The magic of owning horses fulfills many a dream but, once you have the horse, how do you get it anywhere. This is where horse trailers come in handy. The weight of your horse trailer will be one of the main factors in the size of towing vehicle needed.
The average two-horse trailer weights around unladen, which means no horses and no tack inside. Each horse will add 800 – 1500 lbs on average, plus tack and any extras like water or feed.
Horse trailer weights can vary widely based on the material used for construction (steel vs. aluminum vs. fiberglass). The type of trailer also makes a big difference. A 4-horse bumper pull stock trailer, for example, is going to weight less than a gooseneck living quarter trailer that fits two horses.
These are some examples of horse trailer types and weights. They are organized first by capacity (number of horses), then by weight.
Weight of a Single Horse Trailer
Steel horse trailers are still more common than aluminum or fiberglass. Single horse most commonly seen are the older steel models. These were commonly used by cowboys for hire. If the cowboy was needed somewhere he would load up his good horse and head on out. There was no need to bring a friend or a second horse to worry about.
Finding a new one-horse trailer is less common because most people want the option to be able to go out with a friend.
That being said, lets look at some single horse trailer weights.
- 1300 lbs – 1 Horse Bumper Pull – 2007 Brenderup Solo – Fiberglass with Ramp
- 1600 lbs – 1 Horse Bumper Pull – 2013 WW 5×10 Stock Trailer – Steel with Step Up
- 2700 lbs – 1 Horse Bumper Pull – Double D Trailers – 2019 One Horse Trailer Bumper Pull – Aluminum with Ramp
Weight of a Two Horse Trailer
Two horse trailers come in a variety of different types and styles. You can have straight load trailers, slant load, and stock trailers. In addition, as with every other trailer, there is the option for a ramp or step-up entry for the horse.
- 2150 lbs – 2 Horse Bumper Pull – 2005 Brenderup Baron SL – Fiberglass with Ramp
- 2360 lbs – 2 Horse Bumper Pull – 1987 Charmac Trailers 2 horse straight load Horse Trailer – Steel Step Up
- 2800 lbs – 2 Horse Bumper Pull – 2019 Logan Coach 2 Horse Bullseye – Steel / Aluminum with Step Up
- 2900 lbs – 2 Horse Bumper Pull – 2019 Maverick Highside – Steel with Step Up
- 10580 lbs – 2 Horse Gooseneck – 2019 Logan Coach Select 810 – 2 Horse with Living Quarters
Weight of a Three Horse Trailer
A three horse trailer is almost the right size for a couple who wants extra space to be able to take a horse along for a child, friend or family member.
- 2920 lbs – 3 Horse Bumper Pull – 2019 Logan Coach Crossfire 3H Horse Trailer – Steel with Step Up, Front tack compartment.,
- 4140 lbs – 3 Horse Bumper Pull – 2019 Double D Slant Load Trailer – Steel with Step Up, Rear Tack Compartment and Dressing Room
- 7495 lbs – 3 Horse Gooseneck – 2020 Lakota AC311 3H Alum Colt GN LQ Horse Trailer – Aluminum Living Quarters with Ramp and Rear tack compartment.
Weight of a Four Horse Trailer
- 2861 lbs – 4 Horse Bumper Pull – 2019 Delta Manufacturing 16′ 500 ES Stock Livestock Trailer – Steel with Step Up
- 4700 lbs – 4 Horse Gooseneck – 2019 Logan CrossFire – Steel with Step Up, Tack Room
- 14230 lbs – 4 Horse Gooseneck – 2019.5 Lakota BH8416TSR 4H Big Horn 16′ LQ Horse Trailer – Steel Living Quarters with Ramp and rear tack compartment.
Weight of a Five Horse Trailer
Once you get into needing to be able to carry five or more horses, all of your options are going to be goosenecks. Unless you are trailering 5 foals or ponies, a gooseneck trailer is just going to be more stable and give the safest ride.
- 3760 lbs – 20′ Gooseneck Stock Trailer – Approximately 5 Horse Capacity – 2020 Cimarron Trailer Gooseneck Livestock Trailer – Steel with Step Up and Tack Room
- 4860 lbs – 5 Horse Gooseneck – 2004 Classic Manufacturing 5 Horse Trailer – Steel with Step Up and front tack room.
Weight of a Six Horse Trailer
- 4400 lbs – 24′ Gooseneck Stock Trailer – Approximately 6 Horse Capacity – 2019 Cimarron Trailers Lonestar Livestock Trailer – Steel with Stepup
- 9720 lbs – 6 Horse Gooseneck – 2019 Featherlite 8541 Six Horse Trainers Trailer with Mid-Tack – Steel with ramp.
Larger Horse Trailers
Six horse trailers aren’t the largest, you can go much larger. At that scale, you are probably running more of a commercial horse operation and will want to consider several factors that are beyond the scope of this article.
