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Dumb question - can you blanket a wet horse?

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  • Dumb question - can you blanket a wet horse?

    Yesterday 60 degrees, today 35 with a mix of rain and snow continuing all week. Yuck. I pasture board my mare. She has shedded her winter coat. I'd like to go out and put on her waterproof sheet. Can or should I blanket a wet horse? Thanks.
    Moving on doesn't mean you forget about things. It just means you have to accept what happended and continue living.

  • #2
    when I need to throw a blanket on a wet horse, I put their cooler on underneath until they are dry then I pull the cooler out and viola, dry, warm horse.
    If i'm posting on Coth, it's either raining so I can't ride or it's night time and I can't sleep.

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    • #3
      It works fine as long as the blanket in question is of the waterproof AND breathable type.

      In a pinch, add some straw on the horse's back under the blanket to help absorb some moisture and create some air circulation.

      I prefer a mediumweight blanket in that instance to a sheet, but sometimes you just have to make do with what you have, and adding the sheet is better than leaving the horse out in the rain if it is really cold out, as your 35 degree day would be.
      If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

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      • #4
        I have heard not to blanket a wet horse. When my horse would get sweaty in the winter due to riding and I would have to put his blanket on, I would have to wait till after he dried off because they can actually become colder under a dry blanket if they are wet because the blanket absorbs the moisture and just sits on them cold and wet.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by winegum View Post
          I have heard not to blanket a wet horse. When my horse would get sweaty in the winter due to riding and I would have to put his blanket on, I would have to wait till after he dried off because they can actually become colder under a dry blanket if they are wet because the blanket absorbs the moisture and just sits on them cold and wet.
          I think that made sense back when I learned it, when blanket materials would get wet and clammy from the moisture on the horse, but the new turnout type sheets and blankets made out of gore-tex and other materials should still be warm when wet. Wool is also OK when wet.

          Out here in the world of cold and rainy 24x7 turnout, I've often had the OP's dilemma, and I go ahead and blanket, and remove a dry blanket from a warm horse the next morning. My favorite for this circumstance is a Rhino wug, which is a mediumweight waterproof breathable turnout.
          If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

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          • #6
            Yes, they will be fine, warm up and dry out under the sheet and then stay dry. I do this regularly and have yet to have a problem with skin funk or chilled horses because of it.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Catersun View Post
              when I need to throw a blanket on a wet horse, I put their cooler on underneath until they are dry then I pull the cooler out and viola, dry, warm horse.
              I would use a scrim sheet underneath to help him dry out and I would only use a blanket that is waterproof and breathable.
              Horses are better off with nothing rather than a heavy wet blanket acting as a sponge...

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              • #8
                Originally posted by poltroon View Post
                It works fine as long as the blanket in question is of the waterproof AND breathable type.


                More than a few times each Winter I end up having to do this. My sheets and blankets are w/p and breathable, in short order there is a dry, warm horse under them.
                ______________________________
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                • #9
                  Yeah, I do it pretty regularly as in the springtime especially storms blow up so quickly that I often don't have time to get home and blanket my old guy before he's pretty wet. As long as it's waterproof and breathable, there's no harm done, and IME the horse dries pretty quickly.

                  The "never blanket a wet horse" advice was more for the old school blankets that didn't let the horse dry underneath them.
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                  • #10
                    With the new 'high performance' fabrics, they actually wick the moisture from the horse, and transfer it to the outside of the blanket. I use polar fleece coolers - and come back an hour later, and underneath, horse is warm and dry - and top of cooler has beads of moisture on it...
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by winegum View Post
                      I have heard not to blanket a wet horse. When my horse would get sweaty in the winter due to riding and I would have to put his blanket on, I would have to wait till after he dried off because they can actually become colder under a dry blanket if they are wet because the blanket absorbs the moisture and just sits on them cold and wet.
                      That was true in the day of the heavy felt lined canvas New Zeeland rug, or cotton sheets. Modern technical fabrics, or the old but expensive standby wool will actually dry a wet horse without chilling her.
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                      • #12
                        I've heard it is okay, as the horses natural warmth under the blanket will dry it's coat. Again, as long as the blanket is waterproof/breathable.
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                        • #13
                          Yup, I've had to blanket my mare when she was wet before for similar reasons. Random massive cold front came though, temps plummet, and rain/sleet rolls in. Yuck.

                          FWIW, I expedite the drying process by rubbing her down VIGOROUSLY (ie, my arms are tired afterwards ) with a few big bath towels, and will even blowdry her with a human blowdryer. This way she's still damp, but not dripping wet.
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                          • #14
                            I steal my husband's cattle blower love love love it!

                            Of course for the horses, it takes some getting used to
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                            • #15
                              just a random thought.. but we are all specifiying a breatheable waterproof one.. do they make blankets that aren't breatheable anymore? and I wouldn't say waterproof is nessisary if the horse is then staying in, but if going back out waterproof.
                              If i'm posting on Coth, it's either raining so I can't ride or it's night time and I can't sleep.

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                              • #16
                                I do still see old school canvas ones for sale occasionally that I doubt are very breathable (and they certainly don't advertise that they are!). The vast majority of blankets are though, I'd guess.
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                                • #17
                                  You should be fine so long as the rug is breathable.
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                                  • #18
                                    I often run into this situation, a great solution is to get an antisweat sheet and put it on underneath blanket or sheat, it wicks away the moisture and allows for breathing, if not to cold dover sells a rainsheet that has a mesh liner attached. This also works well. Horses are always completely warm and dry in the am and so are the sheet or antisweat.

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