Has anyone ever kept their horses tail braided and gotten negative results? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 04-24-2009, 11:45 PM Thread Starter
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Has anyone ever kept their horses tail braided and gotten negative results?

I started keeping my mare's tail braided, and now it's about a fourth of what it used to be (thickness wise). It's a couple inches shorter, too.

You can see the different here: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3105/...bed7102d_o.jpg

It's even thinner now: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3585/...e4773c05_b.jpg

You have NO idea how upset I am over this. It happened over just a few months.

I kept it loose at the top. I tightened it when I was about halfway down. I NEVER brushed it. I kept my gelding's tail braided the exact same way and got great results with him.

I had been using MTG at the same time, and the top part of her tail and her feathers have gotten a lot thicker. It's just the middle and the bottom that have thinned out.

I'm going back to doing what I did with her tail before this happened. Which was.... absolutely nothing.

Another thing that changed was I started dying her tail black with human hair dye. I only did it every few months. Do you think that could have caused it to fall out?
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post #2 of 17 Old 04-25-2009, 01:47 AM
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hmmm it might have been a combination of the things you did, there is a definite difference :( the hair dye could have had a bad reaction with her PH and caused it to fall out. my gelding's tail was uber thick like her beginning ones and when I stopped washing it through the winter, he broke it all off by stepping on it, and all his feathers at the top are thick and the bottom is thinner. :( I don't use MTG, but sometimes if I leave it braided too long, he ends up ripping it out by getting it caught on things.
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post #3 of 17 Old 04-25-2009, 05:43 AM
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I have always said the best thing to do to a tail is leave it alone!

Years ago a friend braided my mares tail and said to leave it in all winter. After only a month it was a mess so I went to take it out. OMG it was so tangled and interwoven on itself that I had to cut her tail off. Never again!

We condition tails during show season, brush as little as possible and spray the tops of tails with listerine/baby oil to keep them from rubbing or mtg
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post #4 of 17 Old 04-25-2009, 10:05 AM
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i braided my 5 year old AQHA`s tait once and it was brittle so a big chunck fell out.
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post #5 of 17 Old 04-25-2009, 10:05 AM
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I've gotten good results from doing several braids vs. just one. their usually thick as well adn not too tight but I would say about an ince to 2 inches thick individually.. I also conditioned her hair while I was doing it. I usually do this during the summer hotter months and giver her a few braids so she can fend off the flies a bit better too.

I didnt intend too, but her tail looked great after! I would usually redo it every month just from it getting dusty and dirty which I found would make her hair more brittle nad break.. so redoing it and more conditioner helped.
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post #6 of 17 Old 04-25-2009, 02:03 PM
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I have always kept my horse's tails braided up in tail socks until I had my daughter. They've had 2 years of being left alone and couldn't look better. Except my dh's horse's tail did thin a bit when we dyed it black last year. We are just going to try to Shapley's (spray on temp color) it for show season this year instead of the dye...we'll see. I'd leave it alone, but she has changed color so much in the last few years that her tail is now flaxen instead of black and it doesn't match her fake tail...appaloosas are so wierd.
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post #7 of 17 Old 04-25-2009, 02:12 PM
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we use showsheen to help our tails.. he got a warmblood who had a shorter thin tail and a few months of brushing is a few times a week with showsheen and grew and became very thick.. id try that.. itll keep her tail from getting too dirty and brittle.. wed spray it in and just not brush it on the off days.. try it
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post #8 of 17 Old 04-25-2009, 04:50 PM
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I had very bad results. =[ I kept it braided just like you did, loose at the top, not too tight, and then the bottom 10 inches or so was left free for flies. I noticed her tail started thinning out after a month or so, but the thing that really got me was when she stepped on it or snagged it on god knows what. That broke the skin, and when it scabbed over, all the hair that grew out of the bottom two inches of her dock fell out. We're talking ALL the black hair in her two-tone tail. It was terrible and I haven't braided her tail since. Trust me, I know EXACTLY how upset you are, because I cried for weeks whenever I saw her poor tail. To make it look better, I cut her tail short [I don't show] so it wasn't just the long stringy white hairs touching the ground.


After about five months, this is what it looks like now --

"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds."
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post #9 of 17 Old 04-26-2009, 07:30 PM
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The only problem I ever had was that my head mare liked to wait until my hubby was walking past, then whack him with her braided up tail (with the big knobby on the end) Never kicked at him, never gave any trouble, just smacked him with the tail... winter, summer - whatever. She likes to pick on him in particular.

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post #10 of 17 Old 04-26-2009, 09:30 PM
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Are you taking it out and rebraiding it weekly or braiding and leaving it for good? I've had the most success with washing my geldings tail in late fall, soaking it in MTG, and braiding and bagging it. I then unbraided once a week, reconditioned it with the MTG, combed it out, and braided again. I did this every week until spring. That worked great for me in the past, although I didn't do it this year because I was lazy. You can't braid it once and leave it for months, this will cause the hair to become dry and eventually break it.

But here's my bad braiding experience: I've been growing Chance's mane out for over a year. It finally got down to just past his neck. I gave him a bath over the weekend, washed and conditioned his mane, and braided it in 6 larges chunky braids. I turned him out with his new pasturemate, left, and when I came back his pasturemate had eaten half of a braid! He now has a choppy spot in his mane that's about 3 inches shorter than the rest. Ugh.

I've spent most of my life riding horses. The rest I've just wasted.
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