What kinds of horse blankets are there and when should they be used?


The choice of horse blanket is dependent on weather and temperature and there are many different blankets to match the different needs of the horse. The most common blankets are outdoor blankets, which include everything from light to heavy turnout blankets and rain sheets. These types of blankets are very common for when horses are turned out in the pasture. Some blankets, such as stable blankets or cooler sheets/fleece blankets, are also popular to use for purely aesthetic reasons, such as when you lead your horse to the racetrack, or simply to match halters, leg guards, leg wraps or other equipment. 

The most common horse blankets are:

* Stable blanket. A stable blanket is primarily used indoors in the stable and is one of the most common horse blankets. This is mostly used to provide extra warmth when the horse in in its stable, but can also be used during transport. Stable blankets come in different levels of thickness and the choice can vary depending on if the horse is clipped and how much extra warmth is needed. Stable blankets are not typically used in paddocks or outdoors as they are not designed to protect against rain, wind and changing weather.

* Rain sheet. Rain sheets are thinner and water-repellent blankets that are used when it rains. The rain sheet usually does not have much lining as its primary purpose is to act as a shell against rain in warmer temperatures where extra lining is not necessary. 

* Cooler sheet. A cooler sheet, or fleece blanket, is used to remove and transport away sweat and moisture from the horse. They are often used after training sessions or competitions. Cooler sheets are also great to use after bathing your horse to help it dry faster, or during transport. Fleece blankets can sometimes also be referred to as cooler sheets, as these have the same moisture-transporting properties. 

* Riding blanket. Riding blankets are used while riding. The blanket provides primary protection to the horse's backside against the cold, wind and rain. Riding blankets are often attached to either side of the saddle girth with straps and works perfectly

for outdoor rides and riding sessions indoors. 

* Exercise blanket. An exercise blanket is used, just like the riding blanket, when riding. The difference between an exercise blanket and a riding blanket is that the exercise blanket is larger and covers more surface in front and behind the saddle. The exercise blanket is designed to make room for the saddle. Exercise blankets can also be called riding blankets. 

* Winter blanket. A winter blanket is warmly lined and is intended to protect and warm the horse against colder temperatures and rough weather in the colder months. If a horse is clipped, winter blankets are often used to in place of the horses winter coat and are therefore the horse's warmest "jacket". Winter blankets are available in different thick linings and weigh different amounts. Winter blankets are typically available in weights between 200 to 450 grams. The choice of thickness and weight of the blanket will depend on the temperature and weather. 

* Fly sheet. Fly sheets often also covers the horse's neck, with the primary purpose of giving the horse extra protection against flies and other insects that otherwise can irritate the horse. Fly sheets are typically used during warmer seasons and are most common during the summer months. The fly and insect sheets are thin mesh blankets that are made of materials that breathe well. 

* Eczema sheet. An eczema sheet has many similar functions to a fly sheet/insect sheet. This type of blanket protects the horse against insects, flies, and other insects that otherwise risk causing eczema on the horse. The difference between eczema sheets and fly sheets, is that eczema sheets tend to be made from a denser material to help provide additional protection, while fly sheets have lighter material to facilitate air circulation, usually a mesh material. Some eczema blankets also have UV protection and can therefore also be called a UV blanket, as they protect against both the sun's UV rays and against insects. 

Equestrian Stockholm offers several different types of horse blankets in different colors. Click here to access the complete collection

Guide tagged with: Horse Blanket
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