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Horse Grooming

Partial Clips: The Best of Both Worlds

Which clipping method you choose depends on your level of riding activity, your climate, and your horse’s turnout, barn and lifestyle conditions.

Even the most modest of clip jobs, however, require some sort of blanketing. When you remove a horse’s hair, you expose his skin to the cold. If you clip, you’ll need to commit to daily blanketing and unblanketing.


Post-Ride Care for the Unclipped Horse

Leaving your horse unclipped allows him the full warmth and protection of his winter coat and eliminates most blanketing chores for you. However, if you do choose to leave your horse unclipped, be prepared to dry him properly once he’s worked up a sweat under tack.

Curry his wet hair as best you can to release some moisture. Then cover him in an Irish-knit or anti-sweat sheet that contains “holes” in the fabric, allowing the air to reach his coat. Cover this with a wool cooler or a high-tech cooler that will wick moisture away from the horse.

If his coat is really drenched, you may need to change these rugs as they become saturated. Once he is dry, remove the wet rugs. You wouldn’t spend hours in a wet towel after your shower, would you?

Winter riding doesn’t have to be a chore, and with these options, the right hairdo for your horse is in your reach

Further Reading
HorseChannel’s Guide to Clipping Your Horse

View Comments

  • I think this is a great message to send to all horse owners/riders! As much as folks would like to feel that they are well-informed, many would not know that there are these options to protect their equine buddies. However, so many clip options seem a bit "over-the-top" to me, but just the fact that the info is available is a good thing. I personally have been among folks who show little consideration for the comfort of their horse, whatever the weather, but dress themselves to the endth degree for their own comfort. I know folks who body clip their horses every winter because it's "convenient" for grooming, and of course, it shows off the beauty of the animal. Yikes! It's good to remind people that it's the animal who relies on them to provide safety and comfort which in the long run, keeps them happy, comfortable and most of all, HEALTHY.

  • For horses that really working out some of these clips look ideal. Otherwise, not clipping is not only the best option for the horse but it's the best option for you! No worries about blanketing or about your horse getting too cold.

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