How many hours between stops?

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gspfan
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How many hours between stops?

Post by gspfan » Mon Aug 31, 2009 8:48 pm

We are hauling 3 horses from Texas to North Dakota.
Plans are to drive straight thru. (26 hours last year)
How often do you suggest getting the horses out of the trailer?

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Karen
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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Karen » Tue Sep 01, 2009 8:38 am

I personally wouldn't get them out at all. We drove 14 hours from NJ to MI last year and all we did was offer water and make sure they had hay when we stopped for fuel, food or a bathroom break (approximately every 3 hours), and gave them 15-20 minutes at each stop to rest before moving on. They had a full day to recover from the trip before they were ridden and both were fine and ready to go.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by RayGubernat » Tue Sep 01, 2009 1:13 pm

As Karen said...no need to stop for horses. Dogs, yes absolutely, stoip and let them out to do their business about every four hours, but leave the horses in the trailer. They will pee and poop right there and be happy as clams. Have plenty of hay for them to munch on and offer them water after about 12 hours and you should be fine. If you try to take them in and out, you are asking for a disaster. What if the horse spooks somewhere nearby an interstate as you are trying to load it?

I once drove to West Tennessee and split it into 2 days. It was a 20+ hour trip as i recall. I stopped over mid-trip at a "horse and breakfast", that I found on the internet. The horses got let out into a corral for the night with fresh hay and fresh water, we got a good meal at a local restaurant,and a great night's sleep and continued the trip the next day with a good breakfast under our belts.

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Almost forgot. When you stop to eat or whatever and leave your vehicle...LOCK UP THE TRAILER. People are inquisitive... and dumb as rocks. Some folks would think nothing of looking into the trailer to see the horses and even get into the trailer with them to let them out. I would expect such a person to also walk away without latching the back gate.

People are idiots. You need to idiot proof your trailer and vehicle.

Before you take off again, even if you were only gone a few moments...take the time to walk around the trailer and check all the doors. Visually make a check on the horses and make sure the tieouts are still in place and nobody is tangled up, etc.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Casper » Tue Sep 01, 2009 1:28 pm

I would plan on making your trip at least a two day trip. Depending on the trailer you have may be a bit rougher ride than you may think. Horses do need to stretch their legs too. There has been joint issues that have come about from horses that are in a trailer for extended periods and often. Most times you can board a horse over night at fairgrounds. Some charge others dont.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by wannabe » Tue Sep 01, 2009 9:05 pm

I agree with Casper. Split the trip into two days of driving and find a motel or campground where you can stake the horses out for the night. Some horses won't pee in the trailer because they can't stretch out, and if they do, the floor gets slick. The horses are standing and bracing themselves the whole time they are on the road, and it wears them out as well as stressing them out.
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Anaconda Pintler
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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Anaconda Pintler » Wed Sep 02, 2009 5:19 am

I haul from ATlanta to Montana quite a bit, and have never got them off the trailer, I just feed them and make sure they have water a few times a day, usually when I am letting the dogs out, most horses do not drink but will feed on a little hay if offered! I have read studies on this and they say it is actually more stressful to get out of and then back on a trailer a few times! That being said I haul my horses lose and they have plenty of room in the trailer to move around as they want.


As far as the horses not peeing in the trailer I think that is a ol wives tale I have herad that over the years, I deal with horses and Professional horse haulers everyday single day in my business and after talking to these pro's about it the call bunk on all that as well, I think mostly cuz the days of the old straight load two horse trailers are pretty much gone and with the new designed trailers and slant loads horses have plenty of room to relieve themselves. As far as the trailer floor getting slick that is what the make good quality shavings for I never haul without shavings, for two reasons, 1 being just that safety, no slick trailer floors and 2. no sore feet after long hauls, Horses standing on nothing but trailer matts for up to 30 hours or so have no frog pressure and their feet are designed to have frog pressure, the deep shavings give them this support resulting in no stiff and sore feet when I arrive!
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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Kiki's Mom » Wed Sep 02, 2009 6:20 am

We haul all over the country. For trips that are relatively short (6-12 hours) we leave the horses on board with water and food offered every 8 hours. Water offered every 8-10 hours always. On the longer hauls we make a point to stop and drop everyone at the 12 hour mark or so.

If you have horses that are difficult to load then leaving them on the trailer is/can be an option but doing this increases the risk of something called "shipping fever" and other maladies ( as referenced joint problems, stiffness etc...in Casper's post). If you leave them on board you want to always try and park your trailer on level ground as much as possible.

