When do you start removing blankets? - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 22 Old 03-16-2010, 05:19 PM Thread Starter
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When do you start removing blankets?

Basically the title says it all. I'm trying to decide if I want to stop blanketing Lacey now that the winter is basically over and she's shedding...

The only pros of not blanketing her that I can think of are that she could possibly shed faster and that she might be getting too warm under there right now (she's not sweaty at all when I take the blanket off, it's just warm under there and with it being consistently in the 50's to 60's lately...).

However, the negatives are that she's rather skinny right now and while I'm trying to get more food into her there's only so much I can do without going out there everyday which I just can't do, therefore she doesn't have much fat to keep her warm. I've been feeding her 2 little scoops (the scoop that comes with it) of Cool Calories each time I go out but that's only three/four times a week so so far it hasn't made a huge difference in her body mass. Another negative is that her field has not shelter so there isn't any way for her to get out of the rain if it starts raining, and then with her current skinniness, I really do not want her standing in the rain, cold and soaked through...

I would just get her a turnout sheet but I don't have the money right now. However, that is on my list for as soon as I get money. I have a little old lady that I do chores for and make $30 per time, but she doesn't want me to come unless it's sunny so I haven't gotten to yet. But that first $90 that I make is going to buy Miss Lacey a turnout sheet, no doubt.

So basically, what makes you say "it's time to stop blanketing the horses"? How do you decide?
If it were you, would you take Lacey's blanket off and leave it off?

Fabio - 13 year old Arabian/Lipizzaner gelding
Hazel - 14 year old Angora goat

Atticus - 4 year old LaMancha/Alpine cross goat

~
Rest peacefully, Lacey.
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post #2 of 22 Old 03-16-2010, 05:44 PM
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Can you take it off and if the weather turns bad put it back on? I have always hated to see a horse standing in a blanket when I'm in a T shirt.
There is one in our area that we keep threatening to pull to the side of the road, jump the fence and pull the blanket off of


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post #3 of 22 Old 03-16-2010, 06:19 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Vidaloco View Post
Can you take it off and if the weather turns bad put it back on? I have always hated to see a horse standing in a blanket when I'm in a T shirt.
There is one in our area that we keep threatening to pull to the side of the road, jump the fence and pull the blanket off of
I totally know what you mean! It's one of my major pet peeves as well.

I wish I could just run out there when the weather gets nasty and put her blanket back on but my car gets 14 mpg when it's feeling good and it's 14 miles to her house, round trip, being a poor college student I just can't justify that with how expensive gas is. =(

I was thinking about this more though and maybe I can get my BO lady to let me move Lacey into a vacant little paddock thing that does have shelter. Lacey would be by herself but she doesn't care about the other horses and she'd share a fence line with some of them so she would have equine contact if she wanted it...
I just called my BO and she said that that would be fine so maybe the problem is solved! Hopefully that'll work (and no one will be all smarty-pants-ed and move Lacey because "she doesn't need shelter! She's a horse!") because Lacey loves that little paddock and she loves having shelter.

Fabio - 13 year old Arabian/Lipizzaner gelding
Hazel - 14 year old Angora goat

Atticus - 4 year old LaMancha/Alpine cross goat

~
Rest peacefully, Lacey.
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post #4 of 22 Old 03-16-2010, 06:22 PM
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I take them off as soon as the air isn't bitter cold on a regular basis. My guys haven't been in blankets since the middle of Feb. I would leave her blanket off, as long as she has hay she should be able to keep herself warm :)

-Melanie
Mom to 3 bays: Beau, Daisy & Cavalina
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post #5 of 22 Old 03-16-2010, 06:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Wallaby View Post
I totally know what you mean! It's one of my major pet peeves as well.

