Blanketing - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 04-19-2015, 06:45 AM Thread Starter
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Blanketing

Hello,

I am not new to horses - yet I am new to blanketing horses. I had blanketed him once and that was when I first got him (he was skinny and not looking good.)

I've been very critical of blanketing horses in summer to cool them down. I don't know the pros and cons. Summer here in Australia can go over 35 degrees Celsius (95 fahrenheit) which makes me wonder why do people do it?

It is now Autumn and it is getting chilly. Sam is starting to grow his hideous fluff (I don't like the long hair, at all.)
I am starting pony club and hunting (hopefully) when I get my job (hopefully.) and I am going to trim Sam. Because he won't have any warmth, I am thinking of getting a blanket. In winter the average temperature is 15.9C, which is cold for us :P

My questions are:

Should I blanket Samuel when I get him trimmed?

What type should I get for our average weather? (15.9C, in case you missed it.)

Thank you heaps!

Hold onto what makes you happy, if it tries to buck you off, just hold on a little tighter!
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post #2 of 13 Old 04-19-2015, 09:02 AM
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Hello from Canada!

Does he have access to hay at all times? is he of good weight now? does he have good shelter that will block the wind from him?

15 degrees isn't cold for horses - if you are doing a full body clip, a good, waterproof rainsheet should be fine. (assuming he is in good weight now and has lots of hay to eat).

We have horses with trace clips (about half the horse is clipped) and they go out naked if it's 15 and sunny. They have access to hay outside at all times (eating keeps them warm).

We always blanket according to the windchill, not the actual temp - so, if it's a calm, sunny 15 out - everyone is naked. If it's 15 with rain and a good wind (therefore the windchill would feel under 15), then we put rainsheets on them.

When blanketing, horses should not feel warm under their blanket. It's healthiest for horses to feel just a bit cool (you know that temperature that you wouldn't mind having a long sleeve shirt on instead of a t-shirt because you are just a little cool - but, you can totally survive in the t-shirt? -that temp is what horses should have).

The wind is what makes them cold so, if he doesn't have shelter outside, that would be a factor in putting a blanket on him or not as the blanket has to serve as his shelter.

There is a really cool app - I think it's from one of the blanket companies - you type in the temp (factoring in the wind) and how your horse is clipped and it tells you what the animal should wear. Obviously not perfect but, it's pretty accurate.
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post #3 of 13 Old 04-19-2015, 10:09 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Dapples and hello!

No he doesn't have access to hay, but he is in a green paddock with lots of grass. He is a good weight, and he doesn't really have shelter. I agist him down the road so it takes five seconds to get to him but the property isn't ours. There are buildings around his paddock and trees but no genuine man-made shelter.
Maybe it's a good idea to get a combo with the neck and body blanket? One that will stop the windchill?

Hold onto what makes you happy, if it tries to buck you off, just hold on a little tighter!
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post #4 of 13 Old 04-19-2015, 10:14 AM Thread Starter
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Or something like this?
Horseland WeatherBeeta RugsCombat Tearstop Neck Standard Neck Medium

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post #5 of 13 Old 04-19-2015, 10:21 AM
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Hey there.

Sorry - when I said hay, I meant forage - so grass is totally good. The calories eaten go to keeping the horse at the right temp.

I think a rainsheet with a removable neck piece would be good. I know you said the average temp is around 15 so, the rainsheet would be good on days down to 5 degrees.
If you are doing a full body clip and the temps go down under 5, then I might consider two blankets (sorry!) - a classic rainsheet and then a sheet that is fleece lined.
But if you are sure the temps will stay above 5, the rainsheet will be more than fine, imo. Try to get a good one - they might cost a bit more but they come with breathable fabric on the inside that wicks any moisture away from the horse's skin. The cheaper ones can heat up with the slightest amount of sun (it's like us wearing a plastic poncho and then the sun comes out.....the poncho traps the heat in - you don't want that.) The last thing you want is a sweaty horse under a blanket.

I'm not sure what type of blankets fit your horse but Bucas have very good wicking materials - they are more expensive but, you get what you pay for.

And - if it's a sunny, calm day and 15- 16-17 degrees, I would put him out naked.

And make sure to waterproof your blanket every year - again, you want the horse to stay dry underneath so it's not something to take a chance on.
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post #6 of 13 Old 04-19-2015, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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It won't reach under five degrees...I wish it did though :P

So a nice rainsheet will do then. I'll get one as soon as I get Sam clipped, thanks heaps for that!
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post #7 of 13 Old 04-20-2015, 08:25 AM
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It all depends on how much hair you are going to remove.

A full clip will require a slightly thicker rug, a trace clip then just something rain and wind proof.

I wouldn't worry about a neck cover, they are good but do rub the main out,
Certainly your weather is not what I would call cold!
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post #8 of 13 Old 04-20-2015, 09:28 AM Thread Starter
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Haha, Foxhunter, I call it freezing here :P

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post #9 of 13 Old 04-20-2015, 10:15 AM
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That is why I don't live in Australia!
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post #10 of 13 Old 04-20-2015, 10:45 AM
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Just FYI- Smart Pak has a blanketing app for your phone. You can input your location and it brings up the forecast, then it tells you what type of blanket to use for that day. It's a good guide for a beginner blanket-er. Of course, it expects you to have one of every type of blanket (heavyweight, midweight, sheet...etc)
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