Horse Jitney is a commercially insured horse transport company
Horse Jitney LLC is a woman-owned, Maryland-based horse transport company shipping thousands of horses over 1,000,000 miles. We specialize in working with difficult loaders, problem shippers, and horses with special needs. We often ship horses with neurological conditions, mares with foals, shipping anxiety, limited trailering experience, and chronic health problems such as heaves and laminitis.
Horse Jitney LLC provides local shipping for horses traveling from barn to barn in Maryland, plus routine and emergency trips to area equine hospitals including, but not limited to, the the Marion Dupont Equine Center in Leesburg, VA and New Bolton Center in Kennett Square, PA and many others.
Horse Jitney transports a wide variety of horse breeds, large and small, plus all disciplines in including, but certainly not limited to: race horses, pleasure horses, show jumpers, vaulters, hunters, dressage horses, reining, and event horses. I enjoy meeting each and every horse and love getting updates no matter how long its been since they traveled with me.
Oversized box and straight stalls available - full stallion walls separate each horse area
Call or txt me at 301-526-8273 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your horse's travel schedule and particular shipping needs. If you have an emergency, please call multiple times and text, especially if it is the middle of the night. I leave my phone on for emergencies during the night.
Your horses travel with me, Athena Haresign, a horsewoman with over thirty years of equine experience, including breeding, training, and trailering competitive show horses. I am a horse woman who is also a trained veterinary technician, capable of noticing subtle signs of illness and administering oral, IV, or IM medications per your veterinarian's orders. I also happen to be a pretty good driver!
We are currently shipping primarily in the Mid-Atlantic states and New England.
If I don't answer please leave a message - I may be loading a horse, in heavy traffic, in the mountains without cell service, or sleeping! I will call you back as soon as I am able to, which may be the next day.
Horses in my care:
- Have hay and water available at all times
- Can lower their heads to blow dust from lungs
- Enjoy ample space in straight or box stalls
- Travel in as direct routes as possible and rest every three hours
- Arrive as happy and unstressed as when they got on
I have a reputation for delivering horses that are as happy and healthy as the day their trip began. Keeping them hydrated, well-fed, and safe during their travels is my primary concern, and I believe that my success has been a direct result of my knowledge, horse care, driving style, and equipment.
Feel free to request references or read testimonials.
Although I am based in Maryland, I am usually out on the road somewhere, maybe even in your neighborhood! If I don't answer right away, please leave a message. I do talk hands-free when I'm driving, but if I'm in an area without good cell coverage, in difficult traffic conditions, or working with a horse it may take a little time to call you back.
TXTs and emails are a good way to communicate with me too because I can answer during "down" times or at sociably unacceptable hours for returning calls.
Need to ship your horse? Call or text Athena at 301-526-8273 for the most current schedule information.
So what's a jitney, anyway?
The definition of jitney is "a small, often informal bus that carries passengers over a regular route on a flexible schedule."
Horse Jitney Equipment
We have two four-horse-head-to-head (straight stall) trailers that are extra-long fully customized with longer stalls and head spaces than standard head-to-heads to maximize the safety and comfort of horses traveling long distances. Each trailer has two very inviting ramps, one on the side and one in the back. The interior height is 7'8" making them extremely open and airy so even the most claustrophobic horse steps right in. Each trailer can be configured for five horses comfortably and safely as the center box is a full-size stall.
The trailers can be configured with up to three box stalls, one box, and four straights, or two box stalls and two straight stalls for maximum flexibility.
I prefer and use only head-to-head horse trailers instead of slant load trailers for shipping horses long distances because of the differences in safety and comfort.
Unlike slant load trailers, the head-to-head configuration allows access to each individual horse without unloading any other horses. In addition, the horses have much more room to shift their stance and ride as comfortably as possible, not forced to balance on one half of their body which they would never do naturally and causes body soreness during prolonged travel.
Full stallion walls (floor to ceiling dividers) separate each horse area and allows the safe transport of foals, ponies, and miniatures, as well as keeps any stallions or aggressive horses from being able to get overy friendly with other passengers.
Horses ride in extra large straight stalls or loose in 8x10 box stalls (optional in most cases), with hay and water at all times, in one of my head-to-head trailers. The head-to-head trailer configuration allows me to access each horse individually and safely, as well as provides the most amount of room for the horses to adjust their stance and maintain proper balance.
Box stalls are required for weanlings and yearlings, mares with foals, miniatures, and some special needs horses such as those with neurologic conditions, seizures, or narcolepsy, but you can choose to ship any horse in a box stall. I strongly recommend box stalls for older horses or those who have never shipped before.
Box stall or straight stall? Here's how to choose!
In the straight stall, your horse has the option to move a little forward and backward, shift a little side to side, but basically standing in more or less the same position during the trip. Heads are tied long enough to reach the water and hay, and lower their heads to blow snot and debris out. Some horses ride untied when it makes sense. I use my judgement to determine the best way for your horse to ride, which may include removing breast bars.
