mane trimming suggestions?

Discussion in 'Miniature Horse Forum' started by WinchesterGirl30, May 1, 2015.

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  1. May 1, 2015 #1

    WinchesterGirl30

    WinchesterGirl30

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    I am wondering how everyone else trims their horses manes? My girls have such THICK manes and getting them with scissors just makes them look choppy and terrible! But they can't hardly see they are so long and thick now. So what does everyone else use/do to shorten and thin out manes??? Thanks!
     
  2. May 1, 2015 #2

    chandab

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    I don't, since I don't show, it's good fly protection. The closest I come to thinning, is combing without detangler.

    Che - July 17, 2014.jpg
     
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  3. May 1, 2015 #3

    amysue

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    I agree with Chanda, mane and forelock provide excellent fly protection. I just snip a 2"bridle path behind the ears so their halters do not slip off. Some of mine are so hairy, they're hard to halter and bridle. I have had to thin the forelock of show and working horses and when I do, I always cut from the underneath so as to achieve a natural look. Start by grasping the longest hairs of the forelock, brush out the shorter hairs on either side and snip a line pointing up toward the ear just trimming off the outermost hairs. Once both sides are trimmed, you will have cut a "v" pattern on the poll trimming only the short whispy side pieces of hair on either side of the forelock, so the remaining hairs are long and smooth. It keeps the length for eye protection, but cleans it up. If the mane is too thick, you can flip it over to the side it does not fall on and clip off a small strip of hair along the crest. Do not clip on the outside on the side that the mane falls or your horse will look like it has a mohawk along the crest. If your horse rubs his mane and has broken hairs that stand up, you can slick them down with leave in conditioner, detangler or MTG hair grower (it does have a funny smell though fyi). Sometimes a trim isn't necessary, it is amazing what some detangler and a comb can do to slick it all down into place. If you do trim it up, a fly bonnet may be necessary to shield your horse's eyes and ears.
     
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  4. May 1, 2015 #4

    WinchesterGirl30

    WinchesterGirl30

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    This is one of my mares she is constantly trying to get hair out of her eyes lol I also brush without detangler to make it a bit thinner, the mane might be fly protection from some flies but around here our big issue is black flies, they LOVE to burry under hair to bite. So in the spring my poor girls are covered in bites all under the mane along the neck (goes for people necks too sadly!). They also can't see which is why I want to at least trim it a bit. Mine are hard to get a halter on to because of the hair but I don't like snipping the bridle path so I just deal with it lol. I don't care about it being slick, they aren't show horses but I know how bad it gets for them in summer between the heat and the black flies which is why I want to trim it. I just would like it not to look choppy like it usually does. Thanks anyway though!

    IMG_201505121_105137.jpg
     
  5. May 1, 2015 #5

    chandab

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    I think that thinning shears might be available, kind of like what a hairdresser uses but heavier duty to be able to clip coarser horse hair.

    If the mane and forelock are rather tangled, like in wind knots (or with burrs), then cutting before combing out sometimes works for thinning and shortening without that blunt look.
     
  6. May 2, 2015 #6

    Rocklone Miniature Horses

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    You can just pull it like you would a normal horse. They dont excatly like it but it works and looks good.
     
  7. May 2, 2015 #7

    Marsha Cassada

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    Use a clipper blade to comb through mane and forelock. This will shorten and thin naturally. Braid the area at the bridle path so it's easier to get the halter on; use a rattail comb to divide the forelock/mane. I use girls' hair bands as they are easy to use and don't cut the hair. Undercutting the heavy mane is an attractive way to make it appear thinner without losing the natural appearance.

    Someone once showed me to use a regular wire brush. Brush at the roots of the mane; I believe it helps remove wee insects.

    On my new horse I was thinking I would leave it all thick and natural. But after trimming my other horse in the usual way, I believe I will go ahead and trim the mane of my other horse also. It looks so much cleaner and shows off the head better. But, bridle paths are maintenance, and it takes a looonnnngg time to grow them out, so one has to be sure.

    My vet told me that forelocks in the eyes can cause irritation, so I keep mine braided. A fly mask, of course, could be the answer, too.

    I don't think scissors ever give a natural look, unless one is a beautician and has the expertise.

    Check out some photos of show horses. Of course they are extreme "glamour shots" but you can see they are groomed to show off the horse's good points. A lot of mane and forelock can disguise a handsome neck and head. Just because a long, thick mane and forelock are "natural", doesn't mean it's better.

    btw, love your bay girl--my favorite color!
     
  8. May 2, 2015 #8

    paintponylvr

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    So - what about just removing all of it? With clippers. That's called "roaching" or "hogging the mane".

