Fall is in the air, even though it's going to be in the mid-80's again this week. But it is nice and cool at night and Teddy is shedding his summer coat like crazy while at the same time, thickening up his winter coat. After being body clipped all summer, the feather on his legs are coming back nicely too.
I use a couple of different types of horse grooming curry combs on Teddy when he's shedding at the end of Summer. Because his coat is shorter, these are different than those that I use in the Spring when his coat is about 2 inches long. The basic, rubber, flexible curry works really well to loosen the hair on his body. I also like the jelly scrubber to use on his legs because it is even more flexible and I want to be extra careful on them. This is followed up with the Leistner Dandy Flick brush and the Leistner Natural Bristle Haflinger brush to get the hair and dust off of him. This all takes a lot of elbow grease and is fun and relaxing, and with this great weather, I could do it all day everyday!
Summer is here in full force with warm temperatures and high humidity. This is also the time of year when Teddy starts to struggle with anhidrosis, a condition where the horse's ability to sweat shuts down. This can be dangerous because sweating is how horses cool down their bodies, and it can lead to heat exhaustion, collapse, or worse.
The first sign that Teddy shows this condition is when the first hot, humid days start, he will be rapidly breathing with visibly flared nostrils and heaving flanks, even while just in his pasture. I always compare how he is sweating compared to other horses and he does have a little bit of sweat on his chest, but that is all. I will hose him down for several minutes while continually scraping until the water on his body is cool. Then, he sits under a fan for at least an hour to cool off. I also body clipped him for the second time this year.
Teddy has had this condition for the past two years and after researching the various supplement and treatments, I've found that there is not one thing that works for every horse. There is also no substantial finding that addresses the cause of anhidrosis. So, what I did is try what most people try first, and that is One AC supplement.
I also found that people give beer to there horses for anhidrosis, specifically dark beer, so I added a Guinness Stout.
Finally, I also added an electrolyte supplement.
I started Teddy on 1 scoop of One AC back in March to try to get him ready for summer. Then, at the first sign of becoming over heated, it went up to 2 scoops of One AC and 1/2 scoop of electrolytes in his morning supplements and 2 more scoops of One AC, the beer and 1/2 scoop of electrolytes in the afternoon. He also got daily, sometimes twice daily, hosing/scraping sessions followed by sitting under a fan.
Thankfully, after about a week of this, he started sweating again and no more panting. I then am keeping him on 2 scoops of One AC and 1 scoop of electrolytes in his morning supplements and a beer once a week. I have also been taking his temperature and on the warmest days, he has been at 99 to 100 degrees every day, which is average. I wish I had taken his temperature when he was panting, but I was so focused on getting him quickly to the wash rack, I didn't want to take the time to take his temperature.
Next year, I'm going to be even more proactive on trying to be a step ahead of this problem. Anhidrosis is a scary thing and I feel lucky that Teddy has responded well to basic treatment. The panting was the biggest symptom he had but was not lethargic and did not have any dry coat problems, which are also symptoms.
UPDATE: 2016 - Teddy is sweating this year! We've had 90 degree, humid weather and he is doing great. The changes that I have made in his supplements since last year is to add 1/2 cup of Omega Horseshine a day to his feed, along with Vita-Flex MSM, and I took him off of Smartbreathe. I don't know if any of this is why he is sweating again but am so happy that he is!
If your horse has symptoms of anhidrosis, definitely consult your vet. There are different treatments available and I am listing the one's that I know about below. I've only tried One AC, Guinness, and electrolytes, so ask your vet what is best for your horse.
One AC supplement
Let M Sweat supplement
True Sweat supplement
Platinum Refresh supplement
Equine Mega Sweat supplement
Finally, I have read that beet pulp and antihistamines, such as Dex or Tri-hist can contribute to or be a cause of anhidrosis. Teddy did not take any of these, so I can't comment much more than that. Again, it's best to consult your vet.
Teddy's Tack Trunk now has with several new horse grooming brushes in stock from William Leistner. For more information, click on the title or image.
Leistner Luxurious Large Goat Hair Brush
Extremely soft and luxurious horse grooming brush made of long and thick, 100% pure goat hair with beech wood handle and a durable leather strap. This is the large sized brush.
Size: 210 x 95 mm or 8.3 x 3.7 inches.
Leistner Natural Mixed Bristle Dandy Brush
Medium soft, all natural tampico (Mexican fiber) bristles and an inner core of coarse bristles with a lacquered beech wood body. This dandy brush has a dual purpose of flicking dust and also brushing off mud and getting deeper in your horse's coat.
Size: 200 x 58 mm or 7.87 x 2.28 inches.
Bristles: 2.56 inches
Leistner Natural Bristle Haflinger Brush
The Haflinger grooming brush has a very dense bristle tipped (530 bundles) of 100% pure horsehair. This makes the skin receives a special glow. The back is varnished beech wood with the Haflinger breed logo and the soft leather strap has "Haflinger" printed on it.
