A week left! Any suggestions to pretty him up? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 21 Old 06-22-2019, 05:19 AM Thread Starter
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A week left! Any suggestions to pretty him up?

Exactly one week until my and Ninja's first ever show! I'm really excited!

Does anyone have any tips or tricks for getting horses looking nice for shows? Or any suggestions? I wanted to do one of those double french braids on his mane, where there's one on each side? No idea what to do with his tail though haha. Also any bathing tips? As I said earlier, never done this before so it's all new territory, although I have been stalking a lot of the show prep threads lol.

I don't know how much it matters, but the classes I'm doing is led handler, pony club rider/mount, smartest on parade and maybe hunter.

Any help is appreciated! Attached a photo of Ninja so you know what he looks like plus the braid I wanted to do for his mane!

(By the way, the only rules are regarding tack and uniform, so I can pretty much do whatever I want with his mane and such ^^)
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post #2 of 21 Old 06-22-2019, 06:55 AM
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He is really cute and handsome. I don't have any show prep tips but I do like the double braids. Does he have thick enough hair to do that? It looks like he might.

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Last edited by LoriF; 06-22-2019 at 07:03 AM.
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post #3 of 21 Old 06-22-2019, 07:16 AM
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If you are going to clip (legs, coronet band, bridle path, jaw -- please do not remove vibrissae from chin, nose, eyes), and tidy his ear hair, you should do it now so clip marks have some time to smooth over.
Wash him with a brightening shampoo a few days ahead and keep him rugged. On show day you can apply hoof gloss.

Make sure your tack is perfectly clean and do it in plenty of time so you don't have to find out you put it back together wrong on show day.

I don't know what the convention is on tails for your part of the world, but if you leave it loose you should pull the untidy hairs at the top of his dock to create a smooth appearance and make his butt look bigger. Some horses object to their tail hair being pulled and others don't mind in the slightest (stand in a safe place until you know which your horse is!). Only three or four hairs at a time.

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post #4 of 21 Old 06-22-2019, 07:22 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoriF View Post
He is really cute and handsome. I don't have any show prep tips but I do like the double braids. Does he have thick enough hair to do that? It looks like he might.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WVgZAenjNDE
I think so, it'd probably just be a bit thinner than the photo. We did a single braid a while back, but his mane has grown since then. Thank you by the way!

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post #5 of 21 Old 06-22-2019, 07:26 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Avna View Post
If you are going to clip (legs, coronet band, bridle path, jaw -- please do not remove vibrissae from chin, nose, eyes), and tidy his ear hair, you should do it now so clip marks have some time to smooth over.
Wash him with a brightening shampoo a few days ahead and keep him rugged. On show day you can apply hoof gloss.
I did want to clip his legs and maybe his jaw and ears depending on how he goes, just to see how he is with clippers. We'll have to dig them out tomorrow then! Brightening shampoos, are they those coloured ones you see in the stores? Like the bay and shampoo and white? If it is, I can get some tomorrow because we're going to the tack shop.
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post #6 of 21 Old 06-22-2019, 08:47 AM
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Color enhancing shampoo is what you described and yes, they will brighten white too.

For what you describe, I would leave his tail alone.
If this is a current picture his tail is full with long top hairs, not busted/broken from rubbing...
If he had a tail with a ragged look to the top, then yes pulling of a few hairs to tidy it...
With emphasis on the rider and tack appearance not so much horse...leave it be.

Being it is winter where you are the horse is in winter splendor of coat...
A nice bath if weather is mild and sun warm to dry the animal.
A very fine mist of baby oil sprayed on a rag, then wipe carefully around the eye where the socket is pronounced, along both sides of the muzzle below the nostril, down the flat of the face and the outline edge of the ear will add a glisten to the face...then continue on and go over the horses body but be extremely careful in the saddle and girth/cinch area as this is a polish and slick = saddle slippage.
I would suggest trying this at home first to see if you like the look and effect it gives so you can remove it when bathing the horse...
Only add a shine/glistening product just before going in the ring as it attracts dust/dirt and can make a horse immaculate in appearance now look dusty and dirty especially if to much is used and applied.
Less is better and more appealing in looks.

Hoof polish on hooves you scrubbed clean at home of built-up mud and caked on debris...then paint them.
It the hoof product dries to a shine, remember at home you need to clean that product off so the hooves again can breathe.

Winter time and thicker coat, do not use a tight cutting clipper blade as you will take off to much coat and instead of enhancing, it could really detract from appearances.
Now though is the time if you are going to clip so tracks blend you will possibly make with having that winter thick coat to contend with too.
I would clean up legs of just removing/blending the long hairs gone off the back or leg and bottom/back of the fetlock/ankle.
Carefully trim the coronet band line if it is really long and shaggy looking, again it is winter where you are and anything you touch is going to really show.
A clean bridlepath, edge the ear and remove long tufts sticking out {horse benefits from this keeping debris out of the ear as ear hair is meant to do}...there is really no need to whistle clean the ear interior.
I would clean up the underside of the jaw & jowl area, remove/trim the muzzle hairs that are long and really unsightly.
I also do eye feelers to leave them a few inches long so they stick out from the face for feelers not laying against the face doing nothing to warn the horse they are to close to a object before bumping it...same way I would clip the muzzle actually and for the same reason.
Much of what you do is dependent upon your horse and how they accept being clipped.
If a fight, is it truly worth it? Not to me.
If quiet and allowing, a better appearing job can be accomplished...
What you do is also very dependent upon how horses are presented for shows in your area by competitors.


