay the vet bill? And what should I say to the BM?

It's a lot like nuts and bolts - if the rider's nuts, the horse bolts! ~Nicholas Evans
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post #2 of 15 Old 05-26-2012, 10:55 AM
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I would think not, because of all of the factors involved. I'm curious as to what the majority says though.
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post #3 of 15 Old 05-26-2012, 11:07 AM
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I personally do not think so. You weren't there to witness what happened, and who knows what could have been the cause or the actual events. It is unfortunate that the other mare had to have stitches (where ARE the stitches if I may ask?).

But! Most horse owners should understand that horses will be horses, and they WILL have scuffles and not get their feelings hurt over it. Had it been some neglect on YOUR part, I'd say yes, pay the bill. But it was just horses establishing herd status and well...I'd personally want to know why they switched pastures.
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post #4 of 15 Old 05-26-2012, 11:11 AM
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I don't think so. You had and the BM had knowledge of what could happen and the BM should have prevented it while you were away.
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post #5 of 15 Old 05-26-2012, 11:36 AM
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I wouldn't think so. We all know that these four legged monsters are vet bills waiting to happen :) I used to be at a yard where a big ordeal was made at horse A biting horse B, and then Horse B had a mark on his neck and poor horse B. Oh the drama of it all. As I see it, my horse = my vet bills. They have brains and we can not control what they do when out in the paddock!

I can understand your concerns over where she was turned out, but you had already voiced your concerns about the turn out situation.

You have NOTHING to feel guilty over.

Stop for a minute, open your mind, learn. You may not agree with what I say, I may not agree with what you say but we will both learn something new.
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post #6 of 15 Old 05-26-2012, 11:46 AM
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I wouldn't think so. But if the vet bill is low enough that it would keep the peace then maybe. If I were the owner of the horse that needed stitches, I would not accept/expect payment from you. Are they wanting payment?
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post #7 of 15 Old 05-26-2012, 11:49 AM
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Last time I checked, horses were horses. They kick and bite and play. It's what they do. You can't stop a horse from doing that. If the other girl didn't want her lovely horse touched, she should have made sure he was kept in a private paddock where he would never be within ten feet of another horse again. But she didn't. She's apparently fine with shouldering the risks associated with a herd situation. If anything, the BM should be paying, since you specifically told her you did not want your horse out with other horses because he has shoes and could injure someone. I always make sure no one in the herd has back shoes on, because a horse can do serious damage with back shoes. Some moron let their horse out into the herd my mare was in once, bruised her up, and she has a grapefruit-sized lump of scar tissue that never went away after the bruising cleared up.
Anywho, I'd be furious with the BM if I was that girl. She knew your horse had shoes, but put him out even though you said not to. Since you had no knowledge of it, I wouldn't be upset with you. If she comes looking for money, direct her to the BM. You are under no obligation to pay for her bills, unless you're rich and can spare the money. :)
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post #8 of 15 Old 05-26-2012, 12:21 PM
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I wouldn't pay the vet bill, it was not your doing. I would have some pretty heated words with the BM though and if I didn't feel the point was made with the BM, I'd go up to the BO.

A) Your horse is shod behind.
B) You've expressed concern about what could happen in turn out.
C) It hasn't been the practice to turn her out with other horses in the past, why the change without discussing it with you and getting your approval?
D) Why was a horse who had been out of the herd, stuck back in it without proper reintroduction time?
E) Why weren't you or your designated emergency contact advised of your horse's injuries at the time so you or they could come out and evaluate them for treatment?

As for the other boarder, I would tell her straight out that the BM did not have your permission to put your horse out with the others and while you are terribly sorry for her horse's injury and the missed show, that it is not your responsibility. Horses are horses and they kick & bite & strike and run each other through fences on occasion. I'm thinking the BM knows she messed up big time and was hoping you wouldn't notice or ever know.

Last edited by Dreamcatcher Arabians; 05-26-2012 at 12:22 PM. Reason: punctuation
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post #9 of 15 Old 05-26-2012, 06:29 PM Thread Starter
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Dreamcatcher- you could be right about the BM hoping it just went unnoticed. To be honest, with my exercise rider going back to FL for her summer break from college last week, I don't get my usual updates anymore when I'm out.

The other boarder didn't ask to be reimbursed, but I know it bothered her. And she's had a string of bad luck, I just hate having any part in adding to the pile. I'll talk to her about the situation. I'm not sure that her knowing it was avoidable will lessen her being angry, but at least it won't be directed at me. And she can also push to keep my mare out of the group pasture when I'm not around, should somebody be inclined to repeat that mistake.

It's a lot like nuts and bolts - if the rider's nuts, the horse bolts! ~Nicholas Evans
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post #10 of 15 Old 05-26-2012, 07:33 PM
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BO or BM is responsible if anyone is here.

If your horse is not turned out with them, they should not have done that.

Horse returning from another place should have not been turned out either into the group without new intros.

They are at fault here, not you.

Horses make me a better person.
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