I'd like to pass on easy techniques that make a world of difference to horses. So, this is the first issue of my Evolved Grooming Newsletter. Future topics will address seasonal issues as well as your grooming concerns. I look forward to sharing information that proves both useful and important to you and the horses in your life.
Here are blanketing tips your horse will appreciate:
∙ Ouch! - If you want to reposition a blanket or sheet, do not pull it over or forward. This action pulls his hair back against its growing pattern and hurts. Such an experience is why many horses try to bite you when you attempt to fuss with their clothes.
∙ Moving Blankets - Reposition blankets by first undoing leg straps, then grabbing just above the tail and folding the fabric forward to the withers. Now that the clothes are halved, use one hand at the withers and the other at the fold to lift the clothes to move them. That is, elevate all the material and hold it up as you straighten the clothes and move them toward the chest. Next, gently slide them back. I like to leave about 5" of space between the chest and clothes. This leaves the horse shoulder room to lie down comfortably and reduces the number of times the blanket needs to be repositioned. Donít forget to finish with the leg straps.
∙ Leg Straps - Leg straps can be dangerous stressors. If a horse lies down and his hock gets caught in the slack of a strap, he'll panic, scramble and likely hurt himself. Don't attach the straps across the diagonal or simply attach them to the same side. Instead, snap them to the same side, passed through the other strap between the legs. This way, the straps hang suspended between the legs rather than drooping with that dangerous slack. Be sure to adjust the length to hang loosely, yet a few inches above the hock for safety.
Wishing you and yours happy holidays and happy horses!