How to Choose the Right Two Horse Trailer

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How to Choose the Right Two Horse Trailer

Every horse owner will at some point need to transport their horses for various reasons, such as going to the vets or taking their horse to a show. The buyer will need a good horse trailer in order to get their horse from A to B. How many horses the buyer has is a huge aspect when picking a trailer. For instance, will they need a two horse trailer, or a bigger one?

The guide aims to inform the buyer what to look for in a trailer and how to purchase one on eBay.

The Different Types of Horse Trailers Available

Horse trailers will vary in size and design, but all horse trailers will ensure the comfort and safety of the horse above everything else. Trailers will come in two main types:

  • Lorries: this type is a running vehicle so the buyer will not have to hitch the trailer to a back of a vehicle. Lorries can vary from holding two horses to holding up to 6 horses with overnight accommodation attached for the horse owners. These types of horse trailers will need tax and insurance.
  • Trailers/Horsebox: These come in two ways to be hitched to the towing vehicle; the bumper pull trailer or the gooseneck trailer; both trailer and horsebox offer different advantages when being used to transport horses.

The following table breaks down the other varieties of horse trailers found and their details:

Type

Description

Stock Trailer

These are often used for transporting farm stock, but serve well to transport horses over a short distance; these are often open-topped, so bad weather can be make the journey uncomfortable for the horses. Stock trailers can be converted to horse trailers by adding padding and extra safety measures for longer journeys.

Gooseneck Trailer

Gooseneck trailers need an open truck bed system to hitch the trailer to the truck’s bed. These types of trailers tend to be more widely used in America but are becoming more common in Europe.

Bumper Pull Trailer

These will need attaching to a vehicle, because types such as Bumper pull horse trailers don’t need an open truck bed to attach to the vehicle. These can be more difficult to move and park than goose neck trailers.

Slant/Front-Load Trailers

Other types of trailers are slant-load trailers and straight-load trailers; these are how the horse will enter the trailer, from the back or from the side of the trailer. Each holds different advantages, which will depend on how the horse prefers to be loaded. These will be discussed later in the guide

Lorry

These will come in weights starting at 3 tonnes to 6.5 tonnes, being able to carry up to ten horses.

Some come with living accommodation and extra storage room for horse feed and tack.

Understanding the Key Parts to a Horse Trailer

The buyer will need to understand the key parts to a horse trailer before coming to a purchasing decision. The following table describes some of the key parts to be found in a horse trailer:

Part

Function

Groom’s Door

Every trailer should have a side entrance, often known as the groom’s door or side, so a person is able to get through and look after the horses. The door is normally at the front of the trailer.

Ramp

Ramps are preferable for loading a horse, especially for unloading a horse that is facing backward. Ramps should have a good covering to prevent slippage. A few trailer designs can come with a side ramp, which is practical for getting access to horses at the front of the trailer. Some horse trailers may have a step up entrance, but these can be difficult for unloading a horse backwards.

Floor

The floor should be solid and have matting down to prevent the horse from slipping when the trailer is in motion.

Windows

Windows and roof windows are good for letting in air and light when travelling. Horses feel more comfortable with lots of light. Windows should be reachable by the horse rider and have extra secure fittings.

Door

Some doors may double up as a ramp, which is advantageous for both horse and owner. Look for doors that are sturdy and can be secured to prevent being shut suddenly and spooking the horse.

Body

The body of the trailer needs to be durable and the materials can vary from fibreglass to aluminium. The walls inside will need to be strong with reinforced panels in case the horse kicks. Some used trailers may have been repainted to give a fresh effect.

Divisions

Two horse trailers will vary how the horse is placed, some may have the horses side by side, others may allow for one horse to be in front of the other. The division will want to allow the horse some space to move, but the division may need to go to the floor to prevent the horse getting its hooves stuck.

The above mentioned are the most common parts to a horse trailer, but trailers will vary from brand and if the owners have customised them over time.

When Loading a Horse, Which Type of Trailer is Suitable?

A buyer knows that they will need a two horse trailer, but something they must decide on is how they wish to load their horses. There are slant-load horse trailers and straight-load trailers available.

Choosing which one will depend on aspects such as the horse’s size and nature:

  • Straight-Load Trailers: These types of trailers tend to be longer as the horses stand the length of the trailer. This type of trailer is ideal for larger horses as there is more space for the horse to move about during transit.
  • Slant-Load Trailers: Loading horses in this way is often referred to as herringbone, so the horses are loaded in at an angle during transit. Some horses may prefer travelling sideways, but for a long journey it can be difficult for the horse to maintain constant balance. A factor to consider is that the horse at the front can’t be accessed until the horses at the back are unloaded, which may be a concern for some horse owners. Slant-load trailers in general are more comfortable for smaller horses as they will have more room to move about.

How to Buy a Two Horse Trailer on eBay

With the above information the buyer is now better equipped to begin their search for a two horse trailer on eBay. The buyer should go to the Sporting Goods Portal and then click on Equestrian. After that, the Horse Trailers/Horseboxes sub-category should be visible.

The buyer has a few options for viewing listings on eBay. They may prefer to look for specific horseboxes, so options like Keyword search would be useful. Entering such search terms as ‘Two Horse Trailer’ (without quotation marks) will bring up listings and descriptions that match those terms. The buyer has the option to try different combinations of words to find different listings. The term ‘trailer’ may not bring up many listings; the buyer could use ‘Horsebox’ for more results. So for example they could search for ‘2 Horse Horsebox’. The ‘Advanced word’ feature can also be used to do a more thorough search on eBay.

The next option to look for listings on eBay is categories. By going to the Horse Trailers/Horseboxes page, the buyer can begin to narrow down the listings by selecting certain features, such as brand and weight of the horse trailer. The buyer can select how many horses the trailer can carry, such as ‘Stalled for 2’ and also key features like Backward Facing or Forward Facing.

Another search option on eBay is to look at the range of stores. Stores on eBay work like retail shops and stock a wide range of products that private sellers might not have. The buyer can search for stores, which might stock what they are after, or look for extra parts that they can’t find in the main listings.

Safety Tips with Horses and Trailers

Horses are wonderful animals to keep and train, but getting a horse into a trailer can be dangerous if safety precautions aren’t taken, below are some general tips and advice to bear in mind:

  • Before even starting to lead the horse to the trailer, it is vital to have everything set up and have the trailer hitched onto the vehicle.
  • Have the horse secured with a head collar and lead rope. Always lead the horse facing towards the trailer so they can see it properly.
  • Always approach with calm and never get angry at the horse or try to force it into the trailer. The horse will begin to associate the trailer with fear and confinement.
  • Avoid getting into a corner with the horse; never be confined in a small space, especially if the horse is unsettled.
  • Never tie the horse in the trailer until everything has been secured, as the horse could damage itself if it spooks and rears back. Some horse owners prefer not to tie their horses during transit. Some horses may prefer the security, as they are used to being secured to walls and posts etc. If tying the horse allow rope length for the horse to lift its head
  • Avoid closing the doors and ramps immediately after the horse has entered the trailer, allow the horse to get used to the space and then slowly close everything.

Conclusion

Many horse owners will understand how vital it is to move their horses about, and finding a good two horse trailer can seem a difficult task. eBay makes it easy to search for the perfect two horsebox by taking into account things like the buyer’s preference for loading the horse, or if the buyer is looking for a used horse trailer. With the information from this guide the buyer can select a horse trailer with ease on eBay.

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