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Month: September 2017

Shiny Horse

What creates a shiny horse?

A shiny horse is always nice to look at – and sunlight seems to just dance off their coats. Some of us with more “mud loving” horses know the challenge – but a few simple habits to get into will create shine on your horse.

It starts with proper nutrition! High quality hay and feeds are best. Your Veterinarian can help you determine if your horse’s nutrition plan matches his lifestyle, exercise levels, and medial needs.

It also includes proper parasite control. Intestinal parasites harm your horse’s digestive system and create a dull and lifeless hair coat.

Groom until your arms fall off! Part of grooming is bringing the natural oils on your horse’s skin to the individual hairs. The oil, called sebum, is the skin’s first layer of protection and this is the shine!

Avoid too much shampooing. While it’s so tempting to keep your horse covered in suds, frequent bathing with shampoos can lead to a dried out coat. Using a mild shampoo is also best.

Deal with mud. Lots of grooming, and use a sheet for turnout when you know a roll is in the works. You can always rinse away any residue with plain water if the weather is nice.

Remove dried sweat from your horse! Sweat is dull and dusty when it dries, so a quick few minutes on sweat marks with your grooming gloves solves this situation.

Supplement your grooming routine with shine creating sprays. These products should complement the shine, not create it. Use sparingly, especially under the saddle area, and enjoy the stain repelling help.

Remember to groom daily, and grab your sunglasses to admire the shine you create!

Shedding Tips

Help your horse shed with these tips!

The fall will bring about a big change in your horse – the winter coat! You might think that the only big shed happens in the spring, but your horse will also shed his summer coat in the fall to prepare for winter. All of this is triggered by the diminishing daylight – as sun rises later and sets earlier, your horse knows to start letting go of the summer coat and grow a winter coat. Here are some tips to help your horse shed evenly and smoothly!

  • Get your elbow grease going. Use your grooming gloves before and after riding/turnout. Not only does this help the hair shed, it really spreads out your horse’s own natural oils so that his new winter coat comes in as healthy as possible.
  • Let your horse roll as much as possible! A nice patch of sand in a paddock or round pen is an excellent idea. Rolling is great for your horse’s back anyway, and the sand helps the shedding hairs come loose. Then just brush out the sand (and more hair).
  • Use a grooming oil or sheen spray on a cloth to wipe your horse. The oil will act like a magnet and remove any stray hairs. Bonus – your horse gets some more shine!
  • Use a horse vacuum! These are great for gathering all of the hairs that are loosened from your diligent use of grooming gloves. The vacuum also comes in handy after a sandy roll to help your horse be sleek again.
  • Keep exercising your horse! This promotes overall health, stimulates circulation, and helps create a healthy shiny coat. Even if it’s chilly outside, exercise will loosen up some of the shedding hairs and make grooming that much more effective.
  • Avoid metal blades. Not only can these rust, they can damage the hair coming in. And, you want to be able to groom your horse’s legs and face – which doesn’t works so well with a metal blade.

These tips will help your horse have the best transition between summer and winter coats! Happy grooming!

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