Braid, band, or shave the whole thing off?!

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Braid, band, or shave the whole thing off?!

This is a discussion on Braid, band, or shave the whole thing off?! within the Horse Grooming forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • Shaving a horses tail
  • Can I shave mane for dressage

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    01-26-2010, 07:13 AM
Green Broke
Braid, band, or shave the whole thing off?!

So I have a month yet before my first show, but here are my questions.

First off I will be showing a QH mare on the circuit, she will be shown western and english. I have never shown both on the circuit, so I am wondering would it be okay to band her mane for both, or braid for both.

And my second question is what to do with my gelding. I am going to be showing him dressage. I hate braiding so I am wondering if it would be okay to band his mane...or hog it...anything to not have to braid. And what should I do with his tail? The top part is all short and straggly, I have tried a french braid without much luck. I was thinking about shaving the top part, but I have never done this before. Any suggestions?
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    01-26-2010, 08:34 AM
For the mare, I think I would band it. I've never shown "on the circuit" before, but I've seen lots of horses at larger local shows do both disciplines with bands. Plus, bands look OK with any saddle... braids with a western saddle look a bit weird, IMO .

I think braiding is preferred to banding, and definitely to hogging in the dressage ring. How long is his mane? Maybe you could do a running french braid or a continental. A little unorthodox, but not too frowned upon (at least in my backwoods section of the country). Scalloping can even look nice, but that's about the same fuss as buttons or flats.

For the tail, most dressage horses are left unbraided. Maybe you could do a tail bandage the night before the show to coax the stragglies down? Shaving the top can work, depending on your geographical area. I think the shaving is more common in the UK.

Good luck at your show!
    01-26-2010, 08:45 AM
I would hog his mane before banding it for dressage. I've seen hogged manes a few times this year already at shows.
    01-26-2010, 08:57 AM
Green Broke
SSPX0095.jpg (image)

This is his mane right now. He has this awesome mohawk going on. :p I would say its 4 inches long or so, too short for a running braid or I would totally do that.
    01-28-2010, 01:15 AM
I would just band his mane if you will doing both the same day. If you were just showing one discipline, would braid for hunt seat and band for western. If your horse has the right neck, shaving it all works too. Usually with horses that a arch/crest to their neck can pull it off.
    01-28-2010, 01:29 AM
I think it's up to you, really; hogging it would be cleaner, easier to manage, and not as much work prior to a show, and 'in general' most horses will look decent with it. Braiding will require some amount of pulling, or thinning, as well as the fuss over getting the braids in nicely. I hate pulling mane (bad hands), so I usually thin it out with different thinning tools, and then trim using thinning shears, so it looks more 'natural', then I'll braid.
    01-28-2010, 01:47 AM
For dressage we usually almost always braid unless breed standard states otherwise and since you have a quarter you would have to braid. In english and western I believe banded in acceptable in both. But if you want to avoid braiding and banding altogether you could always roach the mane. For my mare's tail in dressage I usually shave the dock hair that is too short or broken so that it looks like this:
    01-28-2010, 07:54 AM
Green Broke
The QH mare will be shown at QH shows only.

My welsh cob cross is the one that will be shown dressage.
    01-28-2010, 12:50 PM
Opps sorry missed the word gelding. With your welshie a running braid is most common I believe but you could roach it too, its really up to you. The quarter if doing both english and western usually people just band. I hope that helped.
    01-28-2010, 01:02 PM
Super Moderator
With your QH mare (If it were me - I'd band). But what you are supposed to do is pick the discipline that the horse accels at and do that one. So if she's better HUS then braid, if she's better western then band... Unless you are me, then you just band.

For the welsh, I would either roach or braid. Up to you.

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