New to Horse Grooming
Hello everyone, I am a first time horse owner with a paint horse who is mostly white and very dirty!
I have been reading alot how you can use human shampoos and conditioners, and it seems like the general consensus is Baby shampoo is the safest way to go? I've never used that before, will it still get a filthy horse white?
Do you wash a horse like you'd wash a dog, that is, lathering the shampoo from the top of the back down? I also understand you should spray the feet with water first to prevent them from spooking?
Am I using human conditioner all over the horses body as well, and rinsing it out like you would with your own hair? Is it okay to leave conditioner in the mane, then braid it? I'd really like to grow out his mane.
Also, this may be a silly question, but when brushing him with the curry comb, it really gets filthy! I tried to clean it off with my soft bristled brush, but that just made both brushes dirty instead! How do you guys clean your curry combs in between strokes? Maybe he is just dirtier than usual.
Oh, also, how do I get as much dirt out as possible while bathing him? Am I using the curry comb with the soap and water?
I use suave or mane n tail. I use two brushes and a handmit. I wash my curry comb after I use it but not during. I usually brush him off before I ride with the curry comb.. then he gets hosed down. I like getting the horse wet before he gets shampoo in his fur and mane. I then lather up the mit and go at it. No particular order really. I really like the mit because I can scrub around his hooves where all the mud sticks.
Starting the water at the legs is to get them used to the water temp, not to keep them from spooking.
I use a sponge and a wash mitt. Wet them down well, apply the shampoo, scrub it in well, and get them really clean. Make sure you completely wash it off well. You dot wat to cause skin irritation
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Clean and white are two different things. If you're looking to get white eye poppingly white, go with QuicSilver or Cowboy Magic. As far as just shampooing, any human shampoo and conditioner work fine on horses. :wink:
If a horse isn't used to being bathed, you should start with his hooves and work up. If they're used to being bathed, you can start anywhere you want.
I hose off my curry if it gets too dirty. I use several different brushes and curry combs when I'm bathing.
Once the horse is clean, conditioned, and rinsed, make sure you scrape him/her thoroughly. If you like, this is the time to spray mane and tails with Show Sheen. I like to use ethnic products as they have the same ingredients as Show Sheen, but are much cheaper.
Plus, it's HAIR not fur. Horses do not have fur. Beavers, wolves, chinchillas, foxes, etc. have fur. Horses do not. :?
I.. never said it was fur...
So, am I conditioning the whole horse? Is it okay to leave conditioner in the main and braid it like that?
I was also trying really hard to pick the hooves out, but it's so packed in there~! I bought a couple of buckets and a dish-brush/scrubber and was thinking I could wash his hooves real good once and a while. What does everyone think, that's fine right? Or are you not supposed to wash out a hoof?
It's a peeve of mine. :?
Either he hasn't had his hooves picked on a regular basis, or you're not putting enough effort into cleaning them out. It takes quite a bit of muscle to clean out a packed hoof.
There's no reason, unless he has thrush, that you need to wash the bottom of his hooves.
As far as conditioning, no, I don't do the whole horse. I only use conditioner on the mane and tail. Unless it's a leave in conditioner you need to rinse it out before you braid, otherwise you'll wind up with a greasy mess when you get around to unbraiding it.
A horse's hoof is very, very strong. If you're nervous about hacking away at something, watch his body language. Pick away slowly at the packed in 'stuff' and feel around. If you hit something sensitive, he'll move his ears, lift his head and quickly try to pull his hoof away. You will be able to tell a distressed horse from an impatient one. If it helps, check out some diagrams of a horse's hoof and familiarize yourself with the anatomy.
And most times, you'll be able to tell the difference between mud and manure, and actual hoof. If you're really, really nervous, have someone experienced stand by you and watch as you're cleaning.
A few things I've noticed people do that kinda messes up bath time: 1. If its a really hot day, make sure you've let all the hot water out of the hose before you put it on the horse.It can be scalding and needs to run till it gets cold or at least to a normal temp. 2. Don't get water in their ears. 3. Scrape him off when done or he'll be hotter than if he was standing in the sun.
As for getting him clean and white, Cowboy Magic Yellow Out is pretty awesome. It'll get him super clean and shiny. I have a grey/white Mustang that looks pearly after a bath with it. Bath time is fun and remember to let him play with the water if he wants. He may like it and you'll get tons of cute pictures. (:
With you being nervous/hesitant to go to town on his hooves, I'd suggest getting an experienced horseperson or trainer to show you the ropes. It's much easier having an oral and visual instruction than just reading it.
Also, do you have a washrack you could use? Or somewhere to safely tie your horse? If he/she does end up spooking one or both of you could get hurt quite easily so having a proper place to bathe helps reduce that risk a little.
I also have a paint who gets very dirty. I just use baby shampoo or Cowboy Magic shampoo. Here's what I do:
1. I rinse him off with the hose. I turn on the hose while standing beside him and aim it towards the ground beside him. So if he does spook when I turn the hose on, he's likely going to try to get away from the scary thing so I'll be out of the way as well. I start at his hooves usually just to get the dirt off of them and then move onto his back..
2. I apply the shampoo to his back, neck and legs and start lathering.
3. Then, I rinse it off very well and move onto his mane and tail.
4. For his mane I just put in the shampoo & conditioner, lather, and rinse it off. (I rinse his neck off again as well).
5. For his tail I put a little bit of shampoo and conditioner in a bucket and fill it 1/2 way with water. Then, I go beside his rump and put his tail in the bucket and lift up. You should be very careful when doing this because it puts you in somewhat of a dangerous place. You are near his rear end and some horses really don't like it when you bring the bucket up too high.
6. Then I rinse his tail off.
As for growing the tail out, I put in Cowboy Magic mane and tail detangler and brush out their tails. I try to avoid braiding at all because it can get caught when you turn them out and pull out some hair.
Good luck with your new horse!
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