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MajorClementine

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We had a BIG rainstorm in the middle of the night last night. It was totally unexpected. When I got up this morning (earlier than usual thanks to a 2 year old) I went right out to check the minis and feed. My poor Major was shivering something fierce. Clementine wasn't as much but I felt so bad. They had gotten locked out of the back pasture where their shelter is. They did have a big tree to stand under but they still got pretty wet. I gave them an extra helping of hay and some grain and fed them inside the shelter. I feel terrible. I'm hoping the sun will come out so they can lay down and soak in it to warm up.

So this breeds a question. Blankets... who uses them? We have really cold hard winters here but it seems like the minis grow plenty of coat. I'm actually not so worried about the snowy winter as the wet cold fall and spring. Are blankets worth the investment to have around? I'm also thinking of getting one for my riding horse. What I don't know is weather blankets just make me feel better or if they actually help out the horses that much.
 

targetsmom

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I would have blankets for each horse JUST for a situation like you had, but not for regular use. In my mind, a shivering horse needs one, in which case I will toss one in the dryer so when it goes on it is already nice and toasty. Also, for those type of conditions you need blankets that are waterproof. For normal cold (without the wet) horses that are allowed to grow winter coats (i.e. not clipped or just shipped in from Florida) will usually do just fine. Putting a blanket over a fluffy coat will lay down the coat and somewhat defeat the purpose. But a wet and/or shivering horse is another story and IMO should get a blanket until they warm up.
 

chandab

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Blankets??? Good question. In general, our minis don't need them, as mother nature provides more than adequately to keep them warm. That said I do have blankets available in sizes to fit everyone, but not necessarily enough for everyone to wear one at the same time. I live in NE Montana, and we get cold in winter, and usually have a fair amount of snow. For my normal, healthy minis, I do not blanket them (unless I've clipped them too early in the spring and we get anohter cold snap); but I have 2-3 horses with health issues and they often wear blankets all winter. My Cushings gelding, despite that long, ugly Cushing's coat, often gets cold in winter; so if needed he gets a blanket. I have a mare that doesn't seem to grow as much hair as everyone else, so when she needs it, she gets a blanket. And, my small stallion came to me from a warmer climate, and even though he's been here through several winters and grows a long coat, he sometimes needs a blanket to get through our really cold spells.

Here's a group shot in winter:

Bonny - March 14, 2012 - with Tana and Showy.jpg

Happens to be March, but you can still see they are very fuzzy.

And, a couple more in November:

TAna and Bonny - Nov 10, 2009.jpg

My 3 year old, January of her first winter, so only like 7 months old:

dolly - jan 11, 2010.jpg

The girls in Feb a couple years ago:

Showy - feb 27, 2010 - butt shot.jpg

And, while not a pic of my gelding, but rather his paddock 3 years ago, when he was stil a stallion:

winter 2009 - Dakota's paddock.jpg
 

MountainWoman

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I live in a cold climate and we also have lots of dampness and chill. I have blankets for everyone. I think they are worth the investment. I don't necessarily have to use them on everyone or all the time but there have definitely been times I needed them.
 

Minimor

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This time of year, as long as the horses are healthy, a cold rain won't hurt them, even if they are shivering while wet. It it were a prolonged cold rain and they have no shelter then I light blanket if they are cold, but if they can get into a shelter out of wind and rain then they soon warm up. In your situation this time I wouldn't use blankets.

When I do use blankets--in winter I have one made that doesn't tolerate cold well, especially if it is windy. I blanket her during the cold spells. this spring I had a flu bug go through the horses and when we got a spell of cold, rainy weather some if them were COLD, even in their shelters. In this situation those horses were blanketed--because they were sick and feverish they needed some help to stay warm.
 
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kay56649

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I live in the icebox of the nation (you can look it up, it exists, literally) and we use blankets if it's super cold (like -50 degrees Fahrenheit) but we har the advantage to a heated barn for them. Our horses beg for their blankets! We love them! We have heavy winter ones, hunting season ones (blaze orange), and fly sheets and they all work wonderful!!!
 

Grace67

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this will be my first winter with my new minis and I know they'll probably grow thick winter coats like my fjord gelding does I'd like to have a couple waterproof turnout sheets and blankets on hand for them just in case as we often get wet and cold storms that can last for days. What brands do you like best for waterproof capabilities, good fit, etc? I've always used Weatherbeetas on my big horses and they've been great, not finding anything with them in mini size though?
 

Minimor

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I recommend the kensington waterproof turnout that Ozark sells--it fits well, stays in place and wears well. It is truly waterproof and breatheable too.
 

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