Skip to Main navigation Skip to Left navigation Skip to Main content Skip to Footer

University of Minnesota Extension

Extension is almost done building a new website! Please take a sneak peek or read about our redesign process.

Extension > Agriculture > Dairy Extension > Farm life > Livestock trailer safety

Print Icon Email Icon Share Icon

Livestock trailer safety

Karen Johnson

We have all seen the newspaper headlines “10 head of cattle loose after crash” or the worse-case scenario of “Prize-winning cow killed in crash.” These headlines are tragic but enforce the need to have a safety checklist that is reviewed every time we hook up the truck and trailer. Proper preparation of truck and trailer, animal loading and driver attentiveness are all factors that contribute to safe and effective livestock transportation.

Preparing the truck and trailer

Using a livestock trailer to transport animals between farms and sale auctions is common and increases during the summer as exhibitors attend shows. Trailer safety is essential to decrease the chances of a costly incident happening to you and your livestock. Before you hit the road, ensure that your vehicle and trailer are in good condition for the animal and equipment to arrive safely.

Loading the trailer

When transporting livestock, the comfort and safety of the animals is your top priority.

Driver safety

Finally, the overall attitude and mental condition of the driver is vital to a safe and successful trip.

The ultimate goal for transporting animals is to maintain the highest standard of hauling with the well-being of the animals as a top priority. Preparing the truck and trailer for travel, loading the animals properly and driver attentiveness is essential to ensure a safe ride for your livestock.

For more information about livestock trailer safety, additional tips and some helpful videos, check out the eXtension article Livestock Trailer Safety.


Livestock trailer safety. (2012) Farm and Ranch eXtension in Safety and Health (FReSH) Community of Practice. Retrieved from

September 23, 2017

  • © Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved.
  • The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer. Privacy