Moving across the country! 15 weeks and counting! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 06-14-2020, 10:14 PM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Dec 2019
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Talking Moving across the country! 15 weeks and counting!

At the end of September I am packing up my stuff, loading my horse up and moving from WA state all the way to PA!


I just bought a horse trailer! It is a '87 Circle J straight load and it is a fixer upper but I have a good team of people helping make sure it is 100% safe and sound.

I already plan on replacing all the floor boards as piece of mind for such a long haul.
First step is getting new tires, new barring's, breaks and all that!

Then once its back from the shop I will be repainting it if possible as I am sure once I get it cleaned up it will show the wear but if that doesn't get done that is the least of my worries.

Now I have never done a long cross country or even out of state haul myself just to local events and such, no more than 2 hours away from home.

I know I need a health certificate and coggins test 30 days within hauling time.

I plan on stocking up and using before/during/after ulcer medication to ease any stress through her gut.

She is already on electrolytes and is good about drinking water. I did hear that taking water from home always helps horses continue to drink while on the trip.

I plan on not wrapping her while in the trailer but simply just having bell boots on her.

My one worry is layovers, I have already mapped out the route that we are taking. I am still waiting on email replies from the places I picked from the app "Bed and Bale" I checked each place out via Facebook and they all have recent postings stating they are in fact still doing layovers with the virus going on. It will be myself and three friends hauling her. We don't plan on driving more that 8 hours each day and the first day is only 4 hours to test out how she does with longer hauling. She is new to me and doesn't have a ton a trailing experience so I don't want to stress her too much. In the new couple months I will be taking her on short hauls so that it is not 100% stressful.

Along with water from home I am planning on bringing enough hay to keep her on the same hay throughout the trip as well as after we arrive and slowly transfer her over to the new barn's hay to keep her from getting any unnecessary upset.

I am hoping from all of you guys I can get helpful thoughts and suggestions I may have not thought of.

I have attached pictures of her as she is just so cute!

I also plan on keeping this thread going with pictures/updates and the actual move! Please keep coming back for updates!
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Arc De Triumphe 5 Yr TB B GMillie 26 YR Morgan/QH B M "
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post #2 of 17 Old 06-14-2020, 10:26 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: Ontario, Canada
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Don’t have tips for long drives as I never done one, but I know others who have had horses travel well in the beginning become more and more reluctant to get back on the trailer. So might want to teach her to self load, so you have the tools needed to get her in without force.
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post #3 of 17 Old 06-14-2020, 11:44 PM
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I trailered my horse from West Virginia to Montana almost 2yrs ago. My horse had been trailered from WV to NC over a handful of times so fair to say he's decent at being in the trailer for longer hauls!

So for me, I found that hauling enough water from home for the entire trip wasnt possible for me, we just didnt have enough space, so I brought as much as I could fit and when we had lay overs Id use their water at the overnight stables....but I started to add a little bit of apple juice into my horses water at home so he would continue to drink water along the trip when we stopped, and when I ran out of water from home. It worked great and he drank the entire trip!

Another tip to make sure they get enough water is to feed alfalfa cubes that have been soaked in water, or even the bale in the bag things from TSC or farm stores similar.

Also check all the states regulations on traveling through them. I found out that Montana had an import permit type of thing, which sucks as I didnt find that out until I got here and got a warning in the mail about it, so thats something to look into as well!

8hrs a day is a pretty good day worth of driving/hauling! Make sure to stop and check on her and offer her water every few hours. I had kids with me, so we stopped for bathroom breaks quite often, which my horse loved as Id open up the trailer window, and people would come over and ask about him/give him all the attention he could ever ask for!

I would also suggest joining some trailering groups on facebook, I recently joined one that updates people to where protests/road blocks and even accidents are and where to avoid while driving thru the nation!

Best of luck on your travels and your move! Look forward to your updates!
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post #4 of 17 Old 06-14-2020, 11:58 PM
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If you don’t need the second stall for hay or anything see if you can slant or remove the divider to give her more space.

Other than that stop and let her rest every couple hours. It’s not hard work but that are actively working to balance and need some still time even if you don’t unload.

Good luck and safe trip!
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post #5 of 17 Old 06-15-2020, 07:19 AM
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Location: Middle Tennessee
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1. Whoever goes over your trailer, they had better inspect the frame with a fine tooth comb - twice.

Have them double floor the trailer then put your rubber mats on top. A 3/4” marine treated plywood will work fine for the top floor. It gives a lot more cushion to the legs.

Make sure your truck is also in top condition - new hoses, new tires, etc.

2. I moved my horses (three) cross country twice 2,150 miles. In my 87 Ponderosa 4-horse open stock bumper pull.

2.1. Never take her out of the trailer to “rest” until you get to your layover. Especially being alone, there’s nothing saying she will refuse to load back on.

