Body clipping

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Body clipping

This is a discussion on Body clipping within the Horse Grooming forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • Are horses better off with a summer coat or clipped
  • Does clipping a horse late in the season ruin his coat

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    09-18-2010, 12:38 AM
Body clipping

I don't know if this is where I should put this, but i'm debating on clipping my horse. He was body clipped when I bought him so I just kept up with it then after I moved from the show barn decided to not clip him anymore. I talked to the vet about him not shedding his winter coat all the way and he said it had nothing to do with him being body clipped all the time. I was told it ruins their coat. I dunno. His old owner said his coat has always been really thick which is why she clipped him. Well two years now and he is getting older and I noticed this summer he was doing pretty good, but if the BO forgot to turn on his fans he couldn't take the heat at all. Also he sweats if you look at him wrong, and he is in great shape, but my friend rode him to ten mins light work and he was soaked. My concern is this winter he will not dry in enough time for me to put him back in his stall. I didn't have problems last winter cause I had two surgeries and couldn't ride for three months. This winter I plan on keeping him muscled up and in shape.

So I just would like your opinions. Should I just do like a trace clip type thing or full body clip or what?? I'm not worried about keeping him warm I have the right blankets and hoods and stuff to keep him warm. I was thinking of leaving his legs hairy and neck, just clip where the blanket goes since that is where he sweats the most is his belly and where the saddle goes? The vet is coming next week for shots so I was going to ask him to test him for cushings, and ask his opinion too.
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    09-18-2010, 02:30 AM
Green Broke
The barn I ride at clips all their horses and ponies that get worked on a regular basis. We mostly do a trace clip which you can see in the link below. A lot of the girls will leave a design on their ponies bums like a heart.

The horses are outside during the day and brought in at night, but this is Canada so it does get quite cold. There hasnt been any bad effects because of the horses getting clipped. It makes them easier to cool out as well as they arent wooly mammoths. :)

If your horse gets sweaty all over, you might be better off giving him a blanket clip rather then just the trace.

    09-18-2010, 02:41 AM
Hmm.. thanks I just wish I didn't have to clip him cause I love his color:( He is just a silly boy and it's hard when I get to the barn at 6 and they close at 9 to make sure he is plenty dry before I leave. Also in the summer he would be more comfortable especially since we can't trust that the fans will be turned on like they are supposed to be. I'd move but a lot of places won't take my horse cause he is a cribber:(
    09-18-2010, 02:45 AM
Green Broke
He should shed out in the spring and still be his normal colour. To help shed him out get something that looks like helps a ton! Our horses get pretty woolly looking because of where we live, so I always use this in the spring to help get rid of the excess hair that is not wanting to come off of them. :)
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File Type: jpg shed blade.jpg (15.8 KB, 243 views)
    09-18-2010, 02:55 AM
See that is the problem is he won't shed out. Like if you look at him from far away he looks normal, and than when you get up to him his hair on his butt is like super thick and on his belly. Like I thought this summer we were doing good than it was like oh i'm done shedding. He has a thyroid tumor but I don't know that it would cause him to not shed properly. He is weird. Like his hair on his neck was real nice at the beginning of the summer, and than like the middle of show season I noticed it was getting thicker and his hair on his ears and stuff grows back in a week, which last year I clipped his ears twice during show season. This year I had to clip him every weekend. He is old, so i'm having a lot of bloodwork done to see if he has anything besides the thyroid tumor.

Oh I think for sure i'm going to leave a heart on his butt or something ha ha.
    09-18-2010, 04:18 AM
Green Broke
It is partially an "old man" thing I think....the school horse I ride is about 18 and it takes longer for him to shed out then the younger horses. My guess for it happening is as they get older(like us) they get cold easier, so they try and keep their coat longer into the spring, and grow it earlier. I just use it to help him along. But of course, that theory could be all wrong! Hopefully it is just old age though :)
    09-18-2010, 04:25 AM
Clipping doesn't 'ruin' their coat or make it grow in heavier, those are both myths.

With age, some horses tend not to shed out as well or thoroughly. It can also be an early indicator of Cushing's disease or another thyroid disorder.

As far as the impact on their coat color, clipping more often, before the coat gets long, will help minimize the effect. Pigment tends to migrate to the end of the hair shaft, so with a long coat, you get the maximum color change, usually to that weird gun metal gray color.

However, if it makes your older horse more comfortable and allows him to stay in work, I'd say it's well worth it. I have had some older guys and some ponies with heavy coats that didn't shed out well that I ended up clipping year round - they were a lot happier clipped.
    09-18-2010, 02:56 PM
Thank you guys, I just have tons of people telling me to not do it, but I decided to clip him today when I went to the barn at 930 and he was already sweating. The weather has been really cool and it's heating up again and his coat is already getting super thick. I think i'm going to clip him everywhere but his legs so he has thick hair in the winter on his legs. Poor old man can't take this heat, and this crazy freaking weather we have had is really screwing him up. By noon even with his fan he was soaked. So i'm going to print out those different types of ways to clip and start clipping him tonight. If it gets to 90 like they say it's going to be next week he is going to be miserable and loose weight cause he won't eat when it's too hot.

Thanks again for your guys advise:)
    09-18-2010, 03:44 PM
Sorry to steal the thread, but my mare over the last few years has stopped getting rid of her thick winter coat as well in the summer and I have the same problem. I was thinking of doing the same thing, and clipping out but didn't really know what to do. I was thinking of doing a low trace and seeing how she gets on with that because I don't want to take too much off and regret it.

Everyone I know clips going into winter, and then again coming out but I'm worried if I clip going in and we have a particularly bad winter she might struggle. Can you clip just the once coming out of winter rather than going in? And do you guys think there is a wrong time to clip? I want to leave it as late as possible but don't want to ruin her summer coat coming through. Thanks.
    09-18-2010, 06:00 PM
Depends on the horse and where you leave, but you want to avoid clipping after there's any chance of it affecting their spring coat.

Here in Central Virginia, USA, last clips on hunting horses are usually done in late January. Last clips on show horses are done a tad earlier, but again, depends on the individual horse and where your located.

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