Trailer safety tips? - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 31 Old 12-27-2015, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beau159 View Post
Always close the back door BEFORE you tie the horse. If Harley would have gotten a leg off the back of the trailer while tied, you really will have a huge wreck on your hands.

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Point taken. I was truly frightened for a minute and feared the worst. The only reason it all worked out is that Harley is a smart, even-tempered horse (the BEST kind of horse for us newbies - he forgives my many mistakes). I never knew not to tie until the back door is closed. Although the bumper bar had been shut, Harley had a bowel movement and the BO decided to grab a shovel and try to scoop it up and throw it on the manure pile, then come back to shut the back door. In the time it took to do that, Harley had backed his whole rear end out under the bar. I had stepped out, then immediately got back in and stood at his head, helplessly trying to pull him back. If he hadn't been tied though, he would have kept going and might have hurt himself worse. But next time, the back is shut immediately while I make sure he is quiet and THEN I will tie him. The fact that it was a bar (well-padded, thankfully) may have made a difference from a chain too. In any case, I do not want a repeat of that. Thankfully, Harley loaded up perfectly the next time, so hopefully he wasn't traumatized.
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post #22 of 31 Old 12-27-2015, 09:56 PM
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Quote:
Always close the back door BEFORE you tie the horse
How do you get out if you don't have an escape door?

I'm happy with my step-up 2 horses slant. Aluminium (frame included) is best, no rusting worries. If you can get one with a tack, you won't regret it. But you must know what your towing vehicle can pull before you shop for a trailer. Aim for 75% of towing capacity, including horse, tack, hay and water.

I travel alone and do not have an escape door. I bring the horse in, tie her, then move the partition at the same time I'm backing and crawling under the partition. Horse can't back anywhere in a slant.

If you get a step up, look for a round rubber edge to prevent leg injuries going in-out.
I use a break-away halter, a quick release snap and carry a pocket knife on me.
My arabians are small enough to turn around to get out.
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post #23 of 31 Old 12-27-2015, 10:15 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eole View Post
How do you get out if you don't have an escape door?

I'm happy with my step-up 2 horses slant. Aluminium (frame included) is best, no rusting worries. If you can get one with a tack, you won't regret it. But you must know what your towing vehicle can pull before you shop for a trailer. Aim for 75% of towing capacity, including horse, tack, hay and water.

I travel alone and do not have an escape door. I bring the horse in, tie her, then move the partition at the same time I'm backing and crawling under the partition. Horse can't back anywhere in a slant.

If you get a step up, look for a round rubber edge to prevent leg injuries going in-out.
I use a break-away halter, a quick release snap and carry a pocket knife on me.
My arabians are small enough to turn around to get out.
Thanks Eole! The ones I've seen all had escape doors, but that very question has occurred to me because there are some for sale that don't. And yes, we're well below towing capacity as long as we only get a two-horse trailer, preferably aluminum. The pocket knife is a good idea too!
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post #24 of 31 Old 12-27-2015, 10:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Acadianartist View Post
Ok, so how do I keep the horse from backing out while I shut the back door? I assume I'd have to have someone hold him. So it is necessarily a two-person job?
You can run a longe line up through the front and be behind the horse to lead him in. You can send him in and you stay behind. You can walk in the stall next to him and have some food for him so he stays while you get out.
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post #25 of 31 Old 12-27-2015, 11:17 PM
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I learn from people who do NOT have problems with their horses. I have learned that you need to practice trailering skills With your trailer, but there are ways to practice trailer loading skills withOUT your trailer. Slant load trailers have the same width as a human sized door and baffles horses that have never seen it before. So...you practice leading through human sized door in the barn, and backing through it. Much safer, because if something goes wrong you can drop the lead and then catch the horse. Once he has mastered it, your won't have that problem in the trailer, and it helps if your barn isn't well lit, like a dark trailer. Practice getting your horse to load himself by training him by voice to go into his stall with the lead draped over his back and then to face you to take off the halter. Also, even though Harley seems pretty well grounded, practice tying him up and look for excuses to tie him up and wait for you. I did that today. We just got 6 inches of rain in two days and have flood watches. My horses are stallbound, so I took them out one at a time and tied them to a post to wait for me to clean their stall. Buster Brown pawed and got his leg through the lead, above his knee and the lead snap was inches from his knee. Good training opportunity to teach him NOT to panic, and it WASN'T in a trailer. Every time something like this happens it builds trust, so if it happens in the trailer we won't have a horse explosion.
I have always used trailer ties with a quick release. AVOID the bungee cord trailer ties. If your horse pulls back they just overstretch and break and aren't worth it. The standard nylon ties work best. Long loopy leads in a trailer are an accident waiting to happen. Also, expecting your horse to keep his head up while travelling is asking for trouble. It's too tempting for him to drop his head down while in transit, and he could get stuck under a divider. Do NOT use a rope halter to tie to in the trailer. A standard nylon halter is better and one with a breakaway OR a leather crownpiece that buckles on both sides is the safest because it will breakaway in an emergency.
http://www.statelinetack.com/item/we...-snap/E001017/
When I bought my QH/TQH cross who was my tough herd leader, and had been there and done practically everything, but I didn't know it, I enlisted help with somebody with a trailer. (I hadn't bought my first one yet.) She WISELY, took her time loading him, as if she was expecting trouble. He patiently waited, let her put in his two front feet and wait, and then load the back feet...and wait...and then lead forward to the front...and wait. Extra caution and EXTRA TIME is very important when you are learning this. When you and your horse are pros you can try and break my record, 20 minutes FLAT, wrapping all legs and loading 4 horses!
Remember, a single horse travels in the front and left part of your trailer for the best balance. =D
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post #26 of 31 Old 12-28-2015, 12:14 AM
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My fingers slipped:
Also, expect your horse to keep his head up while travelling.

