What to do after clipping your horse

What To Do After Clipping Your Horse

When you’ve finished clipping, switch off the clippers and move them safely out of the way ready for cleaning. If you used an extension lead, put it away securely.

Praise your horse. After all, the happier he is, the easier it will be to clip him the next time.

Remove the loose hair from your horse's coat as this may make him feel itchy. The best way to do this is to give your horse a bath. If this is not possible because it’s too cold, simply sponge him off with a bucket of warm water. Put some HibiScrub in the water - this will remove any surface grim as well as loose hair. Alternatively, groom him with a soft brush to remove all the fine hairs left from clipping and to smooth out the coat. A good curry comb session and a thorough brushing are important if you’re going to put a clean rug on, as the fine hair and grease that has been loosened after the clip will end up on your nice clean rug!

Some like to follow grooming with a coat conditioner to put a shine on the freshly clipped hair.

Ensure that your horse is warm enough, so rug accordingly. Remember the more hair that is removed, the more rugs your horse will require. Most horses with body clips of one design or another will need to be rugged and may even require neck covers.

Clean the clippers. Unscrew the top, put it to one side with the spring and metal clip that holds the blades in place. Gently lift the blades off, being careful not to drop them. Brush away any build-up of hair from both the clippers and blades. Wipe the surfaces down with a clean cloth. Then oil the clippers and blades and place both neatly back in their case. Store them in a dry place so that they don’t rust.

In the days following the clip, it's important to keep the coat and skin well-conditioned. This can be done by using a variety of different products, such as moisturising sprays, and grooming to aid blood flow, etc. If a clipped coat is well cared for from the beginning, the new coat that grows through will also benefit. A shiny coat will also help to reduce the chance of skin irritations.

No matter how much or how little hair has been removed, a clipped horse still needs to be regularly groomed, especially before and after every ride. It’s also still important to sponge off any sweat as it can dry out their skin.

Often, a clipped horse is livelier, so you might want to consider reducing their hard feed temporarily if this is the case.

When exercising a clipped horse, it may be necessary to use an exercise sheet to protect him, not only from the cold, but the wind and rain too.

And finally… clean the area of the yard where you clipped, so that it’s ready for the next horse!

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Kim Horton

Co-Founder of EQUUS and a keen equestrian, when Kim's not at her desk she's with her horse, Waldo.

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