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Tips for shipping your horse
Understand NO grain or rich feed prior to shipment no matter how much you love your horse. Hay is fine but use a flake that has more grass than alfalfa, etc.
Have the paper work ready. This includes vet papers for shots, health, coggins tests, brand inspection, etc.
Horse must have basic halter and lead rope.....don't send your best show tack!!
Discuss any problems up front. This is for the horse's and the handler's benefit.
If the transporter allows for extra things to be shipped along with the horse....label your things and make a list to be given to the transporter and the person receiving the horse(s), even if this is the owner.
Blend Mountain Dew or Kool Aid in drinking water for a week prior to the transport for horses that are finicky about their drinking water. This is a common trick with horse transporters.
Usually a horse's own bale of hay is good to supply so they are eating what they are used to being fed.
Shipping boots are not a good idea unless the horse is used to wearing them. If you really think they are necessary put the boots on and leave the horse tied for several hours to test their behavior. A shipping boot may sound like a good idea but if the horse kicks at them continually then it may injure itself . They can also add excess heat and stress to the horse's legs. Many transporters have ramps for loading/unloading so there is little risk of injury. Ask the transporter if they have ramps.
Transporters don't supply blankets and boots for sanitary reasons.
Tips for selecting a Transport Company
Be aware that your insurance company may not cover your horse if you use a transporter who isn't licensed with their own basic insurance coverage for horses. Inquire with your insurance company.
Get references and check out the transport company you are considering.
Compare several transport companies for hauling equipment, horse care, price and customer service. Ask......don't assume all the things that will effect your horse.
A transport company may ask for a reasonable deposit to secure your place on the trip but I would question any company that asks for payment in full before they even arrive for pick up.
The cheapest priced transporter may not offer the shortest, healthiest trip for your horse. Vet bills can be many times more $ than you might save by going for the cheapest priced company.
Don't ask a transporter to haul your horse for LESS $ than it costs for gas!! They're trying to make a living, too!
Seriously think about whether your horse will do fine in a tie stall or if you need to spend a little more for a box stall so the horse can move around.....based on the horse's behavior with shorter trips to your local horse shows and trails.
Understand that exact times for pickup/drop off are not always possible. Drivers can't always give exact times because traffic, weather and other horses all effect the travel and arrival time. The transporter should be in contact to keep you updated though.
Transporting a horse incorrectly may cause shipping fever, thrush, cuts and abrasions, colic and emotional scars. The best way to prevent problems is preparation. It is important to remember that transporters are in the business to move your horse with the least amount of stress possible but they are not in the business to train your horse. Adequate groundwork on your part will help your equine companion have a less stressful trip. Elevated electrolytes, proboscis and mineral oil are essential ingredients to a successful transport. These are very easy to administer prior to shipping and help in reducing stress.
Any specific questions regarding shipping can be answered by contacting us at (352) 793-8495
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