I wish I could just run out there when the weather gets nasty and put her blanket back on but my car gets 14 mpg when it's feeling good and it's 14 miles to her house, round trip, being a poor college student I just can't justify that with how expensive gas is. =(

I was thinking about this more though and maybe I can get my BO lady to let me move Lacey into a vacant little paddock thing that does have shelter. Lacey would be by herself but she doesn't care about the other horses and she'd share a fence line with some of them so she would have equine contact if she wanted it...
I just called my BO and she said that that would be fine so maybe the problem is solved! Hopefully that'll work (and no one will be all smarty-pants-ed and move Lacey because "she doesn't need shelter! She's a horse!") because Lacey loves that little paddock and she loves having shelter.
Great! Its good she will use a shelter too. My 4 goof balls don't know when to come in out of the storm :roll:
At her age she may need a little more somethin to keep her warm and dry. At least till she gets more weight on.


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post #6 of 22 Old 03-16-2010, 06:41 PM
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Yeah, we have stopped blanketing at my barn already. Poor Bailey was always drenched under his sheet.
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post #7 of 22 Old 03-16-2010, 08:24 PM
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I would keep it on her if you were still keeping her in the shelter-less pasture. Better her be a little extra warm than her freezing her tush off if it gets super cold at 3am. O_O

Even now, though, being older and on the thin side, I'd be concerned about pulling her blanket just yet, so I'm not sure I'd be any more decisive than you are, lol. Just pay a lot of attention to the weather channel, and pull it when you have a string of good weather, as well as making sure she has it on if it's going to get pretty cold. You know that no clouds = cold nights, right? The clouds act as in insulator, so if there are no clouds, it gets a lot colder. Just so you know. =]

I see my horses in the am and the pm, so it's really easy for me to fiddle with blankets, and I live close enough that I can run to the barn if it randomly starts pouring. So I don't have much of a plan for it, sometimes I'll change Ricci's blanket three times a day. O_O

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post #8 of 22 Old 03-16-2010, 09:11 PM Thread Starter
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I think what I'm going to do is take her blanket off tomorrow (and move her to the paddock) and then watch her the next few days since I always go out on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays so if she's acting sluggish and uncomfortable (she's distinctly a baby about being too cold, heehee) I can just put the blanket back on. It's supposed to be pretty ok weather this week, cloudy but warming up, it's supposed to be 70 degrees on Saturday! And it's been cloudy too, thanks for that tip Ricci! I had heard that before but I hadn't really thought about it, yknow? Haha

She has a REALLY thick LONG coat too. It's a little crazy, most of her hair is 2.5 to 3 inches long so as long as she has shelter and access to food, I'm not too worried about her getting cold. But she'll let me know!

It's so irritating, she's at the bottom of the herd, dominance-wise, and all the other horses are fatties, why do I have to be the one to take charge of keeping her chubby(I've never had any say in where she was kept before...I've tried but it's never worked/stuck)? I mean, she is not a hard-keeper at all! I could also understand that if she was officially MY horse but she isn't! She's only half my horse. Gah, people are dumb. If I was running a boarding facility, or whatever, it would not matter whether I owned the horse, I'd be all up in the horse owner's beeswax if I felt their horse was too skinny, not just waiting for someone, anyone, to ask if they could make changes to help their horse be fatter. But then again, these same people think that all old horses should be skinny because "they're old and dying".

I can't wait to be able to move Lacey to a real barn where she'll have a stall at night and old friends to frolic with during the day. Cannot wait.

End rant. Haha

Fabio - 13 year old Arabian/Lipizzaner gelding
Hazel - 14 year old Angora goat

Atticus - 4 year old LaMancha/Alpine cross goat

~
Rest peacefully, Lacey.
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post #9 of 22 Old 03-16-2010, 10:36 PM
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I've always been told that you should take them off when it gets to 60F because you don't want them to start sweating under the blanket.

On the sixth day, God created the Quarter Horse.
On the seventh day, he Painted the good ones.
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post #10 of 22 Old 03-17-2010, 01:04 PM
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I took sonya's off in feb because she was starting to shed already and was sweating underneath the blanket... Although she is pregnant sooooo, the baby was probably giving her a little more heat than usual! Lol.

Sonya ~ 5 yr old Appaloosa/Welsh mare
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