Safe Trav­els

A run­down of doc­u­ments for your trav­el­ing horse.

Trail Rider - - NEWS - BY RE­BECCA GIMENEZ, PHD

WWhen you travel with your horse, you need to carry a num­ber of doc­u­ments, es­pe­cially if you’re cross­ing state lines. Some doc­u­ments show your horse is healthy. Some will help you if you’re in an emer­gency sit­u­a­tion. Oth­ers are proof of own­er­ship and reg­is­tra­tion of your horse, your tow ve­hi­cle, and your trailer. Some states re­quire an en­try per­mit and brand-in­spec­tion cer­tifi­cate, as well. Do your re­search well ahead of trav­el­ing.

Here’s a run­down of the ba­sic doc­u­ments you should have when you travel with your horse. Keep the orig­i­nals of these pa­pers with you, and the copies at home, in a safe place, where some­one there can lo­cate them.

In ad­di­tion to these doc­u­ments, also be sure to carry your driver’s li­cense, proof of in­sur­ance, and reg­is­tra­tion pa­pers for your tow ve­hi­cle and trailer.

Here’s a run­down of the ba­sic doc­u­ments you should have when you travel with your horse. BY RE­BECCA GIMENEZ, PhD

Cer­tifi­cate of Vet­eri­nary In­spec­tion

What it is: Also called a health cer­tifi­cate, this le­gal doc­u­ment cer­ti­fies your horse’s health sta­tus, the ad­dress where he’s sta­bled, and own­er­ship. Why you need it: A CVI is re­quired for en­try to any state bor­der cross­ing in the United States. Although many states are lax in en­force­ment, oth­ers have a ran­dom check­ing pro­gram. You’ll need a cur­rent CVI within 10 to 30 days of travel, de­pend­ing on the re­quire­ments of the state or states you’ll be trav­el­ing through and to. Pri­vate equine fa­cil­i­ties, trail-rid­ing des­ti­na­tions, overnight-sta­bling fa­cil­i­ties, and or­ga­nized trail rides may also re­quire a CVI. How to ob­tain it: Make an ap­point­ment

with your vet­eri­nar­ian to ex­am­ine your horse. This ex­am­i­na­tion should in­clude a gen­eral health exam, tem­per­a­ture check, vac­ci­na­tion- and de­worm­ing-pro­gram review, ver­i­fi­ca­tion of a Cog­gins test (see below), and a full de­scrip­tion of your horse. Ex­pert tip: How can you prove the CVI is for your par­tic­u­lar horse? In some states, a per­ma­nent method of iden­ti­fi­ca­tion (such as a mi­crochip or brand) is re­quired; this is a wise op­tion for you to con­sider. The CVI can in­clude your horse’s mi­crochip iden­ti­fi­ca­tion num­ber.

Cog­gins Test

What it is: A Cog­gins test, de­vel­oped in 1970 by Leroy Cog­gins, DVM, PhD, shows your horse didn’t carry equine in­fec­tious ane­mia an­ti­bod­ies at the time of test­ing. This le­gal doc­u­ment also cer­ti­fies the ad­dress where he’s sta­bled, and own­er­ship. Why you need it: This test is re­quired for en­try to any state bor­der cross­ing in the United States. Although many states are lax in en­force­ment, oth­ers have a ran­dom check­ing pro­gram. You’ll need a Cog­gins test within 30 days to a year of travel, de­pend­ing on the re­quire­ments of the state or states you’ll be trav­el­ing through and to. Show­grounds, fair­grounds, pri­vate equine fa­cil­i­ties, com­pet­i­tive-trail events, trail­rid­ing des­ti­na­tions, and overnight-sta­bling fa­cil­i­ties may also re­quire a cur­rent Cog­gins test. How to ob­tain it: Make an ap­point­ment with your vet­eri­nar­ian. He or she will pull a vial of blood from your horse, then send it to a lab­o­ra­tory to ver­ify that your horse is neg­a­tive for EIA. Also known as swamp fever, EIA is a highly con­ta­gious, po­ten­tially fa­tal dis­ease for which there’s no ef­fec­tive vac­ci­na­tion and no cure. Ex­pert tip: Take pho­tos of your horse, and get a mi­crochip im­plant, so you can prove his Cog­gins test pa­per­work is for the ac­tual an­i­mal you’re haul­ing. This pa­per­work can in­clude your horse’s mi­crochip iden­ti­fi­ca­tion num­ber.