Size: 210 x 95 mm or 8.3 x 3.7 inches.
Bristle Length 20 mm or .8 inches.
Leistner Natural Bristle Hoof Brush w/Handle
Hoof washing brush with beech wood handle. Stiff, natural fiber bristles on the end for tough scrubbing with natural Mexican fibre (also known as Tampico) bristles for cleaning.
Size: 250 x 65 mm or 9.8 x 2.5 inches.
Leistner Mane & Tail Brush - Hedgehog Light
Hedgehog design, rubber pad, needles with heads, beeswax light beechwood body, with a durable leather strap.
Size: 125 x 75 mm or 5.0 x 3.0 inches.
Leistner Mane & Tail Brush with Handle
Universal double-sided brush, rubber pad with headed needles on one side and pure wild boar bristle brush on the other side. Beautiful brown grained beech wood handle. Also makes a great hairbrush for the rider because wild boar bristles smooth and shine the hair.
Size: 220 x 60 mm or 8.7 x 2.4 inches.
Just like a typical Haflinger, Teddy gets very fuzzy during the winter. He looks like a Teddy bear horse!
I prefer to not blanket him in the winter, but, he also sweats a lot, even after a short ride, and it takes a long time for him to dry. He lives out 24/7, so in the winter, I make sure he doesn't go out wet when it is cold. Although, I doubt he would mind because he likes the cold weather.
So, I did a modified Irish-type clip on his neck, chest and just past the girth area. These are the areas where he sweats the most so drying out in the winter was easy. You can see it below. This is right before I did a full body clip, and he had, at this point, already shed a ton of hair.
Teddy is very good for clipping. He is very quiet and calm, even when clipping his ears, face, and legs, which are the usual sensitive areas that I've experienced when clipping other horses. I also use quiet clippers, that are not as powerful as the big, noisy one's, but if the horse is clean and you keep the blades cool and oiled during the clipping process, they work great. Here they are, the Andis AGC Super 2 Speed clippers with the wider, T-84 blade.
Here he is after his clipping. He is about 3 shades lighter and lost probably about 10 pounds of hair.
And the next day, he was ready for a ride.
The weather is getting warmer and Teddy the Haflinger and his friends are loving their afternoon naps in the sun. Usually, some of the horses will lie down while others stand to keep watch. But, as you will see, this group was very tired from what I can only guess is that they just finished eating their hay. I also feel sleepy after I eat a big meal.
Teddy and one of the ponies, PJ, got things started. Will the other keep watch?
Nope. Flash (the paint horse) and Buddy (right) decided to join in too. So that left the grey as last pony standing.
Obviously, the grey pony, Blue, was so tired and decided things were fine. So, he also joined the slumber party.
Recently, I ran over Teddy's leather halter with my car and it got badly scuffed and the clip on the throat latch broke. I left it hanging on the passenger side mirror and the lead rope got caught under the tire when I drove off and almost took the mirror off. Anyway, the car was fine but the halter was not. So I went on a hunt for a new one.
I like padded halters and Teddy isn't turned out in one, so I wanted something nice. I've heard about the American leather makers, like Quillen, Danzig Bros., and Tack Shack of Ocala and decided to choose one of these. Each of these companies do handmade leather goods and have reputations for outstanding craftsmanship, as well as high quality.
After looking at each company's website, I decided to go with Danzig Bros. They had the nicest looking padded halters and the price was right. William Danzig is actually the person that I dealt with and when I first called him, he was at the Keeneland horse sale. But, he was happy to speak to me and after we discussed what I wanted, he asked me to email him so that he could send the halter measurements back. I could have gotten exact measurements and they would make it custom, but Teddy usually is fine in horse sized halters, so that's what I ordered. I also got the fixed chin and the brass nameplate. The leather color is black with burgundy padding and brass hardware. They also offer other leather colors, as well as nickel hardware. Danzig Bros. leather goods are also Amish made.
So, here is Teddy in his halter. I actually captured a very nice photo, and Mr. Danzig asked to use it on their website.
The final cost, with shipping, was $109. I think that is a very good price and I am very happy with the fit and quality.
Here's the link to their website: www.danzigbros.com. If you are planning on ordering from them, I would definitely email or call them first. Their website is a little confusing and the prices don't include shipping. A lot of their items are made to order, so in my case, it took about 3 weeks.
Teddy is boarded at a local hunter/jumper farm and lives with a group of very nice ponies. They are known as the "little boys" and they all get along really well. Teddy is at the bottom of the herd because I think he just doesn't want to put much effort in to running around and sparring with the others. He's much more interested in grazing until he's sleepy and then sleeping until he's hungry.
Of the seven other ponies in his pasture, Teddy is best friends with Buddy. Even though, when Teddy first came to this farm, Buddy picked on him relentlessly. He was the recipient of many bite marks, courtesy of Budders. But in the end, they became BFFs and I often find them doing things together. When I turn Teddy out to the pasture, he usually finds Buddy first and then they spend their time grazing together, drinking water together, and even sharing some salt.
