How do you keep your horse clean for a show?
Also of people either bathe the day before and stall or get up at the ass crack of dawn and bathe that morning. Not quite sure what to tell you about the winter months though. I know I dont have hot water outside...no baths for my ponies until warmer weather.
A week before a show, I clip all legs with a 10 blade from the below the knees down. This way the hair blends in & is short. After I bathe, I showsheen while horse is still wet & hand rub it in, recommended on the bottle. On the lower legs, esp. white socks I douse them. This way with the short hair & showsheen, no dirt or stains will stick, you can just brush it off, even a mistake with hoof black. Never spray showsheen near the saddle area, says on the bottle as well. Then I put a slinky on the horse, either a full body or hood/face & a satin stable sheet. Because I don't use a barn, I put a waterproof blanket on & a outer hood. I put on a SM tail wrap & a tail sock. A freshly bedded stall will add to the horse staying clean as well. The configuration of my barn doesn't allow him to have contact with his buddy, so I just leave them both in the paddock, but make sure the run in shed is freshly bedded & feed him there, he seems to know & stays in there.
If it's too cold to bathe a shop vac does a nice job. Don't tie the horse but hold his lead shank. Other than the noise most don't mind being vacuumed. The coat stays nicer than with bathing as none of the oils are removed.
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I own a white horse (faded grey paint), so I have show clean down to a perfection, haha. I don't like waking up early, so I do majority of the bathing/clipping the night before along with braiding/banding. I put a sleezy on (helps bands/braids stay down, just makes sure they're straight), put his blanket on, braid and bag his tail (makes it fluffy in the morning and prevents poop stains!). I close him in a stall, and add LOTS of fresh bedding, along with some extra hay to hopefully keep him busy enough to NOT roll!
I get there as early as possible in the morning to do spot cleaning (usually legs have to be re-done)/checking braids (re-doing bad ones), and all the minor touch-ups (cowboy magic = amazing).
Of course, in the summer I do daily hosings/keep his tail up/ect. to make sure he's not an absolute disaster come the day before :]
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