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This is a discussion on Trailering within the Horse Talk forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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        07-31-2008, 07:26 PM

    Okay so I am going to have to load my horse for the first time in a trailer he doesnt know without his buddies tommrow. And I am so stressed out about it because the one time I tried to load him in an trailer he didnt know he wouldnt get in it I have no idea what kinda of trailer it will be. Does anyone have any tips on loading a difficult horse?

    Also I am doing this tommrow and have had no time to practice let alone a trailer to practice in...i am going to start practicing for future trips when I get to my new barn.
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        07-31-2008, 07:36 PM
    The best thing I can think of is practice asking him to walk through narrow spaces. Like two barrels close together etc., not sure how far this will get you the night before but might help. Also, if possible warm him up tomorrow with some groundwork so he is thinking and listening to your cues when they show up with the trailer. Good luck!
        07-31-2008, 08:03 PM
    If you are nervous/anxious maybe get someone confident to load him for you. Horses read off our body language so he might get some nervous vibes off you.

    Have treats ready for him too, reward him once he gets in and let him relax for a few minutes before moving off.

    Practice leading him through small/narrow openings is a great idea. Carry a whip for extra reinforcement. Stand on his left side, holding the lead line in your left hand and lay your right arm over his back with the whip in that hand ready to tap him on the right, where your leg would be if you where riding him.

    Also if he is walking on a ramp into the trailer, if you have any kind of similar surface at your old barn to practice walking him over. Ramps tend to have a hollow sound and can make horses a little uneasy.

        07-31-2008, 08:19 PM
    Oh yeah, I forgot about the ramp thing. A peice of plywood on the ground is a good simulation for that. It makes a similar hollow sound when they walk over it.

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