2015 has started out wet and rainy here in Georgia, and Teddy the Haflinger Horse was soaking wet when I went to see him today. It isn't very cold, but I wish the weatherman would have been a little more accurate on the timing of the rain, because I would have thrown his sheet on the night before. Oh well, he's fine.
Since the weather is so yucky, there's not much to do at the barn when it is so wet, I decided to make Teddy a warm, healthy treat. I know that there are bran mashes but, for various reasons, I don't really want to give him bran. So, I mixed up a small pot of oatmeal, carrots, apple, and a dash of cinnamon and cooked it in lots of water until it became a slurry of horsey goodness. Then, I added a splash of 100% pure apple juice to cool it down a little and add some more flavor. I poured all of this in a bucket and off to the barn I went.
The delicious smell of warm cinnamon and apples filled my car on the 5 mile drive, and I couldn't wait until he tasted it. After wading through the mud and muck to catch him, he willingly came with me in to the barn. He knows that there's always a good grooming session and maybe a snack or two during the process. Well, there wasn't much grooming to do so I put a towel on his back and covered him with a polar fleece blanket. Even though it was going to rain again, I wanted to try and get some of the water off of him.
I put the bucket of his oatmeal treat down and he dove right in. And, yes, he loved it and licked the bucket clean. It is very satisfying cooking for your horse. Although, I wouldn't do it every day, once in awhile is perfectly fine. It wasn't a lot either, just a snack. So, I'll be planning to do this more often, especially when it is cold. Maybe once a week at the most.
Teddy's Tack Trunk would like to wish all of our wonderful customers, visitors, and friends a joyful holiday season and a very happy New Year!
We appreciate everyone's support and are looking forward to some new product offerings for next year, as well as continuing to offer the same, quality grooming supplies that we have now.
I really enjoy clipping horses and have recently done several at my barn for upcoming horse shows. It really makes the horses look clean and pretty and makes winter grooming a breeze. However, in colder climates, blankets and turnouts are a must for a clipped horse, which is sometimes a hassle. Teddy does not get clipped for the winter but instead I do it in the Spring. He lives outside 24/7 and does not show, so I prefer that he keeps his natural, winter coat. Therefore, I don't blanket him either.
Anyway, here are some tips that you can use if you are clipping your horse.
It's best to start with a freshly bathed, dry horse. But that isn't always possible because of the cold weather or because a last minute clipping job is needed. However, it is important to get your horse as clean as possible to get the best performance from your clipper blades.
So, if you can't bathe your horse, use a curry comb to loosen as much dirt as possible, and then use a dandy flick brush followed by a body brush. Teddy's Tack Trunk offers a complete line of William Leistner brushes that are excellent for grooming your horse. For more information on these horse brushes, go to our Grooming Brushes & Tools collection page.
Next, you can get even more dirt and grime off of the horse with waterless shampoo, such as Espana Silk All Natural Waterless Shampoo. You simply spray your horse and then wipe off the dirt and grime with a towel.
The final preparation for clipping your horse is to spray him/her with a detangler, like EQyss Avacado Mist Conditioner Detangler or Espana Silk All Natural Detangler & Sunscreen. This will make your horse's coat smoother and will allow the clipper blades to glide through it more easily.
Now it's time to use the clippers, and please make sure that they are clean and oiled. Also make sure that your horse is completely dry before starting. The waterless shampoo and detangler sprays just take a few minutes to dry. Turn on the clippers and let your horse hear the sound of them. Gently place the body of the clippers (not the blades yet) on your horse's shoulder to let him/her know that you will be starting to clip. If you horse is calm and aware, you can start clipping. I usually start on the shoulder area and do one side first, then the next, followed by the legs and the head. Some horses are more sensitive on the legs and head so I might start with those areas just to get them out of the way. I also use a hay net for a horse that gets antsy, to give him/her something to do while clipping. Periodically, clean the clippers by brushing out the clogged hair, spray with coolant, and always oil them last, wiping off excess oil before starting to clip again. While you are clipping, use a body brush to clear the clipped hair and remaining dirt out of the way.
Once you are finished with clipping your horse, you might find that the horse has some type of skin fungus, such as rain rot or crud. Often times you can't see this prior to clipping, when the horse's coat is thicker. To keep this from spreading, these skin problems need to be taken care of. You can spot clean the areas with an anti-fungal shampoo, like EQyss Micro-Tek Shampoo or Espana Silk All Natural Antiseptic Shampoo, followed up with an anti-fungal spray, such as Zephyr's Garden Anti-Fungal Spray, EQyss Micro-Tek Spray, or Espana Silk All Natural Antiseptic Topical Spray. All of the products are all natural and made with the highest quality ingredients. It is best to do a daily treatment to get these skin conditions under control and these products are safe and effective to get the job done.