Tag Archives: hauling

How to Buy a Horse Trailer

By: Chris Robertson

Whether you own one horse or several, a horse trailer will provide a convenient way to travel with your horses to shows, rodeos, camping sites, horse trails, or wherever you need to take your horses. Horse trailers are also useful in case of an emergency if you have to evacuate your horses or get them to a veterinarian in a hurry. But buying a horse trailer can be a little confusing because there are so many different types and styles available. Here are some things to look for when shopping for a horse trailer.

Stall Details

Probably the most important features that will determine how well your horse travels are the features of the stalls. How many stalls are included? What size are the stalls (length, height, and width)? If your horse’s ears are touching the ceiling of the trailer, it is probably too short. Also, be sure the horse will have room to turn around for exiting. Some horses can be very difficult when it comes to backing them out of a trailer stall.

Be sure there’s plenty of ventilation for each stall. Horse trailers usually have from two to nine stalls. It’s a good idea to get a horse trailer with one extra stall than what you actually need. This will provide more room for your horses and also allows you to add another horse in the future.

Trailer Entrance: Step Up or Ramp

Horses are like people in some ways… they seem to have their own preferences when it comes to horse trailers. They especially have their own preferences when it comes to stepping up into a trailer and/or walking up a ramp into the trailer. This makes choosing a horse trailer difficult because you might not be sure which method of loading your horse would feel more comfortable with. Before you start shopping, find a couple of friends with horse trailers of different styles and ask if you can do a test load with your horse. You might be able to find out ahead of time what type of trailer will work best for your horse.

Slant Load or Straight Load

Another thing to consider is if you will buy a slant load or straight load horse trailer. The slant load trailer has stalls that are slanted diagonally from right to left. The horses stand in a slanted position while riding. These are usually economical for carrying more than two horses. A straight load trailer enables you to load the horses straight into the trailer from the rear and the horses face forward while riding. With both styles, choose a horse trailer that is the correct size, has proper ventilation, and provides the features you need.

Bumper Pull or Gooseneck

Consider whether you want a bumper pull or gooseneck trailer. The bumper pull trailer attaches to a hitch near the rear bumper of your towing vehicle. The gooseneck extends over the bed of the hauling truck and attaches in the truck bed. The main difference is the gooseneck can provide extra room for dressing room or living quarters.

There are other features to consider as well. The trailer might be made of steel or aluminum, or a blend of the two. It might have a tack room in the front of the stall area where you can store saddles, bridles, buckets, feed, and trunks. Some horse trailers come with dressing rooms fancied with a mirror, table, and an area to hang clothes. Some have roomy living quarters featuring a bedroom or two, dining room table, kitchenette, and bathroom. Living quarters are great for frequent campers!

Towing Vehicle

Before buying a horse trailer, consider what type of trailer you will be able to haul with your current truck or vehicle. Some vehicles haul better than others, and some can handle heavier trailers than others.

Consider all these features when shopping for a trailer, and go online to compare horse trailers and brand names such as Sundowner horse trailers. You can search for trailers by brand name or by location and state. For example, if you live in Tennessee, you might search for “horse trailers in Tennessee” or “Sundowner of Tennessee.” You can also find used horse trailers for sale if you’re on a tight budget.

Use these tips to find a horse trailer that you and your horses will enjoy for years to come.

Author Resource:

Chris Robertson is a published author of
Majon International. Majon International is one of the worlds MOST popular internet marketing and internet advertising companies on the web. Visit their main business resource web site at: http://www.majon.com

To learn more about subjects like horse trailer please visit the web site at: http://www.sundowneroftn.com

For more information and informative related articles and links about this subject matter and content, please visit Majon’s Pets and Supplies directory: http://www.majon.com/directory/Pets_and_Supplies

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Does Your Horse Need Electrolytes while Traveling?

Drinking HorseThe technical summer season may be dwindling down, but the heat is definitely not.  In many parts of the country, cities and states are still seeing temperatures in the upper 90s and even 100s.  With the heat and humidity, horses being transported for long distances, especially in climates they are not used to are prone to dehydration.

Dehydration results from the excessive loss of fluids and cause horses to have an elevated body temperature, develop colic, have muscle malfunction and even die.  With the fluid loss is also a loss of the essential electrolytes that the body needs, which are very important components in normal body function.

The electrolytes include sodium, chloride, potassium, calcium and magnesium.  They are vital to muscle contraction, nerve transmission and blood fluid balance.  These substances are soluble in water and sweating causes them to be lost.  When a horse sweats and then dries, the white residue that is seen is salt and indicates a loss of electrolytes.

Horses that are transporting through consistently hot weather will need to be watched for sweating and electrolyte loss.  You can test whether or not a horse has become dehydrated by taking your thumb and forefinger of one hand and pinching the loose skin on a horse’s neck.  If the horse is hydrated, the skin snaps back quickly.  If the horse is dehydrated, the skin will stay in the pinch that you made with your fingers or “tented.”  This is an indicator of dehydration and a sign that the horse needs fluids as well as electrolyte supplementation.  However, horses are different and some may develop gastric irritation and ulcers from electrolyte supplementation, so it is important to discuss this with the horse’s owner prior to supplementing it.

