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SunnyK01 03-22-2013 08:14 PM

Calming Supplements While Trailering?
I am not sure if this is the appropriate section or not for this question.

I need some advice or suggestions for keeping a horse calm while being trailered. My mare gets extremely agitated while traveling and ends up soaked in sweat by the time we arrive at our destination. She is not scared of the trailer at all. She loads exceptionally well, unloads easily, and will munch hay while in the trailer. She has been trailered extensively throughout her entire life. We have traveled basically all over lower Michigan for different shows and trail rides. She has been on probably 10-30 trailer rides each year for the past 15 years, varying lengths from 5 minutes down the road up to 4 hours away. She doesn't pull or rear in the trailer, but does paw. I think she just paws and shakes herself into a frenzy. If the ride is over 30 minutes, she will be dripping sweat by the time we arrive. This is in any weather. She does do much better with another horse trailering with her, but this is often not an option.

I have tried ear plugs, but she has always managed to shake them out. I am considering trying calming supplements because I feel like this level of sweating is extremely unhealthy and will be detrimental to her performance as well. I don't want to give her any supplements that will actually sedate her though because I feel like that will also be detrimental to her performance.

Any advice will be so appreciated! I am just at a loss for ideas.

Joe4d 03-23-2013 06:15 AM

windows and vents open ?
Otherwise sounds like a tough one, you'd think she'd eventually get over it. Not sure your activitiy but some of them ban calming agents so,,,, there is that to consider as well. The pastes arnt expensive, probably just gonna have to try one see what happens.

poppy1356 03-23-2013 06:50 AM

Some horses are just like that. Besides the pastes there is mare magic which I love. But you will need to feed it for a week before you leave then double the day she travels. But it's super cheap. I would just start trying different pastes that won't make her drowsy.

SunnyK01 03-23-2013 10:41 AM

Thanks for the responses!

Windows and vents are all open, and she travels the same whether in an open stock type trailer or my slant load, enclosed trailer.

We don't show much anymore, but do occasionally participate in local shows. We also have been doing competitive trail events the past few years. So, I know I definitely have to be careful about what I give her. :?

As for Mare Magic, she has been on that for years. :-) She doesn't really "need" a daily calming supplement. She is a very well behaved girl, just seemed to get touchy around her sides while in heat. The Mare Magic works great for helping with that!

Looks like it will be a matter of trying some different products and seeing if anything helps.

walkinthewalk 03-23-2013 11:15 AM

I have never experienced what the OP is describing so here's my question:

Does anyone suppose there are a few horses that get car sick? Maybe the motion of trailer makes her ill and/or really insecure?

I never thought about that until reading the OP's comments but there are dogs that have to have pills to fight car sickness.

The fact this is a mare and they do deal with hormone issues, makes me wonder even more.

I'm for trying the Mare Magic or the Raspberry Leaves and see how it works but I think I'd try it on a short haul first:-)

Saddlebag 03-23-2013 11:55 AM

Do you blanket her in the trailer? If so, it restricts her ability to cool off.

Joe4d 03-23-2013 01:08 PM

hows your driving ? you driving like a maniac ? slamming her around trailer ? taking curves to fast ?

SunnyK01 03-23-2013 01:51 PM

No blankets.

As for driving, either my dad, myself, or my fiance drives her. She has also been hauled by her trainer when she was younger. Again, same reaction no matter who was driving her. All good, safe drivers. Proper towing vehicle, well maintained trailer. My dad is an especially excellent driver - there is nobody I would trust more driving my horses!

I am just totally out of ideas.

SunnyK01 03-23-2013 01:54 PM


Originally Posted by walkinthewalk (Post 2001697)
I have never experienced what the OP is describing so here's my question:

Does anyone suppose there are a few horses that get car sick? Maybe the motion of trailer makes her ill and/or really insecure?

That's a really interesting thought! I have never considered that she could be getting car sick. I would assume that she would be colicy or lethargic afterwards if that was the case though . . . or that she would still act nervous while being trailered with another horse. I will bring it up to my vet next week at her spring appointment though and see what he thinks. Thanks!

Palomine 03-23-2013 11:37 PM

We had show horses that hated trailering backwards in vans. And had some that hated trailering forwards too.

She may have inner ear problem that is coming out with the movement of the trailer too.

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