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ohmyitschelle 01-02-2011 04:47 AM

Ideas on how to trim my mare up.

I'm on a roll of making threads tonight and so I thought why not ask here for some tips of how to approach my overgrown mare! I'll admit I've never been the best with manes and end up being bad and cutting them when they get out of order. These last few months have been a bit rough and apart from getting the essential care, and love and attention, my poor ponies have been neglected with their appearance (mane/tail/extra hair areas) and looking at photos, I'm feeling like a bad Mummy and wanting to start 2011 off by cleaning up the appearance to my mare.

Honey is very tolerant of being washed but thats about it. She's the typical rough and tough kind of mare (although she has her moments where she's very girly lol) and loves mud, loves being dirty and doesn't care if her mane is messy, so long as it doesn't interfere with her eating/play time, its all good! However I'm the opposite, love being able to plait and pretty my horses up, and usually do so with my gelding who is very much so a pansy and loves everything and anything to do with looking good. With him now being sold on, poor Honey is in for a right treat.

I'm not too worried about her feathers/ears/hair on chin as I can do them well and always have... but I'm wondering how to improve her mane and tail. Honey has been cursed with the thick mane/thin tail syndrome and I get really frustrated with her mane! She isn't very patient about having her mane pulled, but I am going to try that with her, because whenever I cut her mane it looks absolutely ridiculous and fuller.

Anyways enough talking... basically the poor girl looks like this...
Most Recent
Three months ago.

What is the trick to correct manes... do I cut off the excess (want it to be just a little longer than show length short really) then pull it or is there another handy way to approach this?

And re her tail, after trimming around the dock and the length, is there something I can do to help it get fuller? Anything I could add to her feed?

Thanks in advance!

PintoTess 01-02-2011 04:31 PM

You can get a razor or a comb thing that thins the mane and tail. I would do a french braid down it to make it lay flat and then leave it in for a week then undo it and do it again if you want to. But only do it if the horse is comfortable and make sure you don't do it too tight. Her tail looks good to me. But if you want it fuller, Don't trim the top of the dock off completely as majority of the hair comes from up the dock. But you did that, now to make it fuller, don't rip a brush through it, put in some no-nots and finger comb it through.

Hope I have helped and good luck with your beautiful mare

PaintLover17 01-03-2011 11:45 PM

I leased a gelding with a very thin and short tail. I started putting mane n tail detangler in it and brushing it gently every day. This helped to stimulate growth and soon his tail was looking fuller!

ohmyitschelle 01-05-2011 02:00 AM

Thanks for your suggestions.
I didn't attack Honey's tail, a show friend clips the tops off. So she did mine too. I've tried leaving it to grow, and am just going to tidy up after washing it this weekend.
Thanks for the mane idea, I have gotten a couple of ideas how to "attack" it for lack of a better word now ^_^

CelticAngel 01-05-2011 12:22 PM

I second both using the mane and tail conditioner/detangler and investing in some thinning shears. I've used both to great success. As well, you can always do just small basic braids on her main for a bit to train it down into place. She'll look like she has dreads for a bit but it's a cute look to me! =-)

Hope that helps!


IslandWave 01-05-2011 08:54 PM

For her tail, keeping it banged/trimmed at the bottom like it is in the photos is the best way to make it look fuller. I really don't think she has a thin tail at all. Supposedly, if you comb it out with only your fingers you won't rip out any hairs on accident and make it thinner. I've just never had the patience for that. I'd just keep it well conditioned with detangler so that it doesn't get tangled.

As for the mane, I just recently learned a new way to trim a mane while making it look like it was pulled. You take a small chunk of mane in one hand and a pair of sharp scissors in the other. Open the scissors, press the blades against the hair and move it in a brisk up and down motion. It makes the cut not perfectly straight, which makes it look natural. It works very well if you only do small portions of the mane at a time. After that, I go through the mane and pull it where I may have missed with the scissors. It takes way less time than just pulling and looks just as good.

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