Vaccinating your horse at least once every year helps in protecting it from several life-threatening viruses. For that, you first need to know the kind of vaccines available, and how much do horse vaccinations cost.
In general, horse vaccinations can be categorized into core and risk-based ones. As per the AVMA, core vaccinations prevent a horse from being affected by diseases that are highly infectious and commonly spread in a certain region.
Nevertheless, it is absolutely necessary for horse owners to give core vaccines to their equines. On the contrary, risk-based vaccinations are not compulsory. The need to administer risk-based vaccines depends on several factors such as the environment the horses dwell in, their exposure, the purpose they are used for, and their age as well.
Let’s have a look at different horse vaccinations and their price.
How Much Do Horse Vaccinations Cost?
Getting all core vaccines done for your horse, including EWT/WN and Rabies costs $100-200. However, many vets charge in multiples of that and the price may vary with your locality as well as the time of the year.
Although vaccinations are a simple yet effective method of providing safety against severe diseases, they can be pretty costly.
Here’s a horse vet check cost list for you to compare, along with why it is important to administer the vaccines. Also, it’s worth mentioning that there are a number of vaccines that you may opt-in or out of which will factor into your final bill.
Often priced between $40-50, this is a core vaccine that provides immunization against Tetanus, West Nile Virus, and Eastern & Western Encephalitis. Its cost is likely to vary from pharmacy to pharmacy and from country to country.
In addition, horse owners can not only get these vaccinations individually, they can even go for the more convenient option of having them combined into a single intramuscular injection.
These vaccines should be administered annually, preferably during Spring.
The vaccine for Rabies is priced between $25-30 and may vary when you buy from different pharmacies and countries. Rabies is widely known to be a fatal disease, making it compulsory for horses every year. Besides, it is better not to risk contracting the disease yourself from your horse through routine contact, when you can easily prevent it through vaccination.
Vaccine for Rabies needs to be administered annually, during Spring or Fall.
Other Risk-Based Vaccines
There are a number of risk-based vaccines available. However, the real challenge lies in identifying what vaccines do horses need. It depends on the horse’s circumstances and environment that determine how much risk of that certain disease they are exposed to.
The most common risk-based vaccines include the following:
Although the seriousness of Flu/Rhino is not as high as Rabies or Tetanus in a horse, it is still highly contagious. The virus can spread rapidly from one horse to another whether they are in a yard, horse show, or race. Moreover, the first symptom that an infected horse shows is a mild temperature. This is followed by a persistent cough.
As a result, the horse needs to be kept away from all equine activities for at least 3 weeks. It is better to vaccinate your horse against flu semi-annually. The vaccination costs between $40-45.
This is another extremely contagious infection in horses that arises in the respiratory tract. Not only can it spread through direct contact between equines, but also through buckets, clothes, kits, tack, and vermin. This virus is quite common and horses affected by the infection normally have a high temperature as well as a runny nose. Sometimes, swollen lymph nodes in the neck and head can also develop due to Strangles.
Nonetheless, Strangles is indeed as discomforting as it sounds, but can be treated with antibiotics, unlike herpes and flu. Regardless, vaccinating your horse against it (annually) will be a good move and costs between $50-60.
Potomac Horse Fever
The Potomac horse fever refers to a diarrheal infection in equines. Moreover, in pregnant mares, the virus can also often lead to an abortion. The effect of the organism triggering the disease tends to follow a seasonal pattern and is common in hot weather. Hence, it is during this time when horses fall ill by ingesting insects that hatch in warm water.
The best time to administer the Potomac vaccine is, therefore, between spring and fall. And even though the vaccine does not help in preventing abortion in most cases, you should still give a booster to the pregnant horse before foaling. This will at least decrease the impact of the infection.
The Potomac vaccine price ranges between $40-50.
Normally costing between $25-50, the vaccination for Rhinopneumontis, also known as Herpesvirus, is to be given as required during horse pregnancy.
Typical symptoms of the virus include a runny nose, fever, and cough. Needless to say, it can easily spread via the horse’s respiratory secretions. Moreover, it usually rests on the lymphatic tissue until stressors like breeding, foaling, and weaning reactivate it.
The consequences are abortion in most cases and neurological diseases in a few. Hence, in order to prevent complications from arising due to the Herpes infection, horse owners should get them booster vaccinations semi-annually.
