Hauling Buddies Animal Transportation Safety

Transporting your animals can be an overwhelming process. There are many safety considerations when traveling. With countless transport companies and transportation options, picking the right one may seem like a daunting task. Luckily, companies like Hauling Buddies are providing ways to make this process easier. This article will discuss considerations for animal care and safety during transport. It will also take a closer look at things you should consider when hiring a transporter. 


Considerations When Picking a Transporter

It is critical to do your research before hiring someone to transport your animals. Websites like Hauling Buddies can be extremely helpful when looking for a transporter. The website allows owners to connect with an extensive network of verified transport companies.

When evaluating a transport company, the first thing you should do is make sure the transporter has the proper licensing for the transportation of animals. A new search feature on Hauling Buddies’ website connects animal owners to the search database for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. This government agency is responsible for the regulation and oversight of commercial motor vehicles. The database provides information on the transportation company’s operation classification, the type of cargo they carry, and where they are authorized to operate. This tool is critical to ensure that you are hiring a verified transport company with the proper credentials.

For Small animals search for the company using the International Pet and Animal Transportation Association (IPATA) and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) databases to ensure legitimacy

Once you have verified credentials, pay close attention to customer ratings and former reviews of the transporter. If a transporter has no reviews, this should be a red flag and warrants further investigation.

Professional transport companies should have travel requirements and clear safety guidelines. All of the details should be laid out and discussed with your transporter ahead of time. For long trips, you should have a way of tracking your animal’s progress and receiving updates on their well-being. Safety is essential, so do not be afraid to ask for the information.

Safety is also essential when it comes to payment. Transporting animals is an expensive endeavor. Unfortunately, many non-reputable companies and scammers are trying to make a quick buck. Use reputable websites and verifiable payment methods to keep your personal and financial information safe.

Proper Restraint in a Vehicle

Just as humans buckle up when they get in the car, proper restraint is critical for the safety of your animals. Smaller pets often travel in cars and should be restrained in an appropriate crate or using a pet seatbelt. Crates should be strapped down and secured within the vehicle to prevent them from rolling over or sliding around. The Animal Welfare Act details specific guidelines for crates used in commercial transit. For more information on those guidelines, you can access the Animal Welfare Act here.

Not only is proper restraint in your pet’s best interest, in some states, it is also the law. Regulations vary from state to state. In states like New Jersey, failing to restrain a dog in the car can result in fines up to $1000. More legislation like this is being passed to help protect animals during transport. 

Trailer safety

Livestock and horses travel in trailers. Hauling such heavy loads is treacherous and comes with a variety of safety concerns. To ensure proper weight distribution, load the heaviest animals first. The heaviest animals should be in front of the trailer axels, while smaller animals should be kept at the back of the trailer. 

Trailers usually have open slats and windows for airflow. While maintaining good airflow is essential, make sure the animals cannot stick their heads or other body parts out of the openings. Animals that can do so are at high risk of being injured by flying objects.

When trailering horses, there are some additional safety considerations to keep in mind. Horses should be tied in the trailer using a quick-release knot. Make sure the lead line length is long enough for them to move their head for balance. Lead lines should not be too long and allow horses to reach the ground or any horses traveling alongside them. Horses should always travel in a breakaway halter. In case of emergency, these halters are less likely to cause serious injury. Shipping boots and leg wraps are also essential to prevent harm to a horse’s legs in the trailer.

Access to Food and Water

Access to food and water is critical, even for short trips. The Animal Welfare Act contains detailed requirements for food and water during transport. Access to water at all times is ideal. Professional transport companies should be familiar with these regulations. The transporter should provide proper documentation each time the animal is offered food or water during the trip.

When transporting an animal with food and water receptacles, make sure they are appropriately secured to the crate or trailer to prevent spills and injury to the animal. For horses, transporters should secure hay nets above the ground. Low-hanging hay nets can become a hazard if the horse’s legs become entangled in the hay net. For small animals, consider attaching feeding instructions to the crate that your animal is traveling in.

Health Certificates

Before traveling, a veterinarian must clear the animal to travel. Most states and transport companies require a health certificate filled out by an accredited veterinarian. These health certificates are used to ensure the animal is healthy to travel and free of infectious disease. Make sure to check the requirements for the animal’s destination. Health certificates have to be done in a specific window of time prior to travel.

Horses will also need a negative Coggins test to travel. A Coggins test requires an appointment with your veterinarian and time for the laboratory to complete the test. Plan ahead to make sure your animal is healthy before they travel and has the proper documentation.


Trusting someone with your animals is a big decision and should not be taken lightly. Understand the safety requirements specific to your pet and do your research before hiring a transport company. Use websites like Hauling Buddies to discover your transport options and pick a transporter that meets your needs. Hopefully, this article will provide you with the tools you need to get your animals safely on to their next adventure.