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Horse Grooming

Ringside Grooming Kit Checklist

There’s no need to tote everything but the kitchen sink to the show ring with you. Professional grooming expert Liv Gude’s horse show grooming kit full of their favorite ringside essentials will fit into a small bucket:

  • Hoof pick with brush.
  • Hoof polish/oil for touch-ups.
  • Elastic bands to repair a braid, if needed.
  • Zip ties for emergency tack repair.
  • Dry washcloth for last-minute wipe-down.
  • Damp washcloth to remove any slobber.
  • Bottles of water for rider (and groom).



Some grooms also bring a cooler or sheet to toss over the tacked-up horse to keep the dust off until it’s time to enter the ring.

For last-minute touch-ups before entering the ring, Quarter Horse trainer Roger Daly relies simply on a clean, dry towel to wipe off any dust, and a comb to run through the mane.

“If you’re at a show by yourself, the most important thing is to check the feet before you go into the ring to be sure you haven’t picked up a stone or anything during warm-up,” Gude notes. All of these essentials are important to have in your horse show grooming kit to keep your horse looking show-ready at a competition, and you won’t need to tote everything along with you.


This article originally appeared in the June 2019 issue of Horse Illustrated magazine. Click here to subscribe!

Cynthia McFarland

Cynthia McFarland is an Ocala, Fla.-based freelance writer, horse owner and avid trail rider. The author of nine books, her latest is The Horseman’s Guide to Tack and Equipment.

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