Grooming is an essential part of life for your horse. Not only does it clean their coats and make them look beautiful, it also allows you and your horse to bond and grow closer. Grooming should be done regularly to keep your horse as clean, healthy and pretty as possible, but don’t worry; you should find that your horse likes being groomed and responds positively to it! In this guide we’ll tell you exactly how to groom your horse so he/she looks perfect:
Keep Your Horse Secure
Before you start grooming you might want to secure your horse. Some horse might willingly stand still for you, however, others will probably try to walk off after a short while. Secure them to a post, or have a horse loving friend help you hold them. Remember, if you secure your horse to a post you should always use a quick release knot, as a regular knot could seriously injure them if something freaks them out and they try to run.
Pick The Hooves
To get your horse to lift his foot, you’ll either need to lean against his shoulder and lift it off the ground, or run your hand down his leg and give his fetlock a squeeze. Use a hoof pick starting at the toe to carefully remove all rocks, stones, and foreign objects. You should also carefully clean the grooves of the hoof (just be careful as the hoof can be sensitive). Picking your horses hooves should be completed before and after riding.
Remove Loose Hair
Now you’ll want to remove loose hair from your horse using a rubber curry comb. Use this before brushing to remove any debris and to keep your horses coat in good condition. Rub the comb in a circular motion against the direction of growth, working from the neck to the rump.
Brush With a Hard Brush
A hard brush helps to rid your horse of the hair and dirt that was loosened during use of the curry comb. Use flicking motions with the hard brush, but avoid using on areas the horse may find sensitive, such as the face, ears, tail, and legs.
Finish With a Soft Brush
The soft brush finishes the grooming treatment and can be used anywhere on the horse to get rid of remaining hair and debris. Include the sensitive areas you missed out in the last step for the best results.
Wash Your Horses Face and Tail
Use a wet sponge or cloth to wipe over your horse’s face, concentrating on the eyes and nose. Clean under the tail properly too, as these areas are the most moist and need to be cleaned effectively.
Brush The Mane and Tail
A wide bristled mane brush should be sufficient to brush out your horse’s mane and tail. Avoid tugging on the hair by holding it gently in one hand, and use your hand to separate as many tangles as you can first. As you do this, you should always remain at the side of the horse (to avoid getting kicked), and talk to the horse to calm him/her. You can then use a horse hair product to make their mane and tail look shiny.
As part of your regular maintenance routine, you should also give your horse any necessary medicines such as horse wormers to keep them fit and healthy.
Your horse should now look perfect, while both of you have developed a stronger bond. Enjoy grooming your horse!