Backing Out of the Trailer - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 03-23-2009, 02:17 PM Thread Starter
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Lightbulb Backing Out of the Trailer

I am needing advice on how to teach my horse how to back my horse out of the trailer. He is just small enough now that he can turn in the trailer and unload, but I know I need to teach him to back out of it. He is terrified of unloading anyway, so its going to make it extra difficult. He seems like he is scared of falling or slipping when he unloads. So then he jumps out of the trailer (not a big jump, but he doesn't step out normally). Any advice? Thanks!!

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post #2 of 22 Old 03-23-2009, 02:31 PM
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can you open the whole trailer up? Make him see its not a scary place? Or you can reward him everytime he behaves in the trailer. I'd work on staying calm in the trailer before I worked on backing out.

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post #3 of 22 Old 03-23-2009, 02:36 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by english_rider144 View Post
can you open the whole trailer up? Make him see its not a scary place? Or you can reward him everytime he behaves in the trailer. I'd work on staying calm in the trailer before I worked on backing out.


He's calm while loading and trailering. Thats not the issue. He just doesn't like stepping down to get OUT of the trailer. He thinks he's going to fall or something.

~*~*~*~No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle ~*~*~*~
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post #4 of 22 Old 03-23-2009, 02:53 PM
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You can start with backing him up from his stall (if you have stalls in barn). You can just make stall narrow by using, say, barrels. Walk him in, do NOT let him turn, and then ask him to back out by slightly wiggling the rope. So it's some kind of imitation. I'm pretty sure he'll freak out for the first time (at least, mine did), but after 5-7 times in and out they understand.
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post #5 of 22 Old 03-23-2009, 03:11 PM
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How big of a step down is it?
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post #6 of 22 Old 03-23-2009, 03:16 PM
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I agree with what kitten Val said about backing out of a stall, but first you need to make sure that your horse backs for you just standing in an open area. You should be able to back him anywhere on the ground before you try backing him out of a trailer that way he trusts that you're not going to back him somewhere he can't fit or could get hurt. I like to start my horse backing on flat ground...then back up and down little hills and even through water. You probably won't have to go to all that extent...I just like reverse! :p Lol!

Edited to add: Oh...and take your time...even if he holds one back leg in the air for ten minutes hunting for the ground...let him find his way out once he starts moving back...and be sure not to let the lead wrap around your hand incase he starts moving back fast. I wear gloves until they learn to back out slow so they don't burn my hands.

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post #7 of 22 Old 03-23-2009, 03:16 PM
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Is it a ramp or step down?

Another excersie you can do is get yourself some barrels or even boxes and make yourself a chute on the ground and practice backing him through it.

Last edited by G and K's Mom; 03-23-2009 at 03:19 PM.
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post #8 of 22 Old 03-23-2009, 03:27 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kitten_Val View Post
You can start with backing him up from his stall (if you have stalls in barn). You can just make stall narrow by using, say, barrels. Walk him in, do NOT let him turn, and then ask him to back out by slightly wiggling the rope. So it's some kind of imitation. I'm pretty sure he'll freak out for the first time (at least, mine did), but after 5-7 times in and out they understand.

I do have stalls in my barn. He already backs up on command. He can back up in our trailer (its a 16ft) already. His problem is just the step. How do I work on that? Should I just load him up and do it that way by trial and error? Or is there any other method to teach to step DOWN while backwards?

~*~*~*~No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle ~*~*~*~
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post #9 of 22 Old 03-23-2009, 03:29 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mls View Post
How big of a step down is it?
Its about 8 inches to a foot. It really depends on the angle of the trailer and how its sitting though. But normally its between 8-10 inches.

~*~*~*~No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle ~*~*~*~
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post #10 of 22 Old 03-23-2009, 03:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randiekay215 View Post
His problem is just the step.
Which is how high?
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