NOTE: The photos in this post may be disturbing to some viewers.
In the wild, predators and scavengers remove the carcass. If the horse was euthanized, as was the case recently near the Heber WHT, and/or received medications prior to death, you could get a secondary kill.
If you have land and the codes allow it, you can bury him on your own property. You’ll need some heavy equipment to dig the hole and place the horse in it. You are not going to drag a thousand pound animal out of a stall, corral or pasture.
And you’ll be doing all of that while you’re upset at the loss of your horse. Yeah, it sucks.
When Trapper died the vet referred me to a hauler. One option was to take him to a rendering plant and another was the pet cemetery. I opted for cremation. I still had to get him out of the corral, which was a muddy mess due to rain.
My paint mare, one of two other horses in the corral, became very agitated that evening when she realized he wasn’t coming back. They had been barn buddies for eight years.
The result of the cremation process is an urn with the horse’s remains. In the photos below, Trapper’s urn is on the left, Cassie’s is on the right. She was my first horse, lost in 2012.
The vet bill was $744. The hauler charged $300. The cremation fee was $800.
The incident was a reminder of why you should never let your savings account drop below, say, $2,500—if you have horses. That amount does not include the cost of feed and other expenses if you lose your job.
Many financial coaches say you should always have between three and six months of living expenses in savings, but they’re usually not thinking about horses.
With the cost of feed at $100 per AUM, that’s an extra $600 per month for six horses.
RELATED: Trapper Gone But Not Forgotten.