How can i save time in winter nights?
Mud, rain, more mud, more rain, oh wait a little bit of snow and sleet thrown in for good measure don't we sure love the great British Weather! Add a white tail in to the equation for good measure and i think we are just about exhausted by winter already.
Owners often spend many hours a week washing & brushing mud from their horses tails; I personally had a Welsh Section D for many years and he had the thickest tail i had ever seen, come 5pm and i had just left work heading down to the yard to bring my little mud monster in i would see his face stood at the field gate, the look of sheer contentment that he had done his best to cake himself in as much mud as possible ready for me to repeat the same rigorous routine of hosing his tail, spraying it and brushing it through. Then before i knew it I looked at the time and realised i had to go home to family life and could not even ride (not sure he would have been unhappy at this though). The problem with his thick tail was as the mud got on to his native hair it would stick and twist so that not only did i have to wash his tail in -0 degrees with a cold hose, i also had to spend a good hour using conditioner to randomly separate and untwist the dreadlocks back out. After working a full 45 hour week i was by far from lazy but was starting to feel fed up by it. I spent the sparse time i did have at the yard clearing mud out of his tail, however he is such a sensitive quirky boy that even walking from the field to the stable he was the 'yards entertainment' as he walked past each stable like John Wayne due to the thick piece of tail hitting his hocks every stride. It was certainly one way to lift his hocks. He really did have the full yard laughing with his funny gait.
*photo below courtesy of a customer
Aside from the cosmetic & time issues this created it also weighed a lot, so i did worry that the weight pulling down on his back could cause him back issues as the clogged damp mud was heavy.
Myself and the Horzehoods Team started experimenting with tail bags, trying lots of different fabrics, trying to be scientific in design and my little Welsh was the perfect tester for the job.
Waterproof tail bags seemed the first point of call with a velcro tab, the con's were that mud got in the velcro and the waterproof fabric was heavier than it needed to be. After various tests, we finally made a tail bag with an extremely simple tie system made from our very popular Hood fabric, nothing scientific or technical yet was so simple it was genius. It worked for the body and coats so why not the tail? And bingo! He wore it out all day with no problems, it was absolutely heaven to get to the yard from work in the dark with his cheeky face peeping over the gate at me knowing i could brush him over, untie his tail bag and plait and that was us off for a ride. Something so simple yet saved me a good hour extra at the yard and meant he was exercised a lot more.
Our Tail Bags are purposely not waterproof, they don't need to be, their aim is to keep the mud off. The beauty of our special hood fabric is when wet it dries so quickly always reverting back to that super lightweight texture perfect for the job.
Of course anything on a horse can come undone, move, get lost etc to the point where we think as owners 'how on earth has he managed that'. I think the classic one has to be finding your horse in the field with no rug on, then actually finding the rug in the field fully fastened? how do they even do that? :D But getting back to the product my Welsh Pony never had instances of losing his.
Another bonus for using them means we do not have to brush them daily, we would always advise not over brushing manes and tails, a couple of times a week if already clean is more than sufficient. Every time we brush hair, we brush follicles out. The Tail Bag prevents us having to do this.
Do i use anything else with my tail bag?
Yes. My favourite products are 'Alva Horse Mane and Tail' which is purely natural and it smells beautiful too, i also like Smart Grooming Products Coat Sheen.
A typical routine would be 1) Initially wash the tail completely with shampoo 2) Spray your chosen product 3) Plait & use several good quality bands to secure (i always use three) 4) Put your plait inside the tail bag, then loop the two ties through the top of the plait (I repeat, tie and loop through 3 times in total just to keep a really good secure tie).
TIP: We always suggest having two or three to rotate for even more convenience, you can simply take home and wash or run through the hose at the yard, hang up in the tack room and you have a dry clean one as and when needed.
Hey Presto! An extra hour a night to ride. Bonus!
- Tail Bags RRP £12.50
- 12 Colours to choose from
- Instructions inside each packet
- Next Working Day Delivery
- Very simple yet effective
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