Some horses are claustrophobic, some are so tall a bar hits them in the wrong spot, and some are so short that they can't reach the hay and water comfortably if it is in the way. Leave it to me to determine what works with your horse. Straight stalls are fine for horses riding a couple days, but I don't like to have them in straight stalls beyond three nights, preferably less.
Box stalls are 8x10 with floor to ceiling dividers which allow the horse to travel loose, just like he's in a stall at home in his own barn except that it has wheels! Some horses will lay down while in motion, while others will lay down at night when we are taking our requisite rest break. Large horses, even Percherons like the grey horse in the photograph, have room to lay down and move about the stall comfortably. I don't recommend shipping stall walkers in box stalls unless being confined in a straight stall makes them more upset than walking off their nervous energy in the box.
Horses with no shipping experience must ride loose in a box. If they've never been on a trailer before, shipping them long distance is absolutely not the time to try to confine them in a straight stall. It's far better to let them get used to the whole experience when they are able to move about and take it all in.
Yearlings, weanlings, mares with foals, minis, small ponies, and very old horses must ride in a box if they are riding with me. I also suggest HYPP, EPM, EPSM, and any neurologically compromised horse ride in a box in case their condition causes them to lose their balance and fall. In addition, a horse with narcolepsy should ride loose. Call me to discuss your horse's particular needs so we can set him or her up for the best possible trip.
What horses tell me
Horses tell me a great deal about how they feel inside their body and mind by how they present themselves in the trailer. I've noticed that when a horse rides loose and has a history of bowed tendons, ankle injuries, or laminitis in the front, he will most likely put his body facing forward, while horses with stifle or hock discomfort will generally ride backwards, which tells me a great deal about how smart horses really are! To balance themselves in a trailer their weight shifts to the back as the trailer moves forward, so they put themselves in a position that allows them to take the extra weight on the part of their body with the least amount of aches and pains.
If you tell me about any previous injuries and your horse is riding in a straight stall on a long journey, I will do my best to have him ride facing forward or backwards to suit his needs whenever possible. Of course when four hock horses are on board, there's not much choice but to have two ride facing forward.
Don't be surprised if you get a call from me asking if it's normal for your horse to grind teeth, wrinkle his eyebrows, or drink more or less water than expected - sometimes it's those subtle signs that help me catch a small problem before it's a big problem.
Call or txt me at 301-526-8273 or email email@example.com to discuss your horse's travel schedule and particular shipping needs.
The Horse Jitney advantage
- We are horse people first and foremost
- Trailers are custom built for the care and comfort of horses traveling long distances
- We treat horses the way we would our own - with the utmost respect and kindness
- Small loads and personalized care keep horses relaxed
- Equipment is routinely cleaned and disinfected with same products used in equine hospitals
What kinds of horses do I transport?
I ship horses from all different disciplines, including eventing, dressage, racing, hunters, jumpers, vaulting, barrel racers, and western pleasure, just to name a few. I routinely ship Thoroughbreds, warmbloods, quarter horses, Friesians, Gypsy Vanners, Icelandic horses, arabians, welsh ponies and cobs. Some are just backyard pets who bring joy to their owners lives just by being there for them, and others are competing at high levels, including internationally.
I give all horses, regardless of breed, pedigree, and performance level the same quality care and attention I give my own, and make every effort to make them comfortable during the ride.
Do not expect Horse Jitney to be your cheapest quote, but my horse transportation services are competitively priced for the quality of equipment operated, level of care, and my expertise, as well as reflecting my commercial insurance and DOT compliance. I ship several thousand horses each year and am happy to provide references upon request, and invite you to read testimonials.
I pride myself on delivering relaxed, healthy horses. Click here for more information about how you can help make your horse's shipping experience the best ever.
How I operate
Everyone has their own philosphy about transporting horses, so this is mine: I believe that hydration, hay, rest, and maintaining consistent speeds are the foundation for a successful long-distance shipping experience. I do not keep a horse in motion for 24 hours because it dehydrates them, fatigues their muscles (back and butt primarily) and minds, and significantly increases the risks of colics, shipping fevers, and upper respiratory conditions post-shipping. If you want your horse to travel without appropriate rest, please call someone else!
That said, every once in a while I have a horse on board that forces me to stay in motion longer than usual, and if this happens, I will communicate with all owners and ask that you understand things sometimes don't go as planned. In general, I travel 500-700 miles a day, and generally stop by midnight to avoid the late night fatigued and drunk drivers. I stay on the rig with the horses, so I'm right there to react should there be a problem. Most of the time, the horses are happy to stand quietly and eat, drink extra, and snooze, and often those in box stalls will lie down just like at home in their stalls during rest breaks.
Pre-trip preparation - help us make it a great experience for your horse
Prior to picking up your horse, I invite you to discuss any previous problems you've had loading or shipping your horse so I can work with you to make loading and unloading safe and unstressful for horses and humans. Anything you can tell me about his or her past experiences and the types of trailers used will help mitigate potential problems and manage quirks for a good loading and shipping experience.
