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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So my mustang has never been blanketed in his life, but he was always out 24/7. Now, he is stalled at night in an insulated barn, and I was still planning on not blanketing him. My friend told me that I should start blanketing him, because the weather change from being inside at 40 degrees then going outside to single digits can make him sick.

Any thoughts on this?

Also - she told me to start using a cooler after I ride him (which he has also never worn before). I understand the reasoning, but want to hear thoughts on that. I only do light riding in the winter, but since he is out of shape he will work up a light sweat (she told me it's not the end of the world, but it's a good idea to get a cooler).

I would love input...
 

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If he's never been blanketed before and is living in the same area you bought him from now is not a good time to start - especially if he's in a heated barn. He's just going to get too warm and itchy - which increases the risks of him rolling in the stable and getting cast
Same with the sweating - always try to walk him for the last part of your ride so his body and muscles and ligaments can cool down gradually. If he's got a thick coat he doesn't need a cooler - his coat alone is enough insulation from the cold air.
If he's sweaty then rub him over really well with a dry towel(s) and give his coat a good go over with a plastic curry comb and stiff brush once he's dry to 'fluff' the hair back up
If he's in a heated barn at night he's going to find the temperature outside more of a shock to his system than he would in a non heated barn so even with his coat he might need a thin waterproof on when its really cold in the day (that is not much warmer than the night time temperature), snowing or raining all day
You'll probably find he starts shedding sooner than he usually would - again down to the heated barn and getting him a part clip next winter might work better for him and you
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
After riding I do cool him out by hand walking, and curry and stiff brush him (as well as blanket him off). Where he was before, he was out all day in the rain and snow and would get soaking wet and still wouldn't go in the run in.

I wasn't planning on blanketing him at night; my friend was just suggesting blanketing him for when he goes outside during the day?
 

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I'm not completely sure about health problems - she may be right, I just haven't heard of it as health problems... I've heard of horses shivering and getting cold.

I moved to a new place back in October where my horse began stall board. She used to be turned out all the time 24/7. Something you have to keep in mind is if your horse will have access to hay (eating helps keep them warm). I also think that if your horse cannot move around as much in a stall, they don't have as much of the option of "warming themselves up," so I'd keep that in mind also.

Here, the average winter temperature is in the high 20's and low 30's. My horse has a nice and fluffy winter coat, and I think she is currently in a plain sheet when inside. If she had been turned out today, I think she would be in a midweight. We never go heavier than a midweight.

I think your friend has a good point in saying you don't want your horse to drastically change temperature going in and out and changing.. I mean, how would you feel doing that? It may be a health concern, but it's definitely a comfort concern. You want your horse to stay warm but not TOO warm and not too cold while keeping it all balanced. Experiment with it and see how it goes, but don't overload your horse with a blanket that is too thick to make him sweaty - that's just as bad as being cold IMO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
He has a super thick winter coat, he's very fuzzy. I got him from even farther north than I am, where he was outside all the time. His stall is huge and insulated (so warmer- don't think I would worry about him being cold at night). And he has access to hay at night as well.
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If his stall is so warm I would be tempted to put a thin waterproof on him when he goes out in the day if its raining or snowing - its that sudden change in temperature that can cause problems and his coat can't 'fluff up' to keep him warm on wet days when its plastered down.
 
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