How to groom your horse
Grooming means taking care of the physical maintenance of
the horse. The sight of a well-groomed horse gives immense
pleasure to true horse lovers. The process of grooming also
brings the owner close to the horse, who in turn gets the
feeling of being taken care of. The horse is an incredible
creature, and if it looks good, there’s nothing like
Naturally, horses have a tendency to groom themselves. They
do it by their tongue, by scratching, rubbing against trees
etc. However, no matter how well a horse self-grooms itself,
we as owners have to take care of them, and additional grooming
is required from our part as well.
Not only from the beauty point of view, grooming also helps
in detecting any physical injuries, or diseases related to
the skin. Moreover, a dirty horse would be more prone to diseases
and infections than a clean one.
Grooming is not an easy task. It is also time consuming. Grooming
involves a series of things to be done including cleaning,
taking care of the feet, brushing and so on and so forth.
Before starting to groom your horse, some things need to be
collected. These include brushes, hoovepick, sponge, water
Start grooming the horse by the feet. Whether it is a working
horse, or a racehorse, healthy legs and feet are very important.
Before cleaning the feet, you should be familiar with what
a horse’s feet should look like. Cleaning the hooves
is important. A hoof pick is the answer to this. A hoof pick
is used to remove dirt from the hooves. Clean each and every
hoof very carefully starting from the heel, and gently bringing
it to the front, at the toe. Clean around the triangular frog.
After the cleaning process is over, apply hoof oil to the
hooves. Taking care of the feet also involves checking the
condition of the shoe. Do that on a regular basis.
The coat of the horse is the main ‘to-be-groomed’
part in the process. To some people, their horse’s shining
coat means a symbol of status and pride. A number of brushes
are available which serve different purposes.
Polishing is very important if you want to make the horse
look good. After cleaning and brushing the horse, polishing
is the job to be done. Use a stable rubber to remove additional
dust. Use horse grooming mitts to remove the leftover unwanted,
loose hair from the body, and then to polish it. Use a wisp
to tone muscles of the horse. Use it on thighs, neck, and
any other muscular area of the horse.
After this is done, use a damp sponge or cotton to clean the
eyes and nose of the horse. Use a separate sponge to clean
the rest of the face. Use water to remove any stains that
were not possible to remove by normal brushing. Water brushes
are available, which do this job very easily. Any stained
parts on the body can be cleaned very easily using these brushes.
Special combs are available for the mane and tail. Use these
for finishing touches to your horse.
The whole process should take around thirty to forty minutes.
Warning: Proper care should be taken prior to starting to
groom a horse. Make sure that the horse is tied up properly.
If you do not know the horse’s behavior, be very careful
while cleaning the facial parts; the horse might react in
an unwanted manner, causing injury to you.
by Björn T.