I always body clip my horses each winter and bundle them up like the kid from the Christmas Story and I still can't keep them from shivering. Does anyone have this problem? Our horses are turned out in IL for about 8-10 hours a day and I have never had a warmth issue with them. So far the winter here has been mild but when the temps drop and the boys start to shiver.
Mine is fully clipped. We left the hair on her face an ears but everything else is gone. She's been wearing a heavy shire blanket with a hood and medium under that...nice and toasty even though she is out all night (in temps below 30---and give how muddy and wet her top blanket can be...she stands out in the rain instead of her shed!).
I've also had good luck with Rambo Supremes. Basically you need a good quality waterproof blanket with a hood and may need some layers under that.
I don't want too many blankets on them as it gets heavy. You need that layer of air under their blanket to keep them warm. Adding an irish knit cooler under a blanket can often increase the warmth for your horse. That and adding hoods are the two best ways to keep them warm IMO--but you need good blankets.
Last edited by bornfreenowexpensive; Jan. 13, 2012 at 11:57 AM.
** The difference between genius and stupidity is genius has its limits. -- Albert Einstein **
Mine is perfectly happy in his Rambo Duo (100g) with the 300g liner attached, and the 100g hood attached. He also has two 300g stable blankets, and sheets, for layering underneath if it gets really cold.
I did a full clip last year, and then I felt like the most awful owner EVER for the next two months any time I found my mare shivering. She wore a 340g turnout with a 100g turnout underneath when outside, and on colder nights, she wore a 200g stable blanket under the 340g turnout. She had plenty of hay, but she just got cold.
This was in Texas, where we seldom get below the twenties, so I figured that I had just clipped off too much.
This year, she has a modified chaser clip and her belly has been de-furred. She has been perfectly happy living outdoors so far (we've only been below freezing about 4 times this season), and she's stayed manageable sweaty during/after rides.
My mare, get this, isn't clipped (!!) and was shivering last week when I pulled her out of pasture. It was around 25*, slightly windy. She was wearing a Rhino heavy weight, so I added a sheet over top of that. That along with feeding extra hay should (hopefully) do the trick. It's not even that cold....yet....
I'd say 4 things that other folks have mentioned: 1) use an irish knit as a base layer to keep any other layers off the skin a bit, it will allow for air circulation which keeps them warm. 2) Get a turnout blanket with a belly band, such as this: http://www.sstack.com/horse-blankets...band-turnouts/, 3) make sure they have a heavy neck cover, and 4) make sure the blanket is long enough, both front to back, as well as hangs down to cover the chest and tops of the legs.
Layers of blankets, hay, and a wind break for sure. Pretty much what everyone else said.
I've never had an issue and I keep both my boys bodyclipped all winter in the great white north. I layer medium-weight stable blankets under heavy-weight turnouts, feed as much hay as they'll eat, and they have a 20' by 50' run-in.
Do your horses have shelter when turned out? What are you blanketing with? Are they otherwise completely healthy?
My horse is always full clipped in the winter and lives out 24/7. The only time she has ever shivered was when she had a tooth problem and couldn't eat as much hay as she needed to stay warm. She has free access to shelter, and lots of hay - I use nibblenets, which make the hay last longer, but I don't skimp on hay. I leave her at night with more than I think she needs, and often there is some left in the morning. As others have said, proper blanketing is important. I have the Rambo Originals with Leg Arches. For REALLY cold nights (low teens or below), I use the liner system to create a 500g+ blanket without having to double blanket.
I assume you have checked to make sure she is not overblanketed and getting damp under her blankets which will make them cold as well?
I agree on this one, I use a full face and neck Lycra slinky with a Polar fleece liner than medium or heavey weight turn-out rug.
I still prefer wool rug liners of old and have turned to using fitted coolers or Polar fleece so the horse can breath. I have one horse who shivered until he got a body slinky??? under his rug. Maybe add some corn oil to his feet to create some more BTU's to burn for fuel....
Yup... hay keeps the furnace on and blankets keep the heat in the house. As others mentioned, do NOT let them get wet underneath - that makes them very cold. That's why I do not like liners that are cotton b/c they hold water. Fleece is a good liner solution as it wicks and is easy to wash/dry (unlike wool).
Last edited by VicariousRider; Jan. 15, 2012 at 04:06 PM.
"We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals" Immanuel Kant
wow! i'm glad my horse isn't the only one getting cold. despite wearing a baker sheet, medium, and heavy with hood, he still shivers. He's naturally a leaner horse (bone structure) so I hate to bulk him up with extra clothes. I've resorted to putting him in his "superman pj's". he wears a lycra full body that covers his face and ears as well as his neck and body now underneath his other layers and he has finally stopped shivering.
I am trace clipping my horse (I've had to do it in phases, she's about half done right now, looking like a dork!) and right now in Iowa she has a medium turnout with a neck cover. I have a stable blanket that I will add underneath when she's fully clipped and it gets a little colder.
My problem has been that since I have to pasture board ($ and she is happier anyway), finding the right layer to put on her when I see her at night is not necessarily the right layer for the day time. We have had super weird weather this year (just had our first snow) where it went from 50 degrees during the day one day to a wind chill of 0 late that night when the snow started. This was before I clipped her but that day she was too warm under a medium turnout (w/o neck), then I had to put a heavy weight on her at night. Now that she's partly clipped and things are a bit more consistent night to day we have been just doing her medium one with the neck cover because I am mostly concerned about her being too warm during the day and getting chilled because of sweat. Since she has free choice hay and is sheltered from the wind by her blanket and a shed, I have settled for maybe a bit less than ideal blanketing over the night to ensure that she is not overheating during the day while I'm at work and can't go change it.
OP-I think if your horse has free choice hay and good quality blankets (and a neck cover I hope?), she should be okay. Shivering is a way for them to keep themselves warm without having to move all the time. If she is dropping weight, then I would be more concerned about her being cold, but if she is maintaining good weight it should be a good sign that she is doing fine. You definitely have to compensate for the missing hair but it sounds like you are doing that.