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Discussion Starter #1
Long time no see... its been 7 weeks since our move!!!!!! My goodness has the weather changed fast O.O I haven't had a chance to update my journal but I'm having the time of my life....

I wouldn't really think about rugging at this time of year and coz she's a healthy 10 year old of good weight... But she was fully clipped not long before our move and the fuzz she has now I don't feel can keep up with the fast changing weather. We had a similar cold spell last week that I left her naked for and she didn't appreciate it much lol. But she was already soaked and I didn't wanna rug her wet. It's not even about weight.. she just seemed a bit miserable. Some of the oldies there were shaking you could practically hear their knees cracking (they were rugged when their owners arrived). But boy it was WINDY!

Upcoming weather:

- seriously wet and heavy downpour for the next week
- gusts around 17-29mph
- 10-15 celsius (50f - 59f converted on google!)

Note:

- current "summer" field lacks good cover for windy conditions but has pretty good cover for sun/rain
- winter field moving to soon though has lots of huge trees so will feel better there!


Was thinking that since temps are fine I'll just slap on a rain sheet? I'm just conflicted as this time last year she had a full coat and I didn't rug until much later. But the rain starts tomorrow and I want it on her dry....

... I'm totally not up at 2am wondering this while completely cracked on caffeine lol. Hope everyone is well!
 

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I'll be honest and say I'm not big on rugs, so feel free to take whatever I say with a grain of salt.

I'd throw on a rain sheet, but try and keep things as light as possible. I really get antsy about even using rain sheets at this time of year just because weather can change so drastically. One minute it'll be cold and miserable, the next it'll be 20C and sunny... Then you drive past a field and see a few miserable horses blanketed in the heat with no cover from the sun.
Also just keep in mind that your decision depends on what you plan to do this coming winter. Rugs and clipping, or let her fur coat grow in? If it's the latter, you'll want to think about allowing her to be exposed to as much cold weather as possible without overdoing it. I like my horses to survive off their own hair as much as they can, so although I might give her a rain sheet this time, I'd personally be itching to take it off as soon as I can and let her body adjust naturally to slowly dwindling temps.
 

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For me...use the rain sheet before she gets wet.
Its not "the wet"...
Its the wet with the wind that will make her miserable.
The temperatures by itself is not a issue, but combine it with 20 or more mph winds and the 50"s just dropped to nasty and get in your bones raw, cold.

Not everyone believes in sheets or blankets used on a horse no matter the weather...
You've already seen though the chilled to the bone effect of horses shivering to stay warm ...
I hate seeing that... :frown_color:
To me, you saw and not liked it so as you are present often, cover Katie so she is comfortable and you are content she is coping and comfortable.

Bottom line is you are not keeping the horse warm with insulation...
You are providing a wind break by using the sheet...
If it also keeps her dry in the process to me that is a bonus.
Do though watch carefully for her to not sweat and remove the sheet daily, brush and let the coat dry completely so less chance of rain rot from sweat, not being able to loft the coat to dry to the skin as needed..
I think it was walkin who has mentioned using a vitamin supplement and amount given as a preventative to stopping before it begins the skin infection/breakdown so many are not sure why it happens...but a deficiency.

Yes to a rain sheet...absolutely. :cool:
:runninghorse2:...
 

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IMO a body clipped horse should wear a turnout blanket in the winter. They is those the ones meant to be worn outside with various thickness of insulating linings. Thin sheets just plaster down the hair coat that they have and so it does not insulate them.
 

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I would always rug a clipped horse,but try to keep it as light a rug as poss,my new horse has a really thick coat atm because he has lived out for nearly 2 years with no rug,but now I'm bringing him in and riding him he's getting a full clip(he's also having it done for health reasons) so he will need a turnout and a stable rug.
Do whatever you feel comfortable doing,don't let other people influence your decisions, you know what's best for your horse because you know your horse best xx
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks guys. It's hard justifying it because right now it's a comfortable temp. But its gonna be worse than last weeks wet spell and it seriously was so cold with the wind it felt like ice.

