In which something bad happens, but not to anybody at our farm

When I went riding Saturday afternoon with Jennifer and her "baby" horse Mateo, the sun was shining, the horses were happy, and all seemed right with the world.

Later that day, apparently, somebody left the trailhead, and within 3/4 miles of leaving the parking lot, the back door of their horse trailer opened, and a horse fell out and was dragged for more than a mile.

Link to the article in the Seattle PI

Accusations have been flying, names are being named, and everybody is upset about the horse's gruesome end.

Have you ever had a bad feeling while you were hauling your rig? Have you ever stopped the truck to run back and check on a door that is already secure, just because you couldn't quite remember if you'd latched it tightly already?

I have.

I've even blocked traffic to do it. And after reading the reports, I will now continue to smile and wave apologetically at the angry drivers behind me as I hop out of my truck and race to the rear to check it whenever I get that bad feeling.

In this instance, maybe the horse owner was to blame. Maybe it was a horrible accident. As far as that horse is concerned, it doesn't matter anymore.

What does matter is that each and every one of us make a promise for now until we hang up our keys forever, that we will check those latches, every single time.

I promise. Do you?


  1. I am always so paranoid about this kind of thing happening, and there have been times when I pulled over to double-check that everything was where it belonged. I'm lucky that with my 2-horse I can look back in the rearview and see if the horses are standing, but I still don't understand how people can go for a mile or more without noticing that their horse is being dragged from the trailer... This is not the first time I've heard of an incident like this, and there have already been a few more incidents this year. It's scary to think that this happens so frequently.

  2. Yep, I get out and check often if I don't feel like my trailer is handling the same or there's a funny noise, or something just seems "off".

    And I ALWAYS do a pre inspection of truck, trailer, and hitch after stopping at a rest stop. Who knows what crazy things people will do.

  3. I'm kind of queasy just thinking about that. That's mine (and Dixie's!) worst nightmare. I promise to always double-check everything :(

  4. Heartbreaking!
    So very sad for that poor horse.
    One of my biggest trailering nightmares. Always check, recheck...and check again.

    Good reminder!


  5. I get really nervous putting my horse in a trailer where the back door is the last barrier.
    My trailer has dividers in each stall, probably wasted space, but it makes me more comfortable that way.
    It seems a lot of the newer trailers don't have a last stall divider.
    So sad, and I still don't see how the driver couldn't feel anything as the horse tumbled out??

  6. Rumours have been flying and so have accusations, suppositions, and generalizations. I am horribly sorry this happened to these people, and to the poor horse whose agony is now over. My question--Wasn't there anyone behind them??? Ever during those 1-3 miles(depending on what you read where)? Until we walk in their shoes, I am not sure any of us should throw stones. I am sure they are beating themselves adequately without us doing it, too.

  7. Oh how gruesome! I hadn't heard this story.

    I am always paranoid as well. So paranoid in fact I'm thinking about making myself a marker to hang on the latch. Like those things that say dishes are clean/dishes are dirty. Only for this I'll hang in on the latch when it's open. When I close the latch I'll take it with me into the truck and hang it on my dash where it will tell me my latch is locked up and my horses are safely inside.


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