Where Did You Get Those Dapples? Ultimate Grooming Guide
By Jennifer Shepherd
My mare greets me every morning with triumphant nickers, diligently watching over me as I walk towards her pasture. The most fantastic way I know to develop this devoted companionship is through anticipated grooming sessions. There is no equal to the time spent caring for and bonding with the horse. Just as the horse depends upon us for well thought out nutrition, training, bodywork, veterinary care and farrier services, establishing routined grooming is essential to their overall health and wellbeing. A horse with dapples for miles is a showstopper. Horse Tack Co. is here to help you get your horse dappling with innovative and effective grooming products. When you are ready to stock up, be sure to save 15% off your order by using the promo code “LoveTheRide” upon checkout, all-the-time and anytime.
I’m often overheard saying, “you’re so beautiful” to my mare. She listens intently as I separate the hairs of her tail to release any grass or twigs that were caught during a satisfying roll in the pasture. My favorite product to aid this untangling process is Clear Choice Detangler and Moisturizer Spray. It has a light refreshing scent that can be used daily. There is nothing better than a well-kept tail.
I’m selective when it comes to purchasing brushes. Brushes must fit securely and comfortably in the hand and have high quality bristles. I don’t want them to fall completely apart after a single season of use. The EasyClean Body Brush by Sound Equine is a new addition to my grooming kit and has quickly become my favorite. This brush does quick work of removing dried on surface mud and the unique angle of the bristles helps to extract oils from the skin and create a robust shine.
Prior to any shampoo session, I thoroughly clean and examine all 4 hooves with a hoof brush/pick combo and apply quality hoof oil to form a moisture barrier. I prefer to shampoo with a soft jelly scrubber rather than a sponge, so I can get closer to the skin and more effectively lift built up grim. I typically shampoo once a month, so I don’t strip the protective oils from the coat. The gentle ingredients in Clear Choice Natural Shampoo have performed well for us. My mare always appreciates a post shampoo face rub with a warm wet towel.
Equiderma Skin Lotion has been a game changer this season with the exhaustive humidity and endless rain. I apply the lotion to my mare’s legs and tips of her ears and it’s kept all opportunistic skin issues at bay. It’s easy to apply, not sticky and the lovely scent of lavender is a nice bonus.
Layering is a term used widely at hair salons, but I use it as a method for maintaining a healthy happy horse throughout the season. I add a designated focus area in addition to those areas that require daily attention to each grooming session. For example, I may focus on the legs from the knees down trimming excess fetlock hairs to keep those areas neat and tidy.
I’ve tried several fly sprays and my personal favorite is Bronco Fly Spray because it’s a great formulation for sensitive skin. I’ve used it for years. The flies can be relentless, so I also use a breathable white mesh flysheet to provide my mare with additional assistance.
All of our grooming sessions end with some playful carrot stretches and a requested drink of Horse Quencher. I’ve learned that carrot stretches are some of the best exercises a rider can do before and after a ride. Horse Quencher is a nice way to make sure my mare is hydrated and her joints, tendons and ligaments are lubricated.
Any opportunity to bond with your horse should be cherished. With the right grooming products from Horse Tack Co. you can achieve happy grooming, be sure to and use the promo code “LoveTheRide” upon checkout to save 15% off your order, all-the-time and anytime.