Sheets, turnouts, and blankets - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 2 Old 10-08-2015, 11:20 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2015
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Sheets, turnouts, and blankets

I have recently purchased my own horse, a 5 year old OTTB gelding. I have leased for many years so I never really had to worry about blanketing. My new guy is going to be on 24/7 pasture board, with a run-in. I live in eastern PA, winters nights get around 20 but it's not rare to get into the single digits.

I am wondering what are your ''rules'' when it comes to blanketing horses. He doesn't grow a super fuzzy coat. I currently have a weatherbeeta turnout sheet with no fill, a weatherbeeta medium weight with 210 g file, and a Rambo heavyweight with 400 g fill. All of them are water proof of and the medium and heavyweight have detachable necks. When do you used what weights? Would you suggest any other winter accessories? When do you layer? Do you do anything extra for snow? What do you do for a lot of rain, a rain sheet over there blanket? If I decided to give him something similar to a trace clip, would that change blanketing?

Thanks in advance!!
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post #2 of 2 Old 10-08-2015, 11:41 AM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Portland, OR
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Blanketing needs depend on a lot of individual needs and preferences. A general rule is that horses are fine in cold, wind, or rain, but when you get 2 or more of those elements together then you could/should consider blanketing. The rule I've developed for my horse is to use an unlined waterproof sheet when it's rainy and temps below 50F. This is partly for my horse's comfort (there's not a lot of shelter and he can't get out of the rain by his own choice), but also for my convenience because I don't like riding a sopping wet horse

I suspect with your typical weather and the blankets you have, you probably won't need to layer or use anything heavier than the 400g you already have. Even during long, heavy rains my horse stays dry under his sheet, so as long as your blankets are still well waterproofed, layering shouldn't be necessary for rain.

When I did a low trace clip a couple years ago, my vet advised not to change any blanketing practices (though I would have needed to if I clipped any larger areas). To be on the safer side, you might think about doing the minimum clip necessary to help keep your horse cool during exercise- maybe start with the front of the neck and chest only, then part of the belly if that's not enough, etc, until it's sufficient.

The horse is a mirror to your soul. Sometimes you might not like what you see. Sometimes you will. - Buck Brannaman
"Nothing forced can ever be beautiful." - Xenophon
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