2.2. She can rest when you stop for fuel or a meal.

3. Keep a fly mask on her to keep her eyes protected.

4. Thanks to construction areas, my horses ended up being in the trailer 10-11 hours a couple of times, going both ways. I’m pretty sure that double wood floor with mats on top was a big help in none of them having any leg strain.

I did not use shavings but some folks do.

5. My front horses had the divider and butt bars to lean on when they needed a break.

My 16.1H fella rode in the back and stood diagonally much of the time so he could rest his butt against the side wall.

6. Yes to keeping hay in front of her at all times and having an extra bale or two for arrival at your destination.

7. Buy a small bucket big enough for her to get her head in and buy human gallon jugs of water when you stop for fuel. My horses quickly learned to drink that way, albeit they only drank what they absolutely needed.

8. Keep Banamine and any other important meds UP FRONT in the truck. You don’t want to hope you can find a vet if the horse starts to colic on the road.

9. It would be great if you could take another horse for company but hopefully she is a good hauler and your driving won’t make her sick. I’m not kidding - if you’re a bad driver, On the brakes a lot, sway the trailer, panic easily, let one of your more reliable driving friends drive and you take pictures:):)

When I left PA for SoCal in 1998, the first thing the vet told me was my horses shouldn’t lose too much weight because “they were used to my driving “. She hauled her horse back and forth to vet school so knew what she was talking about.

My horses lost about 15# each at the end of the first trip. Coming back east of Mississippi five years later, they didn’t drop a pound.

10. I am not familiar with the web site you are using for your layovers. I used used horsemotel.com to plan the trip. The folks at each stop treated my trail horses like royalty.

I also moved three dogs and one cat with me. I spent a lot of time training my Rottweiler, Lab/Sharpei, and Beagle/mix to “go potty” on cue. D how to be quiet in motel rooms at the back of motels:):)

Best wishes for a safe and uneventful trip:):)

A Good Horseman Doesn't Have To Tell Anyone; The Horse Already Knows.

I CAN'T ride 'em n slide 'em. I HAVE to lead 'em n feed 'em Thnx cowchick77.
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post #6 of 17 Old 06-15-2020, 08:14 AM
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A fixer-upper trailer tells me you need some serious look-see done by true professionals who know what to look for in rehabbing horse trailers.

As walkin mentioned...that floor support system is going to take the biggest beating, and is overlooked how many times...
Even you did not mention the undercarriage checking just putting new flooring down...
Check the wiring that all is enclosed in steel conduit and up away from the road, not being caught as you go on and off of roadways for gas, bathroom, food and in the evening a place to stable the horse.
DO NOT unload that horse anyplace but your nightly destination for the horses safety.
The horse is going to be stressed hauling long days in a very hot trailer..
You unload that animal it may not go back on and now what???
Trailering at that time of the year days coming cross-country are often 100 degree by 10AM...
I am hoping your plan is to start driving around 11:00 PM as the heat of day leaves, drive all night long and be done and off the road ASAP so the animal can have some cool-down time of a good hosing and quiet time in the shade of a non-moving stall or paddock.
You mention water and carrying enough of it...
Invest in a inline filter for a garden hose and start using it now...filter all her drinking water so no matter where you are the water tastes the same to her.
Otherwise, buy jugs of some name brand bottled water so she will drink, flavor the water with whatever you can starting now so again, it is something very familiar to the horse.
How long are you figuring this trip shall take?
Figure a bale a day cause when traveling I would be offering hay all the time, water often while driving and if the animal wastes, they waste...then you need 3 bales at destination for a slow and gradual changeover to new hay.
I would also be very hesitant to grain my horse on such a trip... again, what ever you are going to feed/ do currently feed make sure when you arrive at that destination that brand is available so you can start the introduction again while she is eating her same hay product.

Vet care...make sure the horse is fully vaccinated not only for what your area of the country has but for your destination has...it is different often.
The horse needs those vaccinations done now so the body has time to build the appropriate antibodies so best protection is assured for the traveling, stressed animal.
You may need special paperwork to cross state to state as some states have significant requirements different...do that now, not wait.
Its nearly July and you have several long holiday weekends that no paperwork will be done during, all of which needs done in advance and takes time.

