If you use blankets on your horse or pony in the winter, October is the time to start looking for your horse’s blankets. But where are they? If you are an organized person, they are stored in a box and are clean and ready to go. But if you are like most of us, your horse’s blanket is probably in a messy pile on the floor of the tack room!
Blankets can be expensive items of equine clothing, and they will last longer if you look after them properly. It’s not that hard! The best time to clean and store a blanket is in the spring, right after you take it off your horse for the last time. Instead of “storing” the blanket on the tack room floor, wash it, treat it with waterproofing solution and pack it away in a mice-proof container. Check out how easy it is to take care of your blankets.
1. Wash both sides of the blanket with a delicate wash detergent or a special blanket wash (you can find these where you buy blankets.) Use a soft brush to remove mud and manure. Then hang up the blanket to dry.
2. Go to the tack store and buy blanket waterproofing solution. If you can’t find it at the tack shop, go to a camping store and buy tent waterproofing solution instead. Read the instructions on the container. Usually you mix the solution with water and then sponge it all over the outside of the blanket. Hang the wet blanket on a fence and let it dry.
3. Take a close look at the blanket’s stitching. Is it ripped? Is the blanket torn anywhere? If it is, take it to a saddler to have it repaired. Blankets can last for year if you make simple repairs. Most saddlers will only work on clean blankets, so make sure the blanket is spotlessly clean before you take it to the shop to be repaired.
4. Finally, fold up the blanket and store it in a mouse-proof and water resistant container. Now it’s ready to keep your horse warm in the winter.
Thanks to Becca Santrock for being a great blanket-cleaning model!