A recent trailer accident in my area prompts a question. Initially, after I saw the story, I ordered some shipping boots. This is because both horses appeared to be *okay* after, and they were clearly wearing the boots. I have learned however, that one was put down and one is in danger of needing surgery to repair lacerations on their lower legs. Maybe I should make a poll...
Last edited by 2boys; Nov. 15, 2012 at 06:18 AM.
Depends somewhat on the horse and how far I'm going. My older gelding always wore standing wraps and bell boots if we were going more than half an hour or so; I felt the support the wraps provided helped him be not quite as stiff after the "longer" trips. Otherwise, I generally put shipping boots on, with the exception of my current mare, who can somehow pull them off (?) so if she's going more than half an hour or so she gets standing wraps and bell boots on the fronts.
I never wrap. but I always use Lende shipping boots that cover the knee and hock. I put polos on underneath when I travel to local shows/clinics. The polos help the boots stay up and snug them up. I know some people who would never wrap/use boots, but I've know horses that got hurt traveling w/o them.
Generally, no. Wraps and boots add little but complexity. Professional shippers generally don't handle horses in wraps for this reason.
Professional shippers drive better than me and have a much nicer trailer.
I do shipping boots 99.9% of the time. I'll sometimes wrap after a show if the horse is going to stay in once it gets home. I love the ease and coverage of shipping boots. Wraps are easier to wash for sure.
I do bell boots on all 4 for my mare. Would do shipping boots but she kicks nonstop in the trailer with them on & stands so quiet you'd forget she's in the trailer without. Have to think the kicking is more likely to result in a preventable injury than the shipping boots. I think it's a horse/situation specific judgement call. They're fragile creatures at the best of times and in a collision where we have seatbelts, airbags, etc. to protect us, I don't think a couple layers of fabric will help that much. i know I'm not counting on a down jacket as my only safety device!
Shipping boots that cover the hocks always, at least behind (horse kicks on the trailer). Standing wraps on all four (with shipping boots over behind) if coming home from a show and horse is already wrapped or it's a longer trip ( > 2 hrs). I've had quiet horses in the past I would ship naked without hesitation, esp short distances, but our current horse has earned his bubble wrap!
I answered 'never' because I never wrap. But I do use shipping boots almost every time. The only time I don't is for a short ride in my parents XL straight load when my gelding is shipping by himself. He occasionally likes to attempt to kill himself loading and unloading on my trainers 5 horse head to head, so he gets shipping boots on all 4, plus bell boots.
Wrapping only protects a small portion of the leg, takes a lot longer to put on/take off, is more laundry, and there's a chance of them coming off. If I wrap for other reasons, such as poulticing after an event, than I still put shipping boots on over the wraps.
I agree that it depends entirely on the horse, and who the horse is trailering with. My last mare would trailer perfectly calm alone, and I would leave her naked and untied with a halter. When we shipped with other horses, it was a whole different story, and she wore shipping boots.
My current horse, an OTTB gelding trailers like it's his job (which I guess it was) and he rides naked, unless we're in someone else's slant load. He doesn't balance as well inthe slant load, and then I use shipping boots.