The Perfect Fit
Wrapping your horse in a well-fitting blanket is like giving him a big hug, even when you’re not there.
Take it from the Top
The top of the front closure should line up with the point of your horse’s shoulder, and the neckline should lie smoothly above your horse’s shoulder without pulling. You should be able to slide one hand between the blanket and your horse’s withers.
There should be a slight overlap in the fabric under the front closures, and those closures should be snug but not straining. Similarly, you don’t want to see anything “cheeky” when viewing the blanket from the back—the edges should reach, but not cover, the tail.
Keep it Covered
The blanket needs to be long enough to prevent drafts and provide adequate warmth. Make sure the blanket covers your horse’s barrel entirely, ending just below his elbow and stifle.
Wither Woes and Shoulder Rubs
A blanket that’s pulled tight across your horse’s withers or shoulders is a recipe for rubs. For high-withered horses, look for a high-neck cut, and for horse’s prone to shoulder rubs, try the V-Front closure offered on many Horseware Ireland blankets.
Go for the Gold(ilocks)
In other words, make sure the fit is “just right.” If you see any skin peeking out under the front closures or more than 2” of skin between the edge of the blanket and your horse’s tail, the blanket is too small and will cause rubs. If it sits loosely and easily moves when fully buckled, it’s too big and will shift and bunch, causing rubs and even getting tangled up.
Don’t Skirt the Issue
The blanket shouldn’t look like a mini-skirt or a bed skirt. If your horse’s belly is peeking out, he’s not getting the full benefit of the warmth. If the blanket falls more than halfway to knee or hock, it’s too long, which probably means the blanket is too big overall (or is simply the wrong style for your horse).