The static is killing me! Every time I take off a blanket I am getting sapped, and some of them really hurt. Most of the time I can hear it building up when I am taking off the blanket so I can prepare myself but tonight it got me and the horse GOOD and I didn't hear it coming. My hand went numb for a sec and he flew to the other side of the stall and looked at me like I had three heads growing, So people from up north how do you stop the madness?
Works every time:
Wet the fingers of one hand in a bucket (or spit on them). Keep the wet fingers in firm contact with the horse untill the blanket is totally off and away. This grounds you and the horse. It works better if you keep horse contact with the wet fingers on the hand that is not scooping the blanket off.
If I have to hold a horse and remove a blanket, I hold the lead rope with the left hand, wet the right hand fingers, and scoop blanket firmly up the neck and over the head with blanket gathered between my thumb and wet fingers pressing against the horse. (I am lazy and do not undo chest straps).
We have a ton of static here in Charleston, SC (or maybe it's just me)... I hate winter.. my car shocks me every time I get out and close the door. My dogs shock me... the horse shocks me when I take his blanket off. Metal doors shock me. When I stick my house key in the door sometimes I can see the spark (although I personally don't feel this one lol). It's nuts.. I get to the point where I'm afraid to touch stuff.
Maybe try having a box of dryer sheets handy and rub that on the sheet and horse before removing the blanket? Not sure, but I would think that could help.
It IS cold and dry here in FL - 27 degrees this morning. My horses have static in their tails - I've been spraying them with Showsheen and using conditioner to help with that. They come in with their tails splayed all over their hindquarters and legs. It freaks the 2 year olds out lol!
Touch any part of the horse's body where there's bare skin while you're removing the blanket. There are very few such places, and most involve getting intimate with your horse, but it works.
The first few times are a bit tricky until you get your moves figured out, but then it becomes second nature.
The same trick works when grooming, but you have to be a bit of a contortionist to groom all the spots.
My grey was very static prone. The radio on the aisle wall would crackle while I was brushing him. I got two anti-static wrist straps like the computer geeks use and wired them together. I placed one around the base of his tail so the contact pad touched the bare skin under his tail, and fastened the other around my wrist. It looked a bit silly, but while everybody else's horses were jumping around, mine was enjoying a snooze.
“There are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by the sword. The other is by debt.”
I also have a super effective grooming spray for winter static that is dirt cheap.
Buy a bottle of Suave Professional Hair Conditioner - Humectant (only)
Pour 3/4 inch in the base of a spray bottle and fill with water. Mist horse before and while grooming and you'll have no static and shed hair falls to the floor. Also works while body clipping.
The Humectant conditioner has the same chemicals as Static Guard and dryer sheets, just nicer smelling and shines the horse.
I use dryer sheets, personally. Just bought a box yesterday, as my very sweet parents bought my dog a fleece-lined blanket, and she and I keep getting shocked every time I take it off! I will definitely try the humectant, though!