Ever since Tofino’s sight has been deteriorating, he has been very difficult to load onto the trailer, even though we never had a problem with loading at all before.
First thing first, NEVER use force. No whips, chains, hitting etc. The reason why a horse won’t load is either because it’s something new and need to get used to it, or it’s because they are genuinely afraid for many reasons.
- Be patient
- Open the side door of the trailer so the area feels less claustrophobic
- Having a horse already inside will help to ease anxiety and doubt
- Lead your horse yourself as they probably trust YOU
- Allow your horse to walk around the trailer and sniff it out
- Reward with each step
- Talk to your horse gently
- If that fails, simply cover your horses eyes with a jumper or towel and lead them inside (this seems to work most of the time)
Note: Don’t forget your safety travel gear!
If you have any specific technique you know of, please do not hesitate to share. Personally, I have been using the above steps and ended up having to cover his face once which worked like a charm. Without doing so, it would take me 20 minutes to load otherwise.
Hope this helps