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How short is too short?

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  • How short is too short?

    To my utter embarassment I pulled my gelding's mane too short. He is sporting a lovely mowhawk and I cannot tame it to lay down. My trainer suggested I learn to braid since I will be taking him to TB shows this year (the first one in 4 weeks) and I need to braid. I attempted to braid for the first time today and it is too short. I learned 4 fingers sideways and his is 5. I can barely handle it enough to braid it. So a few questions:

    How long can I expect it to grow in 4 weeks?

    How long do you generally keep your manes that you need to braid?

    (I generally do the local circuits so I only have to braid for medal finals).

    I will admit I rocked the forelock on my first time!
    "People who think their brains are not worth protecting are probably right!"
    - quoted by Martha Drum

  • #2
    I'd just roach it.

    But then, I cut my horse's mane off too.
    The Trials and Jubilations of a Twenty-Something Re-rider
    Happy owner of Kieran the mostly-white-very-large-not-pony.

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    • #3
      It will grow quite a bit in 4 weeks. I always had to re-pull my horses mane for shows two weeks apart.
      .

      Comment


      • #4
        See if watering it and adding a heavy conditioner will help keep it down and growing faster.

        Hopefully it is not a thick, wide mane also.
        A thinner one, as many TBs have, tends to be easier to train down and grow out.

        Comment


        • #5
          Use scissors next time..... I am sure it is thin enough and cutting promotes heathly growth.

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Originally posted by HealingHeart View Post
            Use scissors next time..... I am sure it is thin enough and cutting promotes heathly growth.
            Originally posted by Big_Grey_hunter View Post
            It will grow quite a bit in 4 weeks. I always had to re-pull my horses mane for shows two weeks apart.
            Oh good that makes me feel much better. I was able to get in 7-8 braids with only one real show worthy one. I couldn't seem to keep them tight enough with how short it was. I am sure a professional braider would be able to do it though! Another inch and I think I will be okay Thank you for the advice everyone!
            "People who think their brains are not worth protecting are probably right!"
            - quoted by Martha Drum

            Comment


            • #7
              It is 4 fingers long for the lenght of the mane minimum.
              Not 4 fingers wide of hair to braid.

              Try taking smaller width of hair to braid, you'll do many smaller ones!

              I'm sure it will grow back enough in 4 weeks.
              ~ Enjoying some guac and boxed wine at the Blue Saddle inn. ~

              Originally posted by LauraKY
              I'm sorry, but this has "eau de hoarder" smell all over it.
              HORSING mobile training app

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                #8
                Originally posted by Bluey View Post
                See if watering it and adding a heavy conditioner will help keep it down and growing faster.

                Hopefully it is not a thick, wide mane also.
                A thinner one, as many TBs have, tends to be easier to train down and grow out.
                Yes, he definitely does not have a thick or wide mane thank goodness! (unfortunate for my sister's OTTB). I tried watering it down and it did not help but I will definitely try the conditioner thanks!

                @HealingHeart- I was told never to use scissors because it made the mane look unnatural and blunt. But hey I might give it a go next time!
                "People who think their brains are not worth protecting are probably right!"
                - quoted by Martha Drum

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Originally posted by alibi_18 View Post
                  It is 4 fingers long for the lenght of the mane minimum.
                  Not 4 fingers wide of hair to braid.

                  Try taking smaller width of hair to braid, you'll do many smaller ones!

                  I'm sure it will grow back enough in 4 weeks.
                  I measure 4 fingers sideways like pointing towards their ears. Is that not correct?
                  "People who think their brains are not worth protecting are probably right!"
                  - quoted by Martha Drum

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I'm not sure how you could only get 7 or 8 braids? The shorter the mane the smaller your braids will/should be. For hunters 20+ braids is expected and manes are usually 3-4" long and you should be using about an inch worth of mane per braid. Use some quikbraid to get a better hold.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      You could use thinning scissors low on the mane, where it is more forgiving if you don't like the results.

                      Since you have a trainer, how about picking her brains about this and have her show you what to do?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by wishfulthinking711 View Post
                        I measure 4 fingers sideways like pointing towards their ears. Is that not correct?
                        Yes yes it is.
                        My bad, I misread. I thought you were taking 4 fingers (pointing down) width of hair for each braid so was suggesting to take less hair for each braid.

                        I it 4 fingers wide (pointing toward the ears) in general but if the mane is too thin or too thick...then you keep it longer! LoL

                        Your horse will be just fine!
                        ~ Enjoying some guac and boxed wine at the Blue Saddle inn. ~

                        Originally posted by LauraKY
                        I'm sorry, but this has "eau de hoarder" smell all over it.
                        HORSING mobile training app

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #13
                          Originally posted by ElisLove View Post
                          I'm not sure how you could only get 7 or 8 braids? The shorter the mane the smaller your braids will/should be. For hunters 20+ braids is expected and manes are usually 3-4" long and you should be using about an inch worth of mane per braid. Use some quikbraid to get a better hold.

                          Oops sorry I meant I got 7 or 8 braids before I gave up! haha! This makes sense his is probably 2-3" long.

                          @Bluey I will definitely ask him for sure. Thanks!
                          "People who think their brains are not worth protecting are probably right!"
                          - quoted by Martha Drum

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Thank you alibi_18 for clearing that up! I am sure they braids will improve as well with some quick braid and lots of practice
                            "People who think their brains are not worth protecting are probably right!"
                            - quoted by Martha Drum

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              You can braid in yarn to add thickness or length to the braid. Just match the color really, really well to the mane.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Our horses grow about an inch a month, so I would figure on having enough mane to make good braids in that time.

                                Our horses ALWAYS have mohawks if not roached, to have manes the correct length for braiding. Even the thin haired one just sticks straight up with only 4" lengths.

                                Happily we have now chosen to go with roached necks, leaving only forelocks and wither locks as protection on that thin, bony area. Roached necks allow horses much better cooling in hard work and are SO EASY to maintain. Saves me SO MUCH time not having to braid or band the manes down. The horses all have an excellent length of neck, muscular but not over-developed, so going "naked" is quite attractive on them.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  See how long it is as the show approaches. If you still can't braid it nicely and it won't lay down, you could always roach it just before the show.
                                  Flickr

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    If it is not long enough before the show my trainer or her daughter are professional braiders so they will take over my horrible braiding abilities Thank you all for the suggestions though they really helped
                                    "People who think their brains are not worth protecting are probably right!"
                                    - quoted by Martha Drum

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