The days are getting shorter and the weather is becoming colder. The two biggest questions we get at this time of year – “Should I blanket my horse?” and “Which blanket should I choose?”.
Question #1: Should I blanket my horse?
Answer – Well, that’s a loaded question. Let us ask you a few first:
What kind of hair coat does your horse have? Does your horse grow hair easily? The winter horse coat comes in at two different levels – one is a shorter layer for insulation, the next is a longer layer that protects the lower layer from rain, snow and wind. We’ve all seen those horses that look like woolly mammoths – hair that is so thick you feel bad for the owner that has to shed it out in the spring. Other horses don’t grow as much – if your horse doesn’t have a thick, luxurious coat – he probably needs an extra layer to keep warm.
Do you body clip in the winter? If you show through the winter or you work your horse regularly and don’t want to dry out a long coat often – you may body clip your horse during the winter. Without that extra hair your horse will need to be blanketed. It’s always a good idea to make sure that your horse is dry before putting the blanket on.
What kind of shelter does your horse have? While some of our horses stay in the barn during the winter there are many others that get to go out during the day or stay out 24/7. If your horse is one that stays out 24/7, is there a place that he can get away from the precipitation and blustery weather? A horses coat will most often grow in enough to keep them warm – but sometimes they don’t. Depending on the shelter and hair coat you may need an extra layer of warmth for your horse.
How old is your horse and are they in a good body condition? Aging seniors sometimes get chilled, even with thick coats. Staying attentive to their warmth and needs will alert you to whether or not they need an extra layer. Horses that may have compromised immune systems or are recovering from any medical conditions will need extra help staying warm until they are back to their healthy state. Keeping them warm with an appropriate blanket will help them recover faster and safer as well as ease your mind.
Now that you’ve thought about your horse’s coat, shelter, age and body condition – you may be wondering which blanket you should choose.
Question #2 – Which blanket should I choose?
Answer – It really depends on your answers from above. If you have a horse that doesn’t have a thick coat, is outside and you live in the cold Northern states – you probably need a heavyweight, as the temps get warmer going further south you may only need a midweight or simple sheet.
Big Dee’s Country Pride blankets come in a variety of outer-coverings and thicknesses as well as turnout or stable blanket styles.
1680 Denier Turnout Blankets – These are the some of the toughest, most durable blankets that you can buy. These turnouts have a high tear resistance. They are DuPont Teflon coated for superior wind and water proofing. The material is also breathable.
Many of the 1680D turnouts come with an inner air mesh membrane for extreme breathability and to wick away moisture, like the Ice Shield. Some have detachable hoods like the Olympia and an attached hood like the Rainier. If you’re looking for a bit of extra protection without a full hood, there are also high neck options like the Vortex. Some also come with a double adjustable snap and buckle open front closure with Velcro assist to allow for maximum adjustment like the Arctic Shield. The 1680 Denier blankets come in a range of poly-fill insulation including Heavyweight, Midweight and Lightweight warmth.
1200 Denier Turnout Blankets – Strong, heavy-duty ripstop material. 1200D is the density of the yarn used in the making of the outercovering. DuPont Teflon coated for superior wind and waterproofing. The material is also breathable.
Most of 1200D turnouts come with a smooth, nylon lining that helps to keep the horse’s hair slick and clean like the Glacier. The Paladin offers an inner mesh membrane to wick away moisture as well as high neck coverage. New, fun patterns can be seen on the Vancouver and our signature classics like the Storm Pro and Snow Ridge are tried and true winter blankets that hold up against demanding winters. The 1200 Denier blankets come in a range of poly-fill insulation including Heavyweight, Midweight and Lightweight warmth.
600 Denier Turnout Blankets – Strong, ripstop material. 600D is half the density of the 1200D turnouts. Great for horses that aren’t extremely tough on their blankets. DuPont Teflon coated for superior wind and waterproofing. The material is also breathable.
The 600D turnouts come with a smooth, nylon lining that helps to keep the horse’s hair slick and clean. Miniature horse blankets are available in the 600D with a strong velcro bellyband. The Klondike features a fun new argyle pattern and the Nordic is a turnout favorite. Available weights include Heavyweight or sheet with no insulation.
1200 Denier Stable Blankets – One of the toughest stable blankets you can buy. Available in tight weave Cordura material or Polypropylene. Cordura material stable blankets like the Squall come in a bellyband style that makes it easy to stay in place with secure velcro. Polypropylene material like the Highland are tough stable blankets that also have gussets for maximum freedom of movement. The Highland also comes in Miniature Horse sizes. Many weights are available ranging from Heavyweight to Lightweight.
420 Denier Stable Blankets – One of our most popular stable blanket options. The Sentinel Channel Quilt is a favorite for it’s durability and quality. It has an open two buckle front for ease and convenience. The Diamond Quilt offers a strong and secure velcro bellyband. The Polarfleece Lined Sheet is a great choice to extra warmth.
Turnout & Rain sheets are perfect for horses that need an extra for protection from the elements, but not the poly-fill for warmth. Our large selection found here offers every type of outdoor sheet you may need – from a rain sheet to protect horse and tack at a show to heavy-duty strength for horses that are tough on blankets.
Stable sheets are great for keeping your horse protected and clean while in the barn, without the heavy fill and warmth of a stable blanket. We carry many options from cotton to nylon that can be found here.
Coolers & Anti-Sweats
Our large selection of Coolers & Anti-Sweat Sheets can be found here at Big Dee’s Tack & Vet Supplies. Coolers serve a wide range from cooling out, keeping a horse warm by itself or under a blanket and other everyday uses.
Hopefully this helped you decide which blanket you need. Please call our knowledgeable customer service staff if you have any questions – 800-321-2142 or email email@example.com