Stock Horse Trailers vs. Traditional Horse Trailers
Stock horse trailers are going to be lighter than traditional horse trailers. Originally designed for cattle and other livestock, stock trailers don’t typically have as many frills and features as a traditional trailer. This allows them to be lighter.
Most stock trailers will not have any traditional dividers. A six-horse stock trailer, for example, won’t have 5 dividers for individual horse stalls. Instead, it will have one or two “gates” that can be closed if you need to separate horses into different compartments.
Additionally, stock trailers usually have more open sides. This is great to promote airflow as well as reduce weight.
One thing you usually won’t see is trailer walls with mats. Although a nice feature to have in a traditional trailer, these wall mats add weight when trailering. Because the original purpose of stock trailers is to haul livestock, these panels aren’t included.
Because stock horse trailers don’t have individual compartments, the number of horses isn’t gauged by available stalls. Stock trailers are listed by length, not capacity. Capacity is determined by the length of the trailer and the GVWR.
Approximate Horse Capacity of a Stock Trailer based on Trailer Length is as follows:
The number of horses you can fit in a stock horse trailer is dependent on a wide variety of factors including:
- Whether the horses are hauled loose or tied.
- How big the horses are.
- Are the horses saddled or not?
- How well do the horses know each other?
The numbers below are just a general guideline.
Stock Horse Trailer Weights
- 2584 lbs – 14′ Bumper Pull Stock Trailer – Approximately 3 Horse Capacity – 2019 Delta Manufacturing 14′ 500 ES Stock Livestock Trailer – Steel with Step Up – GVWR 7000 lbs
- 2861 lbs – 16′ Bumper Pull Stock Trailer – Approximately 4 Horse Capacity – 2019 Delta Manufacturing 16′ 500 ES Stock Livestock Trailer – Steel with Step Up – GVWR 7000 lbs
- 3760 lbs – 20′ Gooseneck Stock Trailer – Approximately 5 Horse Capacity – 2020 Cimarron Trailer Gooseneck Livestock Trailer – Steel with Step Up and Tack Room – GVWR 12000 lbs
- 4400 lbs – 24′ Gooseneck Stock Trailer – Approximately 6 Horse Capacity – 2019 Cimarron Trailers Lonestar Livestock Trailer – Steel with Stepup – GVWR 14000 lbs
- 6340 lbs – 28′ Gooseneck Stock Trailer – Approximately 7 Horse – 2019 Delta Manufacturing 28ft Stock Livestock Trailer – GVWR 14000 lbs
- 7241 lbs – 32′ Gooseneck Stock Trailer – Approximately 8 Horse Capacity – 2019 Delta Manufacturing 600 Cattleman Livestock Trailer – Steel with Step Up – Only 6.5′ tall no Tack Compartment. GVWR 21000 lbs
The source for all the stock horse trailer weights and details in this section is TrailerCountry.com.
What is GVWR and Why Is It Important?
GVWR stands for Gross Vehicle Weight Recommendation. This is a value horse trailer manufacturers assign to each trailer and reflects their maximum recommended weight for the trailer.
Gross Vehicle Weight (GVW) means the weight of the trailer plus everything in it. Things that factor into GVW include:
- Weight of Horses
- Weight of Tack
- Weight of Hay
- Weight of Any Water
- Weight of Grooming Supplies
- Weight of Trailer Mats
Basically, anything in the trailer adds to the weight and you don’t want to exceed the recommended GVWR.
So lets break that down a moment. For the 32′ Gooseneck Stock Trailer Above here is what we have:
21,000 lbs GVWR – 7,241 lb trailer weight = 13,759 lbs remaining capacity
That 13,759 lbs could be used up with:
- ~11 horses weighing 1200 lbs
- 275 50lb Western Saddles
- 25 532lb weanling heifer calves
- 22 600lb Yearling Horses
Now, of course, weight is dependent on capacity too. Just because you can fit that quantity doesn’t mean that quantity will fit. This is just to illustrate how to calculate maximum weight capacity.
How Big of a Horse Trailer with Your Truck?
Your trucks owner’s manual or inside door panel should be able to tell you how much weight your truck is capable of pulling.
Once you have your trucks towing capacity, you can use the trailer weights above, combined with the estimates of your horse weights, tack, and hay to estimate what type of horse trailer you should get.
Attempting to tow a trailer/load that is too heavy for your truck can create a safety issue as well as cause unnecessary wear and tear on your vehicle.
There are other factors involved as well, do you have the right type of hitch? Do you have the right size tow ball?
Once you have an idea of what kind of trailer you want to shop for, take your truck with you to the trailer dealer. They can help ensure you pick the right size trailer for your vehicle and also get you fitted with the right size trailer ball. They will also be able to recommend other accessories such as trailer brakes.