Make sure your truck and trailer meet each states vehicle code for traveling.. Drivers have correct licensing, trailer meets all vehicle code and you have proper insurance covering your travel interstate needing done.
Laws have changed, and regulations are tightening significantly even for private owned horse trailers. It is your responsibility to be in compliance of those regulations.
And near finally....a HUGE one...
You will be traveling major interstates at highway speeds far exceeding what driving you do on local roads.
Your horse needs to be comfortable traveling on those speed sanctioned roads. Road vibration is huge in a regular horse trailer...leg wearying and exhausting. Make sure that animal is able to rest in shade in quiet roadside areas not just sitting cooking in a trailer at a truck stop...there is a difference in allowing for a rest period.
And here is the other HUGE one...
When you replace those trailer tires...
Because you will be traveling interstate highways at high speed...
Make sure your tires are rated for enough weight carried and high enough speeds to allow safe traveling.
Trailer tires are commonly only 65MPH rated, you need higher ratings because you will be traveling at the max speed you can within the law of that state...
Do not exceed the speed rating of your tires, period.
Do check daily those tires for problems, check air pressures daily and that you not have leaking bearings, and tire tread is evenly wearing. You should be doing a minor inspection of that trailer at every rest period, fueling stop and every-time you stop for a extended few minutes to catch a problem before it becomes a major problem.
When you purchase those new tires, you need to purchase 2 extra spare tires, have at least 1 mounted on a good rim and all tires need to be speed balanced for best ride of the horse in that trailer.

Attention to details now, ahead of travel will make your long distance trip less stressful for you and the horse.
Don't cheap out on maintenance on either vehicle cause once away from home, you know nothing about the area you may breakdown in or have a issue near..you are at the mercy of your location.
Truck fully inspected, serviced and reliable. check!
Trailer, fully serviced, newly maintained and all has been checked... check!
Every weld, check that hitch for road-worthy safe, every window, every door, every light inside and out works, brakes new and properly adjusted, wheel bearings new and a extra set already greased carried on the trip for just in case... check!
Paperwork in order, vaccination records, coggins, health certificates that meet DOT federal and state guidelines of states you cross, insurance on vehicles, towing insurance/roadside assistance not only for the truck but a horse trailer occupied, .... check!
Those things should get you headed in the right direction...
Today, make sure your license is going to be adequate as laws are changing I can't stress enough.
Many are driving illegal and not know it in their rigs...the onus is on you to be legal in all states you travel not just where you are from. check!!
You are going to be a target with out of state plates as you travel, make sure every "T" is crossed and "I" is dotted before you ever pull out of the driveway on your start of travel = least stress on you = less stress on the animal you haul.
Safe travels. double and triple checked!!!

...

The worst day is instantly better when shared with my horse.....

Last edited by horselovinguy; 06-15-2020 at 08:20 AM.
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post #7 of 17 Old 06-15-2020, 01:16 PM Thread Starter
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Talking Thank you ALL, more questions!

Thank you all for the detailed replies in your experiences and suggestions!

I for sure am having more than one machinic look over the trailer, I also have a certified machinic who is coming and will be the one hauling with me as he is apart of our group and will make sure it s all safe and sound before we depart and each day.

I for sure DO NOT plan on ever unloading until we are at the layover for the night, I have had double tires on the trailer of a 5 horse gooseneck on the side of a busy freeway in Canada and had to press that they get out ASAP as he had live animals inside and it wasn't safe to be parked on the side of a VERY busy freeway. That was scary for sure!

One new question I have and it may sound silly but:

Q: Is it okay/not rude to supply my own sanitizer spray to spray her area for the layover should it be say a stall or panels to just be sure she isn't contracting anything or is that pointless? the other part to that question is should I sanitize my trailer each morning when we reload her up? I know when we arrive at the final destination we will be pulling mats out spraying it all down, thoroughly cleaning from top to bottom inside and out.

Q:When building a solid ready to use first aid kit/or purchasing one what should it include, what do you suggest that you may not find in one you buy that you would like to see that would be handy?


I am sure I will have more questions this week before the trailer work gets started.

Keep the ideas/your personal stories/suggestions/etc coming!! I really do appreciate all your support and CANT WAIT TO START THE TRAILER TRANSFORMATION!

Arc De Triumphe 5 Yr TB B GMillie 26 YR Morgan/QH B M "
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post #8 of 17 Old 06-15-2020, 01:58 PM
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When I travel to away shows and rent a stall for a day or a overnight I bring sanitizer and spray that stall well. Then and only then do I ask for the bedding bags to be given to me so I can prepare the stall for the occupant.
Yes to sanitizing the stall at each stop-over point.

I would not spray the trailer as only your horse should be in it...
Spray residue could bother the horses breathing and you don't want that.
As long as no other horse unknown gets in your trailer you should be fine.

