A consistent grooming routine is essential to your horse's overall health and well-being. Grooming will keep him cleaner, allow you to check for minor injuries and insect bites, and develop a lasting, social bond between you and your horse.
For efficient, quick grooming, assemble a basic grooming kit. The kit should include a hoof pick, curry comb, dandy brush, body brush, mane comb, and towel. For hygiene purposes, each horse should have his own grooming kit.
The Hoof Pick:
Use a hoof pick to clean dirt and debris (like pebbles) out of the bottom of your horse's hooves. Utilize this time to check for loose shoes and lost nails.
The Curry Comb:
Use to remove mud and hair from your horse's body before using other brushes. A Shedding Blade usually holds up the longest, but may be too rough for sensitive areas of the horse's body. As an alternative,
rubber models wear well and are less abrasive than metal combs. A good choice is a two-sided
grooming mitt with a rubber curry brush on one side and a soft brush on the other. Plastic combs are less expensive, but may not last as long as metal or rubber models.
The Stiff Brush (stiff-bristled):
After using the curry comb, use the stiff-bristled brush to remove dirt and loose hair. This brush is not stiff enough for those large patches of mud that the curry comb can handle. If the curry comb brushed out an extra large amount of dirt, first wipe it from your horse's coat with a damp towel before using the stiff-bristled brush.
The Body Brush (soft-bristled):
Use the body brush to smooth out the horse's coat after the curry comb and dandy brush have removed all of the excess dirt and loose hair. This brush is much softer than the other grooming tools and can also be used on the horse's head.
The Mane Comb:
Use a mane comb to remove the snarls and tangles from both the mane and tail. Use a specialized mane comb for thinning bushy manes and tails. Groom the tail with caution to prevent breakage, because it takes a few years for new tail hairs to grow to full length. You can apply a
silicon spray or
special mane and tail conditioner to help strengthen tail hairs. If breakage seems likely, take the time to comb out and separate tail hairs with your fingers instead of a brush.
Finish the grooming session by lightly rubbing your horse's coat with a clean, soft towel or grooming shammy. This will help add a final polish.
- Mane 'n Tail Shampoo & Conditioner by Straight Arrow will clean, condition, and beautify your horse's coat, mane, and tail.
- ShowSheen® Detanglers help keep coats, manes, and tails healthy and tangle-free.
- Oster Clipmaster Clipper Kit is perfect for use around your horse's face, ears, feet, and tail.
- Oster Equine Care Series Brushes, Combs, Scrapers, & Picks help to create a customized arsenal of brushes, combs, scrapers, and picks.