The Coggins test usually costs $27-30 and is a simple blood test which the vet performs to screen the horse for Equine Infectious Anemia. A negative Coggins test deems your horse eligible for boarding stables and horse shows, as otherwise, the disease is extremely contagious.
Additional Health Costs for Horses
Proper care of your horse is bound to enhance its longevity and health. This, however, cannot be achieved by vaccinations alone. There are several other factors and costs to keep in mind, which include the following:
Annual Physical Examination
As a horse owner, you might feel that you know your equine buddy inside out, but it is still important to pay an annual or semi-annual visit to the veterinarian. This will enable the expert to address some important issues regarding your horse’s well-being that you might have missed.
A proactive annual physical examination not only enables early treatment of infections of your horse, it also keeps your costs for vet care minimized. Therefore, with infrequent treatments, you need not worry about how much does a horse vet visit cost.
In a nutshell, a typical physical examination at the vet care revolves around performing tests for hoof testing, flexion tests, palpation, intestinal motility, and even neurologic function. Other than this, a thorough hands-all-over-examination helps in identifying sore muscles and any swellings, bumps, or lumps on the body.
The cost of the body examination can vary according to how in-depth you want the check-up to be. It normally ranges between $500-700.
With the help of an ophthalmoscope, the vet will be inspecting the internal structures of your horse’s eyes during an eye-checkup. This will enable him to identify any signs of chronic or active inflammation. Besides, the vet will also let you know how the cataract development is proceeding and if there is any sign of an eye infection.
Assessing the gums of your equine for color and moistness might seem difficult on your own. Hence, you should be ready to spend around $90-100 and take your horse for a routine checkup without a second thought.
And to improve your horse’s oral health, the equine dentistry technician is likely to ask you some questions. These will revolve around your horse’s eating habits and if there is anything that you might be concerned about.
Nonetheless, you will have to hold open the animal’s mouth using a gag before rinsing so that all food material can be cleared out. This will allow for a better dental examination where the vet will be able to easily inspect the equine’s teeth, tongue, cheeks, palate, lips, and in fact the entire mouth.
FAQs Related to Horse Vaccinations Cost
Vaccinating a horse is as vital as vaccinating a human baby. There are several vaccines to wisely select from, so as to protect the equines from unforeseen diseases.
Let’s summarize all you need to know about vaccinating a horse, instead of worrying about how much does a vet farm call cost.
How often should you vaccinate a horse?
You should be vaccinating your horse at least once every year. However, it is not mandatory to give all the vaccinations at once. For instance, your horse can receive the EWT/WN, Rabies, Flu/Rhino, and Strangles vaccines in the Springtime. Whereas, Flu/Rhino and PHF can be given in Fall.
What does the 5 way shot cover for horses?
A 5-way shot is a combination vaccine that provides your horse with protection against 5 different viruses. These are namely EEE, Tetanus, Equine Herpesvirus (Rhino), WEE, and Influenza. Still, you should discuss with a vet before selecting any multi-way vaccine for your horse.
How much does a vet check on a horse cost?
The price of a basic routine check of your horse may vary depending on the veterinary practice as well as the region you reside in. Nonetheless, you can roughly estimate the costs of a physical exam, core vaccinations, dental care, and strategic deworming of your equine to sum up somewhere between $250-600.
What vaccines do horses need?
Vaccines for Rabies, Tetanus, and West Nile virus (WNV) are core ones that all horses should be given regardless of their exposure, past history, or age. These three, along with the EEE and WEE immunizations are mandatory even if you wish to skip the others.
Can I vaccinate my horse myself?
You can definitely give certain vaccines to your horse yourself. However, it is advisable to let a skilled handler do it. Moreover, Rabies is the only vaccine that cannot be given by horse owners.
Regardless, you need to vigilantly monitor signs for any adverse effects on your horse. This is in fact crucial when you are administering the vaccine yourself. You should also have the essential medicines in hand for prompt treatment, if required.
There are a number of vaccinations available in the horse health care industry. Each works as an essential preventive measure against some deadly viruses like Rabies and Tetanus. These vaccines are also known as core and risk-based ones accordingly. To sum up, it is vital that you give your horse Rabies and EWT/WN vaccinations annually.
If you are worried about how much your horse vet bill will be, here’s the good news:
There are certain vaccines that you can skip, depending on how much risk those viruses are threatening upon you. Also, one should not overlook the importance of taking their horse to the vet for a proper physical examination. The clearer you are about which vaccination and check-up you should be spending on, the easier you’ll be able to afford it in the future.