Does anyone have a suggestion for a medium weight blanket? Winter is coming up, so I suppose I probably need to get one... Any brand names that I should look for? What features are the best in a blanket?
That would be considered a heavy blanket. Heres something I read that might help you understand
I'm going to give you some general information but each blanket manufacturer's products will be slightly different. There are usually 3 numbers associated with horse blankets.
The first is the size which ranges somewhere from 68" to 84". The size is usually determined by a horizontal measurement from the center of the horse's chest across the point of the shoulder, along the side, across the hindquarters and to the middle of the tail. Some manufacturers suggest ending the measurement at the edge of the tail.
The second number refers to the denier of the outside layer (shell). Denier refers to the weight of the fibers in a fabric. The lower the number, the finer and lighter the fiber; the higher the number, the coarser and heavier the fiber. So, a 210 Denier blanket will have a shell made of a finer thread and a tighter weave than a 420 denier which will be made from fabric with a heavier thread and a coarser weave.
The third number usually refers to the insulation fill of the blanket. Blankets can be grouped in three categories: Lightweight - Often called a "sheet", the lightweight blanket usually consists of just a shell with no insulation but the shell might have a liner. The liner could be made of smooth nylon, nylon or cotton/polyester mesh, or a cotton/polyester sheeting. Midweight - Usually 180-200 grams of insulation sandwiched between the shell and lining.
Heavyweight - Usually 300-500 grams insulation sandwiched between the shell and lining.
Those blankets that fall in the 200-300 gram range could be classified as either mid or heavy, depending on the type of fabric used for the shell and the type of fabric used for the lining. For example, a 250 gram blanket with a flannel or fleece lining might be considered a heavyweight blanket while a 250 gram blanket with a breathable nylon lining might be considered a midweight.
What's your $$ limit? I personally have medium weight Saxon (jeffersequine.com --> search for Saxon blanket --> 600D one) for 3 years already for both my girls, and going to use them this winter as well. It's cheap one, but so far I have just tiny rips here and there (where they scratch their butts against the fence and trees).
I LOVE the Riders brand from Dover. They are tough 1200D and wear very well. I have had one that ripped, and they replaced it. They also have the gussets in the front, as well as clips, instead of buckles, so it is easier to deal with in the cold weather. They are not too expensive, either.
I have a Big D Devlyn blanket, and it is wonderful! Tough, durable, waterproof (remember to re-waterproof!), and comfortable--no rubs. I bought a 1200d Saxon for Scotch for this winter. Not sure how it will hold up, but it looks pretty comparable to my Big D.