Tag Archives: transport

There and back again – Ten Top Travelling Tips – Part 1


An Overview of travelling your horse and what you need to think about.

Part 1

  1. Many equines do not display obvious signs of stress but recordings of heart rates, hydration levels, hormone levels and body temperature show that travelling is a genuinely stressful experience for any horse and their body reacts accordingly. Your horse may seem fine but don’t assume he is.
  2. Horses learn quickly and have excellent memories so bullying uncooperative horses to try and get them to load is fruitless. All you will be doing is affirming to the horse why horseboxes are to be feared and avoided.
  3. A horse that is new to travelling should be exposed to the idea gradually. Start by leading the horse around the vehicle and let them see and sniff it at leisure. Raise and lower the ramp without loading. Putting some food on the bottom of the ramp will also contribute to the positive experience! Progress one step at a time for no more than 20 minutes.
  4. Driving or towing equines safely and comfortably is a special skill that sadly does not always receive the attention it deserves. Get used to the box or trailer before driving with horses on board.
  5. Reversing a trailer is a difficult skill; master it with an empty vehicle. Trailer towing courses are highly recommended for anyone starting to use these vehicles.
  6. Recent research has shown that stress in travelling horses is significantly reduced when they are provided with the company of another equine. A stable mirror, carefully positioned in relation to the travelling horse, can also help alleviate stress.
  7. Taking a companion for show-bound horses is well worth considering. (Redwings has a guardian home Shetland in a home where her job is to travel with dressage horses!)
  8. Air circulation in horse boxes is often poor so windows should be opened fully to allow for maximum air movement.
  9. Anyone who passed their driving test after 1997 must take additional tests to legally drive a horse box or tow a trailer but even if you passed your test before then, consider professional training.
  10. The implementation of new European legislation now means that anyone transporting livestock, including horses, for commercial purposes must hold a Certificate of Competence. Any horse owner paying someone to transport their horse should always ask to see their certificate.

If you want further information or to download the brochure visit Redwings website here

For ever on the road – John Treagood


As I drove home yesterday I saw John’s Wagon on the roundabout outside Exeter.  His camp was looking untidy and he was no where to be seen, nor his horse, Gildor.  I have spotted John and his raggle taggle band around the place in Devon for years.  I was wondering what was up and when I read this story in the Express and Echo it made me wonder how he was going to adapt to life with a new horse or whether, now, he would have to think of parking up somewhere.

TRAVELLING man John Treagood has been left stranded on an Exeter roundabout following the death of his faithful horse Gildor. The even tempered, Irish cob horse, which for the past 18 years has happily hauled Mr Treegood and his small wagon home around Devon, died earlier this week. A bereft Mr Treagood, 79, said: “I am not sure what I am going to do now. I can’t really talk about it. “Gildor was a good friend to me and wonderful horse. “I shall just stay put and not think about what I am going to do for a few days. It is all a bit of a shock. “I have some friends who might be able to help but I shall wait and see. It’s too soon to talk about that sort of thing.” Mr Treagood, who is now camped on a roundabout just outside Alphington, said Gildor was 28 years old and he had owned him for the past 18 years. “He started to lose weight recently and it turned out his kidneys had given up. “I couldn’t stand to see him suffer I had a responsibility not to do that so he had to be put down. “The good people from the World Horse Welfare charity came along and he was put down round the corner, quietly and peacefully.” Mr Treagood has two other constant companions, his dogs Hale and Whisky. Often he would travel the area, “depending on which way my horse goes.”Gildor was able to see white road lines recognise traffic lights, stopping on red.Mr Treagood said:“The only thing that freaked him a bit was the sound of a braying donkey, which isn’t too surprising.”On ‘moving days’, the caravan could travel up to 30 miles a day along Devon’s roads, Mr Treagood walking. Gildor was happy to pull the wagon, but he would not be ridden because he liked to be able to see his owner.Mr Treagood, who was born in Kent, he never knew his mother and was raised by his grandfather until he decided to run away from home when he was 16.He joined the Army and left after six after with a lump sum of money after being blinded in one eye, and used it to get an education.He has a BA in medieval history and a PhD in environmental studies. He became a freelance lecturer and then one day picked up his backpack and went for a walk, and hasn’t stopped travelling since. Eventually John swapped his backpack for a wagon and a horse, and the little money he needs to get by is earned by doing odd jobs. He does not collect a pension, but does tree pruning, gardening and odd jobs taking what is offered in payment. Read more: http://www.exeterexpressandecho.co.uk/Devon-traveller-John-Treagood-stranded-Exeter/story-26057657-detail/story.html#ixzz3SYMvlIWS