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Author Topic: How to transport my horses?  (Read 205 times)

melissah

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How to transport my horses?
« on: May 12, 2018, 08:41:26 am »

Looks like I'll be trailering the horses with the Lance camper too. It will be 2 days of 12 hour driving.  New Mexico is the middle point where we will stop at a layover hotel. Horses will be let out. I hear so many things. Take them out every 4 to 6 hours. Where? I'm set up for feed bags but can't get water through the top. Rest stops? Feed or no feed especially with no water. Should they be taken out? How? Where? Help lol I can't afford professional transportation for 3 horses. Any ideas? Suggestions? Who's done it? Here is my trailer.

« Last Edit: May 12, 2018, 08:44:53 am by melissah »
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KysaSD

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2018, 12:59:53 pm »

I would consider making it two and half days....leave in the afternoon, drive a few hours, and stay they night.  Then make two long days, split fairly even in the middle.

These are my own personal rules, but based on some research done by Texas A&M of their rodeo team horses.

12 hours maximum days.
Stop every two hours.  This is good for people, too.  Gassing up counts, or just a stop at a rest area to go to the bathroom.
Every 4ish hours, stop for at least 30 minutes...eat a people meal.  Horses do not need to come off the trailer, but they need a break from balancing and the road vibration.  Feed hay in the trailer.  Keep a fly mask on them to keep hay bits from blowing in their eyes.  And offer water every 4 hours.
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PAWalker

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2018, 01:14:21 pm »

I moved my horses from PA to SoCal, then five years later to TN.

Do NOT take them out of the trailer until you get to your layover.  The horses got to rest when we stopped for gas and an hour plus for lunch or early dinner.  My PA vet had carried her horse back and forth to vet school and said she never made frequent stops to let a horse rest.  If you have a special needs horse its best to ask your vet but horses will do fine rolling down the interstate.

Do NOT grain them.  The only way I would feed any sort of feed pan stuff, is if the horse is on meds or needs to have some special supplement in its system.

Carry as much if your own hay as you can so you can transition the horses over a coupl of weeks.  Further to that, don't let horses that are used to desert life (no grass) out on all the lush pasture.   My horses lived in SoCal five years --- I kept the three of them in a 24' X 100' paddock attached to the barn when we first moved here.  After they ate that down, we hand grazed them an hour at a time 2-3 times daily.  This went on about three weeks ---- we were lucky in that we arrived in the Fall when the grass growth was slowing down.

I offered the horses water every time we stopped for gas.  That was tricky --- trying to find something small enough to handle in a tight area yet big enough they could drink comfortably.

You need to have current coggins and health certificates.  Ask your vet to call ahead to where you are moving to check if the vaccinations you now give are sufficient.. I've been hearing a lot about EHV outbreaks somewhere west of me but I can't remember where.  EHV is very contagious so ask your vet if it (any diseases actually) might be an issue on your travel path.  When I entered and left California, they went over my horses carefully, matching markings to each horse.

Put your biggest horse in the section with the most room.  I put My two smaller horse up front (open stock trailer) and put 16.1H Rusty in the back.  I often saw him standing diagonally with his butt against the opposite of the trailer.

To reiterate, don't take the horses out of the trailer until you get to your layover.  There were a couple of times they ended up being in the trailer 12 hours due to construction and they were fine.

My trailer is double-floored with mat on top .  I did not  use shavings but a lot of people do.

Carry some Banamine in the front of the truck with you --- if you have it within quick reach you won't need it.

Unless you just did them and the mileage is low, have the wheel bearings on the trailer checked and repack if necessary.n if your tires are old and the tread is like new, you still might considered getting new tires.  I blew two trailer tires and one rear tire on the truck ---- they had less than 5,000 miles on them but were six years old and weather beaten from life in the Low Desert.

I'm sure there's more but that's all I can remember for now, except that making that drive in two days is a real push.  you might want to consider another night somewhere.



