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Haltering for Safety – A How to Guide

There are lots of things to worry about when you’re trailering your horse, from the temperature inside the horse box to whether or not you’re hitting too many bumps on your route, that you may be missing little details that make a big difference.  The halters you use when your horse is traveling, for example, can cause your horse serious injury in the case of an accident.  Horse trailers are designed with your horse’s safety in mind, but they can only do so much if he’s wearing the wrong gear.


Common Types of Halters

There are three main types of halters in wide use: nylon straps, leather or poly rope.  These harnesses are great for a variety of applications, both in the field and the stable, but they’re not all great for traveling.  Here’s the dirt on each type:


Poly Rope Halters.  Made of the same stuff your rope is, poly rope halters are cheap, easy halter solutions.  They’re great for working your horse on the ground, but with breaking strengths starting around 1250 pounds, hauling with them is iffy since it’s going to take a pretty hard and sudden jolt to free your horse in an accident.


Nylon Halters.  Nylon halters are tough, durable and reliable -- and those are just three reasons why you shouldn’t haul with them.  They’re considered basically unbreakable by horses, meaning that your horse will be in big trouble if he finds himself in a trailer that has turned over.


Leather Halters.  The original breakaway halters, leather halters are the safest standard type for your traveling horse.  Horse trailers allow your horse just enough room to be hurt pretty badly if he can’t free himself in a wreck, but leather halters will snap long before they cause your horse an injury.


These days, there are additional halter options that incorporate breakaway leather straps or velcro with nylon construction to give a horse owner the best of both worlds when hauling, but unless your breakaway halter features a number of places that can fail, it may still be a danger.  Custom horse trailers have come a long way and feature a lot more padding and insulation than in days past, but none of them can possibly protect your horse by themselves. 


Nobody wants to think about getting into an accident with their horse in the trailer behind them, but it can and does happen much more frequently than we’d all like to admit.  When you’re hauling, it’s the little things, like using the right halter that makes the difference between a horse that walks away from a trailer turnover and one that doesn’t.


Of course, horse owners can further increase their horse’s safety by choosing custom horse trailers built with their particular horse in mind.  We like to know who you’re going to be hauling when we build your trailer from scratch so we can design the horse area to comfortably accommodate your horse without giving him too much room to move around.  Custom horse trailers can be surprisingly affordable -- give us a call at 1-888-244-2029 and we’ll be happy to provide you with a free quote for the horse trailer of your dreams.

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