    Here's what it looks like growing out -

    [​IMG]

    If you do it now, it might be grown back in enough to be protection for the winter. Not sure and it varies. It took 2 years to grow this boys' mane out after 1/2 of it removed while showing. Then when I sold him to a friend and she couldn't deal w/ the way it was knotting up a lot , she "roached" it all off... not sure when - but may have been in January?
     
  9. May 2, 2015 #9

    Margo_C-T

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    I have done well by doing two things. To get rid of some of the 'sheer weight' of a long, thick mane, I use the clippers on the UNDERSIDE of the mane, 'roaching' off as much as half the overall width of the mane. This is simple and easy to maintain with good electric clippers. To simply thin and shorten, I do use thinning scissors....a basic 'human' kind. Yes, it is slow and tedious, but if you are careful and don't try to hurry the process, it can work very well. Have mane clean and well-brushed out first, then part off a SMALL strip of hair, hold it straight out, 'cut' about three times at different locations along the length of the hank of hair you are holding, at different locations. Repeat along the entire mane. You may need to go through and do the entire mane again in the same manner, esp. if you want to shorten it significantly. Yes, it will take some practice to do it well...but remember, hair grows back!

    I will NOT 'pull' a mane....the horses HATE it(how would YOU like to have your hair thinned/shortened by yanking out a few hairs at a time??)...and it makes your fingers VERY sore. I've not tried using the 'clipper blade' thing, but seems to me it would be more damaging to the hair than the straightforward

    cut of scissors. JMHO. On reflection,I recall that if I wanted to both loose some of the sheer weight of a mane, AND shorten it, I did the 'underclipping' first, then used the thinning shears...just need to remember that it might take less 'cuts' w/ the thinning shears after an undercutting, as you working w/ much less volume of hair! Good luck!
     
  10. May 3, 2015 #10

    WinchesterGirl30

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    Thanks for the suggestions everyone!
     
  11. May 4, 2015 #11

    BiologyBrain

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    <quote>I will NOT 'pull' a mane....the horses HATE it(how would YOU like to have your hair thinned/shortened by yanking out a few hairs at a time??)...and it makes your fingers VERY sore.<\quote>

    Pulling the mane does not hurt the horse. It may be aggravating since you are pulling on their neck, but it's isn't the same as pulling your own hair. Their manes don't have the same kind of nerves as our scalps. Using a pulling comb or any kind of comb keeps it from hurting your hands, you also should just pull for a short while a day - either take breaks or just do some each day.

    I have pretty good luck just using a regular human hair brush - the ones with rubber tips and cushioned base - vigorously on a regular basis. If there are knots just pull the brush through. The bristles are plastic and flexible enough that most hairs don't break, but strong enough that some are pulled out if they're knotted. The ponies I like to keep long manes on get this treatment to thin it out & then get braids when worked. If you leave a kind of long-bushy tail on the braids they still work to keep flys at bay.
     
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  12. May 17, 2015 #12

    horsenut50

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    I used thinning shears on this mare. Her mane was quite long and needed some maintenance. I thinned it in the middle and the bottom causing thinness and a little bit of layering so it didn't have a totally butched look to it.

    image.jpg
     
  13. May 18, 2015 #13

    paintponylvr

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    That is an awesome job.
     
  14. May 24, 2015 #14

    jandy

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    horsenut50 - that looks so beautiful. Glad my mini can't see your hairdressing skills. I cut Crystal's forelock as she had a continual weeping eye and I wondered if it was the hair irritating.

    Weep has dried up since cutting, so I am happy with that - but it sure looks a bit "hacked" .. maybe practice makes perfect, this is my first trim session.
     
  15. May 24, 2015 #15

    secuono

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    I cut the underside. I haven't seen it help with flies, flies are mostly on face or belly. =/ My horses just sweat a ton with thick manes. So I either shave it off, keep it short or cut underside.
     
  16. May 27, 2015 #16

    Shari

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    Maggie has super, super long and thick mane and forelock. Got annoying when I was driving her so I just roached it. Looked pretty good and easy to care for.

    Maggie19June13.jpg
     
  17. May 27, 2015 #17

    Marsha Cassada

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    I am pleased with Ranger's mane. I thought I might leave it uncut, but after agonizing over the decision, I did clip the bridle path back about 6-7 inches. Undercut, then used a clipper blade to thin. Using the clipper blade gives a very natural look as it thins and shortens. I've used thinning scissors before, too, but I think the clipper blade works better. Takes a little longer. His mane is finer and tangles easily. Keeping it shorter and thinner has made a big difference.

    As for forelocks, I keep Dapper Dan's tied or braided in a pony tail band to keep it out of his eyes. When we go out in public, of course, it is removed. He has such a handsome head and expression, I like to have the forelock out of the way so I can admire him, and keep an eye on his eyes for problems.

    Ranger's forelock is thick but not long, so not an issue.
     
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