Last April I decided to move Superman to a new barn. I was moving closer to work, and the barn was in the opposite direction, and it was just a little too long.
I had boarded Superman at the same barn since I bought him two and half years ago, so I was pretty anxious about the move. I knew that in addition to the move being stressful for me, it was going to be stressful for Superman. He would have to get used to a new place and new people working with him, and his daily routine and diet were going to change, too. I know the stress of moving and diet changes can be hard on horses’ digestive systems, so when I was getting Superman ready for the move, I tried to do everything I could to be proactive about his health.
Superman has a history of tummy troubles (which is why I have SmartGut Ultra in his SmartPaks!), so to help support his stomach and prevent ulcers during the stress of traveling and moving, I started him on a preventive dose of UlcerGard a couple of days before the move.
Moving to a new barn means that your horse will be getting new hay and possibly new grain, so it’s important to support your horse’s digestive system during the transition. If you want to add some extra hindgut support to your horse’s regimen during the move, SmartDigest Ultra Paste is designed to help manage the digestive stress caused by things like changes in hay and grain. Since I knew that Superman was going to be eating different grain at his new barn, I also brought along some of his old grain so that we could make changes to his diet slowly.
Once I had Superman’s digestive system all set, I turned to planning his travel. Superman isn’t always the best traveler so even though it was a short trip over to his new barn, I wanted to make sure that his head and legs were protected. Instead of his everyday halter, Superman traveled in the SmartPak Shipping Halter. The soft sheepskin padding helped keep him comfortable and prevent halter rubs during the trailer ride. In addition to his shipping halter, he wore his Head Bumper. This “hat” is not Superman’s favorite article of clothing, but I rest easier knowing that if he flings his head up while backing off the trailer, I don’t have to worry about him hurting it.
There are a variety of options for protecting your horse’s legs during shipping, but I like to use Foam Padded No Bows, Centaur Standing Bandages, and Centaur Pull On Bell Boots. If you don’t want to use standing wraps, a set of boots like the Kensington Trailering Boots are another good option for protecting your horse’s legs (and helping him look stylish for his arrival at his new digs).
Fortunately Superman’s move went as smoothly as possible. I got his gear packed up early so all I had to do was load it all up on the day of the move. Despite my worry that he was going to give us a hard time getting onto the trailer, he walked right on without any hesitation. After a short forty-minute trip, I was unloading him at his new home and bringing him into his new stall. I was pretty concerned about how well he was going to settle in, but it turned out that I didn’t need to worry at all! He walked into his new stall, took a look out the window, and then turned all of his attention to his hay.
It’s been three months since the move and Superman is well settled into his new home! In addition to partaking in some of my favorite barn activities (lessons, hacks, and cool down walks around the property), he’s been enjoying all of his favorite barn activities –grazing parties with his friends Eden and Kodi, snuggle time with anyone who will rub his forehead and give him a cookie, and plenty of turnout.