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Show clip--hooves/legs?

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  • Show clip--hooves/legs?

    My horse and I are going to our first show this coming weekend. I have been out of the show ring a long time. A friend of mine said that I should be clipping my horse’s hooves and legs for a more refined appearance. I don’t remember doing this as a kid. Can someone tell me how to do this properly? How far up the legs is it conventional to clip? Is there any trick for doing this, especially on the hind legs where the hair is a little thicker? I am afraid my horse will come out looking like she’s wearing the reverse of leg warmers.

  • #2
    You want to use a blade that doesn't cut too close. If you have A-5 clippers, use a #10 blade or lower. You clip up to the bottom of the knee and hock all around the leg. If you think that look will be too drastic, just clip the back of the leg to clean up the profile. Even if it looks obvious at first, it blends in pretty quickly (usually within a week) if you use the right blade.

    Good luck at the show.

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    • #3
      I bathe the lower legs and towel/air dry completely. Then with a good number 10 blade (oiled and kept cool) shave up to just below the knee on the front legs and about the same height (though there is no knee per se). Keep them even.

      Comment


      • #4
        What MHM said, it's pretty open to personal interpretation. We usually just clip up the backs of the legs and blend it in. I do clip the front of the pasterns too and all the way up socks.

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        • Original Poster

          #5
          Thanks everyone! I will do it tonight so it has a few days to grow out and cover my mistakes.

          Comment


          • #6
            Don't be surprised if you find some scurf or dandruff under the hair. That's not unusual after a long furry winter. You can wash the legs with a disinfecting soap like Betadine after you clip to help get rid of any grunge.

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            • #7
              For me it depends on the color of the horse, how hairy it is, and time of year. I often try to clip the knees and hocks, too because they are pretty hairy, can hide scurf and hold a lot of water that make drying their legs harder -- especially in scrunge season.

              I use the 10 blades. On horses with black legs, I try to follow the "triangle" above the knee and hock and blend it in with the body hair. This works for bays, grays, blacks, and horses with high whites. Chestnuts can be a bit tricky, depending on their color and time of year, but it can be done. If necessary, I will blend the hair by flipping the clippers over and running the clippers with the hair, a bit -- it takes a bit of practice to do this to keep the blend line from looking choppy. It is much easier to do a good blending job when they have summer coats or are clipped.

              Having the legs really clean and dry is very helpful. I would also bet for hairier legs that a little showsheen would help, too. If you keep up with it every 2-4 weeks, it makes it easier, too.

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              • #8
                I keep it very simple, and our HB babies show on the line. On the dark legs, I use a #10 blade WITH the hair (down the leg) along the back to tidy up the profile. Also behind the knee if necessary. Then the fetlock and pastern. Again, WITH the hair to blend. I trim the hair at the coronet band.

                For white legs, in most instances, I will shave these with a #10 blade. If the horse has thin hair and is clean, sometimes I'll leave the hair on a white leg, but probably 80% of the time, I clip them. And I clip JUST the white and blend at the top into the dark hair. This works beautifully for me.
                Laurie

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by lauriep View Post
                  I keep it very simple, and our HB babies show on the line. On the dark legs, I use a #10 blade WITH the hair (down the leg) along the back to tidy up the profile. Also behind the knee if necessary. Then the fetlock and pastern. Again, WITH the hair to blend. I trim the hair at the coronet band.

                  For white legs, in most instances, I will shave these with a #10 blade. If the horse has thin hair and is clean, sometimes I'll leave the hair on a white leg, but probably 80% of the time, I clip them. And I clip JUST the white and blend at the top into the dark hair. This works beautifully for me.
                  This is what I do. I clean up the coronary band, the back of the pasterns, and the fetlocks on every leg. I will trim down the back of the leg and behind the knee if needed. White socks are clipped and blended where the white ends.


                  I would never clip the leg up to knees (unless that much of the leg was white). IMO, there is too much color change and it looks terrible. There is a chestnut stallion that I love and in his pictures his legs are clipped to just below the knee. It looks ridiculous to me. Wouldn't stop me breeding to him if that's what I wanted to do, but by golly, everytime I see it, it's all my eye focuses on.

                  Here is my bay all clipped up. Please note legs are tidy, clean and no discolored spots from clipping.


                  There's no way this is blending
                  Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
                  Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by RugBug View Post
                    Here is my bay all clipped up. Please note legs are tidy, clean and no discolored spots from clipping.
                    Never mind the legs, look at those dapples pop!

                    I don't know why they didn't just do the whites, or wait two weeks to take the picture.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by MHM View Post
                      Originally posted by RugBug View Post
                      Here is my bay all clipped up. Please note legs are tidy, clean and no discolored spots from clipping.
                      Never mind the legs, look at those dapples pop!
                      Oh how I miss those dapples. He was covered from neck to tail (but you can't see them all in that photo). These days, he lives in pasture 24/7 and I refuse to make him wear a sheet all the time. He's still shiny, but he fades out badly now so no dapples.
                      Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
                      Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"

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                      • #12
                        I do what lauriep and RugBug said on dark legs. Star has four low socks with a "gray area" at the top so I stop in the middle of that area since it is easy to blend there.
                        The Evil Chem Prof

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by RugBug View Post
                          Ugh... looks weird. His daddy, Ceredigion used to stand about a half mile away from where I live.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            (Flagged the spam message.)

                            Rue has four high whites. I don't clip them all- just neaten the backs of his legs by running the clippers down them with the hair, and tidy around his knees/hocks/fetlocks.

                            Asp is a plain bay, but she has less hair than Rue so I don't have so much to work with. I usually clip her fully, including her legs then just tidy up any bits that need it as her summer coat comes in.
                            Horse Show Names Free name website with over 6200 names. Want to add? PM me!

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by RugBug View Post

                              I would never clip the leg up to knees (unless that much of the leg was white). IMO, there is too much color change and it looks terrible. There is a chestnut stallion that I love and in his pictures his legs are clipped to just below the knee. It looks ridiculous to me. Wouldn't stop me breeding to him if that's what I wanted to do, but by golly, everytime I see it, it's all my eye focuses on.

                              There's no way this is blending
                              Yes ... this is an instance where I would only do the socks . It looks like in the jumping picture below they did his knees, too. Either they clipped him with smaller blades than 10s, or he his just not a candidate for clipping more than the whites of his legs. Gotta love those red heads!

                              RugBug -- I am totally jealous of those dapples!

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                We clip white socks, thats it. Trim up fetlocks and the long hairs that grow over the hoof with #10 or t-84's. Otherwise their legs are a different color and length that can't be blended very well, especially chestnuts!
                                ~*Adult Pony Rider Clique*~
                                www.timberrunponies.com

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                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by lauriep View Post
                                  I keep it very simple, and our HB babies show on the line. On the dark legs, I use a #10 blade WITH the hair (down the leg) along the back to tidy up the profile. Also behind the knee if necessary. Then the fetlock and pastern. Again, WITH the hair to blend. I trim the hair at the coronet band.
                                  I do something similar, but I turn the clippers around so the teeth are towards the hair and then go down.

                                  I don't like the look of clipped white socks. If I'm going to do it, I clip about two weeks out so there is some hair re-growth.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I recommend the book Grooming to Win. It has a very good chapter on clipping with really good pictures.

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