I own a horse that DESTROYS blankets. He chews off the belly straps at the place where they're sewn onto the blanket, yanks them off, and then fully undresses himself. If I'm lucky, I find the blanket shredded in the corner of his stall. If I'm not so lucky, it is shredded, stomped on, and covered in urine. He has shredded 4+ blankets and sheets of various shapes and fit, so I'm pretty sure he isn't responding to discomfort, but his objective is to completely remove the offending blanket.
I managed to survive the past winter with a sewing machine, duct tape and some anti-chew spray. This fall, I've managed to cobble together some (free) moderately worn blankets of various weights - one stable sheet, one medium weight stable blanket, and one heavy weight stable blanket. In the event that His Highness is simply getting HOT and "removing layers," I think I'm pretty well covered for all temperatures this winter.
I would like to purchase a top sheet to go over the assorted sheets and blankets and am looking for something that is VERY STRONG. I also plan to drench the thing in anti-chew spray. I want to avoid a muzzle if at all possible. (Edited to add: I live in the desert - no rain or snow).
Which is a better option:
1) 1200 denier ripstop or ballistic nylon sheet (the 1680D sheets seem really $$ for just a sheet)
2) A very sturdy fly sheet (bonus = multipurpose, can be hosed off, and on sale right now)
Does anyone else use this type of system to deal with a blanket tearer? If so, what works best for you? Do you find that something with the belly band works better than the criss cross surcingles? How difficult is it to shred or remove a fly sheet?
My horse is kept under lights (the entire barn is lit), so he doesn't grow much of a coat. He did fluff out a bit last spring when we left him unblanketed (he'd finished off all of his lightweight blankets) and he grew a nice coat, but lost a lot of weight despite increased feed. He's not an easy keeper, even in the summer, and I could buy a whole collection of Rambos with the $$$ that I would spend on food if he went uncovered for a winter.