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Re: Re: safe loading in a slant load
> I'm about to pick up a new two-horse slant load and so am watching this
> discussion with interest. What Heidi says above re closing the divider
> then tying up the horse makes a lot of sense to me. But what about with
> the rear horse? Assume I am loading two horses by myself..... There is
> divider to keep him in place. Is there any alternative to tying him,
> stepping out of the trailer, going over to get that "huge" door, and then
> closing it? Seems like that gives the rear horse a long time to think
> about "setting back" before I get him closed in.
Suzanne, what works for me is to never allow the horse to back out. In the
slants and stock trailers, there is pleanty of room for the horse to turn
around. Mine are trained to wait quietly while I untie or unsnap them, then
turn their head facing out and we walk quietly out. This way, once the last
horse is loaded and facing forward on the slant, he knows he has to stay
there until I take his head to turn him. You can also load the horse and
stand there with a lunge whip and tap his hindquarters if he starts to back
out. If my "last horse" is iffy, I run the leadrope through the stock
sides; making the horse think he is tied. I then close the back door.
Don't do something stupid like have your body behind the door, in case the
horse exits quickly. If I have a kid available, they stand on the other
side and swing the door hard across to me. But usually I am by myself.
I'm sure the idea of the rope through the feeder door would work, but
frankly, it is just too much trouble and time for me to go to. I am hauling
out most everyday, and just am not going to go into that. I have two babies
that go regularly, that learned to get in and out with pans of grain and get
hauled all the time. I hung haybags at first for additional encouragment.
Another argument in favor of NOT allowing the horse to back out is that you
lot less control of where the horse goes, or if he slams into you. If you
have control of his head, you have more control period.
In the last year, I have had to deal with 5 new horses (including the 2
babies) teaching to load. This method seems to be the fastest and safest. I
usually haul 3 to 5 when I go. Since I am often by myself, I insist everyone
load and unload.
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