It was a snowy and cold January here in Wisconsin and our neighboring farm family had been enjoying the ownership of a cute but sassy pony gelding and a quiet & very sweet older Morgan gelding. Together, the pair had munched on the grass all summer and were well cared for by their family.
On this particular night, the snow had fallen and the plows had cleared even the side roads well before dawn. Unfortunately, the heavy snow had been pushed father into the ditch than normal and the weight of it had knocked down a section of white tape fence. The sassy little pony and the sweet old morgan decided that this was their chance to take a walk about. Less than a quarter of a mile up the side road was a very busy two lane highway which they innocently wandered onto.
At about four in the morning, a vehicle struck and killed the sweet older Morgan horse. The vehicle was totaled and thankfully the driver was not seriously injured. In Wisconsin, the owner of a horse is responsible for the care and security of the horse and was liable for the damage to the vehicle and its passengers. So please check your fences and make sure they are secure. Make sure you have adequate insurance so you are not faced with unexpected bills if your horse escapes its enclosure. It would be difficult enough to suffer the loss or injury of your horse should it get out, but the stress of financial responsibility could be overwhelming.
One extra note that I found interesting is that, in Wisconsin, as a motor vehicle operator, if your vehicle strikes a cow/steer/bull or some other animal that is considered livestock, YOU are responsible for its replacement or compensation but horses/dogs etc. are considered pets and the animals owner is liable for any damages if they wander onto a public road.
Please choose fencing that will protect your beloved horses and keep them safe! Please check it regularly and complete any repairs to keep it secure, your horses life may depend on it!
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