They will not hold up as long, but you can usually find cheap variations at Dollar General, Family Dollar or other low-price outlets. I think the key with these types of coats is to have the bristles farther apart to let them part the hair and get down to the skin, whereas normal horse brushes and curries will simply lay the top layer of hair down over all the other hair and gunk.
You can also clip, and that does't necessarily mean a standard clip. I would clip my mini with the yak coat using a blade guard just to take it down to a more manageable length so she didn't get the super-caked tendrils. Also took off the long leg hairs and clipped her shorter behind elbows, under belly, etc. where she tended to sweat and get matted, but left enough hair that I wouldn't need to blanket. It took some practice and I did accidentally gouge a few spots. Use a longer clipper guard than you think, and you can always take more off if needed. But taking her coat from 3-4" long to 1-1.5" made a big difference in her groomability. I had thought about trying to find one of those old "Flowbees" - the vacuum attachmet that cuts hair - www.flowbee.com - but she probably would have clogged that thing up, unless you could hook it up to an industrial shopvac!
I would personally put the horse on Prascend tabs to see if he could at least partially shed out the abnormal coat. It might also help with other Cushings symptoms such as sweating, excessive drinking and urinating, laminitis and more. I have been pleasantly surprised at our 23-year-old pony's summer and now fall coat this year - which has come in MUCH lighter so far this year. It is his first year on the Prascend. Our pony has had a VERY thick and curly coat in the past, which is difficult to keep clean and dry - a requirement for Cushings horses due to lowered immunity and skin problems. If this is not an option, I second the clipping regimen.
Tractor Supply has this really stiff, oval brush, that really gets in there, gets all that deep dander out, and cuts through the mud really well, even on long coats. I really like it.
Just like this one.... http://www.horse.com/item/cowboy-mud-brush/BJH58/
Definitely too harsh for really hard brushing, but I use it on the legs sometimes if the mud is really caked on there.
smay, he is on Pergolide. His main symptom is heavy coat but he has always grown a nice coat in the winter. It's soft and silky, he just loves his daily mudbath and with the coat being longer now, it's harder to get through.
meaty ogre, I haven't clipped in years but maybe I'll get brave.
Thanks for the ideas!
I do know he sure does LOVE all the extra work I haev to do to make him clean. I think he carefully plans his rolling to maximize the clean-up effort needed later.
Yes, I had that exact same thing with our pony on Pergolide - his Cushings symptoms were somewhat kept at bay, but his coat was still that REALLY thick, and often curly haircoat that he seemed to sweat under a lot, even in winter!!! So we kept him clipped and blanketed when necessary. Our vet switched him to Prascend this spring, and his coat quality really changed on the new meds! He now has a nearly normal summer coat, and his "winter" coat is coming in normally as well - not curly, not long or rough, just nice and plush. I really see a difference and I'm hoping we won't have to clip him or blanket him this winter. His coat is the least of our worries however, since he has developed a chronic case of laminitis over the years. Cushings horses are a toughie.
I don't know how I survived 30+ years with horses and never thought of this (or noticed anyone else using one this way), but a shedding blade does wonders for pulling the chunky dried concrete-hard mud off the horsie. If he's had a good roll in a mud-pond, I use the shedding blade to get the dried muck-sheets off, then curry to get him "basically" clean.
*friend of bar.ka
"Evidently, I am an unrepentant b*tch, possible trouble maker, and all around super villian"