Stable horse rugs are designed to keep your horse warm, protected and clean when stabled. There is a massive range of stable rugs available on the market, each offering various key features, all of which need to be considered when purchasing a stable rug.
Your biggest decision may well be surrounding the level of warmth offered by the rug. This is dependent upon the amount of filling inside the rug. The filling, often referred to as weight, will vary from lightweight (no to 110g of filling) to mediumweight (120g to 250g of filling) to heavyweight (above 250g of filling).
Your requirements in terms of weight will depend on the time of year, your horse’s needs and the location in which your horse is stabled. For example a horse that feels the cold in winter will need a thicker rug than a hardier horse. Equally, if the horse is stabled inside a barn, this is usually warmer and hence the horse requires a less heavy rug than when kept in a stable that’s open to the elements.
Another key choice is whether to purchase a ‘standard neck’ stable rug or a ‘full neck’ or ‘combo’ version. This difference between these is how the rug is cut at the neck. A ‘standard neck’ rug starts at the horse’s withers and therefore does not cover the horse’s neck. ‘Combo’ or full neck horse rugs, which cover the horse’s neck from the ears, offer greater warmth and protection. However some standard neck stable rugs offer the option of a separate neck cover, which can be added onto the rug, enabling you to adjust the coverage as the weather changes.
One main consideration when choosing the style and weight of stable rug is whether your horse has been clipped or not. You will need to replace any coverage that has been lost through clipping. This should be taken into account when making the choice between a full neck and a standard neck stable rug.
The depth of the rug will also affect how much warmth it will provide the horse with. This shape will vary with style and brand. As many economy rugs are less generous, spending less can be a false economy as you may find that the rug does not offer the coverage and protection that your horse requires.
The ‘Denier’ of a rug describes the strength of the outer fabric; the higher the Denier the tougher the material on the outer of the rug. As a stable rug is not open to the elements or as much potential damage as a turnout rug, they tend to have a lower Denier rating. However, as with turnout rugs, a stable rug with a higher Denier is likely to be tougher, and hence may last longer. It is important to remember that stable rugs will still rip if placed under sufficient pressure; this is as a safety mechanism to prevent your horse from being injured.
Stable rugs offer a wide range of fixtures and fittings to help keep them securely in place. This is important as your horse may roll in his stable, causing the rug to slip. Most stable rugs will feature chest straps, cross surcingles and leg straps as well as any closures for the neck cover. Ensure that these attachments are done up correctly to avoid the rug coming loose or rubbing.
There are also additional features that can help improve the comfort of a rug; an essential consideration as your horse is going to be wearing this piece of equipment regularly and for significant periods of time. Look for anti-rub linings, particularly at the shoulder as this is a high risk area for chaffing, and shoulder and neck gussets, which allow for greater freedom of movement, especially important for when the horse lies down and then stands up!
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You can find a wide range of of stable rugs at great prices at Equestrian Clearance
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