« Last Edit: May 12, 2018, 03:44:54 pm by PAWalker »
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loneelk

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2018, 02:07:55 pm »

When do you anticipate making this trip?  I'm assuming that you'll be coming through NM on I-40?  It can and will be HOT from now well into September, perhaps even October, even in central NM.  If you have an option to travel at night, that may be easier on horses & tow vehicle.  You've gotten some wonderful ideas in terms of your other questions.  I haven't used it, but I've heard great stuff about hydration hay.  Last time I hauled horses for what was a full day long trip, stopped about mid-way and got them off the trailer where we could pull about 50' off the roadway, but even w/ VERY calm horses, it was scary because of traffic going by @ 55/60 mph.  I wouldn't do it that way again unless I had NO other choice.  I think better to leave them on trailer & offer water in buckets inside the trailer.
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vruste

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2018, 02:33:48 pm »

good advice so far...I would add, if your horses aren't used to a lot of hauling and away-from-home water, take water along so you have the best chance they will drink.  No need to unload till you get to your stopping point for the day.  Just stop driving occasionally (typically fuel/food stops for people are enough for the horses).  Make sure they can put their head down enough to cough.  Offer water.  Do not grain.  I like to provide hay in the trailer; some people do not.  Sometimes you can sneak under dividers in front of horses for water, otherwise consider a small bucket that fits in the slats you have--they aren't likely to drink a lot so just using a small plastic feed pan may be fine--plan and practice that one a bit.  When I hauled minis from Louisiana to South Dakota I hung small water buckets in the trailer, never full but enough they could get a drink (about 1/3 bucket).  I'd refill as necessary at stops with a gallon jug that would fit through the side openings.  Something like that may be an option for you as well.  For me it didn't spill while driving, and if they dumped it out it wasn't enough to make the floor slick or make a puddle. 
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NoRegrets

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2018, 05:43:29 pm »

I agree with what the others have said.  We did not take our horses out of the trailer during stops.  It was only an 8 hour trip, and we only stopped 3 times.  Two times for gas and rest stops and once for lunch.  The horses were fine.

I also gave each horse Ulcergard for 2 days before we left and another 2 days after we arrived at the new home.  I believe it was 1/4 tube per horse per day. 
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Debbie

melissah

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2018, 06:39:27 am »

Thanks for the replies. I will respond to each one of you when I get my laptop back
 Forums are hard to enjoy on my phone. Writing is hard. Lol a lot of great ideas.
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Melissa, Southern California.....hitting the trails with Jex my Tennessee Walking Horse...soon.

TN Trail Rider

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2018, 10:31:26 am »

All good advice.  For layovers, if you haven't already made arrangement, you can find horse lodging on the internet.  Plan where you are going to stop for the night and Google something like Overnight Horse Boarding in the city where you are stopping.    If you're worried about water, and it might be a problem on a long trip getting them to drink, try soaking some alfalfa cubes in a bucket and make kind of a slurry.  They should have no trouble slurping that up and will get the necessary moisture.  Good luck!
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Walkin45

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #8 on: May 13, 2018, 03:29:42 pm »

If you're going to be traveling alone with 3 horses, I might spring and pre plan my stops. At a regular overnight stabling place. Be more likely to have help and stuff plus be safer.
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slamduncan

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #9 on: May 13, 2018, 04:27:46 pm »

.This might seem weird to some of you but, if it were me I would travel at night especially due to the high summer temps.  jmo.

