Big Time Beginner Question......

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Well-Known Member
Jan 12, 2005
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Hi Everyone! I know this may sound stupid but I'm not sure how to give my minis a bath. I need some advice on how to do it, what to use, where to do it, I'm just not confident enough to do it yet. I have given them a sponge bath with just water 4 or 5 times but not a "real" bath. I'm a little nervous about doing this because of a scary experience with a big horse
, so any tips or tricks would be really appricated. I just need some advice and I know I can always count on you guys
!!! Thanks abunch, Leya

Oh ya, I forgot to mention awhile ago I read on here someone said "minis are like potato chips! You can't have just one!" Well in December of 04' I bought my first mini and now I have 3! Thats almost one new mini every 3 months!!! CRAZY!!!!
Mabey if I can figure out this bath thing I can get some pictures and show you all my babies!!( mabey someone could help me with posting pics?!)

Thanks again!!
-Get a bucket.

-Add a good amount of shampoo in the bottom of the bucket

-Add water to the bucket, use some water pressure to help create suds

-Drop a sponge or soft body brush into the bucket

-Go get your horse

-Tie your horse securely

-Be patient and stand away from the horse out of it's kick zone with the hose in hand

-Start by hosing the legs first and work your way up

-Hose off your horse until he's good and wet

-Get your sponge or brush out of the bucket and continue scrubbing your horse down -- Think as if you were washing a car

-Once you're done scrubbing the body I put the shampoo straight on to the mane and tail and give it a really good scrub

-Once you've scrubbed until your heart is content begin to hose your horse down again

-Remember to be patient, stand out of it's kick zone and start with the legs

-Rinse until all shampoo is removed

-Praise your horse and remove all excess water with a sweat scraper or if you don't have one even a clean brush

-Tie your horse where you wish, so that he can safely dry

-If you wish apply something like Laser Sheen or Show sheen

-Brush out his mane and tail

-And you're done .... by this time you're probably soaked just as much as the horse.
First of all let me welcome you from Northern Michigan! AND we'd love to see pictures.

Has this horse ever been bathed before? Normally they aren't afraid of water, but sometimes don't care much for it if it's very cold water, I always started them by hosing the feet and legs, not like the car wash, just gentle spray, let them get used to it, use sponge in a warm busket of suds to wash then rinse with hose..if you don't have access to hot water that's ok,. Just don't over sdo it.

Never spray the face use sponge with clear water , always careful of the eyes.

Use sqeegee to get excess water off. Depending on what you're doing wither walk dry, stall or let them out to go right back and roll and get dirty:) Even if they do that, you've had a chance to really check them over for any skin conditions, bites etc.

Good idea to maybe spray/wipe with a SHow SHeen type product to help shed dirt inbetween can apply it wet too. Don't soak skin, JUST the coat.A little conditioner on mane and tail, (I have used Pantene Pro V conditioner), let soak 5/10 min.and rinse well might make it easier to brush out in further groomings.

My two stand right out in the hard rain, even storms. Even though they have nice walk in shed..I don't stall unless I have to, they are in there to feed and that's it.Or before a show etc., company coming .

Even if you have to quit and give him a rest, lots of scratchies, rubs, so he knows it's ok, and do it in a relaxed manner.

Good luck, Maxine
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Here's another itty bitty tippy.....

I do the horse's face with a little bit of baby shampoo, incase it gets into the eyes.

Please be careful when bathing your horse!

I have absolute faith that you can do it, but MAKE SURE YOU START AT THE LEGS and work up. If you spray them directly with the cold water, you can put them into shock, and that would be really bad. Sorry if anyone disagrees with me, its just what I have always been taught to do, and its not a bad habit to get in to.
I put in some crossties about a week ago, and it sure has made bath time much easier. Also, make sure you are on a non-skid surface of some kind. I bought some of those treadmill mats and put all around my crossties, they work great! Got 'em at walmart for about $19, comes in 2x2 pieces, hooked together makes about 24 sq. ft. I got 2 packages, but one would probably work fine. Keeps them (and me!) from standing in mud and don't have to worry about anyone slipping around.
Careful how you tie the mini, too. When I am harnessing them up to drive, I clip a lead rope that's hung from a big branch of a tree. It's a dumb idea to tie a horse overhead for bathing or clipping, which should be obvious but didn't occur to me until I had one tied to that branch to clip and she reared up. They could go over backwards and break thier neck. So tie about nose level or whatever, just not overhead.
I can not say ~THANK YOU~ enough! all these suggestions and now it rains!!! Wow, I'll keep all this advice and give it a try tomorrow morning! Every thing was just what I was wondering! Perfect answers to ALL my questions!


And HI MInx from eastern Michigan! I have 3 and I know I have never bathed them but before that ...???? 2 out of the three I really had to work on their feet, they would not let me pick them out for nothing. But hard work paid off (knock on wood) my ferrier said he has never worked on a mini that stands as good as mine. So mabey with some time this bath thing will be somthing we all can enjoy! I just did not know where to start and now I do!!!

Also to Marty.... I understand!!!
Every morning we go through the routine of brushing, picking, combing, spraying and just to have "my boy" instantly roll in what ever dirt or mud he can find. I just enjoy the one on one time!! But I would be alot happier if he would TRY and stay clean for 5 minutes! LOL!

Wish Me Luck!!

I haven't given my boys a bath yet this year (I know Marty, you wouldn't be able to deal.), but between time to do it, raining and waiting for the right temperature, and my ankle messing up, well, there you go.

I do have another issue that bothers me. I try to have lots of buckets pre-warming in the sun, as we have well water that is about 55F. So they are not to happy with that cold water on them. That's why I figure a hot day would be the only time I could bathe them. I've looked longingly at those portable water heaters, but my husband says we'd blow a fuse, so to forget it.

How do you all deal with COLD well water?
Bath? Ohhh, you mean a dirt transfer... the fine art of transferring dirt from your horse onto YOU!

My two words of caution: Don't wait until the evening to start a bath, leave plenty of hours before sundown/dusk for your horse to dry. Even if it stays warm after the sun starts to go down, a cool breeze could give him a chill.

Second, don't give a bath to a horse standing on dirt of you can help it! My horse Loooves to splash in the water, so his belly always gets mucky when he splashes it all over himself. If you must tie on bare groud to bath, move your horse to a dry spot of ground to dry, don't leave him standing in the puddle or he might get his legs and belly dirty again.

Don't bath too often and remember... rinse, rinse, and rinse some more to avoid the "post bath itchies" and dandruf from shampoo residue.

Oh... and when you're prepared to have the hose turned on yourself so the dirt transfer doesn't continue to your house

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