Power of At­tor­ney

What it is: This le­gal doc­u­ment al­lows an ap­pointed per­son to make de­ci­sions as to the care, treat­ment, and dis­po­si­tion of your an­i­mals. Why you need it: If you’re in­jured, in­ca­pac­i­tated, or die while trav­el­ing with your horse, some­one else will need to be able to make the de­ci­sions out­lined above.

How to com­plete it: USRider Equestri

® an Mo­tor Plan has a free down­load­able PDF on its web­site that you can use as an ex­am­ple of how your Power of At­tor­ney form should be worded. (Go to http:// im­ages.equinet­work.com/usrider/USRiderLimited-Power-Of-At­tor­ney.pdf.) You can mod­ify the form, as needed. Print out the com­pleted form, and take it to a no­tary pub­lic to be wit­nessed and signed. Ex­pert tip: En­sure that the per­sons you ap­point to act as your agents are aware of your in­ten­tions. You’re ask­ing them to make dif­fi­cult de­ci­sions con­cern­ing the care, med­i­cal treat­ment, pos­si­ble hos­pi­tal­iza­tion, or euthana­sia of your horse. They should know your wishes con­cern­ing necropsy and di­rect­ing the dis­po­si­tion of your horse’s re­mains.

To Emer­gency Re­spon­ders Form

What it is: This le­gal doc­u­ment al­lows a li­censed vet­eri­nar­ian to as­sess, treat, and even pos­si­bly eu­th­a­nize your horse. It pro­vides cru­cial in­for­ma­tion to fire­fight­ers and law en­force­ment to no­tify as­sis­tance for your an­i­mals. Why you need it: If you’re in­jured, in­ca­pac­i­tated, or die in a trans­porta­tion wreck while trav­el­ing with your horse, emer­gency re­spon­ders may need to be able to make the de­ci­sions out­lined above. How to com­plete it: USRider Equestrian Mo­tor Plan has a free down­load­able PDF on its web­site that you can use as an ex­am­ple of how the To Emer­gency Re­spon­ders form should be worded. (Go to http://im­ages.equinet­work.com/usrider/ USRider-Emer­gency-Re­sponser.pdf.) You can mod­ify the form, as needed. Print out the com­pleted form, and take it to a no­tary pub­lic to be wit­nessed and signed. Ex­pert tip: Emer­gency re­spon­ders of­ten don’t know what to do with a horse af­ter a wreck. Emer­gency con­tact in­for­ma­tion for the horse’s home vet­eri­nar­ian, a provider that has horse knowl­edge, and in­sur­ance in­for­ma­tion are cru­cial to al­low emer­gency re­spon­ders to make in­formed de­ci­sions.

Brand-In­spec­tion Cer­tifi­cate

What it is: A brand-in­spec­tion cer­tifi­cate reg­is­ters your brand to prove own­er­ship. For in­stance, in Colorado, the def­i­ni­tion of a brand is “a per­ma­nent mark on the hide of an an­i­mal reg­is­tered with any State as a live- stock brand. Freeze brands are con­sid­ered per­ma­nent marks. Tat­toos aren’t con­sid­ered as brands. The most ef­fec­tive and per­ma­nent method of iden­ti­fi­ca­tion is the mark pro­duced with a hot iron.” Why you need it: A cer­tifi­cate of brand in­spec­tion is re­quired to cross some state lines, par­tic­u­larly if in the West. How to ob­tain it: Check with a state’s brand-in­spec­tion agency as to brand re­quire­ments, reg­is­tra­tion, and cer­tifi­cates. Ex­pert tip: Eastern­ers are of­ten sur­prised by these com­mon re­quire­ments in Western states. It’s far more com­mon to be stopped for in­spec­tion in the West than in the East. TTR

When you travel with your horse, you need to carry a num­ber of doc­u­ments, es­pe­cially if you’re cross­ing state lines.

RE­BECCA GIMENEZ, PhD

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