The mane will be so pretty in that braid you showed...a lot of work to do I imagine.
Take the braid out as soon as you can at shows end so the horse not get itchy and rub, rubbing huge parts of his mane out or damaged.

Whatever you decide to do, remember the goal is to enhance the appearance...so only do that which you have done before so close to show date so no gouging of coat or scalping takes place which doesn't enhance but detracts honestly.
Practice things when you won't be in the show-ring on what you like and what you not and learn how your horse will react to certain things done with/to them with machinery.
Spotlessly clean tack and you, a smile on your face and have a great time of fun.
Pictures to share...we love pictures!!
....
jmo..
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post #7 of 21 Old 06-22-2019, 09:27 AM
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The double braid looks lovely and with his tail tidied and a shine on his coat heíll look great for all the classes other than the Hunter class if they run the Hunter classes in Australia the same as they do in the UK.
If the horses have to actually look like the one of the standard hunter types as classified by showing definitions and your horse fits in to one of them he would also have to be presented as a Hunter. That means a short pulled mane thatís braided/plaited and a tail thatís normally pulled rather than braided and cut so itís squared off about 5 or 6 inches below the hock depending how he carries it

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post #8 of 21 Old 06-22-2019, 10:06 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by horselovinguy View Post
Color enhancing shampoo is what you described and yes, they will brighten white too.

For what you describe, I would leave his tail alone.
If this is a current picture his tail is full with long top hairs, not busted/broken from rubbing...
If he had a tail with a ragged look to the top, then yes pulling of a few hairs to tidy it...
With emphasis on the rider and tack appearance not so much horse...leave it be.
His tail is pretty good, there's a bit up the top that sticks out but whenever I just brush it down with detangler or water it stays down, so I'll probably just do that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by horselovinguy View Post
Winter time and thicker coat, do not use a tight cutting clipper blade as you will take off to much coat and instead of enhancing, it could really detract from appearances.
Now though is the time if you are going to clip so tracks blend you will possibly make with having that winter thick coat to contend with too.
I would clean up legs of just removing/blending the long hairs gone off the back or leg and bottom/back of the fetlock/ankle.
Carefully trim the coronet band line if it is really long and shaggy looking, again it is winter where you are and anything you touch is going to really show.
A clean bridlepath, edge the ear and remove long tufts sticking out {horse benefits from this keeping debris out of the ear as ear hair is meant to do}...there is really no need to whistle clean the ear interior.
I would clean up the underside of the jaw & jowl area, remove/trim the muzzle hairs that are long and really unsightly.
I also do eye feelers to leave them a few inches long so they stick out from the face for feelers not laying against the face doing nothing to warn the horse they are to close to a object before bumping it...same way I would clip the muzzle actually and for the same reason.
Much of what you do is dependent upon your horse and how they accept being clipped.
I just realised I'm not sure if we've got those clip guard things? That stop the clip from being too short? I can't remember what its called, but if we don't have one I'll probably just use scissors.

I'll definitely take LOTS of photos haha! Thanks for all your help
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post #9 of 21 Old 06-22-2019, 10:09 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaydee View Post
The double braid looks lovely and with his tail tidied and a shine on his coat heíll look great for all the classes other than the Hunter class if they run the Hunter classes in Australia the same as they do in the UK.
If the horses have to actually look like the one of the standard hunter types as classified by showing definitions and your horse fits in to one of them he would also have to be presented as a Hunter. That means a short pulled mane thatís braided/plaited and a tail thatís normally pulled rather than braided and cut so itís squared off about 5 or 6 inches below the hock depending how he carries it
Honestly I'm not entirely sure how they do the Hunter here - it is just a Pony Club show, so it definitely won't be as high class, I guess, as some other shows. But I've never done one before. I'm mostly going off of what the girl who helped organised the show said. She did mention having to braid the mane, I'll clarify with her later.
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post #10 of 21 Old 06-22-2019, 02:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by duskexx View Post
Honestly I'm not entirely sure how they do the Hunter here - it is just a Pony Club show, so it definitely won't be as high class, I guess, as some other shows. But I've never done one before. I'm mostly going off of what the girl who helped organised the show said. She did mention having to braid the mane, I'll clarify with her later.
I had a quick look and your Hunter classes are the same as they are in the UK.
Of course the horse communities over there (UK) are far more concentrated as a lot of people squashed into a small space, but even at local shows and definitely at Pony Club and Riding Club the turn out standards are the same as at higher level
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