Even here in the north east we travel at night in the hot months. ( the we is the barn I show with and I did too when I was hauling my own horses.)
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foxtrotter

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #10 on: May 13, 2018, 04:48:53 pm »

 When you decide how you are going to water the horses, load them in the trailer and try it every day from now until you leave.  It will help them get used to it, and the practice will make it easier when on the road.
 When we were hauling from Ohio to Montana for a few years, (daughter went to college there)  we stopped every few hours, rather be over cautious than sorry we didn't stop enough.   Also, pre planned our stops, and where to board them.
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MJ

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #11 on: May 14, 2018, 11:31:56 am »

I don't have much else to add, except if its hot out, traveling at night will be MUCH easier on the horses and on your truck! I don't take horses out of the trailer unless I'm staying overnight somewhere.  Otherwise, I open all the windows (if you can safely) every time I stop and let the horses look around.  If you can't open windows you'll have to practice going in and offering water.  I use a small bucket, they are easier to carry and less bulky.  Take your own water with you (you can buy water containers at Walmart and the like).  Also, I would give small dose of electrolytes 2 days before going, then slightly larger dose the night prior to going. This will help your ponies "bulk up" on some fluid intake before they head out on the trip.  You can always make slurpies of beet pulp and alfalfa pellets along the way as well to get some water in them.  For a trip that long I would feed hay, better if in a slow feed bag but use what you have, just make sure they can't get a leg caught if the hay empties out. Hmm.. and don't wrap legs.  I know people love to do that, but if you're driving along and the boots or wraps slip off you can have a mess back there.  I've dealt with 2 different professional hauling companies and both of them advised no leg wraps.  Typically you only need to stop for potty and fuel (human schedule) and that should be enough for the horses.  Take the time to stop for a meal, not just a drive through.  Even if you pack a cooler with your meals stop and take time to rest yourself and "refuel".  It will be an easier drive for sure.
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Walkin45

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #12 on: May 14, 2018, 11:42:26 am »

I always wrap and I never stop.
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oncidium

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #13 on: May 14, 2018, 12:11:55 pm »

I hauled from Seattle to Alabama

We hauled during day, and stopped at a campground at night.

I unloaded 1 or 2 times a day, no more.

I had hay and water in the trailer at all times. 

I used e'lytes a every other day until day of hauling the week before.  IOW do e'lytes 3 times.  Then do them every each day one time a day when hauling and 1-2 times after getting to their new destination if they are not drinking.  Do not over e'lyte them.  I would feed hay only, no grain.  If they eat beetpulp then make that wet for one meal, and you can put their e'lytes in the meal.  If not syringe into their mouths.

Unloading and loading is risky.  Also takes more time to get to your destination.  Risky that they could get away possibly. 

I would put some shavings in the trailer but you need to ensure they do not blow around.  If your trailer is open, I would do a fly mask with ears.  I consider your trailer you have pictured "open".  So masks and check masks to make sure they are ok under there and also clean.

There are horse motels.  You can look those up.  Then schedule for one each night if you need to. 

It took us about 4 days of hauling.  The continental divide was a challenge.  Make sure your truck is ready for the task.  We took it at night so it would be cooler for the truck.

I hauled a lot due to riding endurance.  Also hauled for others. 

No leg wraps.  Heat will be the main issue.  But I would NOT haul at night exclusively.  Too tiring for the drivers.  If you stop for people food they will be fine left in the trailer.  Just make it so they do not sweat bad.  You are going to the land of humidity.  It will take about 1 year for them to acclimate.  And come winter that thick stuff is FUR!  They will need it.  :-)  I assume your horses are also used to being hosed off.  If they get too  hot hosing them or sponging them will be an asset.

Good Luck!

O
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melissah

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Re: How to transport my horses?
« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2018, 12:14:39 pm »

I would consider making it two and half days....leave in the afternoon, drive a few hours, and stay they night.  Then make two long days, split fairly even in the middle.

These are my own personal rules, but based on some research done by Texas A&M of their rodeo team horses.

12 hours maximum days.
Stop every two hours.  This is good for people, too.  Gassing up counts, or just a stop at a rest area to go to the bathroom.
Every 4ish hours, stop for at least 30 minutes...eat a people meal.  Horses do not need to come off the trailer, but they need a break from balancing and the road vibration.  Feed hay in the trailer.  Keep a fly mask on them to keep hay bits from blowing in their eyes.  And offer water every 4 hours.

Great advice. I kept reading everyone else talk about stopping to to recoup the ride and rest from balancing. I will need stops too as my RA makes me stiff and sore sitting in a vehicle for such a long time. And good idea about the fly masks.


