Monday Morning Feed from SmartPak

Can you imagine riding six horses at an event and then hopping on an overseas flight to prepare for another event? Team SmartPak rider Boyd Martin did just that this weekend.

Top photo via Lindsey Taylor: Mighty Nice, Shamwari 4, and Otis Barbotiere en route to Germany.

Boyd Martin and Phillip Dutton have headed to Germany to compete in the CCI4* at Luhmühlen this coming weekend, and it was a whirlwind of activity for the three horses competing: Shamwari 4, Otis Barbotiere, and Mighty Nice.

Boyd Martin stretching Otis Barbotiere's legs in Germany. Photo via Lindsey Taylor.

Boyd Martin stretching Otis Barbotiere’s legs in Germany. Photo via Lindsey Taylor.

Boyd’s groom Lindsey Taylor flew to Germany on Friday night with the horses and got them settled in while Boyd competed at Plantation Field. Boyd recently broke his leg competing at the Carolina International in March, and he’s been back in the saddle full time for about a month now. Safe to say he is probably feeling the effects of so much riding, but as any horse professional does he carries on with his duties.

Lindsey Taylor and Otis Barbotiere.

Lindsey Taylor and Otis Barbotiere.

Competition begins later this week for Boyd and Phillip. In the meantime, they will be getting their horses acclimated to the new surroundings, which shouldn’t be too difficult considering that two of them have made overseas trips before. Both Shamwari 4 and Otis Barbotiere competed in the 2012 London Olympics, and Mighty Nice not only traveled from Europe to his new home in the States but has also been back to compete twice.

Boyd and Shamwari 4 in Germany. Photo via Lindsey Taylor.

Boyd and Shamwari 4 in Germany. Photo via Lindsey Taylor.

Perhaps you aren’t flying your horses overseas to compete, but chances are you may be loading them into the trailer and taking them on a road trip in the near future. Are you looking for some tips on how to help your horse travel well? You’re in luck! SmartPak has just the tips you need:

From the SmartPak blog:

Before travel

Your best chance of having a happy, healthy horse when you arrive at your destination is to start with one. If you know your horse is sick or unsound, chances are he’s not going to improve with a trip to a new place, with a new schedule, around new horses. Stay home until he’s back to his old self.

During travel

Generally speaking, while trips over three hours are considered “long-distance” and require more planning, “short-distance” trips under three hours should still be well-thought out to keep your horse’s stress at a minimum. Stress during transport can lead to such problems as colic, diarrhea, dehydration and “shipping fever,” or, respiratory disease.

After travel

Upon arrival, first check your horse from head to hoof to make sure he’s healthy and sound. Look for any injuries that may have occurred during loading, traveling or unloading and make sure he’s bright, alert and responsive. Next, help him unwind with 30 minutes of hand walking or turnout in a paddock if available, along with the opportunity for a drink and bite of hay or grass. If your trip was less than six hours, this may be all the recovery your horse needs

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Go riding!


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