I'll put a rain sheet on. Her hair barely has anything to fluff anyway so I figure as you put it that it being a wind break will be sufficient. This time next year she'll have a full coat again and back to nature's weatherpoofing!
 

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It's warmish here today at 21 C, but Harley is wearing a rainsheet because it will pour all day. Rusty is naked, as always. So I agree with everyone that at 10-15C with good wind and no shelter, a light rainsheet is warranted, especially on a clipped horse, though really, it all depends on the horse. If she appears miserable when soaking wet, then a thin rainsheet is a good idea. My Rusty couldn't care less about getting wet, so he stays au naturel. Harley, on the other hand, is very sensitive and will just hide out in the barn all day if he doesn't have his raincoat on. He is getting on with age, and has arthritis, so I indulge him.

I really feel that blanketing has to be adapted to each horse's needs/preferences. I try not to blanket for cold weather until it gets REALLY cold though, because I want them to grow a good coat (I know people will tell you the cold doesn't make their coats grow, it's the daylight hours, but having gone through winters when Harley was almost never blanketed, and winters when he was blanketed regularly, I beg to differ - he grows a much thicker coat when he is not blanketed). But once the real cold hits, he will live in various layers of blankets and liners all the time. For wet weather, I do cover him though, because if he gets soaked, he feels miserable. I think you know Katie enough to know her comfort level with the cold and wet. If the sun suddenly comes out, you can always bike over and take off her blanket!

I'm so glad to hear you're happy with this new arrangement!!!
 

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P.S. I take it back about Harley needing a rainsheet today. After I posted, I looked out the window and had to do a double take. He does not have his rainsheet on anymore. I have never seen him do this before (I suspect Rusty may have played a part in this), but it is completely off him, all straps intact. I have no idea how that is possible. His bib (prevents rubs) was hanging off his neck. No rips in either.

I guess he doesn't need a rainsheet today after all...
 

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In the UK winter weather is normally not very cold but can be very wet and windy.

No stick does well in those conditions and many times I have seen horses stood behind a hedge, backs up, heads down shaking uncontrollably because, despite a good winter coat, they are soaked to the skin. They will not move even to come to feed they are that miserable.

I light sheet will do not harm and keepmthe wet off their backs.
 

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If she's fully clipped and the hair isn't growing back, chances are it isn't going to grow back now before their coats change from winter to summer.

Rain and wind together are debilitating and I can't see the point in putting a horse through it for the sake of throwing a rug or sheet on them.

I've frequently seen 'naked' horses huddled under a hedge or shelter on a chilly wet UK winters day while the ones with rugs on were happily wandering round the field grazing.
An active horse is a healthier horse than one stood still for long periods shivering.

Even if a sheet flattens the hair its still protecting the horse from the wind and rain.

If you feel that the 0gm isn't enough to keep the horse warm, look at a 40 or 50gm fill or the 100gm fill - its enough to make a difference without being too much.

https://www.premierequine.co.uk/lightweight-turnout-rugs-c102x3120476
 

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Please do not use 0g rugs.

They do not help your horse to stay warm, especially when it rains.
With a rug, the hair of the coat cannot stand up to help keeping the body warm, this is why you need filling. which usually starts at 50mg. If you have a 0g the coldness directly lies on your horse and sticks on its back.
If your horse is completely clipped there is no shame to rug it up, to the contrary.
 

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If you have a body clipped horse and they get wet, you want a blanket that aids drying. My mares all got poured on right before the recent cold front. I put the oldest mare in the stall, and put a lycra sheet on her. It's lightweight and traps body heat, allowing for faster evaporation. Once dry, you can switch to a blanket. Or you can use a fleece dress sheet. The goal is to get them to dry quickly. I've actually timed how long they take to dry and the lycra sheets do allow for faster drying. Not sure if there's a temperature limit on drying time?

If your horse is clipped you do want to blanket. I don't like blanketing in rain because my blankets aren't water proof.

My horses are clipped every year and blanketed accordingly.
 

