A horse float is a vehicle used to transport horses and is usually pulled by another car. The trailer is designed in such a way that it will make it comfortable to move the horse over long distances. The biggest challenge for most people is usually getting the horse into the trailer in the first place. The difficulties are in most cases fueled by three reasons. For starters, you could be giving off the wrong signal, or the horse could be scared to get in. Thirdly, you could have failed to lay the groundwork training that is necessary before loading the horse. With these three reasons as the backdrop, here are seven tips you can use to load your horse onto a float:
Prepare the float
Leave the horse in his pen as your hook the trailer to the vehicle. Check to see that everything is in order including the tyre pressure and the brakes. You can drive the float to a suitable area to make sure the horse will not be stepping on debris. The idea here is to make the trailer look comfortable to your horse. Make sure that you pick one that is spacious enough and well lit.
Ease the pressure
It is essential for your horse to be working in an environment without pressure. One of the ways to do this is to make sure that he has a secure footing. Also, make sure that you start the loading process when you still have time. You want to be able to accommodate his moods without losing patience.
Teach your horse to respond to cues
You can do this step after you have started the loading process, but you must also begin way before. You want your horse to learn that a particular form of pressure needs a specific response to go away. You can start training your horse using a halter. Apply a little forward pressure with a lead line and reward response by easing the tension. Do this regularly to make sure the horse learns.
Many people make the mistake of trying to load their horse only when they need to be on the road. This ends up taking a lot of time and yielding few results. As a way of practice, you can make it a regular thing to load your horse on the float and take him for a short trip. You want him to learn to associate the trailer with a positive experience.
When you first introduce the cue for the horse to go forward, they may not respond as you hope. You are likely to see them back away or tossing their head to escape. A good practice is to let them back away until they are ready to move forward. In the end, you cannot force the horse into the float; it has to be his choice. Before he makes the choice, you will have to learn to take it slow.
After a long training session, or after the first efforts on the horse’s side to get into the float, you can reward him. The idea here is for the horse to learn that he will not be harmed getting in. Bare in mind that the horse does not have to lead on the first try and make peace with that. This will help you to focus and not to pass your frustration on the horse making the process even harder.
Teach them to love the float
No horse will gladly walk into the float. However, you can make the trailer safe so that it feels like a second home. It may demand that you remove partitions or to park facing the stable.
In the end, loading your horse will teach you many life lessons if you let it. It is true also that there may be times when you need an extra trailer to help transport your horse. This doesn’t have to be a stressful task. Contact your nearest trailer hire center; they will be able to have you and your horse on the road in no time!
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