In this article I would like to share with you some useful advice that will make travelling with your horse much easier. Summer is just around the corner and this means that people who are involved in competitive horse riding disciplines such as eventing or showjumping will have to travel a lot.
When travelling with your horse the first thing that you need to do is to properly inspect horse’s lorry or trailer to see whether it’s in good condition.
Specifically you should make sure that the fastings on the ramps are in good working order, you should make sure that on the inside of the lorry or the trailer there are no sharp edges which could cause harm to the animal. You should also inspect the floor boards, particularly if they are wooden, to see whether there aren’t any rotten floor boards. It is also important to make sure that there’s a small window for ventilation.
While travelling, you want to keep the journey as smooth as possible. Plan everything in advance and make sure that you are not accelerating or breaking hard, because this can cause injuries and stress (more on that later) for your horse.
In addition to this, you should also don’t forget to take regular breaks and communicate with your horse. While some of you might have the ability to stay on the road for horses, keeping the horse enclosed in a horse trailer or lorry for more than two hours will do more harm than good.
Finally, let’s talk a little bit about stress. If you know that you are going to travel a lot with your horse in 2013 then you might want to invest some money into a high quality equine calmer. Most of the equine calmers contain natural ingredients such as magnesium and they are proven to make horses more calm and relaxed.
The fact is that stress can negatively affect your horse’s performance and it does not matter whether you are an eventer or show-rider, stress in your horse is something that you really want to avoid while competing, because it will not only negatively affect your scores, but a stressful horse can make mistakes that can injure you, the rider.
Fastenings on partitions and ramps should be in good working order, with no sharp edges. Check under any rubber matting in the horse area, to look for any rotten floor boards. Tie rings should have breakable string attached to them, for tying the horse up. The space between the partitions should be wide enough for your horse. There should be a small window open to provide ventilation. The usual vehicle checks, such as fuel levels, tyre pressures, lights etc.