Need tips to make his tail thicker and longer - The Horse Forum
  • 2 Post By COWCHICK77
  • 1 Post By GrittyCowgirl
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post #1 of 6 Old 08-24-2012, 11:23 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: North Dakota
Posts: 5,748
• Horses: 3
Need tips to make his tail thicker and longer

I got Red at the end of May, and his poor tail is just thin, full of static, and just sad-looking.

I have never braided or bagged a tail before, as I don't do any high showing that requires it. But he sure would look nicer with a nice full tail.

I didn't want to bag it or braid it during the summer, as I want him to be able to us it for flies, but it's certainly something I can do over the winter months. (Although there will be no washing it when it is below zero outside. )

What do you do to get a full, long tail?

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post #2 of 6 Old 08-25-2012, 03:43 AM
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Kansas
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When I first got my horse, her tail looked a bit like this. I really like Frutis Sleek & Shine leave-in conditioner. My horse's mane is much thicker and longer, and her tail has stopped breaking off since I've started using the stuff regularly. Every time I get to go to the barn (which is about twice a week), I put a bunch of it on her mane, forlock, and usually her tail--right on to the dry hair. Then I comb it with a mane comb which has teeth that spin, so as not to pull hair out--it just combs right through.

I had used Head and Shoulders the first few shampoos (very diluted in a bucket of water) because it really gets the dandruff and build-up off the dock better than regular horsey shampoos. You have to rinse it really good and get all the soap out or else the horse will just get itchy there and scratch his butt, then the tail hair breaks, etc. lol. Fructis leave-in conditioner can be used on wet or dry hair. I never have to wrap, braid, or bag Brandy's tail because it is growing well without those since I've started using Fructis Sleek & Shine.

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post #3 of 6 Old 08-25-2012, 06:20 AM
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Orange County, NC
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Some horses have it, some don't, but the best help is to handle tails and manes so that you avoid pulling or breaking hairs, which can be very time consuming. Use a conditioner or detangler and separate problem areas by hand instead of yanking a comb through them.

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post #4 of 6 Old 08-25-2012, 02:14 PM
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: BC, Canada
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Extensions. I gave my horse some extensions in her front lock
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post #5 of 6 Old 08-25-2012, 04:58 PM
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: The sandbox
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I agree that genetics are a factor, then pulling and breaking the hairs from either grooming or snagging on brush or whatever in the pasture. When Stilts first cam to NV he had a thick tail that drug the ground that was kept in a tailbag. Within a month of being turned out with his tail unbraided and unbagged he had it all pulled out and it only came to his hocks.

I like MTG especially if it is due to rubbing from skin irritation and from the HF I learned about Coconut Oil which is a great natural conditioner...I use it on my hair too!

You can braid and bag it will help for the snagging. You can attach a "fly swatter" to the bag, like a home made one of of baling twine or whatever. Tube socks make a great cheap alternative to buying lycra tail bags. You can wash them or toss them, get a whole pack for the price of one tailbag.
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post #6 of 6 Old 08-25-2012, 07:16 PM
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Ohio
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As soon as the flys disappear all of my horses tails get braided and bagged. I only use the lightest weight tail bags I can find or make my own, a lot of heavier fabrics (or the 3 tube type braid in bags) can break or weaken the hair at the roots where it is tied in.

In the summer I usually shampoo and condition my mares every other week and my geldings may get washed and shampooed every 3 weeks unless they are really dirty. To much washing can be bad and weaken hair from stripping all of the natural oils out. If I have a horse that has a really wimpy tail (my appy mare) I will always finish with a leave in conditioner. I never comb without using some type of detangler (even olive oil or coconut oil can be used) AND NEVER COMB WHEN THE HAIR IS WET! It is much more likely to snap and break off.

Some other tricks I have used over the years:
- Baby shampoo is great! Doesn't have any harsh detergents that strip all the natural oils out and its cheap.

- Do your own hot oil treatments with Olive Oil or Coconut Oil. Just warm the oil in a microwave (dont burn your horse! it doesn't need to be hot, just warm) and slather it on the tail starting at the roots all the way down. Braid the tail and let it set for awhile or even overnight. I have also wrapped the tail in saran? wrap and bagged it overnight.

-Never use oil products when the horse is going to be turned out in the sun. This will only make it easier for the horses hair to bleach out and no one wants that! lol

- Never use sweet/perfumed/ fruity scented conditioners in the summer. This will only attract bugs and flies and will cause your horse to switch his tail like a made man, you want less knots and tangles. Save those for the fall and winter months.

- When braiding, start loose at the root and don't braid all the way down to the fragile ends. Leave a 3-5" portion un-braided at the end or stop braiding when the hair becomes thinner.

- Never pull rubber bands out of the hair, carefully cut one rubber strand and unwrap them. Childrens fabric covered metal free rubber bands work great as well and wont cause as much breakage over time.
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