Please tell me about any special dietary needs your horse may have, provide any special hay or feed, and give me written instructions. I am happy to administer medications, soak feed, or use specific bedding en route. I do not recommend graining your horse during travel, but I do keep them happy with generous amounts of hay and water at all times. Believe it or not, most horses will drink while in motion once they are comfortable with their "new normal", usually starting about three hours into the trip.
On loading well
Generally speaking, I ask that you trust me to load your horse as I am most familiar with the equipment and other horses already settled in their stalls. Most horses walk right in my trailers because they are so big and inviting, with extra-tall ceilings and lots of windows, but sometimes I need to give your horse time to interpret what is being asked. I prefer to keep things calm and take time to read the horse so I can ask him to step into the trailer in a manner that is comfortable for him. It's very important that you wait for me to ask for your assistance so I can orchestrate your aids in cohesion with mine so that your horse isn't confused.
Don't worry, I have a tremendous reputation for being able to convince a horse the trailer is a happy place, like the they are going for a ride on the "fun-bus"! But seriously, I give them lots of time to sniff around and get comfortable before asking them to step into onto the ramp. I am not a fan of making a big deal about getting on the trailer and that's probably why the horses respond so well.
My trailers are spacious and inviting so even "problem-loaders" usually walk right in! The trailers have oversized windows and vents, extra-large straight stalls, grilled stallion walls from floor to ceiling, five foot side ramps and gently sloping rear ramps, plus interior ceiling heights of 7'8" allowing the largest of horses to ride comfortably.
Sometimes it may look like I'm not doing anything, and in fact, that you and I are just merely standing there having a conversation, but the reality is I'm reading the horse and taking the pressure off until he or she is checking out the trailer and letting me know when they are ready to be asked into the trailer.
Most horses will amble right on up once they are comfortable with the idea, usually just in a few minutes. It is really important to me that we attempt to make the loading experience a great one and that he makes his own internal decision that "this is ok" so that the next time you go to load you'll be able to repeat the process, especially with a horse who may have been a slow loader in the past.
Obviously, not all horses are so easy, but I am really good at gently convincing a horse that walking right in is a great idea, but if I need to escalate, I do so slowly and work with you to determine the best options. With patience, I know I can get just about any horse into my trailers, but I want your horse to have the best experience possible.
I do not recommend pre-trip tranquilizers because they can actually make loading more difficult as the horse is more likely to "shut down". If you are interested in tranquilizing, please discuss with me prior to travel as it affects how I regulate the temperature in the trailer, as well as hay and water access until the tranquilizer has worn off. In general, I much prefer to ship without.
Call or txt me at 301-526-8273 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your horse's travel schedule and particular shipping needs.
Horse Jitney is the preferred shipper for the thoroughbred stallion Mission Approved, Winner of the 2011 Grade I Manhattan stakes and the only American horse to race in the invitation-only Japan World Cup in 2011, one of the world's richest turf races.
Contact us by phone or txt at 301-526-8273 or email us at email@example.com discuss your horse's travel schedule.
I routinely adding trips, so if don't see one scheduled, call us at 301-526-8273 (Athena)
Since we put about 10,000 miles a month on each truck, we spend a fair amount of time doing preventive maintenance on the trucks and trailers and are lucky to have great shops in Maryland and Georgia for just such services. On the road, a trailer tire can be changed usually with only a 20 minute delay, and a truck tire a bit more depending on if it is a dually or front tire that's gone flat. While we do everything in our power to maintain proper tire pressures, tires are probably the most routine problem we face during a trip as nails are abundant at the farms we visit. In the heat of the summer trailers will often randomly "blow" a tire, even a new tire, when road heat is over 100 degrees.
Contact us by phone or email so we can understand your shipping needs and provide a customized quote for shipping your horse and one bale of hay. Additional fees are assessed for box stalls, equipment, direct or private transport, and client-requested overnight layovers. We have limited space available for shipping tack, plastic totes, saddles, bridles, feed, etc, so please be sure to ask if space is available, and understand we must charge accordingly.
Excellent Thoroughbred horsesfor sale!
If you're looking for a talented Thoroughbred horse for you sport, look no further than A Pinch of Luck located in Atlanta, GA, and owned by Heather Buras. Heather specializes in matching ex-racing and non-racing Thoroughbreds with the right owners and disciplines for a happy new career. She always has a nice selection of horses for a wide variety of disciplines including polo, hunters, trail riding, eventing, and dressage. Many of her horses come from the Finger Lakes Race Track in New York, and are hand selected by Heather for their conformation, athletic abilities, bloodlines, and especially their attitudes. Contact Heather at 404-267-3398.
Contact us by phone at 301-526-8273 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org discuss your horse's travel schedule.
Need a horse broke? Have a layup or a broodmare that needs a place to live?
Sue and Jim Hooper at Haven Oaks Farm in Glens Falls, New York are tried and true horse people located near Saratoga Springs, New York and offer quality care for layups and broodmares. Sue is a foaling expert, and works routinely with babies and young horses. They are the owners and breeders of the lovely grey Inherit the Gold, a multiple graded stakes winner. "Harry" is a true product of the Hooper team's expertise and breeding program. Give them a call at (518)-852-6345 or email Sue at email@example.com.