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For Turnout Houdini--Smartpak or Amigo?

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  • For Turnout Houdini--Smartpak or Amigo?

    My horse knows how to take his own turnout sheet off! Easy... you just tear off both front buckles and one of the cross-surcingles, and off it comes in a muddy heap to be found trampled the next day. I want to replace it (again) with something as inexpensive yet sturdy as possible. I'm looking at the Smartpak and the Amigo 1200 denier, 0 insulation. Are these tough, and if so which is tougher? If your experience tells you these won't hold up, any other suggestions? We can't figure out how he is getting a handle on tearing them off. We get freezing rain here, so letting him go without isn't an option, though believe me, I've considered it!
    Mon Ogon (Mo) and Those Wer the Days (Derby)

  • #2
    Hmm- have you considered a closed front blanket? that might slow the destruction a bit...


    • #3
      I second the closed front; I never had one until this year but I have really begun to like them!

      I had a REAL houdini at one time; when he didn't want the blanket on, he would take it off and leave it in the middle of his stall. Everything stayed buckled and the blanket was not the least bit damaged. I thought someone was playing a prank on me, but later his new owner told me he did the same with hers! We learned not to blanket him except in really cold weather when he would leave it on!


      • #4
        Another vote for the closed front, if your horse has learned to destroy the front buckles. I haven't ever had the Smart Pak blanket but I have quite a few of the Amigos, and although I love the fit, I haven't been blown away by the toughness. My horses are easy on their clothes, and they still get your occasional tear, so I would say for a dedicated blanket destroyer, probably not.
        Mystic Owl Sporthorses


        • Original Poster

          Thanks, I've heard that the closed front prevents rubs on the shoulder too--another good reason to try it.

          Actually, since I've never seen him in action I'm just assuming that he tears off the front buckles first. It amazes me that your horse can do it without harming the blanket--I thought it was a feat even with all the tearing!

          So curious, has anyone really seen a horse take off his own blanket? How did they do it?
          Mon Ogon (Mo) and Those Wer the Days (Derby)


          • #6
            It seems you could increase your odds of success not only with a closed front, but also with a bellyband system. It's a lot harder for a horse to rip off an entire bellyband than a cross-strap.
            Head Geek at The Saddle Geek Blog http://www.thesaddlegeek.com/


            • #7
              I have no clue how he did it; this was years ago...long before video cameras were so accessible. If I still had that horse, I would set up a nanny cam!

              I don't think the stable blankets back then came with back leg straps, so it was probably easier to slip them off over the head.