Clipping/trimming feathers?

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Clipping/trimming feathers?

This is a discussion on Clipping/trimming feathers? within the Horse Grooming forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • How to trim horses feathers
  • How to clip horses feathers

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  • 1 Post By natisha

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    02-25-2012, 08:34 PM
Clipping/trimming feathers?

First show of the season next Sunday and I want Maggie to look spiffy! Thing is, she has these feathers that aren't really feathers, just kind of longish hairs on the backs of her legs, from the knees down. She's not really a draft breed, I think she just has some draft in her, and we show in hunters so I want to trim/clip the feathers.

They're pretty dirty... should I bathe her legs first or does that make them harder to clip?

Should I use scissors or clippers? I don't have any fancy kind of clippers, just normal ones.

How do I do it? Haha, this is probably hard to describe but I don't know how I'd clip/trim them, so if you can walk me through it that would be sweet.

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    02-25-2012, 08:42 PM
Green Broke
Clean hair cuts better. Depends on how close you want the hair clipped. For the long hairs I usually cut with the hair, not against. Some people cut against the hair but I found that is harder to blend in but I'm not expert with clippers.
Good luck at your show.
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    02-25-2012, 08:49 PM
Green Broke
I agree with natisha.

Wash his legs first and make sure they are dry.

In my opinion I think the overall length of hair coat would determine which direction as well. Since it is still winter, I am guessing the coat would be on the longer side. So I would clip downwards. It would look funny with a boot clip and a winter coat above.
    02-25-2012, 08:50 PM
Super Moderator
Dirty hair will dull your blades very quickly! Wash and dry, then clip.
    02-25-2012, 09:30 PM
If your horse is ok with the clippers I'd use clippers over scissors. Easier, quicker and almost always neater. Don't need fancy clippers to cut the hair, although a length attachment can be nice if you want to make sure it matches the surrounding hair.
Shouldn't be to difficult to clip since you say it's not full feathering , but some longer hairs. Certainly not the nightmare my 1/2 Frisians would be if I wanted to clip them.
It's just as the others have already said (clean, dry, etc....)
    02-26-2012, 11:32 AM
My method changes depending on the time and the length of his coat.

During the winter, when he's longer coated, I'll take some scissors, and cut some of the length off to make it easier on my clippers, since my clippers I use for this aren't exactly built for cutting through long, thick hair.
From the fetlock down to the coronet band, I'll go against the hair.
From the fetlock and up, I'll go down with the hair, since it's easier to blend.
Around the coronet band, I start at the very bottom of the coronet band, and get all the little hairs that can get long over the hoof.

The key with a winter coated horse, is to not completely clip his legs of all the hair. So you're going to leave a little more hair than you would then during the summer.

During the summer, I'll just go against the hair the whole way, and then around the knee, blend it out.

It is best to clip when the horse is clean. For legs, you can just get a damp towel, and rub the dirt out, and then towel dry. Make sure his legs are completely dry. Wet hair is no good on clippers either.
    02-26-2012, 11:36 AM
I have clippers that accept snap-on combs. With those, you are able to cut to a certain length and you can go up, down and sideways to blend easier with much less danger of clipping too short or showing clipper marks. Worth their weight in gold to me, as I don't do much clipping. They only cost a few dollars at dog grooming supply stores or wal-mart (I have people combs so they're cheaper than those sold to the pet market).
    02-26-2012, 09:42 PM
My horse as a few of those longer hairs too. I would wash and dry 1st and then clip because it will look nicer. Have fun at the show!
    02-28-2012, 03:09 AM
Definately wash and allow to dry feather before clipping as dirt blunts the blades.

Hold your clippers upside down at right angles to the leg and comb the clippers down the hair. Does a far neater job than using scissors.

The other thing to use for fine feather is the special horse razors, with them you just run the razor down the hair with a little pressure.
    02-28-2012, 09:59 AM
I think most horses are starting to show long hairs here and there as the under coat is getting ready to shed.

Another vote for clipping with the hair growth.

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