I moved my horses from PA to SoCal, then five years later to TN.

Do NOT take them out of the trailer until you get to your layover.Good idea. Glad you told me that. I get more people saying DON'T just the staying and resting without the truck going is good enough.  The horses got to rest when we stopped for gas and an hour plus for lunch or early dinner.  My PA vet had carried her horse back and forth to vet school and said she never made frequent stops to let a horse rest.  If you have a special needs horse its best to ask your vet but horses will do fine rolling down the interstate.

Do NOT grain them. No way The only way I would feed any sort of feed pan stuff, is if the horse is on meds or needs to have some special supplement in its system.

Carry as much if your own hay as you can so you can transition the horses over a coupl of weeks.Yes, will do that for sure and start them slow on the Fescue grass in the pasture. I was also told feed them their regular hay before we let them out for short times so they get full  Further to that, don't let horses that are used to desert life (no grass) out on all the lush pasture.   My horses lived in SoCal five years --- I kept the three of them in a 24' X 100' paddock attached to the barn when we first moved here.  After they ate that down, we hand grazed them an hour at a time 2-3 times daily.  This went on about three weeks ---- we were lucky in that we arrived in the Fall when the grass growth was slowing down.

I offered the horses water every time we stopped for gas.  That was tricky --- trying to find something small enough to handle in a tight area yet big enough they could drink comfortably. That is very tricky especially if you seen my trailer pic. I like the idea of really soaking their hay first then they get some water in the alfalfa.

You need to have current coggins and health certificates.  Ask your vet to call ahead to where you are moving to check if the vaccinations you now give are sufficient.. I've been hearing a lot about EHV outbreaks somewhere west of me but I can't remember where.  EHV is very contagious so ask your vet if it (any diseases actually) might be an issue on your travel path.  When I entered and left California, they went over my horses carefully, matching markings to each horse.

Put your biggest horse in the section with the most room.  I put My two smaller horse up front (open stock trailer) and put 16.1H Rusty in the back.  I often saw him standing diagonally with his butt against the opposite of the trailer.

To reiterate, don't take the horses out of the trailer until you get to your layover.  There were a couple of times they ended up being in the trailer 12 hours due to construction and they were fine.

My trailer is double-floored with mat on top .  I did not  use shavings but a lot of people do.

Carry some Banamine in the front of the truck with you --- if you have it within quick reach you won't need it.

Unless you just did them and the mileage is low, have the wheel bearings on the trailer checked and repack if necessary.n if your tires are old and the tread is like new, you still might considered getting new tires.  I blew two trailer tires and one rear tire on the truck ---- they had less than 5,000 miles on them but were six years old and weather beaten from life in the Low Desert. Yes,there is a place down the road that does horse trailer inspections. Plan that too

I'm sure there's more but that's all I can remember for now, except that making that drive in two days is a real push.  you might want to consider another night somewhere.






When do you anticipate making this trip?The house in MO closes this Friday 18th and as soon as we fund this house in going on the market. We live in a niche community that are horse estates. Only one acre lots but these houses go up for sale and they're gone super fast. So far we are the only ones leaving our horse facilities, new solar, pool, house has an addition in the bedroom HUGE bedroom. Oh and the front is landscaped like New Mexico homes for water conservation.   I'm assuming that you'll be coming through NM on I-40? Yes, and their are a lot of layover places.  It can and will be HOT from now well into September, perhaps even October, even in central NM.  If you have an option to travel at night, that may be easier on horses & tow vehicle.  You've gotten some wonderful ideas in terms of your other questions.  I haven't used it, but I've heard great stuff about hydration hay.  Last time I hauled horses for what was a full day long trip, stopped about mid-way and got them off the trailer where we could pull about 50' off the roadway, but even w/ VERY calm horses, it was scary because of traffic going by @ 55/60 mph.  I wouldn't do it that way again unless I had NO other choice.  I think better to leave them on trailer & offer water in buckets inside the trailer.