Most horses sweat a bit while being hauled. Blanketing helps this but can also hinder things depending on how nervous the horse. Some sweaqt more then others but they all do it to a degree. The shipping fever is a drop in the immune system from the stress and chill of travel and can manifest in a mild case of just a bit of a snotty nose and drop in appetite to more severe cases of upper respiratory infection...starting with stiffness, snotty nose, maybe even a soft cough and can escalate to swollen joints, total loss of appetite and a full blown infection requiring rest, antibiotics and leg compresses etc...

I'd split the trip into two days and make a plan to drop your horses for a full rest off the trailer at a fairground or horse friendly motel, truck stop ( lots have stock pens set up) or camp ground along the way. There are also places called horse motels...people who offer overnight boarding which you will to need to get arranged ahead of your trip.

Good luck and have fun!

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Casper
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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Casper » Wed Sep 02, 2009 8:31 am

Kiki's Mom wrote:Most horses sweat a bit while being hauled. Blanketing helps this but can also hinder things depending on how nervous the horse. Some sweaqt more then others but they all do it to a degree. The shipping fever is a drop in the immune system from the stress and chill of travel and can manifest in a mild case of just a bit of a snotty nose and drop in appetite to more severe cases of upper respiratory infection...starting with stiffness, snotty nose, maybe even a soft cough and can escalate to swollen joints, total loss of appetite and a full blown infection requiring rest, antibiotics and leg compresses etc...
Shipping fever happened to my horse a couple years ago on a 7 hour haul. Wasn't any fun, horse took 4-6 weeks to recover from it.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by shags » Wed Sep 02, 2009 5:39 pm

I think how long horses can stand in the trailer depends on the accomodations. They need room to stretch out to urinate, bedding that will keep urine from splashing, to be able to drop their heads to avoid respiratory problems, and fresh air.
Even with all that, riding and bracing for hours on end without being able to 'walk it off' can be exhausting for them.
A 26 hour trip...I'd make it a two-dayer if only to use the horses as an excuse to get out of the bucket seat for a few hours :lol:

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Kiki's Mom
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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Kiki's Mom » Wed Sep 02, 2009 7:59 pm

Very good point Shag! We haul slant loaded in a 4 horse livestock trailer......lots of room to stretch out and adjust themselves. This isn't the case with straight load trailers of any size. The horses are boxed in and confined by the "stalls". Just more fodder for consideration.......I agree 100%. Take the time to stop over for the night at the very, very least. :D If not for just for the horses but for yourselves as well.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by wems2371 » Wed Sep 02, 2009 9:11 pm

If not for just for the horses but for yourselves as well.
I know this is about horses, but Kiki's quote hits home. My husband recently landed himself in the hospital for a pulmonary embolism (lung clot) caused by DVT (deep vein thrombosis) which is basically a clot formed in his leg and part of it later travelled to a lung. It can occur during airplane, car, etc travel during long periods of immobility. By the ultrasound findings and some other symptoms we didn't recognize as threatening at the time, we can pretty much trace this back to a roadtrip we took a couple months ago. It's not the first long haul we've done, and we stopped here and there during the trip for restroom/snack breaks. Evidently it wasn't enough. He will be okay :wink:. But horses aside, PLEASE don't underestimate the importance of stopping to stretch your own legs regularly.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Wildweeds » Sun Sep 06, 2009 10:41 pm

Anaconda,
The trailers I used to build had airride suspension under them,we got a call one day at the shop from a fellow who had claimed 2 world championships in reigning were the direct result of the trailer we built him.The airride helped the horse who had a tendancy to favor a foot and be lame after hauling even on short hauls.I quizzed the fellow I worked for about all the airride stuff and when we rolled a brand new trailer out he told me to get a cup of coffee and get in the back and set it on the lip of the manger(3 inches wide) he then shut the door and we headed off down the county road all tore up for construction.I was pretty amazed that I couldn't feel any of the bumps,that the cup didn't move and that once we got to where we took pictures that we had been going 60 miles an hour.The guy still ropes in retirement and his trailer is as you suggest,lot's of shavings on the floor.
Anaconda Pintler wrote:

As far as the horses not peeing in the trailer I think that is a ol wives tale I have herad that over the years, I deal with horses and Professional horse haulers everyday single day in my business and after talking to these pro's about it the call bunk on all that as well, I think mostly cuz the days of the old straight load two horse trailers are pretty much gone and with the new designed trailers and slant loads horses have plenty of room to relieve themselves. As far as the trailer floor getting slick that is what the make good quality shavings for I never haul without shavings, for two reasons, 1 being just that safety, no slick trailer floors and 2. no sore feet after long hauls, Horses standing on nothing but trailer matts for up to 30 hours or so have no frog pressure and their feet are designed to have frog pressure, the deep shavings give them this support resulting in no stiff and sore feet when I arrive!

