Loaning out your horse or having a horse on a loan may seem like the perfect solution when funds are tight, however, in reality there are many potential pitfalls and loans are often the subject of bitter legal disputes.

It is therefore important to have a bespoke loan agreement in place before the loan commences.

These agreements define who is responsible for what and protects both parties.

Loaning a horse carries with it risks to both parties. The owner of the horse entrusts their animal to the care of someone else who could be a complete stranger to them. On the other side, the borrower takes on the huge responsibility of the care and wellbeing of another person’s horse.

Without a detailed and bespoke loan agreement, disputes can arise on many issues such as insurance for the horse, how the day to day care of the horse should be carried out, which farrier or veterinary surgeon should be called and what it should be fed.

As well as dealing with the matter by drawing up a specific loan agreement there are a number of practical steps that can be taken to minimise the potential for dispute at a later stage.

For instance, clients are always advised to take a detailed set of photographs of the horse beforehand and to take a video of the horse in work where possible. References for potential borrowers should also be required to ensure the credentials of where your horse is going to.

These are just a few examples of issues that must be considered when loaning a horse. For advice specific to you and your loan please call Alison Goodwin, head of equine at Harrison Clark, on 01432 349675 or email agoodwin@harrison-clark.co.uk.