good advice so far...I would add, if your horses aren't used to a lot of hauling and away-from-home water, take water along so you have the best chance they will drink. We do haul a lot but I have a tank in my trailer and a couple of huge blue water tanks from walmart. No need to unload till you get to your stopping point for the day.  Just stop driving occasionally (typically fuel/food stops for people are enough for the horses).  Make sure they can put their head down enough to cough.  Offer water.  Do not grain.  I like to provide hay in the trailer; some people do not.  Sometimes you can sneak under dividers in front of horses for water, otherwise consider a small bucket that fits in the slats you haveIf you look at the trailer those slats may not work for water. I've seen collapsible water buckets for horses and was wondering how to squeeze them through the slats pop them open and hold them for them to drink --they aren't likely to drink a lot so just using a small plastic feed pan may be fine--plan and practice that one a bit.  When I hauled minis from Louisiana to South Dakota I hung small water buckets in the trailer, never full but enough they could get a drink (about 1/3 bucket).  I'd refill as necessary at stops with a gallon jug that would fit through the side openings.  Something like that may be an option for you as well.  For me it didn't spill while driving, and if they dumped it out it wasn't enough to make the floor slick or make a puddle. 


I agree with what the others have said.  We did not take our horses out of the trailer during stops.  It was only an 8 hour trip, and we only stopped 3 times.  Two times for gas and rest stops and once for lunch.  The horses were fine.

I also gave each horse Ulcergard for 2 days before we left and another 2 days after we arrived at the new home.  I believe it was 1/4 tube per horse per day. 

I LOVE the Ulcergard idea. I will not take them out at all and will give them that. Thanks




All good advice.  For layovers, if you haven't already made arrangement, you can find horse lodging on the internet.  Plan where you are going to stop for the night and Google something like Overnight Horse Boarding in the city where you are stopping.    If you're worried about water, and it might be a problem on a long trip getting them to drink, try soaking some alfalfa cubes in a bucket and make kind of a slurry.  They should have no trouble slurping that up and will get the necessary moisture.  Good luck!


Thanks. I did that and there are so many layover places off the I-40. Have to find one that allows cats or dogs because good chance the Lance will be packed. There are horse/people hotels I would imagine that allow animals. My husband will not be home most likely as he starts his new career nest Sunday he leaves for Salt Lake city and will be in training for 2-3 months so no home time. The house will sell quick so I asked a friend (ex-trucker/Sheriff) to drive the moving van with Hannah's car towed while I drive the Dodge with the Lance and horse trailer. That was nice of him.


If you're going to be traveling alone with 3 horses, I might spring and pre plan my stops. At a regular overnight stabling place. Be more likely to have help and stuff plus be safer.

Yes, that's what I plan. I would assume they have places where people can layover as well as the horses.


.This might seem weird to some of you but, if it were me I would travel at night especially due to the high summer temps.  jmo.

Even here in the north east we travel at night in the hot months. ( the we is the barn I show with and I did too when I was hauling my own horses.)

My trailer stays pretty cool. We've had some 107 days stuck in traffic and husband has went to the trailer to check and it's stays cool. Plus I can't drive at night. I would crash. I remember leaving to Mexico at midnight or when I drove my MIL to northern CA and l left at 5 pm. It was so scary come 1 AM because my eyes were so heavy.


When you decide how you are going to water the horses, load them in the trailer and try it every day from now until you leave.  It will help them get used to it, and the practice will make it easier when on the road.
 When we were hauling from Ohio to Montana for a few years, (daughter went to college there)  we stopped every few hours, rather be over cautious than sorry we didn't stop enough.   Also, pre planned our stops, and where to board them.

Good idea. I'm going to check out riding warehouse because that's where I seen the buckets online, Thanks




Thanks everyone for all the great advice. After reading all this, no worries.
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Melissa, Southern California.....hitting the trails with Jex my Tennessee Walking Horse...soon.
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