Home Current News News Archive Shop/Advertise Ridecamp Classified Events Learn/AERC
Endurance.Net Home Ridecamp Archives
[Archives Index]   [Date Index]   [Thread Index]   [Author Index]   [Subject Index]

Re: [RC] goggles and open trailers - Jennifer Judkins

Bonnie, I may be wrong but I suspect you have never owned a race horse!  If so, I will tell you race horses are not in general treated well, so no matter how much you think they are valued, you're wrong. PERIOD.  (I know them well-Love the slant load, hate the ramp  to the straight load).  Jennifer.

 Bonnie Davis <horsecamping@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

Hi Karen:

A couple years back I went to a one-day clinic on "Trailers". It was put on
by vets.

Diagrams, studies and photos pointed out trailer styles, types, materials,
etc. When it was all said and done, the best 'position' to haul a horse in
and that the animal prefers is facing backwards. In other words, the horse
will turn around and ride looking out over the tailgate if he could do so.
Lots of trailers like this in Europe and if you turn a horse lose in a stock
trailer, he'll ride backwards.

Using a heart monitor on horses in trailers. There was no difference with
increased heart beats with a horse riding slant or straight. The increased
heart beats in both types of trailer began when THE DRIVER OF THE RIG DROVE
TO FAST!!! In other words, whipping the trailer in and out of traffic,
turns to fast, sudden stops and starts, etc. It was difficult for horses to
maintain balance.

Horse s hauled long distances over a span of time, have more shoulder and hip
problems in a slant load than in a straight load. To maintain balance a
horse is always keeping his weight and shifting to the one shoulder and hip.
He tends to lean on that one shoulder and hip all the time when the trailer
is moving to maintain balance. His weight is not 'square' on four legs. In
accidents, horses in slant suffered more 'damage' than in straight loads.
One reason, if a horse in a slant goes down, he goes down on sideways. His
legs tangle in the horse beside him. If the down horse thrashes around, he
kicks other horses. The horse is on his side.

Straight loads, a horse has his weight on all four. With a sudden stop, the
horse sits BACK on his haunches. A sudden turn, he leans to the side to
keep balance. What happens with most straight loads is the trailer
compartments are not wide enough for the horse to stand comfortable.

Two examples were presented -- if your riding a horse across the side of a
hill and the horse starts to slip and slide down the hill sideways, what
does the horse do? According to the vets, the horse will take a few steps
to continue across the hill but then turn and go down forward balancing on
his haunches as he goes down the hill. Horses coming down hills will go
straight down. They get their butts under them and sit down. (My horses
will do that, if going down hill -- they collect up under their butts and go
straight down.)

Second, when the trailer is parked for half an hour with horses inside --
how are the horses standing? Horses relaxed in a trailer will stand with
heads up looking around but they cock but hind foot. They're relaxing. In
slant loads, horses are always on all four. In a straight, they will tend
to shift weight and cock a foot. They will even lean against a side wall to
relax in straight because the wall is solid -- not the partition in the

And last, I sort of look at it from the perspective of the 'sport of kings'.
Rac ehorses are worth big bucks. Some of them up in the MILLIONS. A
racehorse is studied, pampered and people hired to keep that animal safe,
healthy and happy. When racehorses are hauled or even air freighted,
they're hauled straight. In vans or containers. They face straight forward
or ride backwards in a straight position. No slant loads. I figure if that
million dollar horse is hauled straight, it must mean something -- so my
trailer is a straight load, extra wide, extra tall and I never tow over 60

There's a book out called "The Complete Guide to Buying, Maintaining &
Servicing a Horse Trailer". Written by Nava & Thomas Scheve, 305 pages.
Includes chapters on Trailering from the Horse's Point of View; Trailer
Styles, Types & Variations; Loading, Unloading Features & Options;
Controlling Interior Enviroment; Living Quarters; Towing Vehicles and more.
Probably on e-bay but if you can't find it, let me know and I'll let you
know where to buy it.

Bonnie Davis

----- Original Message -----
From: "Sullivan"
To: "Bonnie Davis" ;
Sent: Saturday, January 11, 2003 9:53 PM
Subject: Re: [RC] goggles and open trailers

> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Bonnie Davis"
> Slant loads were
> > invented not for the comfort or safety of the horse but to get more
> animals
> > in a trailer so we can haul more horses faster.
> I disagree with this, Bonnie. I find they are much safer and comfortable
> than the old traditional straight loads.
> If you put a horse in a straight load with the middle divider out, they
> naturally stand on the slant. The slant loads
> are safer in terms of loading and unloading...and you have the option to
> turn them around and let them ride backwards, which is something many will
> also choose.
> Karen

=-=-=-=-=- =-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=
Ridecamp is a service of Endurance Net, http://www.endurance.net.
Information, Policy, Disclaimer: http://www.endurance.net/Ridecamp
Subscribe/Unsubscribe http://www.endurance.net/ridecamp/logon.asp

Ride Long and Ride Safe!!


Do you Yahoo!?
Yahoo! Mail Plus - Powerful. Affordable. Sign up now
Re: [RC] goggles and open trailers, Bonnie Davis