Updated: Sep 4
Many of us use blankets to assist in the well-being of our horses. A horse needs to to move freely under a blanket. The blanket shouldn’t be so tight that it starts rubbing out the hair, where it causes discomfort and not so loose they get caught up, creating a hazard. Have you made these mistakes when fitting your horses blanket?
1) Over tightening the chest straps
The blanket shouldn't be too big or loose where it slips back when it’s on the horse. It should fit well on the horses withers and shoulders. The blanket shouldn’t be so tight that it blanket digs into their neck when they lower their head to graze. There should be enough room where you can still run your hand down the neck of the blanket.
2) Failing to cross the belly straps
Blankets with double belly straps are to be crossed and the cross needs to be in the centre of the belly. Leave a hands width (2.5 to 4 inches) of space between the straps and the horses belly.
3) Failing to loop the leg straps together
Horse blanket manufacturers instruct that leg straps are looped together to prevent rubbing and to prevent the blanket from slipping when the horse rolls. ie. the left leg strap clips to left side of the blanket, right leg strap loops through the left leg strap before clipping to the right side of the blanket.
Safety tip: stand to the side of the horse when putting on a blanket and avoid placing your head in a hazardous kicking position.
4) Straps are too loose
Ensure belly and leg straps are tight enough they don’t create a hazard. A horse can get a leg caught in the straps when sitting up, rolling, kicking or the blanket can hang off to one side if the straps are too loose or blanket is too big. The straps shouldn’t be so tight that it affects the ability of the horse to move freely when running around.
Always check the blanket and straps when putting it on your horse. Avoid making these horse blanket mistakes for the safety and comfort of your horse.