Before you haul your horse, be sure to review our pre-trip checklist to make sure you have everything you need for your horse trailer.
- Wheel bearings serviced? (service every 12 mos./12,000 miles, carry spare bearing set).
- Tires in good condition? (look for dry rot, replace every 3-5 years regardless of mileage).
- Check tire pressure (including spares and inside tire on dual wheels).
- Hitch locked on the ball? Correct size ball?
- Safety cables/chains connected?
- Plug and secure electrical connection.
- Connect emergency breakaway system.
- Emergency battery charged
- Test trailer lighting (brakes, turn signals, running, perimeter).
- Check/test brake controller.
- Prior to loading horse(s), check trailer for hazards.
- Leg wraps, head bumper on horse(s)
- Secure and lock all trailer doors.
- Headlights on? For greater safety – get noticed.
- Drive safely – allow greater braking distance, and travel at generally slower speeds.
Neva Kittrell Scheve is the author of The Complete Guide to Buying, Maintaining, and Servicing a Horse Trailer and Hawkins Guide: Horse Trailering on the Road. She and James Hamilton, DVM, co-authored Hawkins Guide: Equine Emergencies on the Road.