Calm, Forward, Straight

Calm, Forward, Straight

Thursday, February 11, 2010

At the Barn #2 - "Blanket Policy"

We've been at the mercy of some unpleasant (and inconvenient) weather for the past month, as has much of the mid-atlantic region. Besides limiting our riding time, several other issues have come up as a result. (Dreaming of indoor arenas...)

First would be whether or not to blanket. I have heard at least as many opinions about blanketing as horsemen I've asked. "Blanketing will make the winter coat shed out early...once you start you can't stop" "The winter coat grows in relation to hours of daylight - blanketing makes no difference..." "It's such a pain taking them on and off..." "What if it warms up and they sweat under the blanket..." etc.

Since Val has a really nice run in stall situation, and our winters are USUALLY mild, initially I didn't start out blanketing him. Unfortunately, he didn't always avail himself of shelter and would be standing in the rain when I arrived. This becomes worrisome when he gets soaked and then the temperature drops - SO - we're blanketing now if it's raining or below freezing. It's a little more complicated but he seems more comfortable except for itchies.

One thing I know for sure now - if you throw a wet horse blanket in the dryer without washing it first, the aroma is memorable and not in a good way!

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