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by lightonthebay » Mon Sep 07, 2009 7:35 am

I unload my horses every few hours on long trips. They are well trained to reload easily but part of their lack of resistance is due to a comforatable ride with a few outdoor strecthes in between traveling. I enjoy the time with them in a grassy area and I hobble them (with halter and lead rope attached) while I snack on something myself. I also water them at the same time.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by myerstenn » Tue Sep 08, 2009 5:39 am

You folks are making this way to complicated, were not talking about your wife and kids who just ate at mcdonalds and who have to make a pit stop every two hours. If you want to do 24 straight they will do fine, you are not going to make it that long with out stopping any way ,water at reasonable intervals when available, your going to let the dogs out anyway .If you believe horses wont piss in the trailer I"ll bet you give them a big kiss when you put them in the trailer. Have a safe trip!!!

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lightonthebay
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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by lightonthebay » Tue Sep 08, 2009 7:35 am

Some of us unenelightened "folks" would rather keep the wife and kids locked in a stall for 24 hours than our horses. Nothing "complicated" about it in my opinion. We are just answering what was asked by the initial poster. The question wasn't about what can be done regarding hauling horses but rather what we would do.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Buckeye_V » Thu Sep 10, 2009 9:46 am

I don't give my horse a big kiss in the trailer.

They don't piss in my trailer. Poop yes, but no peeing. Maybe it's because I have an old straight-load. You should have seen my gelding get out and pee after an 11-hour trip this spring. I bet his eyebalss were floating.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by RayGubernat » Thu Sep 10, 2009 5:50 pm

I just traded my 2 horse ADAM straight load, but I had it for seven years. In that time I can say for certain that my horses had absolutely no hesitation about relieving themselves in both solid or liquid form.

My trailer did have torsion bar axles and a good suspension which supposedly helps smooth out the ride. It was also slightly oversized for my guys, so they had room to move around.
I can certainly see if the horse had to brace itself or could not stretch out and arch its back to pee.

Oh by the way, I don't kiss my horses in the trailer. Don't have to. More often than not,one of them will take the initiative and give me a wet sloppy one when I open up to check on them while fueling up and such. That is always good for a laugh, especially when one of them knocks me off the running board with a deftly executed nose bump.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by shags » Fri Sep 11, 2009 6:09 am

Well I kiss my horses, but only after circumstances have forced me to use a wrangler's horse! :mrgreen:

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by RayGubernat » Fri Sep 11, 2009 7:38 am

shags wrote:Well I kiss my horses, but only after circumstances have forced me to use a wrangler's horse! :mrgreen:
AMEN BROTHER.

Every once in a while, if you have a strong, safe and smooth horse, it is nice to be reminded of just how lucky you really are.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Dobe » Fri Sep 11, 2009 1:17 pm

I'll second that amen!
And who stops every 2 hours for anything other than a medical condition?! Don't think I would be making fun of people for kissing their horses if I was stopping every two hours on a road trip. :lol:
Personally, I would not haul more than 6-8 hours without a break. As far as horses that don't load, unload, or haul well, that needs to be dealt with AT HOME with training. I have known horses who will pee anywhere, some won't. I would rather get them out so I can look them over and give us all a break.
If you have a good equine vet, talk to them. They should be able to give you recommendations based on your personal horses and equipment.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by RayGubernat » Fri Sep 11, 2009 2:31 pm

Guys -

The only thing i have against loading and unloading horses is the safety issue.

If you unload your horse at a rest area and some A**hole comes by and nails his airhorn, can you be sure your horse will not spook? I don't know about you folks, but I haven't desensitized my guys to tractor airhorns. Guns yes...airhorns no. Anytime you unload horses you are taking a risk. It is far, far better to leave them where they are than to take tem out in unfamiliar surroundings. Suppose one of them spooks as it comes out of the trailer and flattens you? What happens then, especially if you are alone...assuming you wake up with nothing broken?

