Rugging... Your thoughts?
Just wanted to start a thread (may be an old one somewhere, sorry) about Rugging... Who does what and why?
I used to have my horses rugged appropriately 24/7 with the occassional nude day, however I am now leaning towards the nude all the time... I previously agisted where it was full care and the owner was there to change rugs should the weather change in the day, but now they are home with me I leave for work in the morning and don't get back til evening. I have a fear of leaving a rug on in a chilly morning then the day turns and they are home sweating. And I also worry about leaving them nude then the day turns bad...
But, that said have done some looking into keeping horses nude the whole time. And there does seem to be valid reasons for this. So I'm leaning towards this way - other than in storms and chilly winter nights. Trouble is my many rugs will just be wasted, but thats okay. Being nude I guess allows them to use their inbuilt heating and airconditioning, that rugs take away. Does mean they get dirty - but they seem to love it. I just have to get over my own head telling me If I don't rug I am being neglectful.
Plus now they are in a 10acre bush paddock as well as their normal paddock, so with so much to catch rugs on I wouldn't feel comfy leaving them on to get caught up...
So... Thats my thoughts and reasoning...
What do you do and why?
PS I put this under 'Grooming' Cos it kinda relates to grooming... Well... More grooming when your ponies come back full of mud! :)
I only blanketed my one mustang/qh cross in winter, because darnit he wouldn't grow a winter coat! Same schedule as all my others but he just wouldn't. So I got him a blanket and no matter what style or how many cinches, he'd have it off in the morning and be shivering. Serves him right I think!
Now I just give up. All naked, all the time.
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Horses are made to be naked all the time in whatever weather. The only real reason i rug is because its flippin cold up here in the winter, and my horse looses weight easily. I also am at a boarding barn, so there is an indoor arena we ride in in the winter, so if we didnt rug our hroses they would get extremly hot when we took them inside.
Yay, I'm glad at your responses. I completely understand rugging if people are showing, or rugging if the horse has itch or an allergy to insects etc...
But I very rarely show, I don't clip, and my boys have other insect replellents (apple cidar vingar and this natural cream which is awesome!!! I even use it on my face and I'm sensitive to everything normally)...
So I'm really changing my way of thinking about rugging. Guess I was looking for other's opinions as I do really struggle with the thought that I am being neglectful - only as it was instilled that horses are to rugged... So it's a matter of changing my persective. Honestly these boys love being naked. And now I'm not riding in an arena but rather in the open cold during winter - as I don't do a great deal, not endurance etc, so they don't get too hot with their winter coats.
Oooo this is all new to me... Think I'll go and pack away my 15 rugs today, as it's now warm down here... Yep 15 for two horses that I have had for less than one year (as I said it was instilled that to be a good horse owner you must rug, so they have all sorts of different rugs for different weather)...
I can't imagine it being any easier to keep a horse unrugged - being even more grooming in place, so it's not a matter of convenience (oops here I go trying to proove to myself that it is okay again)...
That said - one of my boys will still likely be rugged as this winter showed me he doesn't develop much of a coat, and winters here get to -5 at night. The other horse runs hot most of the time anyway and had a great coat forming til I got him and started rugging...
shakenbake - I was speaking to my vet before I sold my horse. She was a really skinny TB, like emaciated thin when I got her. So I was asking about rugging to help her gain weight. He laughed, and said that in Australia we tend to really over rug our horses. Are you in the alps? If you aren't up that high, I would let them go nude :)
Depends on the pony, the ponies work load, whether I am going to show it over winter, how I plan on keeping the pony (i.e. in or out) and any medical problems.
This is my lot:
Harvey: is heavily rugged most of the year, he is 30, difficult to keep weight on and can't be stabled as he panics.
Pride: is naked in summer doesnt matter what the weather is doing. If it is horrific I may bring him in, dry him off and stick a lightweight on him but normaly I dont bother and he is happier without.
In winter he has a heavyweight turnout rug on. He is a 28year old british riding pony, fat, sassy and lives out 99% of the time. I do not show him in winter.
RIAN: is a 19 yearold arab, is naked and turned out 24/7 in summer, and rugged heavily in winter as he has artheritis in his spine and pelvis which is made worse if he gets cold. He lives in at night in winter.
Reeco: he is naked in summer but has been rugged up since early september. This is because he is likely to be shown this winter. He will also go for breaking in Jan/Feb and It is not a wise Idea to have to clip him and then send him and would cost me more money. If I were not showing or having him broken he would be out 24/7 without rugs. Currently he is out 24/7 in summer and in at night only in winter. he is 3 years old
Stan was 20 years old. He was shown extensively over summer and because he suffered from sweet itch he was rugged with a boett in summer. In winter he was turned away and not ridden. He was left naked in winter to encourage his hair to grow back where he had rubbed it off. He was always turned out 24/7. He was however a purebred connemara who grew an enormous coat.
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