Instore Pickup & Local Delivery


Your Cart is Empty

  • Add description, images, menus and links to your mega menu

  • A column with no settings can be used as a spacer

  • Link to your collections, sales and even external links

  • Add up to five columns

  • December 01, 2022 4 min read 1 Comment

    Competitions and summer beach runs mean that we travel with our horses more often than not over the hot, summer season. There are measures we can take to ensure our horses arrive happy and healthy at the end of their trip. Whether it be a short fun-filled trip to the beach or a long-haul endeavor across the Nullabor, these are our top 10 tips for keeping your horse a happy and healthy traveler.

    1. Reduce Stress 

    Horses can get stressed easily in new environments or particular situations. To keep those stress levels down, we want to familiarise the horses as much as possible with travelling. So, before you embark on any trip, make sure your horse is familiar with your float and unloads and loads easily. If you know your horse is a nervous traveller, take steps to reduce this, even if it means engaging a professional to help with training. A stressed horse during travel often means a stressed horse (and owner!) at the destination!

    2. Drink up!

    Before embarking on your journey, ensure your horse is hydrated, and if your trip is 4 hours or more, offer water regularly during stops. If you know your horse isn't a drinker, then make the offer a little sweeter with some molasses or apple juice flavoured water. 

    3. Provide adequate roughage 

    Before you load your horse into the float, it is essential to ensure it has a belly full of hay. This reduces the likelihood of gastric ulcers, particularly in anxious horses. Horses continually produce gastric acid, and if horses are loaded with an empty stomach, then this can cause the gastric acid to splash around in the stomach, potentially causing gastric disease. Feeding hay will stimulate saliva, creating a buffer and preventing the acid from harming the stomach lining. Some horse owners may choose to feed hay inside the float, and some may not. This is a personal preference. But either way, ensure your horse has a full feed of hay beforeand after travelling to reduce the likelihood of gastric disease. 

    If you are planning a long hahen you will need to stop every 3 to 4 hours to provide your horse with food and water.

    4. Plan your trip 

    Whether planning a short or a long trip, ensure that you have sufficient food and water for your journey. By providing the same food (and water!) that your horse is used to will not only be familiar to them, so that they are more likely to eat and drink, but it will also keep their gut microbes happy. The gut is very sensitive to feed changes, so if you change your horse's feed rapidly, they may stress, and gastric upset may occur. 

    It is also essential to know your route. Plan your trip; know where you can stop or pull over safely, and determine if there are any roadworks in the area or any structures that may impede your journey (such as a low bridge crossing where your float or truck doesn't fit under!). If you are planning a longer trip, plan ahead for places you can stop and allow your horses to rest. Remember, your horse should only travel for a maximum of 13 hours. After this time, they should be taken off the float and rested for a day before travelling again. Failure to do so may result in travel sickness, which is a respiratory infection caused by not being able to clear the trachea. 

    5. Let there be air 

    Your float or truck needs to have adequate airflow. This is especially true in hot weather. To ensure your horse's comfort and health open up the windows, air vents and if available, the storm doors to allow the air to move through the float, and keep your horse cool and comfortable. 

    6. Neck clearance 

    To keep your horse comfortable on the float, ensure they have sufficient headroom. The horse should be able to lower its head (within reason; if tied up, its head shouldn't get so low that its feet get tangled in the lead rope!). This will allow for tracheal and lung clearance. 

    7. Emergency Kit 

    It is always best to travel with an emergency kit. If you are travelling to an unknown area, research a local vet and save their number in case of an emergency. Also, keep a first aid kit in your float, which includes, bandages, scissors, gauze or cotton wool, and a spare lead rope at a minimum. 

    8. Make sure your float is in good working order 

    Before setting off, ensure your float, and car are in good working order. Check brake and hazard/indicator lights, tires (especially air pressure), and braking systems are all working the way they should. 

    9. Avoid dusty feeds 

    If you do travel your horse with feed, avoid any that are dusty. This reduces the dust in the air, which can get trapped in your horse's lungs or eyes. You can place hay in hay bags or dampen the hay to reduce dust.

    10. Don't try anything new 

    In terms of travelling your horse with hoods, boots, or bandages, the advice is don't put these accessories on if your horse isn't used to wearing them ordinarily. You want to keep things consistent for your horse; this means that you shouldn't introduce new things at the time of floating! Also, consider whether or not to rug your horse. In summer, the floats do get very hot, so avoid having any extra layers on your horse to ensure they keep cool and comfortable. 

    Above all else, if you are travelling your horse, on short or long trips, it is always best to monitor them. Look for any changes to their usual behaviour or eating habits, and if there is anything out of the ordinary, contact your vet immediately. 

    Travelling with your horse should be a fun-filled adventure for you both! So it is important to ensure our horse's comfort at all times. As always, we are here to help, so if you need to restock your first aid kit or if you need a hand choosing items to make your horse's next trip more comfortable, make sure to visit us in-store or online! 

    1 Response


    April 24, 2023

    A very informative floating article thank you

    Leave a comment

    Comments will be approved before showing up.