Need advice - moving horses to another state

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AppyLover2

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My family (horses & dogs) and I will be moving from Florida to Missouri in a couple of weeks. I'd like some ideas/suggestions on how to help the horses transition to everything being new. Different pastures (grass), water, environment, etc.. I didn't worry too much about it when the minis moved here from other areas because our Florida grass isn't the best, but since they'll be moving to richer pastures I'm wondering about possible problems with the transition. They'll stay on the same feed and I'm going to start them on T&A hay tomorrow. Any other ideas?????

Marty, you may be able to help me out here. I know you moved from Florida; did you move horses too? And, if so, anything I need to know?

Thanks in advance.
 
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Marty

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Moving them during the right time of year is really key here.

We moved in September too. I think it was a good time because I didn't have to worry about them in the horrible heat, so that was one thing off my mind.

Your horses will think they died and went to grass heaven.

First thing I did was to put my horses in stalls and build a small paddock. When I came up here and saw the rich, lush, grassy pastures, I knew I was in deep trouble, coming from a sand based hardly never a blade of grass place. I knew if I let them right on out, they'd gouge themselves and founder on the grass left and right so I kept them confined in the stalls and small paddock and just eased them out slowly a little bit every day to get used to the grass. That's when I decided to make several fields (5) instead of just one or two large ones, plus the riding ring and round pen. We built the riding arena first and put the round pen up after that so I could be slowly introducing them to the grass in those small areas.

Seeing how it was September, I didn't have to worry too much after that because by the end of October, the grass began to croak a good deal and they were able to get outside more and more each day until they got used to it.

As far as the water, I wanted to haul water as well to make a smooth transition but

1. Jerry said "give me a break you are not hauling tubs of water" (He had issues bringing the gold fish too)

2. It would take up too much room in the U HAUL and we were already out of space

3. It's very heavy to haul water

So, I didnt worry about the water. They drank the water here just fine.

I did bring sheets and blankets because when I left Florida it was still like up in the 90's. But the nights here were already into the 40's so you may want to check on the temps there, the highs and lows.

I used a multitude of Rubbermaid containers for all my tack and stuff. I had everything I needed labeled and sorted so I could find things easily.

Ironically, it's been ten years this month since we have moved. I have just now been able to unload the containers and stop living out of them and put my things in cabinets and up on shelves in my new tack room. Sure hope it doesn't take you ten stupid years to unload your stuff!


I'll bet you are feeding T&A that comes out of Canada. That's what I was feeding.

Prepare to load up on it and your grain because you will have to really be changing them over very slowely until you can locate what you are going to use in replacement of that.

I called the Chamber of Commerece ahead of time for information on feed stores.

Then I called the local telephone company here and they sent me a phone book so I could see what was available to me. I then called the local extension office and they gave me a list of hay suppliers in the area so I could try to line up things in my brain before I arrived. It all was pretty useless as far as the hay was concerend because that ended up with something that I had to go and see before I committed to placeing an order. But I would say to get right on the hay supply when you arrive as I don't know if it will be plentiful or not where you are headed.

The only thing that I wish I had done differently was to bring shots of banemine in a cooler because the day after the horses arrived, 1 of them did colic and I could not get a vet anywhere.
 

Jacquee'

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Here's another tip: Some horses will NOT drink the water although most will..... try putting something in it starting right now. This could be Cool-Aid, or GatorAde or soemthing like that. You don't have to put in a whole bunch, just a little bit to add a taste. Get them used to it NOW. Then when you get to the new place, put the same stuff in. They will never notice the water is different. Once they have settled, gradually start putting less of whatever in the water.

On the grass, make sure they have stuffed themselves first thing in the AM with their hay, THEN put them out for maybe an hour. Do that every day for a week, then you can put them out slightly longer and longer. It's a hassle to do this everyday but it does work. In about a month you won't have to worry anymore.
 

Miniv

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This is for the actual move itself for the horses ---

Take some tubes of paste electrolytes with you. Give a little to each horse just before you hit the road. And then give them a little more later in the day.

This does two things -- balances their systems (they'll be nervous) AND makes them thirsty so it encourages them to drink plenty of water while traveling and when you stop for a break.

MA
 

AppyLover2

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Wow guys (guess I should say ladies) thanks for the great suggestions.


Marty, I had to laugh at the "grass heaven" cause I'm sure that's exactly what they'll think. I can't take credit for moving at the "right" time of year; it just worked out that way. But, you're right; in another month or so the grass will start to die off.

My daughter lives there and has the hay lined up for me (as well as a farrier and a vet). I've already found a feed store that carries Purina. I had 4 bales of NY T&A delivered today so I can get them started on something better than coastal hay before the trip. I have Bantamine and electrolyte paste on hand.

Jacquee, I never would have thought of stuffing them with hay before turning them out on grass. Thanks! I'm wondering now whether or not I need to haul extra hay (T&A) up there. I had thought about taking some coastal, but really hated that idea when the hay up there is so much better (not to mention so much cheaper).

Edited to add - I'm starting them on soaked alfalfa cubes too. Ya think they're wondering what the heck's going on?
 
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