Horses 'flying down to Rio' for Olympics

 

These days travelers are not only humans, and more than 200 horses are flying to Rio for the Summer Olympics, with a bigger baggage allowance than you'll ever get: 300kg per horse.

It's all first-class, of course, with each horse's groom on hand for the trip, and a vet on board. One veteran New Zealand horseman pointed out that not only are the horses used to it, but aside from take-off and landing it's an easier ride than in a trailer on earth-bound roads.

On the other hand, it's a long trip; nearly 12 hours from London to Rio. And it starts with a 14-day quarantine before boarding, to make sure they are not carrying any diseases. That's a worry at the other end, too, where equine diseases not common in Europe, including glanders, can be found. The Olympic horses will be driven to the competition site along a "bio-contained" route.

Photo: Horses loading on an Emirates 777 freighter at Stansted, England

The best part of every trip is realizing that it has upset your expectations

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