Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Chrome Update - A Question About Trailers & Hauling

First an update on Chrome's gelding/castration. He still feels fantastic and the best news is that today was the first day that he had no swelling and no filling in his sheath. Yay!! The bad news is that while his right incision looks great, his left is still pretty open and I can see puss forming in it. It's not draining, but I can definitely see it so I guess there is some infection going on. The frustrating part is that the vet wasn't in today so I have to wait until tomorrow to call him and I can't give antibiotics for seven days because we will be out of town for a couple of days and my only friend I trust to give them has a broken arm . . . so I'm going to see if the vet will let us do another shot of penicillin. I wish I could just reschedule my plans, but work won't let me switch vacation days once they're made. So frustrating and stressful!! I'm just happy that he's still acting like he feels good and it's not swollen anymore. I'll just talk to the vet tomorrow and see what I need to do.

My other question is in regards to hauling. Chrome loads well at home, but he gets very stressed during the trailer ride. He almost always is sweating no matter how cold it is when we get to our destination. I don't want him that stressed about hauling. He also is very difficult to reload when we're not at home. I can't leave the back doors open because right now I'm hauling loose (he's never been tied in a trailer) and he acts like he wants to jump out. It's an enclosed two horse bumper pull, but it does have narrow windows running the length of it that used to have plexi glass and are now open because it broke, which is why I think he likes to turn around (no divider) because he can see. The front where the head goes is completely enclosed except for a couple of ventilation holes. That has to be scary for a horse. I do plan to eventually teach him to tie in a trailer using one of those slider tie rings so that if he ever fell or totally panicked the rope would pull through and not hang him up. So any suggestions on getting him more comfortable in the trailer??

I also would like to buy a head bumber for him in case he ever reared or hit his head (he loads and unloads calmly, but I don't know what he does on the trailer when it's moving - wish I had a camera lol), but I've never bought one before. I've held off a while because I though they were expensive, but I finally looked and some are as cheap at $10, however I know with a lot of things you get what you pay for. So any experience with cheap versus expensive? Any dos or don'ts? Brands? Any advice at all I'm very appreciative of. :)


  1. Pippi is always tied in a trailer with panic release ties. I don't like the idea of get getting too many ideas while we travel. Like rolling at long red light!!!??!! We used to have issues loading, and boy can that be stressful.
    Maybe you could start traveling to a friends house so you cab practice reloading without a time restraint. Pippi used to need the feel a rope behind her rump to give her the idea that retreat is not an option. We never used any real force. Now all we have to do is show her the rope. LoL

  2. I've never used a head bumper, so I can't recommend anything on that side.

    On the trailer side, tying your horse is important for safety (if you door latch breaks he could get loose while you are driving and get injured!). I would load him every day, love on him, and unload him. While he is in there, try tying him up so he gets used to it. Do this enough so that it becomes a great place to go. Then start taking him out for a trip around the block. Some horses never get over it - we are working a young mare right now who starts sweating when she sees the trailer, even if all we are doing is walking her past it. Good luck!


  3. I'm sorry, I had an afterthought... make sure your trailer rides comfortably. Are the tires properly inflated, floorboards solid, etc. I had problems with one of my Friesian mares years ago and found an article about this. I took my trailer in, had the tires rotated and inflated properly and it made all the difference. One or two pounds off doesn't sound like much, but if you are riding in the trailer it is huge. We haven't had problems with her since! Good luck!


  4. Basically lots of trips, and practice. Enzo used to be the same way. Now he could care less about the trailer and he even eats hay. Enzo used to not eat hay at first in the trailer, because he was too scared. Other wise, it sounds like you are doing everything just fine. As for camera I never heard of one being 10 dollars??? Tell us what you found, LOL. Lowest I saw that semed easy was still 250.00. I currently have a camera, but it over heats and then turns off!! But it's a baby moniter that I jerry riggged. So that's probably why and even my job was 250.00!!! So I should have just waited and bought this one! Maybe one year for Christmas, LOL.

  5. Our daughter's TB, Henny, used to sweat profusely while trailering if he was alone. When we took a companion along for the ride - he would remain calm.

    We always tie in the trailer - but use breakaway halters for traveling.

    I agree with Emme's suggestion to try short rides to practice loading in strange places!

  6. Ok, I wrote you back on my blog again, LOL.

  7. Emme, I never even thought of them trying to roll! I think he's too scared right now to lay down though thank goodness lol. I will definitely have to haul him to a friend's house. I didn't even think of that. I never think to take him anywhere except when we need to go somewhere. Going somewhere where I'm not stressed and I have lots of time is genius. Thank you!

    Sam, I have heard some horror stories about doors coming open and horses falling out of trailers, but I don't think it's an issue with mine. Even if the snap broke it has a ramp and the other latch will hold it up. If by some crazy bad luck both broke it still is unlikely to open. My trailer is old and doesn't have traditional doors. It's pretty tough to open lol. I am definitely going to have to start taking him around the block. He needs to practice. And even though I hate winter I need to do it now while it's not so hot so he won't sweat so much.

    I'll have to definitely check the tires. I never thought of that before. I would also like to ride in my trailer (without Chrome of course) just to see how rough it is. I've always wondered. Thanks for the advice!

    Janine, I answered back on your blog. Thank you for the comments!

    Kelly, sadly our trailer is two small to fit two horses (unless they are ponies), so he can't have a companion. I with he could, but until I can afford a new trailer he's just going to have to deal. Thanks for the comment!


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