Top tips for safely transporting your horse

This is the time of year when we travel to horse shows and enjoy the outdoors. In order to make sure that you and your horse arrive safe, happy and ready to win, here are some travel suggestions.

Top tips for safely transporting your horse

1. Examine your vehicle, trailer, and tires. Nobody wants to be stranded on the side of the road, but it's especially critical when transporting animals. Especially during the summer, when standing still causes heat to build up in the trailer. Maintain routine maintenance and have any problems checked out. When it comes to avoiding delays caused by a broken down vehicle, prevention is the best option.

2. Ensure that your mobile phone is fully charged before embarking on any journey with your horse and you have their passport to hand.

3. Put the number of your emergency recovery company into your mobile phone so that you don't have to search for it in an emergency.

4. During a long journey, stop every three hours and untie your horse so he can lower his head to prevent shipping fever. Shipping fever is a catch-all term for any viral or bacterial respiratory infection a horse may catch while traveling. It is distinguished by a persistent cough that can last for weeks after travel. One of the best ways to avoid shipping fever is to ensure that your horse can drop his head and clear particulate matter from his respiratory tract while traveling. Because shipping fever is frequently triggered by stress, shipping with a second horse is recommended. Also, take this opportunity to provide your horse with water.

5. If you are traveling a fair distance, make a list of veterinary clinics along your route, including their phone numbers. If your horse develops colic or is injured during the trip, you will have quick access to a veterinarian.

6. Acclimate your horse to wearing travel boots or bandages to protect his legs during transport.

7. When transporting your horse, use an old leather headcollar and always tie the lead rope to a piece of baler twine rather than directly to the metal tie ring. If your horse slips and falls while traveling, the baler twine or headcollar will break, preventing serious injury.

8. If you are traveling with two horses, ensure that they are tied short so that they do not irritate each other during the trip.

9. Horses are not as sensitive to cold as humans are, so do not overdress your horse. Remember to open a few windows in the summer to provide adequate ventilation in a horsebox.

10. Carry extra water and haylage for your horse in the event of a breakdown.

11. A haynet can alleviate your horse's boredom and keep him from fidgeting during the trip. Utilise a haylage net with small holes so that it lasts longer for your horse. A quick-release knot must be used to secure the net to the baler twine, and the empty net must not hang so
low that your horse's hoof could become entangled in it.

12. Avoid using dusty hay or bedding in your trailer or horsebox, as it can lead to respiratory issues.

Good luck and have a great season!