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Turnout Blanket Suggestions for Captain Beefcake

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  • Turnout Blanket Suggestions for Captain Beefcake

    Not his real name but he thinks he's all that

    I did do a ton of COTH searches on blanket brand fit which were really helpful, but could really use some extra advice

    I pulled out my 8 year old gelding's winter blankets this weekend to discover what fit him perfectly last year isn't fitting great now. He's a purebred Morgan, but on the tall side - a smidge over 16 hands, wears a 54 inch girth and his saddle currently has a wide tree (though that may change to X-wide when the saddle fitter comes later this month). He's probably a good 1300 lbs.

    I think the main growth has occurred in his shoulders as he's filled out. He's just massive. He's gone through a number of blankets in the past three years (mostly because he tears them to pieces-I've never seen a horse grind in the ground like he does when he's rolling). The one I found that fit the best (and stayed in good shape) was the Smartpak High-Neck Ultimate Turnout, size 78. It currently isn't tight on the points of his shoulders, but on day one of wearing it, he busted a chest strap, the shoulder gussets seem stretched open, and he doesn't seem to have that "air pocket" of loose fabric over his back and loin--it is definitely tighter. When he stretches his head down, the material isn't really sliding down across his withers, but staying in place and feels a little tight. Sorry I don't have a pic of him blanketed.

    So I definitely need to get something else pronto, as we're getting a cold snap at the end of this week. I measured him this weekend as a size 81, so he's definitely gotten larger somewhere (most likely shoulders). I'm wondering if the same blanket one size up would do the trick, or if the growth in his shoulders means he might need a different brand? I really do like the high neck turnouts (or wugs), as he probably would get the hood of a two-piece caught in something the first day.

    I've attached a few pics. They are recent, but aren't the greatest conformation shots (my apologies), as I haven't had a chance to get to the barn in a few days, but they show his, ahem, sturdiness. Any suggestions? I know Schneiders and Rambo have a pretty good selection geared to large-shouldered horses, but not sure which specific blankets might be worth a shot.

    Many thanks in advance

  • #2
    My horse was similarly built and I always had trouble with shoulder configuration on blankets. Add in a particularly rowdy turn out friend and I was desperately searching for the right design AND something that could take a beating.

    The Sussex Big D blanket is perhaps the best blanket I've ever owned for this horse. It had clearance through the shoulder and chest, with enough room everywhere else that it fit beautifully. I also had success with the smartpak ultimate (size 81). My horse measured at 82" but the SP 81 wasn't too tight on him. If you had luck with the high neck version I wouldn't say that just sizing up would be a poor decision.


    • #3
      Have you tried Shires? A couple meatier fellows at my barn wear them and do well. They also make some very high denier counts.

      A lot of different blankets rub my horse's shoulders except the Original cut Horseware rugs. I tend to buy closeout Amigo Bravo colors since he's gone through blankets from growing more than destroying. The Bravo line is pretty tough but for a fraction of the cost of Rambo. The Original neck does not slide down on his withers and does allow enough shoulder room. The Amigo Bravo still has the front leg arches which helps with this.


      • #4
        The SmartPak blanket with the quarter horse cut is made for beefy horses, but horse needs to have almost no withers because of the cut back design. It is huge in the shoulders and chest, but the cut back will "catch" behind the withers and create a pressure point. It's hard to tell from the photo how much withers your boy has but it might work


        • #5
          Schneider's Norlund high neck should do the trick. It works very well on my 17h 1500lb WB who is "only" a size 80 blanket because of his fairly short back, but also a 60" girth, and an XXW saddle in terms of something like County and Black Country, and 39cm in terms of Prestige. It also is well-suited to horses with withers, as my shark-finned TB mare also wears one very comfortably.
          The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


          • #6
            Ditto the Schneider's Big Fella blankets. They FIT
            <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.


            • #7
              SmartPak brand blankets, Weatherbeeta, and Shires are the ones I have seen on bigger, beefier horses and they seem to fit well. Horseware original cut may work as well.


              • #8
                I have a similarly built Morgan (not quite as heavy) and the Weatherbeetas fit him fantastic. In the 7 years he's been blanketed, I have yet to have a single rub on him.


                • #9
                  What a gorgeous boy! Beautiful face! We have sheilas and fellas also with beefcake bods. Big necks, big shoulders. All have Rambo's with removable hoods. Some also have Schneiders with removable hoods, and some have Schneiders with attached hoods. Recently bought a few Rambo Optimo's with the shoulder gusset. The Schneiders also have shoulder gussets. So far I am loving blankets with shoulder gussets over those without! I think the Schneiders with attached neck and shoulder gussets is fitting very nicely on several beefcake bods and it is about 1/3 the cost of a Rambo Optimo.


                  • #10
                    Buy a Rambo rug and a neck rug that goes with it. Worst that can happen then is that you have to buy an elastic surcingle off of eBay to go around the blanket. BTDT. It's worth the cost. Check eBay for good buys when people buy the wrong size and then sell theirs.


                    • #11
                      For that type of build, I like the Weatherbeeta originals (not the freestyle) and Bucas. Good luck!
                      "We need a pinned ears icon." -MysticOakRanch


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by JB View Post
                        Schneider's Norlund high neck should do the trick. It works very well on my 17h 1500lb WB who is "only" a size 80 blanket because of his fairly short back, but also a 60" girth, and an XXW saddle in terms of something like County and Black Country, and 39cm in terms of Prestige. It also is well-suited to horses with withers, as my shark-finned TB mare also wears one very comfortably.
                        Ditto on this. I have a wide load Oldenburg mare that is 16H (I was shocked that she wasn't taller when we measured her yesterday, she is massive). Her high neck Schneider's took her through a very rough winter and lived to tell the tale. They have big shoulder gussets, which I think help, and the high neck takes the pressure off the chest straps. Price is right too.


                        • #13
                          A Bucas blanket will shift on a warmblood horse, that is, a horse with a big rump and big chest and shoulders.