Janet is fighting a serious illness, but no medicine gives her more comfort and happiness than her horse, "Whistler." She visits the boarding stable several times a week just to brush his coat and feed him carrots. What if Janet's health takes a turn for the worst - who will take care of "Whistler"? What if the horse needs costly colic surgery while she's too ill to give directions or if she is longer here? Is there anything Janet can do now to ensure that "Whistler" remains with her family and receives proper care and attention in the years ahead?

Yes, under Michigan law it is possible for Janet to create a trust, known as a Pet Trust, for the care of her horse. If you have a horse like Janet, would you like to provide instructions for its care if you are no longer able to do so due to your death or disability? If so, by creating a Pet Trust you can, for example: 

  • Name a caregiver of your choice to assume responsibility for the care of your horse.
  • Provide a monetary sum to be used for your horse’s care in the event of your death or disability.
  • Instruct your caregiver regarding the care to be given to your horse including where you would like to have your horse boarded. This will also provide the owner of the barn with a measure of security knowing that they will continue to be paid for their services in the event of your death or disability.
  • Instruct your caregiver as to a specific veterinarian or veterinary hospital or clinic who you would like to care for your horse when it is sick, injured, requires check-ups or other medical care.
  • Instruct your caregiver as to what is to happen to your horse’s remains after it has passed away.
  • Direct where any remaining funds in the Pet Trust are to be distributed after your horse passes away.

In summary, rather than leave it up to someone else to decide what is to happen to your horse, you can provide funds and detailed instructions as to its care in the event of your death or disability.