As absolute horse lovers and dedicated horse owners, the MirrorMePR Equestrian PR Team share their insider top tips for maintaining your horse’s coat and tips for keeping your horses’ skin and coat healthy and looking great all year around.
A Brush With Success
Apart from feeding, brushing your horses’ coat regular, really does help promote a healthy natural shine. By brushing your horse’s coat regularly, you have the opportunity to check him over for any cuts, lumps or bumps as well as brushing away loose hair, sweat, mud, dirt, dust and dead skins cells. Removing these improve lustre and will leave the coat clean and the skin free from irritants.
By brushing your horse, you are also stimulating the skin follicles and promoting good blood circulation. Regular grooming stimulates the skins’ natural oils which are reflected in the coat developing a deep, natural coat shine. When you are grooming your horse, make sure you do so with clean, quality bristle brushes. Brushing your horse with dirty brushes makes no sense and is counterproductive.
A grooming kit compromising of different brushes from a stiff dandy brush, through to a soft face brush will ensure that your horse’s coat gets a thorough groom. Don’t forget that grooming your horse also offers the perfect bonding time for you both!
A dull coat can also indicate an underlying health issue, including worms or parasite infestation. Regular worming and taking worm counts can help you manage parasite control. However, if you are concerned about your horses’ health and well-being in any way, always speak to your vet. Seeking veterinary advice should never be a last resort if you are concerned.
Although a shiny coat is desirable, you also need to factor in the time of year, the horses’ age, even breed, colour and sex. For example, summer coats will often shine more than winter woollies. A veteran horse may not develop the same shine as he did in his youth. Some breeds naturally produce a coarser, thicker coat, and it can even come down to hormone levels; stallions tend to have shiner coats thanks to their hormones.
And for anyone struggling to create the same shine you find on a dark bay on their grey, we hear you! Your horse’s coat might not gleam like glass, but as long as your horse is healthy in all other respects, there’s always show sheen for those special occasions!
A Topical Conversation
You can undoubtedly cheat a topical coat shine by spraying a topical coat sheen on your horse’s coat. However, be careful to check the ingredients label: A lot of coat spray shines on the market are silicone-based so while they may give instant shine, they do attract dirt and therefore dull the hair long term.
It makes sense to do a patch test before using the product all over your horse’s coat, in case he or she suffers an allergic reaction.
Also, if you are going to use coat sheen, don’t use it daily and avoid the saddle and girth area, as you could find yourself in a slippery situation!
To Rug Or Not To Rug?
After a long, cold winter , you might find that your horse’s skin and coat were looking dull and scruffy. Constant rug wearing can certainly take a toll on your horses’ healthy skin and coat and even cause bald patches and mane rubbing. Without the luxury of being able to bath your horse, the next best thing is regular grooming, buying rugs that fit your horse well and using lighter weight rugs next to the skin that you can easily change and wash and re-use. The summer months give you the opportunity to leave your horse rug free and clean your heavier rugs ready for next winter, an activity which should be an annual event!
In the summer months, apply the same attitude to fly rugs and summer sheets. These should be easier to wash and dry in the warmer months. When flies and midge attack are at low risk, let your horse go naked with a hint of fly spray and watch him enjoy a good roll. Having a good dust bath is the perfect excuse for a thorough grooming session, you’ll both enjoy!
You Are What You Eat
The saying ‘you are what you eat’ remains true for horses and ponies. However, even with the best grazing and hard food, some horses can struggle with skin issues and fail to develop a natural shine to their coat, even during the summer months.
We’ve seen fantastic results on horses and ponies of all breeds and ages feeding Aloeride. This organic, natural aloe vera supplement is known for supporting healthy skin, coat and hooves and is an excellent, easy to feed all-around beneficial supplement for horses.