Modifying stock trailer

So I had a really scary moment this weekend when a horse in a tantrum got a leg out the opening of my stock trailer. Luckily everything was ok, but it could have ended tragically. Has anyone ever added a bar or even a mesh to Make the opening smaller to try and keep this from happening again?

might want to look at what is retailed as a Cattle Panel… 4 ga wire panels that could be attached to the inter sidewalls of the trailer

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What opening, high up or do you have lower ones, which are not really suitable for horse hauling?
Yes, adding bars between bars or slats would possibly help.

If you add any type of mesh, remember horses may scratch themselves on it during hauling, hang a shoe and in any case, never use any with bigger than 2" x 4" holes.
A hoof can easily push thru a 4" x 4" space.

A picture of the space would help.
Glad the horse was not hurt.


That’s pretty high up for your horse to have kicked, maybe adding more verticle bars so there is only a small gap between?

I am definitely nervous about mesh, in my head I was thinking like a small diamond mesh that I don’t even know if it exists! I called my trailer guy and he is going to look at it and see what they can do, but I’m leaning towards them adding a bar in the middle of the space to make the opening smaller. I had a Featherlite before and the opening was smaller and higher than this trailer. I keep going back and forth between modifications or just selling but prices are pretty high to try and replace it.

In theory the space is above kick height, unless your horse decides that its a patchy twat kind of day.


It is an actual horse trailer, not sure if its fair to the manufacturer to post a picture?

Don’t post a picture if in doubt.

You probably would do best working with the trailer people, they will know how to fix it for you.

I have an Exiss stock combo and admit to wondering if this would happen when we picked up my 3yo pony who was not thrilled about being taken away from his friends. But it was too hot to leave all the plexiglas inserts in the trailer. He poked his nose out and yelled but kept his feet inside, if not always on the floor.

So mine has those tracks for the plexiglas, but I don’t think anything thin enough to slide in would be sturdy enough to keep horse feet inside. I’d have to see pictures to offer an opinion on what to add.

here is a picture, I am less concerned about the top opening

:hushed: Wow! That was some tantrum!
I’d ask trailer guys to attach whatever barrier on the outside of the opening.

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Cattle panels are 4” square, plenty big enough for a hoof. There are 2” x4” horse panels that would be safer.

I’d worry about anything deformable–a cattle panel or similarly constructed horse panel will probably still allow a hoof through with enough force and geez, if a horse is determined enough to get a foot all the way up there (impressive!!) it might be better to ensure NOTHING can go through there.

How about a bar welded in that gap horizontally? Match it to the uprights and it’ll look like the trailer came that way!

Another option might be welding in an expanded metal mesh (like so), but sometimes they are a little sharp.

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That sounds like it was very scary! Glad everyone is OK.

This might be a situation where talking to a trusted trailer place is best. They will know trailers, horses, and what they have available to make the problem go awy.

I wonder if they can retrofit the slots for plexiglas to slide into or if it has to be done when the trailer is made. It’s pretty sturdy stuff and a hoof would likely just bounce off of it. Maybe just on the side where the problem child normally rides. You’ll still have the airflow up top.

I might also just attach a heavy duty screen such as the Professionals Choice one. Anything that will encourage a hoof to slide down and stay inside. And also block the visual appeal of the opening.

Was the horse trying to climb out, or just bucking and kicking and happened to get a leg out?

I would not use any of the welded wire panels around horses – if they are hit hard the welds tend to break and then you have very sharp points.

Horse threw a tantrum, I have never had a horse with a temper like this one, you don’t see it often but when you do, it is scary. I think luckily he was mad so he knew what he was doing and was able to get himself down. I think if he was scared he would have definitely panicked and broken his leg. He was going back against the tie and then throwing himself forward and “punching” the trailer violently.

I’m going to see what they think, but I’m leaning towards having them add another horizontal bar across the middle of the bottom opening to cut the opening in half.

A welded bar might be the easiest option. I’d be inclined towards two, to get the spacing tighter. The other option that would keep airflow is the heavy duty mesh cages you find on construction and logging equipment, but retrofitting that would take a skilled welder and access to that material (I’ve only ever gotten it through Caterpillar for a Cat…) That material is designed to take much greater impacts than any horse can generate.
You could get high impact lexan, also used in construction/forestry equipment for safety cages (it is about 1/4" to 1/3rd of an inch in thickness), but that is not cheap and would be even harder to retrofit.


Agreed, I’d have someone weld two horizontal bars across there

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I’m pretty happy with the results, I mean horses will always find a way to kill themselves but I think this lessens the chance of it happening again!


Nice!!! Love it!