Horse will NOT load onto trailer.
   

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Horse will NOT load onto trailer.

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  • Horse that will not trailer
  • Training horse to load in trailer

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    01-15-2012, 06:50 PM
  #1
Foal
Arrow Horse will NOT load onto trailer.

So, today is the day that I was suppose to move my 16yr old TB. He has been at this barn for 12yrs and he hasn't been on a trailer in 9yrs.

We started to trying to load him at 10:30am.. The trailer that I am using is big enough for 2 TB. At first, we loaded on a horse that he was going to be moving with. It was a 20yr old Mustang. But my TB Jazz didn't wanna go on. So we ended up taking out the Mustang hoping Jazz would walk in by himself. It didn't work...

So we ended up trying to get him on for over 3hours. He would place his two front hooves on the trailer ramp, then back away. We eventually got all four on, but then he would pull and put all his weight back on his two back hooves. With that said, we ended up going for a run to Tractor Supply to pick up some VitaCalm. The Tractor Supply didn't have VitaCalm so we ended up getting an oral paste called Quietex. They say that's suppose to work well but it didn't for Jazz.

Once Jazz gets IN the trailer, he shys away. And I think he freaks out so much is because he use to be stall beaten with a piece of wood.

We also tried coaxing him in with hay, grain, AND treats. NOTHING worked. At 6pm I ended up ending the battle between Jazz and I. I'm just so stumped and don't know what to do.. (And towards the end of this day he began having a temper tantrum and charging at everything. He charged at me, and horses.)

I will take ANNNY advice. Please, and thank you!
     
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    01-15-2012, 07:07 PM
  #2
Trained
If the divider comes out, take it out and give him a bigger space to step into.

I had this problem last year and fixed it the next day within 10 minutes. This is what worked for me.

Park trailer in open area where you can work the horse. Put the horse on a long line, 14' or so will work. Near the trailer entrance, yield the horse's hind end in both directions. He needs to move his hind end away from you when you step toward it, not just walk around in little circles. If he's not crossing over with his hind legs, he's blowing you off. Do not get too close to his back legs, Stay up by his shoulders so, if and when you insist on him doing the exercise correctly with a flick of the lead rope, and he kicks out at you, you won't get kicked. If he does kick out, immediately back him up into last Tuesday. Flick the lead rope at him, tap him in the chest, whatever you need to do but back him up. Once you think you've made your point. Quit only after he is yielding willingly from both sides.

Next, again near the trailer, send him between you and a fence, a wall or even the side of the trailer. The goal again is for him to walk calmly between you and the solid object. First do it from a good 10' away, but then gradually decrease the size of the space he is to go through.

Now take him back to the trailer, yield his hind quarters just long enough to establish who's calling the shots about where he is to move is feet and then lead him into the trailer. Come to a halt, praise and then either back him out of let him turn around and come out forward if you've taken the divider out. Repeat until he goes in willingly many times over.

Next apply the sending exercise. Send him between you and the opening, and then send him in. Expect him to go in just as he went between you and the solid object. Forget that the trailer is the trailer and he will to.

If an anytime he becomes beligerent, resume the leg yielding exercise. Once he realizes that his tantrums will only result in more work, he'll get the idea and load. Do not get angry or aggressive with him at any point in this exercise. Do be patient but also assertive. He must understand is to go where you say, but that no harm will come to him for doing so.

Good luck.
     
    01-15-2012, 07:17 PM
  #3
Trained
Or smack his butt & load him into an open stock trailer. If this horse hasn't been hauled in years, I doubt he is body sore from hauling, I had a mare that had enough of being in a 2 horse and I did every method, including the excellent method posted by Puck, forget it she was done. Got the stock trailer, smacked her butt & we were hauling every weekend again.
     
    01-15-2012, 07:41 PM
  #4
Foal
Additional options

I had a TB that hadn't loaded in 5 years and was difficult the first time I tried to load him. We took him to a clinic and while loading he was rearing and striking. About 3 months later I planned on moving him to a new barn so I started early with his loading lessons.

I think the biggest thing is knowing your horse. And not loading when you have time constraints. You need to take as much time as possible and that may mean working with your horse over several days or weeks.

When I first started trying to load him I was told to make it uncomfortable to be outside the trailer and nice inside the trailer.

This is what I did, but again I think it depends on your horse. The first thing was to make sure he was paying attention to me. If he wasn't paying attention to me and seemed distracted, I would take him a little ways away from the trailer and longe him until he was paying attention to what I was asking.

Then I would take him back to the trailer. At first we just wanted him taking steps towards the trailer. Every time he took a step forward we would take the pressure off. (We had a longe whip and would just lightly tap his hocks and make it annoying for him). We would also put pressure on the lead rope. Every time he moved forward towards the trailer we would stop with the longe whip and be lighter on the lead rope. If he backed away from the trailer or stopped for too long, back came the pressure.

If he completely lost his attention, I would take him away and longe him.

Eventually he walked up to the trailer and put his front two feet in. We'd just let him stand there and think about it. We started to be annoying again with the pressure and he eventually got in. As soon as he was in we hand fed him several handfuls of treats.

