The most common response I get when I tell people that Henry is away at rehab is “Wow, that must be expensive!”. If I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard that, I might almost be able to cover the cost of rehab. (Heh… no, not really…)
And while yes it’s expensive, it’s really not that bad when you look at the services we’re getting. Most people that have heard the overall 30-day figure have said “that’s really not that bad, considering”. They’re right, it’s really not that bad, considering. From all the shopping around I did, what I’m paying is pretty average for a rehab type of facility. I kinda wish I’d known a long time ago just how (relatively) affordable this kind of thing can be… I guess I just assumed it would be crazy big bucks.
So for the sake of spreading the word in a “the more you know…” kind of way, I figured I’d share some numbers. Hopefully you never need services like this, but if you do, maybe this will help you figure out whether or not it could possibly be within your budget. Like I said, most of the places in Texas that I looked at were very similarly priced, so I would assume the costs would be relatively comparable elsewhere too.
The way our particular rehab place works is that there’s a basic board fee, and then whatever rehab services you opt for (the aquatred, laser therapy, saltwater spa, theraplate, etc) add a set per diem cost on top of that figure. Pretty standard setup across the board, from the research I did. The base board fee is $600 and includes:
- double size stall
- whatever feed you want (mine eats Triple Crown)
- coastal hay (pretty much constant, so however many flakes per day that they eat)
- a flake of alfalfa at each meal
- daily grooming
- fly mask on/off or blanketing if necessary
- turnout, if the horse is allowed (mine isn’t)
Already a pretty good rate with the alfalfa, premium feed, and daily grooming thrown in. A nice perk is that the owners live on site plus have other employees there daily, so there are always people around. They also let me leave my trailer there for no additional charge, which is nice.
Beyond the basic board rate, things take a pretty individual turn. My vet only had two specific requests: aquatred 5x per week, and bandaging when necessary (the vet laid out criteria for when he wants the leg bandaged, so it’s up to the facility staff to determine the necessity).
The rate for the aquatred at this place goes up or down depending on how often you use it. Once a week, no price break, but the more you use it per week, the cheaper it is per use. Most places I saw just had a flat rate, so getting a little bit of a price break was nice. With the frequency that Henry goes in the aquatred, it brought that figure down to only about $23 per time. Use of the aquatred also comes with time on the equiciser (at a walk, to warm up and cool down) which is a nice inclusion. So figuring he’s in the aquatred 5 x a week at a rate of $23 per time, that adds about $460 for the month.
Bandaging/wound care is a rate they quote you depending on how intense it is – some things are easier than others, obviously. Henry’s is $5 per time he needs to be wrapped, so they keep track of it and we figure that number out at the end of his stay. So far it hasn’t been many. This seemed to be on the cheaper side of industry standard… $10 was the most common rate I saw.
As for the rest of the services, I can’t really speak on individual pricing. I know that just like the aquatred, they too had a sliding scale depending on how often it was used. I suppose if you wanted to utilize lots of different therapies, things could get expensive pretty quickly, but it’s also pretty easy to tailor a program that will work for you and still be relatively affordable.
For a month of individualized care and rehabilitation, while still keeping my horse gorgeous and shiny and fit… seems like a pretty good deal to me. If you ever find yourself in a really crappy My-Horse-Is-Broken situation, definitely take the time to look around at some rehab facilities in your area and see what they can do for you… it might be worth it.