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Mine are both rugged. The mare was clipped back in April, and she's quite happy with only a rainsheet and cotton at the moment (I think because she's almost done shedding out & has a coat again haha). When it's drier she'll only be in her cotton.

My gelding asks for his mediumweight at night, and wants his rainsheet on wet days.
(I've taught them both how to tell me what they want!)
 

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If it is going to be both windy AND wet I usually try to throw blankets on my guys. They have access to shelter, but the wind is what will make them cold. Especially if they were clipped.

I tend to err on the side of caution and blanket - sometimes (OK - most times) it is for my own peace of mind, but it can really make them more comfortable.

And since you live so close you can check her often to make sure she isn't hot/uncomfortable with it on.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thank you everyone for your responses. I put a rain sheet on her (its all the previous yard could find) and she was SO much more relaxed when I went back. Just like @jaydee said the unrugged miserable ones were/are by the hedges with heads down. Even the 30yo tiny pony was rugged and standing out in the middle of the field grazing with her.

I had LOADS of rugs but they seem to all have mysteriously gone missing... I bet they just lost track and they ended up on other horses. I've ordered 4 new rugs; rainsheet, lw, mw and hw with detachable necks because I suspect she probably wont be ready for winter around the corner either. The rain sheet isn't 100% waterproof anymore either so I am despairing a little as it is CHUCKING it down. Thing is she hasn't got enough to fluff so with/without kind of the same.. I've left it on after experimenting and she seemed warmer and more comfortable if damp underneath. I am letting her air out as much as possible between downpours and it dries REALLY fast. I am pleased with how breathable it is actually.

And I have zero guilt buying flamingos and bright teal with pink straps... totally not using this as an excuse to feed into my apparent rug obsession.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Oh and another thing... I've learned that some ppl are more rug mad than me but to the point they worry about their plump and young horses being cold even when its sunny and 15c out (59f) O.O I saw a horse today roll repeatedly and I suspect it wants its meduim weight (200g) rug off (owner was informed in case its something more sinister as well).
 

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I had LOADS of rugs but they seem to all have mysteriously gone missing... I bet they just lost track and they ended up on other horses. I've ordered 4 new rugs; rainsheet, lw, mw and hw with detachable necks because I suspect she probably wont be ready for winter around the corner either. The rain sheet isn't 100% waterproof anymore either so I am despairing a little as it is CHUCKING it down.
Amazing how things grow legs and walk away isn't it?


Your rain sheet...
Next trip to the store go to the shoe department, outdoor camping goods area or hunting equipment and buy waterproofing spray.
Take her rain sheet and lay it out flat on the ground...
Spray lightly one direction, wait a few minutes and do the opposite direction...
Do a criss-cross pattern so every inch is covered and make extra positive you get the center back and down about 8 inches either side really, really well...
Do straps and buckles as dry doesn't attract as much filth. :wink:
You are now waterproof again. :smile:

I do my t/o sheets every year as they are now older but in great condition just in case...my horses have yet to get wet. :cool:
:runninghorse2:...
 

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Ugh! The rug or not to rug question - it drives me mad! We live on the top of a hill, always a couple of degrees colder than the lower lying areas and very susceptible to high winds. Even though Apple is a hairy beast I keep her rugged simply because there is no let up when the cold wind is a-blowin.


We are currently in spring here in NZ and the weather is it's normal inclement horrible spring self, four seasons in one day! I work at home and seem to spend half my time with an eye out to the weather, either running out to put her cover on or rushing it out to whip it off again. Drives my husband nuts - he will be in mid conversation with me when I have to cut him off mid stream as I realize the weather is turning and I "must" rush out and either put Apples cover back on or take it off.


Just the other day it started off fine and reasonably warm (approx 15 degrees) but by mid afternoon the weather had turned, the temperature dropped dramatically and we had rain, hail and high wind. Even today I have her cover off but it is fairly cold, very overcast, rain looks likely so I am on tenterhooks, ready to make the dash to get the cover back on at the first sign of rain on the window - unless it doesn't rain. In which case I will just spend my day weather watching in case it does *sigh*. I hate spring..... roll on summer!
 
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