Horse Tack Review

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Ruthann - Lucky Braids

Fashion should be comfortable and healthy for the horse. Here are a few tips to prepare your horse to show with his best interest in mind:

Eyes - The horse uses the long lashes around the eyes to see at night. If you cut them, you'll likely notice more bangs on your horse's face. In fact, he'll walk into his stall walls in the dark. Judges love horses. They know those lashes are important to the horse's well-being. If your horse is well turned out, with long lashes around his eyes, the judge should understand and respect that you made a decision in your horse's favor.

Muzzles - If your horse does not like his muzzle trimmed, it is likely that he has been burned by a hot trimmers. So, keep your clippers clean and well-oiled. Using a disposable razor is an easy and convenient way to get a quick, comfortable and clean shave.

Coronary Bands - Many people believe that you will dry out the hoof by trimming the hair short around the coronary band; others say it makes the hoof more sensitive. Whatever the truth, all you need is a clean line around the hoof. I like to just cut the hair around the coronary band with scissors. They prevent any of these problems and are quicker and easier to use than mechanized trimmers.

Ears - Horses that live on the road have the inside of their ears trimmed bald to accentuate the ear shape for showing. If you brush the inside of the ears daily, the skin will get very shiny and be more resilient to irritation and the sun. I do not recommend trimming your horse's ears bald if your horse spends a lot of time outside or isn't groomed vigorously each day. In those cases, he needs the hair to protect his ears. You can look well prepared for smaller shows by gently squeezing the ear closed and trimming the excess hair along the edges. This will keep long hairs from sticking out like a teddy bear and leave your horse looking clean cut enough for less competitive shows and well protected.

Either way, you can trim to enhance his conformation. If the ears are really big, cut straight across the top. A blunt line over the ear will make it look smaller. Follow the natural form over the tip of small and normal-sized ears to accentuate their beauty.

Enjoy all!

Reprinted with permission.

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