Heading towards fall, we'll soon see temperatures begin dropping. For our horses, this often means transitioning from a slick summer coat to a thicker winter version. This is Mother Nature’s way of insulating horse's from lower temperatures, rain, snow, etc. However, given the workouts we give our horses when we exercise them, this also means increased sweating and potential overheating
In our previous blog post, we discussed some of the most popular clips used and the strategies behind them. In this article, we will dig further into the thinking involved in selecting a clip as well as the best ways to execute your selected clip style.
#40: Surgical or Fine Cut Much as its name suggests, this blade clips the horse's hair fairly close to the skin. In fact, if you were to review the horse's skin after clipping, you would see tiny nicks or abrasions, everywhere you had clipped.
#30: Medium or Fine Cut While the size of this blade is still finer than the #15 Blade, also called the "Medium Cut," this is the size most commonly used by show barns for removing hair from the horse's face, inside the horse's ears and around his eyes and nose.
#15: Medium or Fine Cut This blade cuts the horse's hair slightly shorter than the #10 or "Course Cut," blade, making it the blade of choice for many people when clipping their horse's faces and heads.
#10: Coarse Cut This is the clipping blade designed to leave the horse's hair the longest. Many folks utilize this blade for body clipping. Most clippers come with this blade, standard. It is an excellent choice for clipping the horse's legs so that there is still some protection. Number 10 blades are offered in both wide and regular sizes, with the wide size being the blade of choice for most body clipping projects. If you're concerned about clipping in curvy areas such as the ears, consider the Andis T84 #10 blade.
Always oil your blades with clipper oil, prior to clipping. Reapply clipper oil periodically during the process. Always wipe the blades with a brush and wipe off excess oil before reapplying. You will notice a change in the sound of the clippers as they become thirsty for more oil.
Clip against the grain of the coat using long, sweeping strokes for best effect. Keep an even pressure to avoid creating lines and markings. It's critical that you allow the clippers to move gently through the coat rather than pushing them forcefully. A gentle approach will help keep nicks and cuts to a minimum.
For more tips on coat care, see our article on grooming and come back to Spalding soon.
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