Horse hates the Curry
What do I do?? I need to get hair and mud off of my horse and he really dislikes the curry. Even the rubber one. I feel like I need to put him in a squeeze chute to keep him still. Some times it worse than others but this needs to be worked through. Then I started thinking maybe it hurts him somehow. Do some horses just have sensitive nerves that cannot take the curry?? The fact that he is grayed out WHITE does not help.
Any suggestions on what may be his problem and how to fix it??
Underweight horses tend to not enjoy the curry.... Other than that, I think every horse I've ever met gets more annoyed when you STOP currying!
Some horses are very sensitive and thin skinned, and don't tolerate hard curries or forceful brushing. Your boy may be one of those.
Yes, some horses have much more sensative skin than others. For example, one of the geldings that I ride will press himself into the metal curry for a massage, but with the exact same curry, my mare will try to kill me if I even try to touch her more sensative skin (chest, legs, belly, etc) with it.
You can't fix a horse's nerves, but you can try using different methods and types of curry comb. What works well for Sour (my mare) is a rubber curry mitt, which is considerably softer and more forgiving than a normal curry. Also try to take your time. Instead of vigorous rubbing, do slow circles as if you're trying to give him a massage. Only press as hard as you must. You might try tying him with a hay net or something the first few times until he realized that you're not trying to hurt him with the brush, and praise him for holding still. Use the dandy brush or a face cloth/sponge in any areas that you can get away with as well, or even a spray bottle to soften some of the dirt before picking it out.
ETA: Sour is extremely thin skinned as well. Darned chestnut horse ;)
I agree with Endiku. Each horse is different. I have 3 tb's, one is much more sensitive to which grooming tools he prefers.
You could experiment with which style of curry and brushes your horse prefers and then just use those ones for him, you will also have to experiment with the technique you use, just how much pressure he prefers. Sometimes if you go too lightly it can be more irritating to them than if you use a bit more pressure. Just try different things and see what works best and then give it time, he may start to enjoy it more.
Some good styles of rubber curry to try would be a rubber curry mitt, like Endiku mentioned, there are a few different variations of them with different style nubbs that would work, but the regular basic one is always a good choice.
You could also try one of the soft rubber curries with the soft fingers, like the Oster Fine Curry or the Grooma Soft Touch Curry or something else similar, there are lots of different kinds like those ones.
I also find that the traditional regular oval style of curry comes in a hard rubber that isn't very flexible or a very soft rubber that is very flexible. My horses all prefer the soft flexible ones. One of the brands that makes a very soft flexible one is Equi-Essentials.
Victory Canter English Tack & Apparel has the Equi-Essentials soft rubber oval curries, the mitts and a Velvet Touch curry that is just like the Grooma Soft Touch curry.
I have an oster curry with nubby fingers and also one that my hand slides into that's rubber. I will check out your link to see what different kinds there are.
I had a horse like that. He HATED being groomed. He didn't just hate curry combs, he hated being brushed or even being scritched with fingernails. Nothing wrong with him, fat happy and healthy QH but just hated it! I only had him for a year, but he never changed. I could wipe him down with a towel and he would tolerate that, but he never enjoyed it.
I was always looking for ways to bond with him (he had trust issues) everyone would always say, "Just sit and groom him!" and I would sigh.
As said some horses are sensitive - and only a rubber or plastic curry comb should be used in them the metal ones are for cleaning the brushes.
One very handy hint is to go out and buy three of the stainless steel pot scourers - the ones that are round balls. Unravel them and plait the three together so you have a bundle of them and use that for removing mud. They are the best thing and do not upset a sensitive skinned horse.
I have told several people this and they are amazed as to how well it works and prefer to use them for removing mud than anything else.
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