Practice Loading onto a Trailer....Unhitched?

Elsbells

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As the title please, can I do it?

I've kindly been offered a loan of an unused trailer. My mare hates them, I want to get her on because I'm desperate to get out and about with her. I think I can do it, but it will take time.

Can I load her without the trailer hitched to a towing vehicle? I soppose I can, but is it safe to do so?

Thoughts please.

Bread and butter pudding with ice-cream;)
 

tinap

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Not something I would do - I would think that the back end would be very unstable (unless it has those stabliser leg things)
 

TicTac

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No! If the jockey wheel at the front collapses for any reason you'd be in trouble and if you want to give your horse a good experience you need the trailer to be as stable as possible.
 

Miss L Toe

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I have just done my trailer training with a good Ifor Williams [hunter] trailer, it does not move, the ramps are both really solid and the horse does not seem worried by any small noise.
The brake is on [ tight] and the height has been both level and tilted, no problems.
I agree I was worried about the jockey wheel slipping, [tapped it tight with a hammer], but it is all very stiff [actually needs oiling]
You could use fence posts [ baulks of wood] to stabilise it, but you would need quite a few to do the job front and back, bricks might do it.
Thinking about it, it was probably unwise.
 
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legaldancer

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No!

I tried it once as a numpty teenager after being dropped at a show and left with the trailer.

As soon as the pony put her feet on the floor of the trailer it tipped like a see saw and out she tumbled!

It would need to be stabilised, particularly at the rear. Some Rice trailers are fitted with these.
 

Tammytoo

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As long as the jockey wheel is down and the box is level, there is no reason why shouldn't practice in an un-hitched trailer. I taught mine to load in an unhitched trailer, OH and I needed my towing vehicle every day so I had no option. If the trailer does move dramatically you can always use wooden blocks or breeze blocks to stabilise it.
 

abitodd

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NO!!!!!!!!!!
I was bamboozled by a horse training expert,who wanted to show off her expertise at loading my young horse. I had already done loads of work with him and a hitched trailer and we were nearly at the self loading stage.In forwards,out backwards.
On this occasion the trailer was not hitched.I expressed my concern but she(the expert) said it would be fine. The woman did some rope twirling,opened up the front ramp of the trailer and lead my 17h 4year old through. The jockey wheel collapsed,the back of the trailer lifted and catapulted my poor horse out of the front.

So two very important lessons learned. Never assume people who call themselves experts can do any better than you. And NEVER practise loading without hitching the trailer.
 

Dry Rot

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Those who have successfully loaded horses onto an unhitched trailer have been very very lucky -- which doesn't mean it can't be done!

The trailer wheels are in the centre of the trailer to help smooth running and any uneven weight will cause it to tip like a seesaw as a previous poster has said. Ifor Williams sell stabilisers which can be bolted to each side of the rear of the trailer but that still leaves the weight in the front on the jockey wheel so it should always be hitched to a vehicle when loading.

I suppose you could jack up the jockey wheel (with the ramp up), put concrete blocks under both front corners, then let the jockey wheel down again so the front of the trailer is sitting on the blocks, but you'd need to do the same for the rear to be safe. The short answer is don't do it! Why risk the safety of yourself and your horse? If things DO go wrong, the least you'll have is a bad loader.
 

zoon

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That is why I love my ancient Rice trailer - it has stabiliser legs to drop down when it is unhitched so it doesn't rock
 

Cortez

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No! Madness! One bad fright and you'll have a bad loader for life. It'll seesaw, bang, crash and scare the bejasus out of your baby.
 

tazzle

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Providing the front and rear are stabilised properly there should not be a problem. The front of mine is on conctrete blocks with the jockey wheel up and bricks at the front corners. The rear has the stabiliser bars down as well as blocks under the corners.

We have had many horses in and out of it and it has never moved.


Totally agree never ever do it with just the jockey wheel down though.... as said by others it can give way .. and put horse off it its in it at the time.
 

SuperCoblet

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I used to all the time, get some logs (or bricks) and stick them I'm each corner, don't worry if it's a couple of inches below as long as the trailer doesn't fully tip up your fine, also put some under the front too, you'll be fine :)
 

Jemima_P

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I've taught my horses to load in an unhitched ifor williams trailer. As others have said, never do it with the jockey wheel down, just block the trailer up! Ours has really been tested and it hasn't moved an inch.
 

Tnavas

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Only if you are able to stabalise the back so it doesn't see-saw when the horse steps onto the ramp.

With one youngster I had I did all his float training with the float unhitched, I used railway sleeper type planks placed underneath the back of the float until it was level with the underside of the float.

It worked really well.

If the float has the old fashioned back stabalisers then make sure they are placed down and very firmly locked into place.
 
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