Need to know how to quickly trailer train
 
 

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Need to know how to quickly trailer train

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  • How to trailer train a horse

 
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    04-26-2011, 12:22 AM
  #1
Weanling
Exclamation Need to know how to quickly trailer train

Unfortunately, after an unexpected decision and situation, in approximately 2.5 months, I'll be moving. The "unfortunately" part comes to my new yearling, April. This means that in two months, I'll have to halter train her, socialize her, and trailer train her, all while pulling her away from her mother. I see separation anxiety issues coming in here to make things difficult, but that's not why I made this thread.

The trip is 106 miles long, moving from Oklahoma to Missouri. With me never having trailer trained a horse myself, I have watched and helped with it a couple times before. (A few times just watching.) It seems like a trick if you have a really jumpy horse. I'd use her mother to help me out, but her mother is due any day, and I doubt she'd want anything to do with April once this new foal comes.

I was hoping someone could give me a quick, yet easy-on-horse way to train April to walk into a trailer. I'm not sure what type of trailer I'll be using, but if we were to use a metal trailer, would hay be fine as a cushion?

Any simple advice would be great. I'll have Roger (who has experience) helping me, but I wouldn't mind having input of my own, too.
     
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    04-26-2011, 01:46 AM
  #2
Banned
Leave you horse hungry for a meal, then offer it in the trailer, if the horse does not take it - then leave a second meal hungry, then offer the trailer again.

I would do this for 3 meals at most, they should be hungry enough at that point, and it will not hurt the horse.

Once your horse is in, feed in the trailer at usual feed times.
     
    04-26-2011, 01:55 AM
  #3
Green Broke
I can't offer much advice, but its excellent you have an experienced person helping you out.

Just stay calm and confident and show April you aren't afraid and you will find things easier.
     
    04-26-2011, 01:00 PM
  #4
Foal
I actually just watch a monty roberts video on youtube about trailering. At first watch I was a bit skeptical but it worked. Mind you I couldn't hear the audio since this computers sound is busted. Ill see if I can find it for you.

Here it is
     
    04-26-2011, 01:34 PM
  #5
Weanling
AlexS: I'll try it. Almost doubting it'll work, since I also have to work on her people skills.

ChingazMyBoy: Sounds like a good idea. Fear is the number one way to get stuck in a dirty situation around a horse.

Tamibunny: Thank you! I hope it works for me.
     
    04-26-2011, 01:48 PM
  #6
Trained
Feeding in the trailer is the easiest way imo.

This way you aren't trying to halter and lead break the horse and teaching it to go in the trailer. If she is comfortable in the trailer already, the whole loading while on a halter and lead will be way less stressful.

Also make sure that you're closing up the trailer sometimes too so the horse is used to that as well.

Good luck!
     
    04-26-2011, 02:01 PM
  #7
Foal
I kinda know your pain ;) I have to teach my mare to load in the one hour I have the trailer to move her with lol. You got some good advice though, I'm sure you'll be fine :)
     
    04-26-2011, 02:46 PM
  #8
mls
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlexS    
Leave you horse hungry for a meal, then offer it in the trailer, if the horse does not take it - then leave a second meal hungry, then offer the trailer again.

I would do this for 3 meals at most, they should be hungry enough at that point, and it will not hurt the horse.

Once your horse is in, feed in the trailer at usual feed times.
NO!

Food is a necessity. It should NEVER be used as a training tool.
     
    04-26-2011, 02:59 PM
  #9
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by mls    
NO!

Food is a necessity. It should NEVER be used as a training tool.
Why not? I'm presuming, which is a bad habit, that the horse is fed grass and or hay, which is it's belly filler and provides most of its needs. Missing out on a couple of hard feeds really shouldn't cause that much damage, weighed against the benefit of her thinking that the trailer is a great place to be. For some things food is a GREAT training tool

To the OP, start from a different mind frame, there is nothing difficult about teaching a horse to load. Yesterday I led my yearlings up to the trailer, on the assumption that they would happily jump in. They chose not to, but they both stood very happily looking in and smelling the straw on the floor. I was really happy with them so just led them away again.

Next step is to get the trailer actually parked somewhere that the step is as low as possible, instead of the current position where it's way high, and then just bring the guys around again.

To me the most important thing with youngsters is your belief and attitude, Is asking her to go in the trailer reasonable, yes it is.

Is it actually that much different than expecting a horse to lead quietly through a doorway into a stall or barn, no it's not.

Given that there is no reason at all why a youngster who hasn't been taught that loading is a bad thing will actually give you any trouble. Take it slow and steady, get her to follow you wherever you want to take her, and the trailer will just come naturally
     
    04-26-2011, 03:08 PM
  #10
mls
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golden Horse    
Why not? I'm presuming, which is a bad habit, that the horse is fed grass and or hay, which is it's belly filler and provides most of its needs. Missing out on a couple of hard feeds really shouldn't cause that much damage, weighed against the benefit of her thinking that the trailer is a great place to be. For some things food is a GREAT training tool
Food can be an incentive or bribe - but it should not be a training tool. A hungry horse can become assertive and food agressive to protect the food when it does get it. Especially in this situation. You are not talking about a cranky old horse. This is a young horse with a clean slate.

Unless the horse has had a bad experience or poor handling, there is no reason to expect the horse will not load. Just be sure the trailer is well maintained and the driver understands how to haul animals instead of 4 wheelers.
     

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