Cross Country Shipping... to wrap or not to wrap, that is the question.
I'll be professionally shipping my horse from NC to CO in late Aug or Sept. I think I'll be using Equine Express. They gave me a great quote and I've heard really good things and read great reviews of them.
So my question is: Should I wrap my horse's legs? I have not yet found a pair of off the rack shipping boots that truly fit her well. She's very fine boned so horse size swallow her tiny legs, but Cob or pony size are too short for her back legs. The boots I currently have frequently slip and twist on short trips... on one trip where she was in the trailer less than 30 minutes, she actually removed a hind boot with the Velcro still closed... after that I quit using them altogether since I really don't haul long distances.
I was thinking about wrapping her in no bows and standing wraps. Good idea or not so good idea? I know if the wrap comes loose, the company will remove them, but will not reapply a standing wrap (good policy). So I am torn as what to do. I am imagining my horse pulling into her new farm with 1 leg wrap remaining, which of course, defeats the purpose of wrapping in the first place.
Most shippers will request that you not wrap. Especially for overnight as a lot of people do not want the liability of re-wrapping or having a wrap come part way off. I shipped a horse from MT to VA and he only had on pull-on bell boots. He still managed to get one off in transit but came off the trailer fine. How long are they estimating travel time? If there is an overnight rest she could have wraps on for over 24 hours which I would be niffy about.
(Sorry about run-on sentences my comma key is not working!)
Why do I work two jobs to support a horse I don't have time to ride?
I shipped from NH to NC with boots and now wish I hadn't. The first leg of the trip was HOT (go figure, it was hotter on the New Hampshire end!) and the shipper said that when she stopped for gas/restroom breaks, he spent most of the time when he should have been resting/drinking trying to take his boots off. He didn't succeed, and he arrived fine (though otherwise naked; he somehow managed to take off his halter and head bumper and spread two entire bales of hay around the trailer once he was loose. He was literally up to his knees in hay and quite obviously pleased with himself.). However I wonder if he would have been cooler and more relaxed without them.
I do put boots on him for short trips, but if I ever take him on a longer trip, I'll put on good bell boots and leave his legs naked.
Two horses from Arkansas to NV bare legs and no problems. Currently moving mare and foal from Wisconsin, two mares, foal, yearling from Iowa bare and will be moving two weanlings from Alberta and three mares from OK...all without wraps or boots and expect no problems. Hauler requests that if I MUST use something I use well fitting shipping boots....but he plans on 3-4 days (5-600 miles per day) from Wisconsin to here with travel at night (cooler) if needed and off-trailer lay over during days to allow them to walk around. Mare/foal pairs in box stalls.
With everyone else. No wraps but bell boot if you want. She'll be much happier without. I used to wrap all the time no matter what. I've come to find that unless there is a specific reason not wrapping is best.
I am enroute to florida with two of my ultra-pampered jumpers as I type this; neither of whom are wrapped. These are horses that get wrapped if they sneeze, but for long hauls I manage to refrain. They stay much cooler and kick less without them. I do wrap going to and from horse shows, but that's a relatively short distance and mostly out of habit. Granted, they are both total pros when it comes to shipping (you completely forget they're back there, even with bad roads and heavy traffic) so it might be different if your mare is a nervous traveler, but I'd avoid boots/bandages if you can.
Nine out of ten times, you'll get it wrong...but it's that tenth time that you get it right that makes all the difference.