Have you thought about what would happen if your livestock died suddenly, whether you are a row crop farmer with a few steers to fill your freezer with beef or a livestock producer whose livelihood depends on it? You’ve worked your whole life to feed your family, this great country, and even people in other countries. Would it be okay for you to lose this much money? You should think about getting insurance for animals that die.

Most likely, you don’t have any doubts about getting the right insurance for your farm buildings and equipment. Your animals should be treated the same way. You may be wondering, “Doesn’t my farm package insurance’s personal property form cover my livestock?” Let me clarify. When it comes to animals, a standard farm policy has its limits. For livestock to be covered by a standard farm insurance plan, it needs to be one of the perils covered by the policy (unless the policy is changed to cover more livestock).


Here are some examples of what a standard farm policy would cover:
Fire: If your livestock building catches on fire and the animals die because of it, the policy will pay for the animals. In this case, you should remember that you will need enough farm personal property limits to cover the animals.

Tornado/Wind: If a tornado kills livestock because of flying debris or a building that falls on them, the wind peril of a standard policy will cover the livestock.

Hail: If big hail stones fall on an outside cattle yard and kill the herd because of the blunt force, the standard policy would cover the loss.

A standard farm insurance policy also covers losses caused by things like theft, vandalism, lightning, wild animal attacks, and car accidents.

Not Enough Coverage in the Standard

You might think that this is all I need to protect my flock. Consider the following types of events that might not be covered by a standard farm insurance policy:

  • Feed or water that is tainted, causing livestock to eat something toxic.
  • Grazing poisonous plants
  • Snow, a blizzard, freezing rain, or sleet can cause hypothermia.
  • Flood water, surface water, any body of water that overflows, mudslides, and mudflows are all things that could cause people to drown.
  • Sinkhole collapses happen on their own.
  • Electrocution.
  • Shooting by accident.
  • Earthquake
  • Riot/civil commotion
  • Bridges, culverts, roads, or piers fall.
  • Explosion
  • leaking gas or suffocating

Leakage of anhydrous ammonia that was meant to be used as fertilizer or as a cooling agent
Each plan differs. Discuss with your agent what is and isn’t covered.
Even though a standard farm insurance plan isn’t likely to cover these things, a plan called an “Animal Mortality Insurance Plan” might. This livestock death insurance is bought to fill a gap in the way that all kinds of livestock are insured. Whether you have cattle, pigs, chickens, sheep, horses, or something else, there is a cheap option for you.

How Much Does a Policy for the Death of Livestock Cost?

Most of the time, these standard policies can be bought for between 0.15 and 0.35 cents per $100 of coverage. Let’s look at one!
Let’s say a ranch has 4 purebred Angus bulls that are each worth $4,000. The rest of the herd is made up of 25 crossbred steers worth $2,000 each, 50 crossbred heifers worth $2,000 each, and 50 crossbred mother cows worth $2,500 each. This particular herd has a total value of $291,000. We will use the highest price model, which is 0.35 cents per $100 of coverage. For this herd to be covered by a standard animal mortality policy would cost about $1018.50 per year. This would include the coverage listed in 1–13 above, as well as coverage for things like animals in transit.
Is There a Coverage Option That Includes More for Livestock Used for Shows, Races, Research, or Service?
On an All Risk plan, there are also options for insurance that cover the death of livestock. This pretty much covers everything you can think of, with only a few exceptions (disease, infertility, and gross profit coverage can be included in these plans). This could be an option for you if you want to cover expensive purebred cattle, show pigs, show horses, race horses, research animals, service animals, aquaculture, or high-value pets. Keep in mind that the rates for the All Risk plan are much higher. In this plan, they can range from $5.50 to $10 per $100 of coverage. For example, a pure-bred Angus bull worth $4,000 would cost about $5.50 per $100 of coverage, or $220 per year.
Our independent insurance professionals know about farming and livestock!
With farm and livestock insurance, there can be a lot to manage and understand. A dedicated, experienced independent insurance agent can help you take care of these things. An independent agent isn’t tied to just one insurance company, so he or she can help you find the best company and insurance options for your needs. Fill out this form or call 419-423-9145 to start a conversation with us right away. We’ll find a policy that covers your business well and doesn’t break the bank.
Please keep in mind that each herd and business is different. Insurance rates are based on several different things. It depends on the state and county, whether the animals are on pasture or in a pen, and the overall value. These are real examples from past applications for coverage. Rates and options for coverage can change over time.

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