To Rug or Not to Rug a Heavy Horse/Draft - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 19 Old 11-30-2012, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Clava View Post
My horses only have natural shelter and live out 24/7, my 2 yr old haflinger will have a bone dry coat underneath the outer layer even after driving rain for days. Rain is not always an issue, but it depends upon the horse, my shetland cross will get cold in the same conditions and so needs rugging even though his coat is excessively thick.
I was including natural shelter in my thoughts - sorry, should have made that clear.

But - to the OP, this post is the best example of the truth that only you can tell if your horses need rugging or not :)
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Get up, get going, seize the day. Enjoy the sunshine, the rain, cloudy days, snowstorms, and thunder. Getting on your horse is always worth the effort.
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post #12 of 19 Old 11-30-2012, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by ThatDraftGirl View Post
Yahoo for another Mainer! Where do you live PercheronMom? We're in Union (Midcoast near Rockland)

I don't blanket Sam (2 year old Belgian gelding). Even his first winter as a weanling I didn't blanket him. If I feel the need, I have a water proof sheet that will keep him from getting wet but doesn't provide any warmth. I only have this because his new boarding barn doesn't have trees or a run-in in the turnouts. But he is fuzzy and wooly, so I may not even use it . I don't see the point. If the temperature is over 35* F then he sweats because his coat is so thick.
Hi ThatDraftGirl! We live in Denmark, which is in the western foothills, near Fryeburg.
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post #13 of 19 Old 11-30-2012, 10:57 AM
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The biggest problem we had in the UK was days on end of rain and lots and lots of mud.
Unless you intend to clip then I wouldnt bother rugging them, they dont need it - though having to scrape 2 inches of dry or wet mud off a horse every time you ride it might make you want to invest in a light waterproof sheet!!!
What I would suggest though is that unless they have a shelter with dry standing underfoot you stable them at night to give their legs/backs a chance to dry out when it is really muddy and or endless rain - which according to most of my friends in the UK its appalling and many who's native ponies always live out have had them stabled at night for months now rather than have them standing hock deep in mud.
The Horse & Hound was reporting a huge rise in mud fever cases back in the summer and their advice was the same as mine
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post #14 of 19 Old 11-30-2012, 03:59 PM Thread Starter
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We have had the wettest year I have ever known in the UK in 50 years. Mud in some of myhorses field is knee deep and they don't like it one bit. They always move to higher ground. I think you are all saying what I was feeling about rugging/blanketing. My boys do have natural shelter during the day but at night they are in large airy stables with wood shavings about 4-6" thick, large haynet each, a bowlful of feed and breakfast each morning! In fact theya re taken better care of than I am. Anyway, thanks guys for the really good advice. You've given me some things to think about.
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post #15 of 19 Old 12-01-2012, 07:44 PM
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I have several blankets for Ahab, but only use them if it is really cold and he is wet after a ride (which is anytime he goes more than 1/2 a mile). I usually put a few towels under the blanket, and replace them when they get wet. The blanket is off just as soon as he is dry. I also used blankets (sometimes) if it is sleeting heavily, but take it off as soon as I can. Ahab pees and poops outside, so he always has a thickly bedded stall to go into. If it is raining, though, he likes to be out in it. Even when his coat covered in icicles, he is bone dry next to his skin.
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post #16 of 19 Old 12-05-2012, 04:31 PM
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Living in Australia it just doesn't get that cold for my boy to grow a full hairy coat,during summer he suffers from Qld itch/sweet itch,so he has to be rugged 24/7 to stop him scratching his skin off,and because i show,keeping him rugged helps keep his coat/mane/tail clean and shiny
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post #17 of 19 Old 12-05-2012, 04:59 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by feather feet View Post
Living in Australia it just doesn't get that cold for my boy to grow a full hairy coat,during summer he suffers from Qld itch/sweet itch,so he has to be rugged 24/7 to stop him scratching his skin off,and because i show,keeping him rugged helps keep his coat/mane/tail clean and shiny
That is totally understandable. We have a Connemara who has serious sweet itch and was going to be euthanised. He was saved by a cats whisker by a young lass. He has to be clipped summer and winter, bathed daily 3 seasons a year and wear special covers 24/7. he only goes au natrel when he is competing. He is an amazing eventing horse and won top level competitions. And to think he wouldn't have made it. The girl has had him now for 3 years and her dedication has paid dividends. Don't give up on your horse, ever.
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post #18 of 19 Old 12-05-2012, 05:02 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the messages guys. Some really useful advice. However, I bit the bullet tonight and rugged 'baby' and my big lad. The temperature is going to drop to -12. When I got to their stables tonight, their poo was frozen solid and I had to break the ice in their water buckets INSIDE the stable. They won't be rugged when they go out tomorrow morning though.
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post #19 of 19 Old 12-12-2012, 10:53 AM
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I blanket mine....
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