12-29-2012, 07:22 AM
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Op-you do realize that stable blankets get dirty whether they are outside or not, right? THe fact that it is dirty now is just silly. Many places I have boarded at charge extra (usually about $5/day minimum) for blanketing. Figure out how you can perhaps just blanket for outside and leave off inside.....like maybe don't clip your horse? Yes, I know they get sweaty..and then it takes more of YOUR time.....but may save you $$. I found out after many years of treating my horses like little hot house flowers at H/J barns, that they actually are much more hearty than I would have thought. While at several reining training barns......they do not really "warm up the horses" like we used to do....they pretty much take them out, trot one or 2 circles, then lope them and lope them for about 40 minutes......then, soaking wet, walk back over to the barn (it was in the NE, but not as cold as Maine) across the driveway, shower them with warm water, and tie them in their stall with a cooler to dry. And know what? They were fine. They did not spend the 20-30 minutes cooling them out like we used to do at all. Now-they were fit horses, and not breeds prone to "tying up", but still. It has taken me years to learn that they really do not need all the fuss we make much of the time. So, bottom line-you could live without clipping, but now that yours is clipped-bite the bullet and pay for the blanketing. Think twice before you clip next year.