We have now welcomed March with open arms. Glad that the worst of winter is behind us and that spring is just around the corner. But with spring means rain, warmer weather and... shedding. This is the time of year where our horses transform from our fluffy equine teddy bears to our beautiful horses with their shiny coats. Now to get from point A to point B, it takes a bit of time. Their hair sticks to everything and it seems like they haven't shed of a single hair the next day we see them. So be patient, all the heavy winter hair will disappear soon enough.
So what can we do to help our horse shed off his winter coat? Well, spending some extra time grooming is a great idea. Take out that curry comb and the shedding blade and get to work. Sure you may end up looking like Bigfoot, but your horse will be thankful.
I don't understand why people will decide to use clippers to get rid of their horse's winter coat. Sure it's a lot less messy and you will get done a lot faster, but it will affect your horse a lot more than you realise. How would you like it if you were wearing your big winter coat outside all winter and when it starts to get a little warmer, you decide go out the next day wearing a tee shirt? It would be such a dramatic difference and you would be cold. Even though it's too hot to wear a winter coat, it's not hot enough to wear just a tee shirt. Instead, you have to wear a lighter jacket or a sweater and wait for the weather to warm up a little bit more. So why would you do that to your horse?
When you clip all of this winter coat off in one shot, it's as if you are making him wear that tee shirt. It's going too much of a shock for him and chances are he might get sick or grow his coat in again. So what's the point? In my opinion, the "quick and easy" method never works with horses. It's the "slow and steady" method that works the best.
It's also a good idea to let him out in a paddock. That way he can rub himself on something like a tree to get rid of that thick coat. He may also decide to roll, leaving a big carpet of fur on the ground. Now don't get upset if he does roll, he's just helping you out. And besides, you're going be be spending some time brushing him anyway. So what's the big deal?
Take the time to shed off that winter coat a little at a time. It will also give you the time to bond and grow your relationship a little more. Soon enough your happy and healthy horse won't have a winter coat any more and all your hard work will have paid off.
I hope that you are lucky enough to have beautiful warm weather where you live. Right now all I can see is snow out from my window, but I'm happy to say that it is melting. Hopefully, we will all be seeing images like the one above around us really soon.