A first aid kit...
Vet wrap in different widths.
Sponge gauze pads of various sizes, pair of sharp scissors.
Big jar of antiseptic cream as you may also need some antiseptic ointment after taking care of a horse not complying.
Vetrolin or something similar.
Standing wraps and quilts
Bell boots
Moleskin, has gotten me out of more jams that you can imagine for a variety of reasons.
Bute and Banamine in paste and injectible safe to administer.
Clean, sterile in single use package syringe and needle.
Electrolyte paste..
Some type of surface scrub for wound cleaning, I use Betadine.
Gloves, sterile is great but just some kind of clean gloves since often you will be covered and now need to really administer first aid with clean hands touching a wound..
A large sheet for a clean surface to lay stuff on quickly...puppy pee pads, hospital blue chucks are wonderful.
A clean metal bucket to make a wash solution in...
Soft cling gauze to cover those bandages while you start wrapping.
Good masking tape that peels easily off a roll in large pieces...
Duct tape cause you just never know..
A baby diaper and a clean Styrofoam cup.
Aspirin and a flask of something for when the crisis has passed to go we made it, we going to be OK.

Kind of a large first aid kit. Some things can be tossed others should not.
From dealing with a eye injury to a severe hoof bulb laceration, legs, knees and hocks.
Soothing ointments, germ killers and what to cover ouches with...
How to cut it since teeth can't always do the deed...and when all else fails and the darn wrap is wrapped backward carefully placing masking tape to hold but not constrict works...
Duct tape to put on the nose of the horse as it somehow makes them docile and safer to handle, placed on the tail dock they stop kicking your head off...and when all else fails duct tape can be used to hold the crazy make it on the fly bandages together till you can get to real help in a crisis...
..

The worst day is instantly better when shared with my horse.....
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post #9 of 17 Old 06-15-2020, 02:32 PM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Dec 2019
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Quote:
Originally Posted by horselovinguy View Post
When I travel to away shows and rent a stall for a day or a overnight I bring sanitizer and spray that stall well. Then and only then do I ask for the bedding bags to be given to me so I can prepare the stall for the occupant.
Yes to sanitizing the stall at each stop-over point.

I would not spray the trailer as only your horse should be in it...
Spray residue could bother the horses breathing and you don't want that.
As long as no other horse unknown gets in your trailer you should be fine.

A first aid kit...
Vet wrap in different widths.
Sponge gauze pads of various sizes, pair of sharp scissors.
Big jar of antiseptic cream as you may also need some antiseptic ointment after taking care of a horse not complying.
Vetrolin or something similar.
Standing wraps and quilts
Bell boots
Moleskin, has gotten me out of more jams that you can imagine for a variety of reasons.
Bute and Banamine in paste and injectible safe to administer.
Clean, sterile in single use package syringe and needle.
Electrolyte paste..
Some type of surface scrub for wound cleaning, I use Betadine.
Gloves, sterile is great but just some kind of clean gloves since often you will be covered and now need to really administer first aid with clean hands touching a wound..
A large sheet for a clean surface to lay stuff on quickly...puppy pee pads, hospital blue chucks are wonderful.
A clean metal bucket to make a wash solution in...
Soft cling gauze to cover those bandages while you start wrapping.
Good masking tape that peels easily off a roll in large pieces...
Duct tape cause you just never know..
A baby diaper and a clean Styrofoam cup.
Aspirin and a flask of something for when the crisis has passed to go we made it, we going to be OK.

Kind of a large first aid kit. Some things can be tossed others should not.
From dealing with a eye injury to a severe hoof bulb laceration, legs, knees and hocks.
Soothing ointments, germ killers and what to cover ouches with...
How to cut it since teeth can't always do the deed...and when all else fails and the darn wrap is wrapped backward carefully placing masking tape to hold but not constrict works...
Duct tape to put on the nose of the horse as it somehow makes them docile and safer to handle, placed on the tail dock they stop kicking your head off...and when all else fails duct tape can be used to hold the crazy make it on the fly bandages together till you can get to real help in a crisis...
..
Horselongguy:

THANK YOU! I am writing all this down and going to start shopping for this ASAP!

My favorite part that 100% agree with after seeing some scary things....

"Aspirin and a flask of something for when the crisis has passed to go we made it, we going to be OK. "


You know your a horse person when you are excited to put this kit together!

Thank you again!

Arc De Triumphe 5 Yr TB B GMillie 26 YR Morgan/QH B M "
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post #10 of 17 Old 07-10-2020, 10:43 AM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Dec 2019
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Talking Less than 12 weeks to go! New pictures!

We are just under the 12 week mark! EEEEeeeek!

SO MUCH TO DO! SO LITTLE TIME!

I am at least going through everything this week horse wise as I am sending G off to "summer camp" until we head out. I have one box packed to send out and just need to pick up a couple more boxes from Walmart to send her winter blankets off in.

This week we pulled the trailer out, started the pressure wash process inside and out, will be doing another round before it is on the road.

Today I call the shop and get a date to bring it in for new tires/ breaks and barrings!

I also need to measure the floor boards and pick up the new floor boards.

I will be putting the large can of WD40 to use on Sunday as well!

I am so excited and yet to overwhelmed!
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Arc De Triumphe 5 Yr TB B GMillie 26 YR Morgan/QH B M "
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