Horse case study: Richard and Lady

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Horse insurance often covers a wide range of claims; from long-term illness requiring continuous veterinary care to common and treatable diseases. However, sometimes claims can arise as a result of something completely unexpected. Accidents can happen without warning, at any time, and unfortunately horse owner Richard Lythgoe knows this all too well.

When opening the stable doors one morning to check in on his horse Lady, he found her in some pain after suffering a fall. Lady luck wasn’t on Lady’s side that day.

“The accident had caused pain in her back and her rear left leg,” Richard told us. “We had a couple of vets out and neither could pinpoint the exact problem, so she was referred to the Rainbow Equine Centre in Malton. Over a period of three days she had nuclear scintigraphy x-rays and other tests and examinations to get a thorough diagnosis.”

Nuclear scintigraphy is often used when signs of injury are vague and unclear, as was the case with Lady. The scans detected increased bone activity or ‘hot spots’ in a number of areas at the time, helping the specialists to pinpoint Lady’s injuries. “She then received the appropriate treatment and over the next month had follow-up treatments of steroid injections and shockwave therapies.”

Steroid injections are used to decrease any inflammation around a horse’s soft tissue in the hope of reducing pain and shockwave therapy uses focused sound energy to speed up healing. These treatments had the desired effect and, after a period of recovery, it was time for Lady to get fit.

“Over the next 14 weeks we followed an exercise program which brought her back to full fitness, and she was subsequently given the all clear.”

Richard is pleased that Lady is feeling much more like her old self and was thankful for the no-fuss claims procedure for helping out during this difficult time. “The whole process of making a successful claim was very straightforward. The claims staff on the initial call were so helpful, the claim form was easy to fill in and the decision to pay for the treatment was passed quickly.”

Having an insurer who understands how important a horse is to a family was vital and knowledgeable liaison with the vets was just as helpful. “This gave us peace of mind, knowing we could provide Lady with the best treatment to get her back to full health quickly,” said Richard. “For this we are forever grateful, we cannot pick fault with in any way, and I wouldn’t hesitate for a second to recommend them to anyone.”

Lady is now back in the saddle (so to speak!) and the family are looking forward to taking her to pastures new. “Since the all-clear, my daughter Poppy has ridden Lady on most days and the horse is in fantastic condition, she hacks out at weekends and has entered a couple of local fun shows. This coming year she is hoping to concentrate on dressage – and plenty of days out during the summer!”

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