When you own a horse, you’ll quickly find that many people will ask you if they can ride your horse. It may be friends, coworkers, or other riders at your barn, but at some point, you’ll have to face that dreaded question: “Can I ride your horse?”
This video has some great potential responses, some of them more lighthearted than others. But most importantly, remember that you are your horse’s owner. You’re responsible for his safety, and if you let someone ride your horse, you become responsible for their safety, too. If you have any doubt, it’s always best to simply say no.
But there’s another important reason why you might not want to let someone ride your horse. According to Equine Law Blog, letting someone else ride your horse can be a major liability risk. If the rider falls off your horse and gets injured, you might be sued for damages. And if the rider falls off and your horse gets loose and gets hit by a car, you still might be responsible for damages to the car and the people in the vehicle who were injured.
It’s a risk that should be eye-opening. The exact degree of responsibility that you may hold depends on your state, the laws in your state, and the exact incident. But lending your horse could have a substantial financial risk associated with it because of your liability as the horse’s owner.
Liability insurance can help protect you in such an instance. There are many different types of liability insurances available to horse owners, stable owners, and equine professionals. In addition to liability insurance, you will always want to have someone handling or riding your horse sign a liability release before mounting up. Keep this release in a safe place in case you should need it.
We can’t rule out all of the risk associated with riding, but we can help to minimize it and be prepared in case an accident does happen.