Stellar behaviour on trail but for the BUGS!
The area we trail ride on is adjacent to a fresh water lake, it is pretty extensive body of water. Today was his first time solo around the lake; he was so well behaved and not a step wrong! However, we encountered clouds of swarming small flies or midges or gnats several times while on the ride. They were horrible, and because he's just getting better from an ulcerated eye, he wasn't too happy to be in their midst. They were getting in my eyes, his nose, ears and eyes.
I allowed him to trot off through the cloud of bugs as to get away from them. At some points he would break into a canter because they were so bad. For the most part we just trotted out of these clouds of bugs, but I wonder what else to do? I don't think its possible to use a fly mask? What about a fringe? Bug spray wouldn't make a difference I think because they were so thick - everywhere in some areas.
It must be a seasonal thing but unluckily we have to travel the same stretch of trail to get to a riding ring later this week. I can still feel bugs parts in my eye.
Why cant you use a fly mask? They do have fly masks specifically for riding.. even has a cover for their nose too.. as for you- get a hat with a mosquito net. ;)
Get the mask with ear protection and get yourself a head net at dollar store for cheap. Wear a baseball cap to keep the net off your face. They are easy to see thro except when riding into a low sun. Your horse will see fine. The mask will also protect that eye.
They have riding fly masks - plain ones, ones with ear coverage, long nose, and long nose + ear coverage. I would check online or your local tack shop - look for "riding fly mask".
You can also get sunglasses and eye shields that fit with a helmet. I have a pair of each and they really help.
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Thank you! I never knew such things existed!!
Cashel Quiet Ride Mask...Google it. There are a number of places to order from.
Comes with ears and extended nose if desired. Around $29
It's a nice mask and should help your horse a lot.
I have a "Bug Out" fly mask, which I like better than the Cashel, plus it is cheaper, at around $16-20. It goes all the way down the neck, lightweight, nice velcro straps under the neck and nose.
At certain times of the year, I have to douse my horse down in fly spray & put a fly mask on with the ear otherwise the horse is in distress by the barrage of biting insects on the trails. Taking those precautions makes riding bearable again.
The horse I used to lease hated BUGS (and mud..or puddles..or any source of water, lol) so I used to ride him in his normal fly mask. Riding him without it was horrible, if I would've continued leasing him (broke my wrist, and then bought my current horse) I would've bought one specifically for riding, but I only had him for one summer.
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