Then we backed him out and started over again. The first time took about 50 minutes. By the second try (that day) we had him in again in about 10 minutes. The 2nd time we closed the butt bar but didn't go anywhere. (we were using a 2 horse straight-load trailer with a ramp)

The reason I say you really have to know your horse is because I realized quickly that when we tried to force him into the trailer, he would rear and strike but if we approached it more calmly, he would think about it and then get in and be good. The last time I loaded him it took about 5 minutes.

If this or other suggestions don't work, then I would say as a last resort you could call your vet and have your horse drugged. It's not a great way to do it but that's how racehorses are usually loaded. I have an OTTB which explains why he wasn't very good loading.
goneriding and loveduffy like this.
     
    01-15-2012, 07:57 PM
  #5
Showing
All three Thoroughbreds I've owned have been fantastic loaders.

Have you tried leading him in while two people standing on either side of the horse (well out of kicking range) stretch a lunge line across the area behind his bum? I worked with a difficult loader once, and a little pressure from the lunge line was all it took to change his mind and have him walk forward.
     
    01-15-2012, 08:46 PM
  #6
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by CVHorseLover    
I had a TB that hadn't loaded in 5 years and was difficult the first time I tried to load him. We took him to a clinic and while loading he was rearing and striking. About 3 months later I planned on moving him to a new barn so I started early with his loading lessons.

I think the biggest thing is knowing your horse. And not loading when you have time constraints. You need to take as much time as possible and that may mean working with your horse over several days or weeks.

When I first started trying to load him I was told to make it uncomfortable to be outside the trailer and nice inside the trailer.

This is what I did, but again I think it depends on your horse. The first thing was to make sure he was paying attention to me. If he wasn't paying attention to me and seemed distracted, I would take him a little ways away from the trailer and longe him until he was paying attention to what I was asking.

Then I would take him back to the trailer. At first we just wanted him taking steps towards the trailer. Every time he took a step forward we would take the pressure off. (We had a longe whip and would just lightly tap his hocks and make it annoying for him). We would also put pressure on the lead rope. Every time he moved forward towards the trailer we would stop with the longe whip and be lighter on the lead rope. If he backed away from the trailer or stopped for too long, back came the pressure.

If he completely lost his attention, I would take him away and longe him.

Eventually he walked up to the trailer and put his front two feet in. We'd just let him stand there and think about it. We started to be annoying again with the pressure and he eventually got in. As soon as he was in we hand fed him several handfuls of treats.

Then we backed him out and started over again. The first time took about 50 minutes. By the second try (that day) we had him in again in about 10 minutes. The 2nd time we closed the butt bar but didn't go anywhere. (we were using a 2 horse straight-load trailer with a ramp)

The reason I say you really have to know your horse is because I realized quickly that when we tried to force him into the trailer, he would rear and strike but if we approached it more calmly, he would think about it and then get in and be good. The last time I loaded him it took about 5 minutes.

If this or other suggestions don't work, then I would say as a last resort you could call your vet and have your horse drugged. It's not a great way to do it but that's how racehorses are usually loaded. I have an OTTB which explains why he wasn't very good loading.
Interesting assertion - based on what facts, exactly?
     
    01-15-2012, 09:23 PM
  #7
Trained
I wouldn't think they'd want to be drugging them up to make them quiet enough to drag into a float before a race unless they wanted the thing to lose?
The tb's I've had have all been very good loaders.

OP, how exactly were you trying to get this horse into the float?
rob likes this.
     
    01-15-2012, 09:36 PM
  #8
Yearling
Good luck. I've had my mare for 6 months now, and today was the first time I got her to load in the trailer! I borrowed the neighbors gelding, and put him in the front of the trailer (it's a 4 horse). Then got her up to the trailer, put rope thru side and around the tie so she couldn't pull back...(but we could let go of the end if we had to and she'd be free). She fought us the first time, bumped her head on the top, slammed her head into the side, but she finally got in. Praised her, loved on her, let her stand there for a while to calm down, gave her a few bites of timothy pellets. Backed her out.... which almost took as long as loading... walked her around a bit, then went to the trailer again.... Didn't take nearly as long, but after about 2 hrs, of loading and unloading, she will finally walk up to it, and I'll pat her on the stomach and say load up, and she'll hop on in there.... The last hour was without the other horse in the trailer. Hopefully tomorrow, she remembers her lesson! We'll keep working on it.

Sorry to hijack your thread, but I understand where your coming from.... Time and patience!!!
Good luck
     
    01-15-2012, 09:54 PM
  #9
Foal
Ill have to try what Puck suggested. Even though I took out the divider already &tried, ill try w/ the exercises. And I also tried what Horselover did too. He didn't budge. He's very set to his way. I mean I've gotten all his 4 hoofs on then he spooks out. &i don't wanna tie the lead rope around the bar in the trailer &have him hurt himself. The driving span that its going to take from his old barn to his new is about 15-20mins. I tried smacking his but &back legs w/ a lunge rope but he didn't wanna hear it. &the last thing I wanna do is call the vet &have him drugged /: &its okay nuisance! Talk about your experience. I love reading success stories! (: thanks for the advice everyone!!!! I'm still open for anyone else advice!!!!!!
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    01-15-2012, 10:11 PM
  #10
Yearling
Every body has said it time to practise is before you need to do it I had the same problem with my draft horse he would not get on I showed him that the trailer would not hurt him he hate tight spots now he looks at the trailer them me and I tell him he will be ok
     

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