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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello! I'm trying to figure out what sort of blanket to get for Sammy now that it's getting cold. I searched for blanket threads, but the ones I found either dealt with horses who were underweight or were from people in different climates.

Sam is a healthy 10-year-old, so he shouldn't need any special considerations as far as I know.

He's stalled at night and when it's really wet, otherwise he's turned out during daylight hours. I'm in NW Oregon, which has the typical Pacific Northwestern climate — wet winters with temperatures between 20 and 40. Since it basically rains from December to May, he will be turned out in light rain.

Should I get him a rain sheet or a blanket? I was leaning toward a Kensington Platinum 180g turnout blanket (link here) because it's supposed to be weatherproof but also dissipate heat so it's safe when the temps are in the 40s.

Anyone have experience keeping horses in wet but mild winters?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
No, just trees. He won't be out when it's raining hard or windy, though. Only on our "nice" winter days that are more of a mist than rain.

The show horses at my barn are body clipped and already blanketed, so I don't use them as an example. The other boarders vary with blanketing. Some don't except on the coldest nights, and some do more often.

I'm mostly curious about what blanket to buy. I trust my barn manager and the others I board with, so I'm not too worried, I just want to make sure I'm not doing more harm than good with whatever I put on him when it gets coldest.
 

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You would really do well if you did not Blankett him especially if he has shelter when the weather is bad it'll be much healthier for him
 

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If you really want to cover him, I would stick with a rain sheet. It's being wet that chills the most and you don't have to worry about rushing to take it off till around 60°.
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Unless you have a driving, pelting rain you really may not need "rain protection" at all.
Horses have the ability to puff up their coat and protect themself from the elements.

We, as humans often do more damage to them by trying to do right but upsetting natures intended defense mechanisms... that includes me too!!

I know for a fact my horse was out in rain yet his coat was dry next to his skin till "I" tried to dry him off, scraped the wet with a scraper and actually plastered his coat to his skin...then he got a chill.
Till "I" did that his coat actually had a loft to it and you could noticeably see his coat where "I" did not touch was higher, insulating my horse from the wet.
As long as he is out in a soft rain and has some protection of trees, honestly...he should be fine with no rainsheet or light blanket.
He is/has already grown his coat, you might actually overheat him by now putting something over his natural coat of insulation and you might also make him cold by blanketing him and taking away his natural ability to fluff his coat for protection of rain, wind and cold...
Just because you "blanket" does not necessarily mean the horse is warmer...or drier.

Think it out carefully.

jmo...
 

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i don't use a blanket unless it is really cold ( under 18 F). so for me that's maybe 1x/yr . and my horse is in the pasture at all times with a run in shelter. blanketing can be a double edged sword. on one hand you are keeping your horse warm and snug and dry but at the same time this could effect how their coat grows. if they are already warm their coat might not come in as thick. itll still come in but just not as thick as it might need to be. also make sure not to blanket your horse if he/she is already wet. they could get sick from that. but with the weather your describing i don't think investing in a rain sheet is a bad idea. my motto usually is id rather have it and not need it then need it and not have it. :) hope this helps with your decision .
 

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Seattle resident here. We don't blanket , unless the hrose is old or is the type that grows hardly any coat (thorobred). most of the horses at "our" place are not blanketed. they have run in shelters with only two sides, and trees or small valleys to take shelter from the wind/rain/snow. as long as they have plenty of hay to "burn" they are fine. They live outside 24/7. sometimes, it means we must put a saddle on a damp back, but the hroses are fine. we use a wool pad. they are fine. they move around a lot and keep themselves warm by wandering.

Do not groom them when they are wet or you will break the seal that their hair creates as it sheds the water off their back. if you groom a a wet horse, the water now will do down to their skin and chill them. Just groom only where the saddle and girth will contact the horse. they will look crummy, but they will be fine!
 

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IMHO, a healthy horse who isn't clipped shouldn't need a blanket until the weather gets downright bitterly cold.

Have you ever scratched on a horse in the winter and ended up with that oily dirt coating on the ends of your fingers? That's their coat's natural water-proofing. Except in a literal downpour, their outer guard hairs will cause the moisture to run off instead of soak in.

These horses had been in the wet rain/sleet/snow for over 2 straight days (long wet spell down here LOL) and still if I was to walk up and separate their hair on their side or back, the undercoat of fine, fluffy hair was dry as a bone.


 

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I'm pretty close to you and I like to use a medium-weight blanket on Lacey when it's cold+wet, let her go naked when it's cold and not wet, heavy-weight blanket if it's snowing/below freezing for long periods of time/etc.

However, Lacey is about a bajillion years old. :lol: She 'tells' me when she's cold by acted whacked out of her mind. She tends to get downright dangerous [she gets really unresponsive to handling, spooky as all get out, etc] if she becomes chilled. I'm not sure why that happens...but she's 100% fine once she gets warmed up.

I bet Mr. Sammy will be just fine going au natural in our winters. He's young and not cray-cray like Lacey. ;)
The one thing you might like is a light/medium-weight blanket [you want to make sure you're making up for any hair flattening the blanket does with blanket weight. Even a light sheet will flatten hair and decrease the horse's ability to keep warm, so on cold+rainy days, you need a blanket that's warm enough for the temperature but not tooo warm = a medium weight will probably be ok for the type of winter we have] for those wet days when he's turned out and you want to ride later.
For me, I hate putting a saddle on a wet horse [just personal preference] so throwing a blanket on on wet days is an ideal solution.
 

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I am just North of you on Vancouver Island, so similar climate. My horses are outside 24/7 with run-in shelters and trees, and they do just fine. The only time I blanket them is when we have storms with freezing rain, or rain turning to snow. Which is seldom, but it wouldn't hurt to have a blanket on hand for those freak winter storms. I know I sleep a lot better knowing the horses are warm and cozy in those situations. Sometimes when it is really windy they won't use their run-ins because they are too freaked out and nervous.
 
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