Horse trailer accessories: Tips and Warnings for Moving.
Last week we talked about horse face and body language and today we want to expand this information with a series of tips and warnings about horse trailer accessories, which should be taken into account to make the trip as pleasant as possible.
First of all, let’s review what we should take with us:
– Veterinary certificate
– Food (fresh hay)
– Vehicle in good condition
– Safety and comfort accessories for the horse
And now we go with the concrete tips:
– When we carry a single horse in a trailer for two, it is important to always load it on the driver’s side.
– Food: the horse will need fresh hay for the trip. Depending on the expected duration, we must bring enough food, and make regular stops to give it a drink so that it is always well hydrated.
– If the horse is especially tall, it is necessary to put a protector on its head so that it does not hit when entering or in a pothole in the road.
– It is important to always carry an emergency kit or complete a first aid kit.
– Horse trailer accessories for travel: The horse must wear a halter during the trip. Many experts suggest that leather (not rope or plastic) is the most suitable; they are easier to cut in an emergency. If the weather is warm it may not be necessary to cover the horse with a blanket, but you should always bring one. The booties or protectors for the legs are essential since they provide security and protection during the trip and during loading and unloading. They must fit perfectly to the animal’s legs, otherwise, they could be more annoying than safe.
– We also suggest that you prepare yourself before a longer trip, gaining experience on short journeys.
– If possible, get a trailer at least 10 inches taller than your horse.
– Prepare an alternative plan when traveling long distances or for several days. It is good that another vehicle accompanies the horse to help in an emergency, or if you have to go to the vet, etc.
Horses that are not used to entering small and dark spaces can be afraid and hurt themselves if the driver is not attentive. You should try to practice the maneuver in advance, so that they are not as scared when you put them in the trailer or truck, as when you go down.
– The ideal time to start the trip is at dawn, and if possible, load the horses when there is already daylight. That way it looks better if everything is well attached and placed. If you have to leave while it is still dark, we recommend that you stop at a rest area as soon as dawn breaks to do a security check and correct any oversights
– There are many models of trailers and trucks for horses. Check firsthand that the trailer is appropriate for you and your animals before you get it.
– Health requirements: You will need a veterinary certificate that certifies that the animal has all the necessary vaccinations and checks for the last 6 months. Check the state regulations in case you cross borders to see if there are any extra requirements. Keep in mind that these procedures can take time, so you should carry out these checks in advance so that the veterinarian can prepare all the documents before the trip.
– Make sure the cabin is well ventilated. After arriving at your destination, check the horse thoroughly so that he has no cuts, grazes or sprains in any joints. Also, check that he does not have a fever.
– Check all the equipment one day before the trip, so you won’t waste time when starting the march or your food.
– Always have spare halters, covers, etc. available. If you’re in the middle of the freeway or down a back road and something breaks, you’ll need a replacement fast. If the weather suddenly changes and a storm begins, you should cover the animal better.
– Horses typically lose 2 to 5 pounds of body weight for every hour of riding in cool weather. This can increase in hot weather, so hydrate the horse if the ride is long.
– It is better that you do not feed it with grain before the trip, since it is more difficult to digest.
– Travel boots, covers and protectors slide with movement and can fall off. It is important to check the paw protectors regularly, every 4 hours. If the legs are not properly protected, they can be damaged.
– Try not to travel during the hottest hours of the day. If unavoidable, make more stops to drink and allow the horse to breathe.
– If not absolutely necessary, avoid transporting a sick horse. It is best not to expose other animals to disease.
– Boxes and horse trailers have a maximum authorized load weight. Consult the manufacturer’s manual and calculate the weight of the animal, the equipment and the people who will travel in the cabin so as not to exceed the weight.
– Fatigue is the biggest problem when traveling long distances, especially at the end of the day. Before embarking on the road you should not be tired. You must be at 100% and for this reason, we suggest you eat a good breakfast and drink fruit juices to stay awake and fresh.
– Horses are unpredictable, and horse riding is one of the most dangerous sports. Prepare for any eventuality.
– You may be an excellent driver, but you must watch other drivers. Drive with extreme caution to perform smooth and fluid maneuvers without hindering the traffic of the fastest and most careless vehicles. For example, keep your lights on at all times and use emergency lights.
After all this, you may think that it is more comfortable and cheaper to hire a professional carrier, but there is no doubt that the adventure of traveling with your horse can be exciting.