Horse suddenly unstable in trailer

You could also see how he deals with ridng backward, which my horses have always done by choice. But then I always removed the center board too.

I had almost the same thing happen! My eventing mare logged a zillion miles happily in my straight load, but in her teens she started scrambling and several times went completely down. I tried her in a slant load and she did better. Tried her loose in an open stock trailer with a center gate, and she turned herself around and stood on the diagonal and did much better. See if you can borrow a few friends’ rigs (reverse slant, slant, open stock) that have different configurations and see if anything helps.

Eventually in her 20s my horse developed pretty severe arthritis in her knees. In retrospect,I suspect the scrambling in the straight load was related to early knee changes and somehow the motion of the trailer bothered her, even though she was still in work and performing at a fairly high level. Have you and your vet given the knees a long hard look?

your driving your trailer as you would your car normally unfortunately when you ae trailering you have to think you have a horse on board

whats happening is your horse is losing his footing as your taking your corners and bends to sharp

and it become more apparant in the feel as you drive

1- here in uk we put the horse if alone or in pairs the heaviest goes on the outside of the trialer if striaght up like yours- away from the cambers and the curbs now i know you lot drive on the right and not on left like us so move him to the other side of your trialer

2- think before you come to a bend or roundabout to slow well befoe you get the end of the road

3- dont brake as you would when driving normally be aware of your position and what you have behind you and start to slow down o approach to traffice lights etc and traffic you are driving and should be looking where your going and whats ahead

4- when you brake all of a sudden the horses body goes crashing in to the brest bar or breeching ie back ramp- when you all of a sudden brake hard

like wise when cornering or going round around about or curve as you call then dont cut the corners or curve go wider ad slower so you give your horse a nice transport exprerince add haynet for him to munch and tie him tie correctly to a piece of baling twine thats attached to the ring- so the horse has an oppertunity to break away in case of accident rather than break his neck

UNDERSTAND ITS YOUR DRIVING THAT EFFECTING YOUR HORSES BEHAVIOUR IN THE TRAILER HES LOSING HIS FOOTING AS YOU GOING TO FAST AND BRAKING TO QUICK ON CORNERS YOU ARE NOT THINKING WHAT YOU ARE TOWEING YOUR LAIDEN WEIGHT IS FAR GREATER THAN YOUR TOWING WEIGHT MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT VECHILE THAT CAN TOW THE FULL WEIGHT OF BOTH THE CAR THE TRIALER AND THE HORSE AND YOUR EQUIPMENT YOU ARE CARRYING - DRIVER ERROR NOT HORSES

In my horses’ cases their issues had nothing to do with the driving. If your driver/driving hasn’t changed then look for other causes.

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Goes, did you actually read the thread? Horse is not slipping. Horse also reacts the same way when turning at 2 mph as he does when rounding bends at 25 mph.

OP, best of luck in figuring this one out. I would be inclined to try a slant load and see if he reacts differently.

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I had a horse that could not tolerate a wall on his left side if he was constrained to one stall. He was fine on the right with a non-solid divider. He was fine on the left if you threw the divider over. It got worse with age so I suspect that some sort of arthritis issue was part of it.

is he sensitive at all to poll pressure? If so, he could be reacting to the pressure when he raises his tied head to balance. Try not tying him.

I agree that maybe rechecking EPM / Lyme if he’s been previously diagnosed might not be a bad idea. I also love the idea of trying him in different trailers, a slant that would allow him to shift weight more side-to-side rather than front-to-back might help narrow down what the causes for this new behaviour could be. Good luck and keep us posted on what you learn!

Have you had his stifles checked?

Wow, how dreadful. My problem doesn’t seem so bad now. But I know how you feel because I almost feel cruel shipping him out to lessons etc. I take turns really really really slowly and still hear him clanging around. He’s 19 so he may not have that many show seasons left in him anyway, but it sucks. He deserves better.

I’m going to try putting him on the right side of the trailer as other people suggested. Maybe I’ll try moving the divider over too. One person suggested not tying him and I have actually already tried that but it didn’t seem to make a difference.

I’m not sure I have access to a slant load or stock trailer but I’m going to look into that too!

Oh and his last work-up right before my original post was at a vet school/hospital and they didn’t really have any ideas other than testing for EPM.

What bothers me about this is how suddenly it came on, that there was no change in the truck or trailer, that there was no precipitating incident, and that he otherwise seems completely sound and healthy. Vet’s coming out today though so I’ll have him check the ears and stifles since a few people mentioned that. I think I would have seen other symptoms, especially of the ears, by now but who knows.

Thank you all for your input!!!

[QUOTE=goeslikestink;8046304]your driving your trailer as you would your car normally unfortunately when you ae trailering you have to think you have a horse on board

whats happening is your horse is losing his footing as your taking your corners and bends to sharp

and it become more apparant in the feel as you drive

1- here in uk we put the horse if alone or in pairs the heaviest goes on the outside of the trialer if striaght up like yours- away from the cambers and the curbs now i know you lot drive on the right and not on left like us so move him to the other side of your trialer

2- think before you come to a bend or roundabout to slow well befoe you get the end of the road

3- dont brake as you would when driving normally be aware of your position and what you have behind you and start to slow down o approach to traffice lights etc and traffic you are driving and should be looking where your going and whats ahead

4- when you brake all of a sudden the horses body goes crashing in to the brest bar or breeching ie back ramp- when you all of a sudden brake hard

like wise when cornering or going round around about or curve as you call then dont cut the corners or curve go wider ad slower so you give your horse a nice transport exprerince add haynet for him to munch and tie him tie correctly to a piece of baling twine thats attached to the ring- so the horse has an oppertunity to break away in case of accident rather than break his neck

UNDERSTAND ITS YOUR DRIVING THAT EFFECTING YOUR HORSES BEHAVIOUR IN THE TRAILER HES LOSING HIS FOOTING AS YOU GOING TO FAST AND BRAKING TO QUICK ON CORNERS YOU ARE NOT THINKING WHAT YOU ARE TOWEING YOUR LAIDEN WEIGHT IS FAR GREATER THAN YOUR TOWING WEIGHT MAKE SURE YOU HAVE THE RIGHT VECHILE THAT CAN TOW THE FULL WEIGHT OF BOTH THE CAR THE TRIALER AND THE HORSE AND YOUR EQUIPMENT YOU ARE CARRYING - DRIVER ERROR NOT HORSES[/QUOTE]

Goeslikestink, The OP covered all this in her inittial post. Did you read it?

Just wanted to thank everyone for their advice! I ended up trying him on the right side of the trailer this past weekend, pretty much our first road trip since this thread, and it worked!!! I didn’t feel him lose his balance once. I don’t know why it didn’t occur to me to try that before. So thanks, all!

I hope it stays that simple because as much as I love him I don’t think I can justify buying a new trailer for an almost-19-year-old horse who is probably (sadly) approaching retirement from the show ring.