Saturday, May 10, 2014

The Long Haul - Full Article

By Julie Goodnight With Heidi Melocco

Q: I’m ready to take my horse on my first long road trip, a 13-hour trek from central Texas to a group trail ride in Colorado. I’ve never before trailered a horse more than a few hours. How can I ensure that my horse is comfortable and safe on a trip of this length? How should I set up the trailer stall? Should I tie him or not? How do I keep him watered, fed, and rested?

Lilly Woods
via e-mail

A: Lilly, you’re wise to ask for advice and seek experience as you head out on the road. There’s so much to consider, and it’s always good to gather wisdom from seasoned road warriors.

I’ve learned a lot of things to do (and not to do) over a lifetime of hauling horses.

When planning a long road trip, consider your horse, your trailer, and your goals once you arrive. Overall, you’ll feel more prepared when you make a plan that feels right for you.

Here’s a roundup of five things to consider.

1. Observe Your Horse

First, observe how your horse travels in the trailer. If he’s nervous and tends to fidget and shake, he’ll use more energy, get himself hot, and need frequent breaks.

Some horses are anxious when you’re not moving, but they do okay once you’re in motion...

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