Tying with a LOOSE and long lead is asking for trouble.
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A Jack and Three Queens, the latest book by James C. Dedman, Amazon.com
Hope that you fall in love with "Trot", like I did! https://www.horseforum.com/general-of...queens-617793/
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post #27 of 31 Old 12-28-2015, 12:43 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Corporal View Post
I learn from people who do NOT have problems with their horses. I have learned that you need to practice trailering skills With your trailer, but there are ways to practice trailer loading skills withOUT your trailer. Slant load trailers have the same width as a human sized door and baffles horses that have never seen it before. So...you practice leading through human sized door in the barn, and backing through it. Much safer, because if something goes wrong you can drop the lead and then catch the horse. Once he has mastered it, your won't have that problem in the trailer, and it helps if your barn isn't well lit, like a dark trailer. Practice getting your horse to load himself by training him by voice to go into his stall with the lead draped over his back and then to face you to take off the halter. Also, even though Harley seems pretty well grounded, practice tying him up and look for excuses to tie him up and wait for you. I did that today. We just got 6 inches of rain in two days and have flood watches. My horses are stallbound, so I took them out one at a time and tied them to a post to wait for me to clean their stall. Buster Brown pawed and got his leg through the lead, above his knee and the lead snap was inches from his knee. Good training opportunity to teach him NOT to panic, and it WASN'T in a trailer. Every time something like this happens it builds trust, so if it happens in the trailer we won't have a horse explosion.
I have always used trailer ties with a quick release. AVOID the bungee cord trailer ties. If your horse pulls back they just overstretch and break and aren't worth it. The standard nylon ties work best. Long loopy leads in a trailer are an accident waiting to happen. Also, expecting your horse to keep his head up while travelling is asking for trouble. It's too tempting for him to drop his head down while in transit, and he could get stuck under a divider. Do NOT use a rope halter to tie to in the trailer. A standard nylon halter is better and one with a breakaway OR a leather crownpiece that buckles on both sides is the safest because it will breakaway in an emergency.
Weaver Original Breakaway Adj Halter w/Snap - Statelinetack.com
When I bought my QH/TQH cross who was my tough herd leader, and had been there and done practically everything, but I didn't know it, I enlisted help with somebody with a trailer. (I hadn't bought my first one yet.) She WISELY, took her time loading him, as if she was expecting trouble. He patiently waited, let her put in his two front feet and wait, and then load the back feet...and wait...and then lead forward to the front...and wait. Extra caution and EXTRA TIME is very important when you are learning this. When you and your horse are pros you can try and break my record, 20 minutes FLAT, wrapping all legs and loading 4 horses!
Remember, a single horse travels in the front and left part of your trailer for the best balance. =D
Thanks! Lots of great tips in here. I will add tying up and waiting as another groundwork exercise to do with him. And yes, I like the slow approach.
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post #28 of 31 Old 12-28-2015, 12:57 AM
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If you don't have an escape door you load, shut the back door, then walk around to the front or side of the trailer and tie them through the window.

R.I.P. JC 5/19/85 - 12/9/14. You made my life better.
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post #29 of 31 Old 12-28-2015, 10:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodhaven View Post
I prefer a step up trailer myself
For some reason most of my previous post did not go through so will try again

I do prefer a step up and since I trailer alone sometimes I like my horse to self load and then I do up the butt bar then go around and tie at the front. When unloading the same procedure but in reverse, untie at the front then go around and undo the butt bar and let the horse back out. My trailer right now has a ramp so I watch to be sure the horse does not stop off over the side of the ramp because they could scrape their leg if they do.
It is a good idea to teach your horse to stand for a while after you undo the butt bar and only back up when you tell it to as this stops the horse from rushing out as soon as the butt bar is undone.
When you get your own trailer you can practice loading and unloading until Harley is comfortable with it and as he has trailered a lot this should be no problem.
I have an escape door at the front of the trailer but I usually leave it closed especially if the horse self loads. If I am loading a horse that could be a problem and I have to lead it into the trailer, I will unlatch the door but keep it shut so if there is a problem I can get out quickly ( never had that happen yet)
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post #30 of 31 Old 12-28-2015, 10:36 AM
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I have always made do with a trailer with out a ramp or tack room. Mine is a 2 horse straight load. I have a tack truck straped to the front wall a couple feet in front of the horses. I keep brushes, saddle pad, helmet, bridle in there and put my saddle in the truck. Not saying a tack room wouldn't be nice !

I personally prefer a step up. Having a ramp is just one more thing that can break.

I would never tie the horse before the butt bar is up. I teach my horses to self load so I am at the back of the trailer to put the bar up immediately. I also trailer by myself 99% of the time
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