Be safe out there. Horses are 1000 pounds of chicken.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by shags » Sat Sep 12, 2009 5:35 am

In some states it's illegal to unload horses at rest areas.
Unloading on private property like truck stop parking lots might pose problems too, if the owners/managers whatever take isssue with it. Not everybody is good with manure being plopped around or scraped out of the trailer as horses unload, so if you find a good legal spot, clean up before you leave.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Crestonegsp » Sat Sep 12, 2009 8:02 am

The long haul horse transport people around here say never take the horse out once you put them in. As long as they have access to food and water and the ability to drop their heads below the shoulder. They also need shavings on the floor and never stand on a mat only, this allows the frog to contact the floor as they would if standing on the ground. They stop every 6 to 8 hours and allow the horses to rest for up to an hour depending on the age and condition of the horses on the load.
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Anaconda Pintler
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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Anaconda Pintler » Mon Sep 21, 2009 4:39 pm

Well I 'll be darned I just got back from Montana and never unloaded our horses either way! 1800 miles one way, and can you believe they are still alive and sound, who'd a thunk it? You people crack me up if you want to stop and unload them go ahead but I am telling you it will make no diference to the horse except that he is probably cussing you to just GET THERE AND QUIT UNLOADING HIM EVERY FOUR HOURS!
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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Perdido » Thu Dec 03, 2009 1:18 am

Anaconda Pintler wrote:Well I 'll be darned I just got back from Montana and never unloaded our horses either way! 1800 miles one way, and can you believe they are still alive and sound, who'd a thunk it? You people crack me up if you want to stop and unload them go ahead but I am telling you it will make no diference to the horse except that he is probably cussing you to just GET THERE AND QUIT UNLOADING HIM EVERY FOUR HOURS!
What about shavings on the floor?
Head below shoulders?
Being able to stretch out?
Water at intervals?

thanks in advance
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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by RayGubernat » Thu Dec 03, 2009 6:13 pm

Perdido wrote:
Anaconda Pintler wrote:Well I 'll be darned I just got back from Montana and never unloaded our horses either way! 1800 miles one way, and can you believe they are still alive and sound, who'd a thunk it? You people crack me up if you want to stop and unload them go ahead but I am telling you it will make no diference to the horse except that he is probably cussing you to just GET THERE AND QUIT UNLOADING HIM EVERY FOUR HOURS!
What about shavings on the floor?
Head below shoulders?
Being able to stretch out?
Water at intervals?

thanks in advance
I'm certainly no expert on the subject, but from my limited experience and what I have learned from others who trailer horses all the time...

Shavings on the floor- Good idea as already mentioned above.

Head below shoulders - Not a big issue for the relatively short time one is hauling.

Being able to stretch out - Depending on the type of trailer and how many horses, there may well be plenty of room for the horse(s) to stretch out. In my 2 horse BP the horses had all kinds of room to stretch out...maybe too much.

Water at intervals - I have ridden my horse at a trial for six to eight hours at a trial and he did not take water. I cannot imagine a horse in a trailer needing or even wanting water in less than eight hours, unless it is unusually warm. I usually make a stop every four hours or so to get fuel, take a bathroom break for both me and the dogs and wash my face. Offering water every second stop seems to make sense to me, especially if the weather is warm. I would not be particularly upset if a horse did not take water when offered.

RayG

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Perdido » Thu Dec 03, 2009 7:39 pm

Ray,
You and I see eye-to-eye on a lot of issues. Most of them as a matter of fact.
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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by tn red » Thu Dec 03, 2009 8:28 pm

it depends on the horse and how much it stesses the horse some do well for 9 or 10 hours others system may not handle it as well . Remember stress can kill a horse

ps
ive worked horses every day for 25 years they can and will pee anytime they want

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by Griffsmom » Fri Dec 04, 2009 12:37 pm

When hauling horses there are so many variables that come into play. Some horses haul better than others, just put in some shavings, feed and hit the road and go. Others can really stress when being hauled and those are the ones you want to keep an eye on. They are constantly bracing themselves at every turn of the wheel and touch of the the brakes, so on a long haul they can get tired and stressed. If hauling long distance I will also give a tube of electrolytes just to help out on the water consumption, and muscle fatigue, I usually offer water when we stop to fill the gas tank and stretch our own legs. I have hauled 14 hours hours twice, with different outcomes both times. One time the horses were just fine and the next time, they were all stocked up in their ankles. One of those times someone else was with me and was determined to stop and let them stretch their legs, well they weren't really happy to get back in the trailer and hit the road again, and it can be dangerous in some areas with traffic situations. On longer hauls I also have rubbed down the legs with a liniment to help with the stocking up and you can also just wrap the legs too. Each haul is different and use your own judgment in each situation. I personally would take a overnight break. Good luck, I hope everybody get there in good shape.

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Re: How many hours between stops?

Post by SeniorCoot » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:47 am

We have hauled our horses from Alaska to Wi. and only took them out at end of each day-- years ago we took them out about every 4-5 hrs but that doesn't give them rest like lunch stops etc- we try and give them an hour once in a while and thay made it fine- ditto this fall we went to MT and back- in two days- no problems --

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