There are several ways you can supplement a horse with electrolytes.  Typically we do so without realizing it when we feed a salt or mineral mix to our horses.  Horses will self-supplement if they have a salt or mineral block available to them.  You can make these available to horses in your trailer by installing small salt block holders or placing them in buckets.  If you place them in buckets, be careful not to pour liquid or mashes onto the blocks, as it will cause them to melt.  You can also put electrolytes into a horse’s drinking water.  The drawback to this method is that not all horses will drink the water and those who do drink it may not consume enough of the water to get adequate amounts of electrolytes. Powdered electrolytes can be placed on the horse’s feed. Most horses will consume them readily in this manner, but others may refuse to eat.  Finally, there are oral pastes available and are ideal for those horses who have become stressed or you can’t seem to get electrolytes down them any other way.

Reducing Fuel Costs When Transporting Livestock

Many horse and livestock owners are affected by the rising costs of fuel and the added cost of fuel prices have forced some horse owners to reduce some of their summer activities, like hauling to horse shows and participating in trail rides. However, there are several things that horse owners can do to help maximize their vehicles fuel efficiency. By properly maintaining the tow vehicle and carefully planning ahead, horse owners will still be able to participate in many different horse related activities.

One of the most important aspects of maximizing the fuel efficiency and reducing the costs associated with hauling horses is to properly maintain the vehicle that is used to haul the horses. One of the most important aspects of maintaining the tow vehicle is to keep the engine tuned. Research has shown that a properly tuned engine can result in as much as a four percent increase in fuel efficiency.

Another important maintenance area is to replace the air filter on a regular basis. The air filter is used to remove particles and impurities from the air that enters the engine. By keeping the air filter replaced, horse owners can increase the mileage in their tow vehicle by as much as ten percent.

It is important to allow time for horses to rest when they are being hauled long distances; however owners should not let their tow vehicle idle while the horses are resting. When a tow vehicle is idling, it is getting zero miles to the gallon and as a general rule; larger tow vehicles will waste a great deal of more gasoline than a smaller passenger vehicle.

Horse owners should also use the cruise control on their vehicle as much as possible when hauling their horses and other livestock. This is because the cruise control will maintain a constant speed on the highway, which will result in great fuel efficiency.

Horse owners should also only pack the necessary supplies that they will need when traveling. This means that owners should carefully plan ahead and leave any extra supplies that will not be required at home. The Department of Energy has estimated that even an extra one hundred pounds in the tow vehicle or the trailer can result in a two percent reduction in miles per gallon. This amount will increase even more as the amount of excess weight that is being hauled increases.

Keeping Horses Safe Before, During and After Returning Home from a Trip

As the summer months approach, many horse owners will be hitting the road for some type of equine related activity.  There are several things that owners can do to ensure that their horses remain safe during all aspects of the journey.

One of the most important things that horse owners can do to ensure that their horse remains healthy is to keep them current on all vaccinations and keep them on a regular de-worming program.  It is very important to give vaccines early enough so that they will be able to induce the proper immune response before the trip.  Giving a vaccine just a few days before the journey will not give the vaccine enough time to properly work on the immune system and the horse will still be susceptible to the disease that the vaccine is designed to prevent.

During the trip, it is important to make sure that the horse is comfortable inside the trailer.  Most horse owners will bed the trailer with shavings and give their horse a good supply of hay to eat on the journey.  It is also important to offer the horse water frequently during the trip.

Once you have arrived at the final destination, it is important to carefully inspect the stall or pen in which the horse will be kept.  It is important to look for loose metal, nails and other materials that could possibly harm the horse.  If possible, it is a good idea to sweep the stall and remove any feces that may be on the ground or stuck to the stall panels.  This will keep the horse safe and hopefully prevent the horse from contracting any illnesses that the previous horse might have had.  It is also important to use your own buckets and feed so prevent the spreading of illnesses and to make the horse feel more comfortable.

After returning home from the journey, it is important to keep the horse separated from any other horses on the property for a few days, ideally two weeks.  This will prevent the horses that live on the property from contracting any diseases or illnesses that the traveling horse may have carried home.  It is also a good idea to take the traveling horses temperature twice a day to determine if they are becoming ill because fever is often the first sign of an illness.

Providing Training to Livestock Haulers

Livestock is one of the most difficult types of item to transport. Unlike other types of cargo, each different species of livestock will have their own special requirements that must be met to insure that each animal arrives at it destination in pristine condition. One thing that the shipping industry is doing to make sure that all of the standards are met is to have training seminars for livestock transporters.

January 25, 2008 was the second time that Alberta Farm Animal Care hosted a training course for livestock transporters. This second training course was held due to the high response from people in the livestock transportation industry. There were many companies that were not able to attend the first training session that was held May 18, 2008.

According to a statement from Alberta Farm Animal Care, the Certified Livestock Transporter (CLT) course is a comprehensive course that focuses on many different aspects of the livestock transporting industry. One of the main focuses of the training program is to focus on animal safety. The program is able to offer advice to anyone who will be in contact with the animals during the shipping process including truckers, receivers and shippers.

One of the great things about the training course is that there are breakout sessions that will focus on each individual species and the different factors that are involved with transporting each individual species. Each of the breakout sessions will focus on either cattle, horses, hogs, sheep or poultry. The great thing about having individual sessions for each species is that haulers and transporters who only deal with one species of animal will not have to spend several hours listening to information that does not pertain to their business.

It is estimated that on any given day, there are about 480 trucks hauling pigs, sheep, bison, elk, cattle, horses and poultry in Canada. One can only assume that these numbers are even higher in other parts of the world. By providing training and certification classes, Alberta Farm Animal Care is helping to create a higher standard that is sure to be seen not only in Canada, but in other areas of the world as well. By providing the necessary training to every sector of the Canadian livestock industry, the CLT program will be helping to ensure that everyone involved in the livestock industry has the necessary skills to safely transport animals.